Tell us about yourself:
I’m a 36 year old married Library Technician doing cataloguing for the Federal Government. I’ve lived in Ottawa all my life.
How long have you been an AFOL (adult fan of LEGO):
I started playing with and building sets around 2008. I became an even more passionate AFOL after joining ParLUGment in 2017.
How did your interest in the hobby develop:
Believe it or not I did not have any LEGO sets at all as a kid. My husband really wanted the Christmas train set and so we decided to buy a big bin of LEGO off Kijiji that had a bunch of train track in it. I got hooked playing with and sorting out all the other pieces and managed to put together a bunch of Harry Potter and Star Wars sets.
How did you find ParLUGment:
I initially heard about ParLUGment by attending a local show in 2014 as a spectator with my husband. Then later on, I was buying parts off of a Bricklink store run by group member Andy M and decided to do a local pickup. He told me where the group meets regularly and it seemed to work out as a perfect opportunity to join.
What is your favourite theme:
I absolutely fell in love with the LEGO Ideas Bird set (21301). Then the designer of that set Thomas Poulsom published a book called “Birds from Bricks” (ISBN: 978-1631590795). I built all 15 of those models and have continued to expand my LEGO Bird collection ever since.
What is your favourite aspect of the hobby:
My favourite aspect of the hobby that I really enjoy is displaying my LEGO bird collection at various events and locations. I love seeing people’s reactions to the fact that my collection ranges from very tiny birds to really large birds. I’ve had my collection on display at multiple locations of the Ottawa Public Library and I was amused when I got an e-mail from a librarian saying that my collection was so popular that at one point there was actually a bit of a lineup of people stopping to look at it!
What is your proudest accomplishment within the hobby:
In September 2018 my husband and I were very fortunate to have been selected to participate in the LEGO Inside Tour in Denmark. This was a trip of a lifetime for us, it truly felt like everything about it was meant to be. During the tour we had the opportunity to build our own MOC using the largest selection of LEGO pieces I’ve ever seen. I wound up building a Peacock. I was later surprised to find out that our MOCs were being judged by actual LEGO designers and I won 1 of the 5 prizes. I won the Old Gray Spade Award for Best Part Usage, which came with a unique Lego trophy and a card signed by all the designers. It was such a memorable experience!
“I really admire how my passion and creativity for Lego has come full circle to inspire others to be creative and supportive. When I was unfortunately diagnosed with colorectal cancer back in the fall of 2020, several members of this wonderful ParLUGment group collaborated to make me some very special presents! They made me a batch of LEGO flowers (before LEGO actually officially released some flower sets). They also made me some very cute birds to add to my collection. I treasure them all, especially the hummingbird that even came with instructions that were very kindly dedicated to me!
Another story that I would like to share is why I sometimes use the nickname the “LEGO Lady”. After my first chemo treatment one of my colleagues made me this very special “You are Awesome” plaque. I decided to take this plaque with me to the hospital as something to focus on during my next CT Scan. I had such a positive experience that my father-in-law who works at that hospital went to thank the nurse the next day, and she was looking at him like who are you talking about, and he says “Oh you know, the “LEGO Lady”, and her eyes lit up with a smile as she remembered me sharing that plaque with her. Ever since then I’ve been using the nickname the “LEGO Lady” throughout my cancer journey. After 15 rounds of chemo I made special thank you cards for all the staff reminding them that “Everything is Awesome” when you’re part of a team and I signed them the “LEGO Lady”. While I was in the hospital for both my surgeries I was of course building some smaller LEGO sets, and funnily enough one of the nurses from my first surgery, remembered me as the “LEGO Lady” during my second surgery! My passion for LEGO has certainly been instrumental in keeping my spirits high on my healing journey these past few years!”