Sunday, December 23, 2012

#idlenomore Lives on...

 has a SPIRIT now, it's been blessed by the sacred pipe, ceremony, Natural Law, & Creator; it can never die

Thursday, December 13, 2012






Take Care,
Shannon M Houle, BGS & BEd

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Friday, December 7, 2012

Idle No More: Confederacy of Treaty #6 Press Release & Info

Idle No More: Confederacy of Treaty #6 Press Release & Info: Some more reading for the grassroots people of Treaty # 6 Territory taken from the Confederacy of Treaty 6 website: TREATY SIX CHIEFS O...

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Idle No More: A Humble Request From A Tired Old Warrior

Idle No More: A Humble Request From A Tired Old Warrior: Jessica Gordon posted on Idle No More - Edmonton Facebook Event Page: Please Read and share with your people. This was sent to me from a d...

Friday, November 30, 2012

ATEP graduates enter teaching profession as proud alumni

atep600px header
Bachelor of Education

University of Alberta 2012
(L-R) Enaam Moghrahi, Shannon M Houle, Joyce Vandermaas, Serena Inscho, Heather Spokowski, Lisa Lefebvre, Vivian Wirth, and Jennifer Spence 
As just under 200 students walk the stage at fall convocation 2012–and just as many unique stories with them—we look at this time to some of our ATEP graduates for their reaction to graduating and their thoughts on what they see in their future as educators...

...Shannon Houle from Saddle Lake says she is already seeing the benefits of graduating from the ATEP program. She started teaching this year in a northern community.
Houle“Having a program like ATEP is so important. Today I am getting my BEd degree, but I have also been given the opportunity to...To Read more CLICK HERE

Monday, November 26, 2012

Crystal Lameman...Standing Up for our True Mother

Crystal Lameman, Beaver Creek Cree Nation, Canada

“It is my obligation as a mother, my obligation to my ancestors to ensure we have our rights respected. It’s my obligation to my future generations and most of all to our own true mother—something each and every one of us here has in common. That obligation can never be surrendered. We are keepers of the land, stewards of the land. Every single thing that a human being needs to survive is here in Canada.”

Activist Interview with Crystal Lameman from Nobel Women's Initiative on Vimeo.

To read HERE

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Cree Syllabics with Reuben Quinn

Reuben is articulating the proper pronunciations for each syllabic on the Cree Star Chart.

He learned the Star Chart from former teacher late Roseanna Houle at Blue Quills School.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Irresponsible Oil...

3rd Major Oil Spill in Alberta & that's only the ones that made it to the news....a few days after Bill C-38 is passed & Earth Summit 2012 begins...shame shame...


  • June 20-22, 1992: Earth Summit 1992 - Severn Cullis-Suzuki 12 years old
  • much has happened in between...but many countries said they would step up but time told a different story...North America & China are major contributors to raping the Earth...

  • June 9, 2012: Red Deer, AB - 475,000 Litres

  • June 18, 2012: Earth Summit 2012 - Severn Cullis-Suzuki 32 years old (20 Years Later)

Other Reads & watches...

70% of our Wetlands have been cleared in Canada - we need them to clean & filter our water, prevention of droughts, floods, & our very survival & the survival of unique plants & animals to our lands...


Saturday, June 16, 2012

The We Dance

Show the world it's cool to care. Learn the We Day dance and join thousands of people across North America who feel the passion and energy of the movement.

It's easy, it's edgy and it's a perfect way to channel your world-changing energy. Share your best moves at We Day, or use the dance at your fundraising and awareness events.

From flash mobs to group performances, the We Day dance is a perfect way to generate interest in your cause in a fun, unexpected way.

Be a part of the movement. Learn the We Day dance...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Dr. James Makokis has been featured in children's book

Tansi All,

PLEASE PASS ON & share....

Dr. James Makokis has been featured in a children's book from the NAHO organization on the promotion of Indigenous health & wellness.  Excellent resource on science, well-being etc.  Please download, save, promote, and use.  It's unfortunate this amazing organization's funding has been cut from the federal budget as so many much needed Indigenous organizations have also been forced to close.  NAHO will be done as of the end of this month due to this funding loss; therefore, I encourage you access as much information from this website as soon as possible.  Sad days for Successful Indigenous Organizations but this is usual standard for the Canadian Government, once an Indigenous Organization shows promise ~ CUT FUNDING....hmmmm sorry, I am quite annoyed by this!  Maybe those of influence can help change this trend.

Media Release: 

The National Aboriginal Health Organization's (NAHO) funding has been cut by Health Canada. It is with sadness that NAHO will wind down by June 30, 2012.
For more information: NAHO Announcement 5 APR 12

Take Care and from the Desk of,
Shannon M Houle, BGS, BEd 2012 Candidate

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dedication to nohkom Roseanna Houle

"You only have to look at a child and you will find something to love in that child, even at first when you think the child a little rascal. The children know what you think of them. From then on, you only teach from the heart and that is the only way to teach!" 
- Roseanna Houle

nohkom teaching the Cree language
I am currently taking an art class (EDEL 302) from the University of Alberta for my after degree in Aboriginal Teacher Education (Bachelor of Education) and our austhetic assignment was to pick an Artist, reflect on how this artist's piece moved my heart & spirit and then create or make a visual representation of what I realized.  Well as I was pondering this over the weekend, I was having to dig around my study and look for art supplies to start creating my "visual representation" ~ boom, I came across this article written about my late grandmother (nohkom) who is and will always be my idol, hero, rock...she represented all that was good & beautiful in the world.  I was only honoured to have her in my life until I was nine years old but she has always been central in my life and heart.  Here is a write up about her done by a former but retired newspaper, "The Native People" in August 1979 and author unknown.

Her blood flows through my vains & I will always honor my hero and get strength, and remember her immense unconditional love kakike (always) ~ the strong messages we get from our ancestors!

I just wanted to share this with you and hope she inspires you to see all that is beautiful in the world and even in the eyes of a child...

She would teach all day & come home to us, her grandchildren, and teach us our mother Tongue, Cree.

Her words are simple:

"You only have to look at a child and you will find something to love in that child, even at first when you think the child a little rascal. The children know what you think of them. From then on, you only teach from the heart and that is the only way to teach!" 
- Roseanna Houle

Here are a few exempts of other accounts of her tireless work in the promotion of the Cree Language:
"In conjunction with the Alberta Curriculum Development Branch, Blue Quills had developed language books, teachers’ guides, student texts, and exercise material in the Cree language. Cree was also taught as a second language to students in the high school and was accepted by Alberta Education as a second language credential for university entrance. The materials developed were Cree 15-25-35 for grades ten to twelve. The Board assigned this responsibility to Mrs. Roseanna Houle who worked with a team of Cree language curriculum developers. Impassioned with the love for the language and a gifted teacher, Mrs. Houle inculcated this passion for the language into her students. Upon completion of the curriculum development project, Blue Quills had continued to write and publish other types of materials including a beginner’s manual for non-Cree speakers, the syllabic system of writing, and the correct application of Roman Orthography. The history of the Treaties was to be recorded to enrich the academic programs and strengthen students’ pride in their heritage." 
Blue Quills First Nations College, 1971-2001 30th Anniversary Commemorative Edition p. 9 (accessed May 30, 2012)

Another recollection of nohkom, comes from an interview of late Stanley Redcrow in 1972, former employee of Blue Quills School in regards to the take over of Canada's First Native Owned & Operated school in Canada.  Jean Chretien was overheard saying we would fail within the first year.  That was over 41 years ago and the school is still alive and well.  As I write this it is conducting it's annual Week Cultural Camp at the very grounds that used to be a prison for many during the Indian Residential School era.:
"...Sask. Indian: Did you make any changes as far as the curriculum went and the teaching of Indian Culture?
Mr. Redcrow: Yes we made a lot of changes. There was no Indian language taught at this school. Right away I told the people to start teaching the cree language, reading and writing and also different ways of doing things to improve the Indian situation that is say, making moccasins, and bead work and all kinds of things like that. They are doing that now and the children are very happy.
Sask. Indian: I understand you have a cree teacher here, Mrs. Roseanna Houle, from nearby Saddle Lake Reserve. Perhaps you can tell us a little bit about her class and how she teaches the children.
Mr. Redcrow: She started with the alphabets and it took her a little while before she could make the kids understand what she was trying to do but of course she's talented to teach the cree language and she just goes ahead like a real teacher and she's doing a very good job. Some of them didn't even know how to speak Cree, their own language and now they are starting to learn their own language again by reading and writing and practicing with the others..."
Saskatchewan Indian. 1972. Interview with Stanley Redcrow. Available at (accessed May 30, 2012).

Monday, May 28, 2012

Aaron Paquette Journal: Sunshine Breaks Through

Aaron Paquette Journal: Sunshine Breaks Through: Cree Teachings 24"x 26" Mixed Media on Canvas 2010 Sohkahcahkwewin ᓱᐦᑲᐦᒐᐦᑫᐧᐃᐧᐣ It means having strength of soul . I called this Cree ...

Aaron Paquette Journal: Painting at the Royal Alberta Museum

Aaron Paquette Journal: Painting at the Royal Alberta Museum: Teachings of the Sweat Lodge 24" x 36" Mixed Media on Canvas 2010 A few days ago I was at the Royal Alberta Museum. I was asked to paint ...

Aaron Paquette Journal: Notes for my Children - Responsibility

Aaron Paquette Journal: Notes for my Children - Responsibility: It’s time to take responsibility, and that’s a Big Deal. Most people will spend their entire lives trying to do the exact opposite, to avoi...

Friday, May 25, 2012


As a proud First Nations Cree & Dene woman who exercises her Treaty Right to hunt, gather, fish, & maintain her culture, & who needs a healthy (Mother Earth) Environment to maintain that Right, I accuse the Oil Industry of Infringing on My Rights & say with all my Spirit & Intent that my Treaty Right can & will not EVER be bought ~ this Treaty Iskwew is not for sale & I will instill this in my grandchildren & you will not starve my family into submission...I will stand strong & tall until my last breath on our Great Mother! 

ekosi maka

... I will make you proud my ancestors, my greatest strengths ~ Mistahi Muskwa (Chief Big Bear) ekwa nohkom Roseanna Houle

Mrs. Roseanna Houle teaches the Cree alphabet

Support the Winnemem Wintu Tribe

On May 20th during the Occupy Oakland General Assembly a representative of the Winnemem Wintu tribe requested support for their War Dance that will take place on May 24-27, which they hope will convince the Forest Service to close the river for their Coming of Age ceremony.

For more information about the War Dance please visit

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

[Positivity] How to Get the Boring Tasks Done

"Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week."
Spanish Proverb

"Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task."
William James


Not all tasks of the day are inspiring, fun or exciting. Some just feel dull or boring. But you still have to wash those dishes and take care of those monotone, routine tasks at work or in school.

So what can you do to not get lost in procrastination? How can you get going with those tasks you don't feel much like doing and get to done?

In this newsletter I'll share how I do it, how I get some motivation and find more pleasure in what may seem to be a boring task.

  • Think of why you are doing the task and how good it will feel when it is done. Instead of focusing your mind on how boring a task may feel focus your thoughts on why you are doing this and how good it will feel when you are done with it. If needed, sit down for a few minutes, close your eyes and see in your mind and feel how good it will be when you are there, when you are done with the task. Then go to work with that motivation and those positive feelings in your body.

  • Do it mindfully. When you sort papers, do the laundry or do the dishes be fully there. Focus 100% on just the fork with all your senses - how it feels, looks and smells - as you are scrubbing it and nothing else. Don't get lost in daydreams. If you are just there I have found that even such a simple and mundane task becomes more enjoyable and something that can bring inner calm rather than distress.

  • Don't think too much. Get going instead. The more you think about the boring task the more boring it seems in your mind. And so it becomes harder and harder to get started and to get to done. So try to think very little about it. Just make a decision to start doing the task, get up and go do it right away.

  • Make a deal with yourself and set a timer for 10 minutes. It is often in easier to do tasks like these in small bursts. So make a deal with yourself to make a dent in this task. Make a deal to just spend 10 minutes on your inbox, mundane reading or cleaning the house. Set a kitchen timer and say to yourself that you only have to do this work for 10 minutes. When the timer rings you can continue doing it if you feel like it (this often happens to me because getting started is the hard part). Or you can stop and go do something more interesting instead.

  • Create a pleasurable distraction. If possible, try to listen to the radio, your favorite songs, an audio book or watch a movie or TV-episode while doing your boring task. You don't always have to do just one thing at a time in silence. I often listen to music or watch an episode of the Simpsons while doing the dishes or other routine work at home.

  • Reward yourself. When you are done with your task then reward yourself. Take a walk in the sun, move on to a more fun or creative task at work or in school or have a tasty treat. This habit can make it easier to get started and to keep going each day. Because you know that you can look forward to not just being done and the long-term payoff from that but also your immediate reward right after you are finished.

I hope this email will help you to have a great and less dull week!


Want to learn much more about living a simpler, happier and less stressful life where you dare to follow and achieve your dreams in 2012? Then check out my premium courses and guides:


Kapellevagen 19, Uddevalla, 02 45144, SWEDEN

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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Niki Watts: An Inspiring Native Youth

Here is a young lady who inspires all by being her & the love for the Arts & Music

Niki Watts: Entry for the video contest sponsored by Tri Cyclen Lo.
Please help me get enough votes and views before MAY 24TH 2012! Please remember to share this video! Also one view per day per IP address counts as a vote and will help me win in this contest! Thanks everyone.

All original songs by my sister Caley Watts:
Song 1: Tumble Weed
Song 2: Lady Rain
Song 3: Lay Me Down

Monday, May 7, 2012


Here is an excellent opportunity in our area considering Doula's are finally considered a valuable asset during labor, delivery and after support in the Alberta Medical Field.  Doula is a historical practice that is healthier for mother & child...

DOULA TRAINING @ Blue Quills First Nations College


A Doula, opamihowosiw, is a non-medical assistant who provides physical, emotional and informational support in prenatal care, during childbirth and during the postpartum period

June 4—8, 2012

Please Register and Pay Fees by May 25 2012 
Tuition/Registration: $450

The 4 day training includes Modules in:
Traditional Knowledge 
Wholistic Health 
& Doula

For More information and to Register Contact: Corinne Jackson at Blue Quills First Nations College — 780-645-4455 ext 121

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Onchaminahos School:EARTH DAY 2012

Shannon M Houle has sent you a link to a blog:

Please forward Ay-hay

Blog: Onchaminahos School
Post: EARTH DAY 2012

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Monday, April 16, 2012

Why First Nations cling to their reserves

Why First Nations cling to their reserves

Certain questions come back time after time in mainstream Canada's hunt for understanding of First Nations issues. One of the most important focuses on the nature of reserve communities. If the situations on Canada's First Nations reserves are so horrible, why don't the people just leave?
Canadians seem baffled by this. The images of squalor, poverty and rampant Third World conditions have confounded them. No one can imagine having to endure such despairing environments. Yet, year after year, another First Nation community emerges to shock them all over again. They listen while governments and First Nations leaders blame each other for the failure of the system...Click here to read more

Why First Nations cling to their reserves

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Save Canada's Environmental Laws

Save Canada's Environmental Laws

Canadians want strong environmental laws to protect our communities, ecosystems, health, and economy.

Tens of thousands of Canadians are urging the federal government to protect the safety and security of our families and of nature through strong environmental laws.


Sign the Petition

Groups nationwide have endorsed a common set of principles that outline how Canada’s environmental laws can support a clean, healthy and sustainable future. Find out more aboutEnvironmental Assessment for a healthy, secure and sustainable Canada. 
See our issues & resources page for more information and our action centre to have your voice heard.
Please see our endorsers page for a list of organizations who support our principles for strong environmental laws...GO TO MAIN WEBSITE TO GET INFORMED

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Please help the Norwegian Wolves


I just signed the petition "Please help the Norwegian Wolves" and wanted to see if you could help by adding your name.

Our goal is to reach 5,000 signatures and we need more support. You can read more and sign the petition here:


Sunday, February 19, 2012

Genetically Modified Foods Change our Physiology

How GMO foods alter organ function and pose a very real health threat to humans A MUST SEE, YOUR LIFE DEPENDS ON IT:

Cree Teachings - Cycle of Life

I attended one of the first of many Cree Language Conferences in my home community last Thursday and Friday, Saddle Lake Cree Nation located within Treaty #6 Territory.  I was so appreciative of the opportunity to be apart of this conference.  Having it locally within the community made it all possible because I didn't need to seek sponsorship or pay to attend if it was elsewhere like Edmonton.  In addition, the majority of the presenters were local teachers, Elders etc..  This venue created an excellent opportunity and atmosphere for me to access valuable resource people on a personal quest to understanding me, my family, and community.

I walked away with so many valuable lessons and yearning to learn more.

One teaching I wanted to share is my interpretation and/or perception of what Elder, George Brertton shared with many of us while I attended his Medicine Wheel session.  He shared that there are 4 directions, North, East, South, West.  Within those directions are the 4 Elements that give life, Air, Sun, Earth (Land), and Water.  He said we all need these 4 elements to exist, all living things need these to live and survive.  Then he went on to say, without one means NO life and we need to respect these 4 Elements.

As he was drawing the circle on the board as his visual pictorial representation of the teachings, he added the directions; the animals in each direction; and the 4 Elements.  Then he proceeded to share the 4 Laws.  As he wrote the 4 Laws on the board, above the Medicine Wheel (Cycle of Life) it went like this:

Land (earth)

Then he circled the first letters of these 4 Elements to spell the 4 LAWS.

It was like a light went on in my head when I saw this.  I have always known this but it was uplifting to see it represented like this.  I felt excited because I could see how this teaching could assist me in teaching the Cycle of Life (Medicine Wheel) in the classroom.  However, another realization came to me as I began to study these 4 Laws and their place within the Circle of Life (Medicine Wheel) ~ I first looked at the Land (earth) in the south, then went to the element Air in the north, to element Water in the west, and finish with element Sun in the east.  As my eyes followed this sequence of all 4 Elements I could see a path forming and this path created the number 4.

The next day, I went home and created this visual representation of what I learned from the Elder:

As the Elder stated, we need all 4 Elements to ensure life exists, we destroy one and there is NO LIFE!
Please note, DO NOT GENERALIZE NATIONS as all being the same
the colours represented for each direction are commonly used in my area and vary among Nations and also families.  For instance families have their own colours.  nohkom (my grandmother) Roseanna once shared with us, her grandchildren our family colours being White (north), Yellow (east), Red (south), and Brown (west).  I have seen other Nations use Blue and Black in the west direction also.
At the end of the day, there are 4 directions and 4 Elements of Life.

Residential schools called a form of genocide - The Globe and Mail

 The Globe and Mail: Residential schools called a form of genocide: 
The chairman of Canada's truth and reconciliation commission says removing more than 100,000 aboriginal children from their homes and placing them in residential schools was an act of genocide.
Justice Murray Sinclair says the United Nations defines genocide to include the removal of children based on race, then placing them with another race to indoctrinate them. He says Canada has been careful to ensure its residential school policy was not "caught up" in the UN's the link to read more

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Canada Fails Aboriginal People in Education but help other countries of the students, a smart and popular boy from a reserve in northern B.C., dropped out this fall, it was an eye-opener for Pearson’s director, David Hawley. While the school provides special support for students from war-torn countries such as Afghanistan and Iraq, it never occurred to him that students from Canada, home to one of the world’s top-ranked education systems, would need the same consideration. He and his staff are now investigating whether they can provide first nations students with the same supports they provide international here to read more

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Our Legacy - The Face Pullers: Ch.3 images - Chief Ermineskin and Grand-daughters

(L-R) Alice Crandell, Chief Ermineskin, Amelia Crandell Chief Ermineskin with grandchildren

Our Legacy - The Face Pullers: Ch.3 images - Chief Ermineskin and Grand-daughters

nihkawiyis (my father's brother's wife) showed me this picture she came across and nohtawiyis (my father's brother) explained that the description says this is Chief Ermineskin with his two grandchildren.  Our family genealogical stories tell us that my great great grandmother was the step-daughter of Chief Ermineskin.  He took on a Cree wife from the Onion Lake or Saskatchewan area and she already had two children.  One of these children was given to European Quaker named John Crandell.  John Crandell got off a boat in Maine, USA in the late 1800s and went across the United States and ended up in Hobbema, AB area for a number of years.  There, he befriended Chief Ermineskin and was given one of his step-daughters as a wife.  This step-daughter had two daughters from John Crandell and named them Alice and Amelia.  Therefore, from the family stories, we can speculate these two grandchildren portrayed in this picture with Chief Ermineskin are John Crandell's children.

Years later John Crandell moved his family to the Whitefish Lake area in northern Alberta near the Whitefish Lake First Nations #128 reserve.  Alice Crandell married a Metis from northern Alberta with the last name Sinclair and Amelia Crandell had a child from Zachius Stamp from Saddle Lake Cree Nation.  This child was my grandfather, Joseph P (Stamp) Houle.  Amelia was given to Tom Houle of Whitefish Lake First Nation #128 and had many more children.

nimosom (my grandfather) Joseph P Houle married Roseanna Cardinal (Eldest daughter of Jonas Cardinal) of Saddle Lake Cree Nation.  nohkom (my grandmother) Roseanna had eight children and seven were from Joseph P Houle.  One of those children is nohtawiyis (my father), Jeremie James Houle.

As we track our family history, we have only stories to guide us because there is not much written historical information on Aboriginal people.  In addition, data was collected from a European perspective; therefore our Cree way of relating (family connections) is different from European kinship and this wasn't taken into account and can be misleading and confusing, at times.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

When is Enough...really ENOUGH?

When is Enough, Enough?

The Mikisew Cree First Nation ask government and industry when is enough, enough oil sands development upstream from their community on Lake Athabasca in northeastern Alberta? Until science has a convincing answer the Mikisew want a moratorium on new oil sands projects.

Narrator: David Suzuki


The Happiness Project

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

Okay, I started a new project; which I found while strolling through Indigo bookstore in Edmonton over the Christmas and New Years holidays.  I think I might just be able to keep up with this one-sentence journal.  I suggest you check it out...

It's also available at Chapters & I will also include the One-Sentence Journal Five-Year Record book for review

What could I loose, over the years I have tried to work towards improving my life and changing behaviours that don't work for me and my new life.  A new life I've been creating since I quit alcohol, drugs, and that toxic life in 1989.  I have found in the past 10 years I am not the only one wanting to change thinking patterns and behaviours, it's pretty prevalent in the books and movies being published/released.  Our thoughts influence our lives just as much as our actions.  I never thought that when I was younger, but when I look at other people who have researched positive ways of being, our thoughts are energy and we send them out there into the universe to be manifested.  This is so clear when I came across the movie, The SecretDr. Emoto's research on Messages from Water, and while I attended Choices a few years ago.

I highly recommend this book with the journal.

The Happiness Project Official Website