Web Application Electronic Form with a Service Guarantee

Ontario Online Certificate Application

Ontario Online Certificate Application

Ontario Online Certificate Application with 3000-7000 electronic transactions per month supporting English and French with bilingual decision logic, complex validation, feedback mechanism, and payment. First service to have a government money-back service guarantee in North America. *During time of initial launch. Current version has enhanced features and functionality.

Website Management of Internet, Internal, and Portal Websites

Various Government of Ontario websites

Various Government of Ontario websites

Administration, design, and content management of Government of Ontario / Ontario Public Service internet and intranet applications and websites with features:

  • Blogs on Health and Wellness and Innovation using standard WordPress blog features (posts, categories, comments, media integration).
  • Microsoft SharePoint team collaboration sites
  • Custom web designs (banners, graphics, CSS styles)
  • Sets of wiki pages used for knowledge sharing, project work, and communications.
  • Intranet divisional websites used for client communications and information sharing.
  • Web applications with integration of portal, security public key infrastructure, and web services.
  • First government inter-jurisdictional messaging gateway in Canada. Gateway uses FTP, SOAP, HTTP/S, web services, and custom interfaces.
  • Ontario Supply Chain Management (procurement) portal with electronic forms, reporting, and custom search and data query.
  • Static content, various content management systems and commercial products
BBQ the Healthy Way – Healthy BBQ Options and Alternatives

BBQ the Healthy Way – Healthy BBQ Options and Alternatives

This post about having healthy barbeque foods was written by guest blogger Lesleanne Blakeley.

In the information and the table below, she outlines some popular BBQ foods and suggests some healthier alternatives to typical barbeque foods allowing you to reduce your intake of fats, calories, and sodium.

Known by some as ‘Canada’s Birthday’, July 1st brings upon nation-wide celebrations. Major highlights often include fireworks, a day off from work, a long weekend in some years, and a social gathering with family and friends, which often includes a Canada Day barbeque feast that looks and tastes good, but doesn’t always include the healthiest or calorie-friendly foods.

This year, the Health and Wellness Ring wants to make sure you are able host the best Canada Day barbeque without sabotaging your diet or that summer-ready body you’ve been working hard for. With these key factors in mind, we’ve provided a few healthier alternatives for the barbeque staple foods that are sure to be just as delicious, but without the extra calories, fats and sodium.

Instead of typical BBQ fare, try these healthier options.

Typical BBQ Food Healthier Alternative
  • Beef Burgers
  • Beef Hot Dogs
  • Beef Sausage
  • White-bread Buns
  • Turkey/ Bison/ Vegetable/ burgers
  • Turkey Hot Dogs
  • Turkey Sausage
  • Whole wheat/ Multi-grain Buns
  • If beef is your BBQ meat-of-choice, always opt for lean or extra lean beef products
  • Ribs
  • Steak
  • BBQ Chicken
  • If ribs are a must for your Canada Day weekend celebrations opt for a low-fat barbeque sauce instead of using a traditional, fatty barbeque sauce
  • Red meat products tend to be higher in saturated fats (bad fats) so cutting down on these and replacing with alternatives the best you can is always a good way to ensure a healthier meal!
  • If red meat is a must, try combining it with vegetables by making shish-kabobs even healthier: chicken or shrimp kabobs- When barbequing chicken, use skinless chicken breasts, thighs, and wings, and use low-fat barbeque sauces
  • French Fries with salt and ketchup
  • Sweet Potato Fries with sea salt
  • “Chips n’ Dip”
  • Use multi-grain Tostitos instead of the regular Tostitos
  • If the “seven-layer dip” is a summertime hit at your BBQ’s, make sure to use low-fat cream cheese and sour cream, use reduced fat cheese for the top layer, and increase the vegetable content. For example, add more fresh peppers to your salsa layer
  • Potato Salad
  • Macaroni Salad
  • Coleslaw
  • Use reduced fat mayonnaise, incorporate more vegetables (red peppers, green onion, etc)
  • If you enjoy your creamier salads, opt for a broccoli salad, still using low fat mayonnaise, cutting back on carbohydrates and starch and incorporating more vitamins into your meal
  • EXTRA HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES: Mixed bean and vegetable salad to really cut back on calories.
  • Include a fruit salad when to add a healthy, yet sweet treat to your BBQ meal
  • Corn on the Cob with butter and table salt

Try Corn on the Cob with:

  • Sea salt
  • Heart-healthy margarines, like Becel, which have no trans fats and very little saturated fat but the same delicious taste as butter
Green Salads
  • Caesar Salad
  • Greek Salad
  • Garden Salad
  • Skip the high-calorie cream dressings and salads such as Caesar
  • While a Greek salad is a great way to incorporate vegetables into your meal, make sure to use low fat, low sodium feta and dressing
  • Make a garden or spinach salad healthier by adding fresh fruit or vegetables, or even a combination of both to the mix
  • Add some healthy nuts to your garden salad (walnuts and pine nuts are an excellent example)
  • Create your own salad dressing by combining extra-virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and dried herbs


The content for this post was taken from the article:

Blakely, Lesleanne (2011 June 8). “Celebrating Canada Day the Healthy Way” Ontario Public Service GSC Health and Wellness Ring June 2011 Newsletter. Retrieved 5 July 2011.

References for Original Article

Dragon Boat Paddling Technique Tips

Dragon Boat Paddling Technique Tips

5 quick tips and mental reminders about basic positions in the dragon boat stroke and what to think of.

#1 Ready Position – The Foundation

  • Sit up straight.
  • Both feet are forward and planted on the rib (ridges) on the floor of the boat. A variation is one foot may be tucked under your seat. Most important is you have a solid base with your feet and connection to the boat
  • Simply raise your paddle forward with straight arms. Elbows shouldn’t be locked and a slight bend in the arm is ok. Make sure your paddle has a positive angle compared to the water and paddle face is facing forward and not at an angle.
  • Bottom arm is parallel to water surface.
  • Paddle will reach near the knees of the person in front of you.

Mental Note: You can hold the position comfortably for 10 seconds without straining.

#2 Body Weight and Positioning on the Seat

  • Keep your weight outside the boat throughout the whole stroke.
  • An easy way to check your positioning is you should be able to comfortably see the outside of the boat and its colour while paddling. Of course, during paddling make sure to look up at your team.

Mental Notes:

  • As you’re reaching forward, pretend you’re reaching around a tree in front of you with both arms.
  • When paddling, as your bottom arm moves through the air (arm closest to water), the motion is similar to trying to reach for the shoulder of the person in front of you with your bottom arm. Just remember, don’t actually hit the shoulder of the person in front of you!

#3 Setup of the stroke – The Catch

  • Reach forward with rotation (rotating) and bend forward slightly (hinging).
  • Keep your arms fairly straight, but do not lock them totally straight. See the “A” frame in the picture for what that looks like.

Woman holding paddle with paddle, arms, and back forming A frame

Mental Note: Think you’re reaching out to pull open a big heavy door.
You need to use all your body strength (rotation) and have a stable frame (strong, fairly straight arms) to pull it open.

#4 Pull Through the Water

  • De-rotate as you pull and engage your legs to help you.
  • Put your weight on the paddle by pushing down with your top hand.
  • When sitting up during the de-rotation, lean forward a bit (e.g. 10 degrees). Avoid sitting all the way up.

Mental Notes:

Think your body is fixed into the seat and you can only rotate around a central axis. Rotate into the inside of the boat — your belly button should be pointing into the boat and rotation your entire body core and not just your shoulders.

#5 Exit and Recovery

  • Pull the paddle out of the water at the hip (i.e. when your paddle reaches your hip, pull out). Starting thinking about exiting as your paddle reaches your knee to be ready to exit at the hip.
  • Give a little push at the end of the stroke to accelerate the boat and make it easier to recover back to the catch. You can hear the sound of the water being pushed at the end of the stroke.
  • Make sure your top hand does not cross into the boat during recovery. Thinking about your top hand being over the water will help you keep your weight on the paddle and outside of the boat.
  • Lead the recovery with your top hand.

Mental Note: Think about pulling a sword out from your hip with your top hand.


Dragon Boat Canada, Bateau-Dragon Canada. (2011). Coaching Community Dragon Boat. Dragon Boat Canada, Bateau-Dragon Canada.