2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you doing this morning? We are well. Another night where Mr. Alvin was up and down. I think it may be his arthritis. Poor guy. He has pain meds when he needs them and of course takes glucosamine daily. Which I need to go and pick up more this week. Starting to snow about 4:30 this morning, just lightly.

Last night I was thinking:

“What have we learned in 2020”

Patience

To be more patient

Not to take family and friends for granted

To be grateful at all times

That grocery shopping is a good outing

That we gave Nature a deep breath and that they would like more

To be good to nature in 2021

All creatures are important to our planet

To be responsible

To be compassionate

It is okay for women to go without makeup (who makes these rules anyway)

We no longer need heels

To Live simply

We do not need so much “stuff”

Have an organized house and workspace is important

Yes, you can do anything you put your mind to

Technology

Learning things

To laugh more

Taking care of our Mental Health

Going for a walk

Being in Nature

Exercise is important for body, mind and soul

Getting up from your desk (home) or at the office and moving about

To dance even if someone is looking

Smile even if you are alone

Call, text or email those you love or even those you do not

Keep in contact

Snuggle with your dog, cat and children more

Play board games

Appreciate just being quiet

Masks are mandatory to wear in a bank now

How to bake break and a good banana loaf

That stretchy pants and sweats are okay for everyday wear

On that note, I have to go and get to work in a few minutes.

I guess I/We have learned a lot in 2020.

Living with kindness, respect, compassion and learning to be more patient everyday.

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Happy New Year. Good Morning ALL. We were up late and up early and after sleeping on the sofa for awhile, I decided to go back and lay on our bed. I opened the blinds and gazed out at the morning sky. The sky was divided into ribbons of gray and pink as the sun began to rise. Slowly over time the gray turned to blue and the pink turned to orange and to yellow. So beautiful. It has been a long time since I actually just was still and watched the sky for any length of time. I think that even though it is now 10 a.m. and I am basically just getting up – it was a great way to start the New Year. 2021 is a New Year so why not start doing something that you would not normally do. So I did.

New Year’s Eve – Alvin and I had a quiet evening. We each had our own supper (I threw together a roasted chickpea salad with caramelized onions, fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers)and afterwards I cleaned up. Then I watched the CTV’s viewing of a James Bond movie “Spectre.” Oh, I enjoyed a “mug” of baileys over ice. After the movie it was 10:00 p.m. with not being close to the NEW YEAR, I watched a bit of Hoda & Jenna’s New Year Special and Ryan Seacrest’s Special and caught a performance by Billy Porter which was great. Every once in awhile I would hear fireworks going off somewhere in the neighbourhood. Over the evening I sent texts to family and friends as I had posted a message on FB. At 10:45 p.m. we started making our way upstairs, turning the television off, Alvin going outside one last time before bed, lights off and then teeth brushing, face washing, pjs on and bed. I ended up reading for a little while listening to fireworks. I am not certain what time I finally fell to sleep but safe to say it was likely midnight somewhere.

Things I learned during 2020:

  1. technology
  2. that I actually liked being alone with myself and Alvin
  3. loved spending more time with Alvin
  4. more grateful
  5. I liked not having to go shopping
  6. taking time to appreciate life, health, people, environment, nature and climate
  7. appreciate time at home
  8. that I love working from home
  9. learning what is truly important
  10. sweating small stuff is better than having to sweat the big stuff
  11. wearing lipstick when at home not wearing a mask makes you feel good
  12. wearing sparkly ball earrings gives you a lift
  13. learning new meanings for words such as: POD
  14. not to be afraid, continue to follow the rules
  15. walks at lunchtime with Alvin were not only good exercise but a good way to break up the work day
  16. that my kitchen is a better place for me to work than my office upstairs, which is my creative space

Well it is a New Year, a new Day and time to get this one going. Time to get dressed, make coffee, eat some breakfast, go for a walk, give Mr. Alvin a haircut and bath and do some laundry.

I hope that you had a great night last night.

This is going to be a great New YEAR, 2021. We must be patient when it comes to COVID19 as we truly know that it is not going to disappear overnight, I know that we all wished that it would. Just follow the rules set out by the Health Professionals and Government. We will get through this, one day at a time. We will be better people, better friends, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, coworkers as a result. Work together. Be strong. We got this.

Happy Friday, January 1st, 2021. YAY.

The sun is shining so bright. I just know it is going to be a great year.

We will continue to live with kindness, respect and compassion for all.

Always, Carol & Alvin

December 31, 2020 – last day

Good Morning ALL. Can you believe it? The very last day and down to last hours of 2020. 2020 came in with all of the promise and hope that a New Year could bring and is leaving us with thoughts of promise and hope that 2021 will bring. So we will start and end with the same dreams for the New Year although the in between could never have been predicted. This year has been the same and different for so many of us. I cannot compare my year to that of my friend who lives down the street and works in the healthcare field. We both have had much different experiences this past year. She has faced all of the stresses and anxieties that came with COVID19 and the Pandemic as she continued to work. Me on the other hand, when our employer announced that we would be closing our doors to the public on March 16, 2020, and start the process of having staff work from home, I had mixed feelings but mostly I was overjoyed. On March 19, 2020 I was sent home with my coworkers with a laptop and whatever supplies we required to work from home. Later that afternoon I was set up and March 20, 2020 I was working from home. In the beginning there were definitely some stressful times but over the last nine months I have smoothed out the kinks and working from home has certainly been a godsend. Of course, there are moments of stress, but that is inevitable, as my job can most certainly be stressful at times. But I no longer have to spend a minimum of 1.5 hours travelling to and from work. There are no worries about leaving a senior dog, my Alvin home alone for such a long period of time. We have figured out a few things over time and one being that we will need to go to the office for one day per month as we have some large print jobs where the documents need to be prepared to be mailed. I can handle one day each month. Of course, this may change over time. My friend down the street lost her beloved pup Abi in February and in July brought baby Bailey home. Having a puppy at any time is a lot of work and with the stresses of working during a pandemic has been difficult for our friend. We have kept in touch with porch / sidewalk visits, texts and video chats. We live only a few doors apart and yet our lives that were so similar are so different this year. She was not able to spend Christmas with her sister and brother-in-law who are expecting early in the New YEAR nor her parents. Her parents are in her sister’s pod as she is expecting. I on the other hand was so blessed to be able to spend Christmas with my daughter and son-in-law and pups. In January my friend will be hosting a “virtual baby shower” for her sister. So many firsts this year. This is a reminder that I must check out the registry and chose a gift for the new baby. I always love to buy books for little ones, cannot go wrong with books.

I am grateful that we have the technology to see family and friends. This is the time to use this technology so that no one is alone. Take a few minutes and reach out to family and friends. We are blessed to have the technology to physically see each other.

So as we wrap up this YEAR, I have mixed feelings. I would say for the most part I have positive feelings. Working from home was always a dream, a thought that I had but never thought would come to fruition. I missed spending time with my sister and brothers in August. My daughter and I did not take our annual girls road trip in August. Since March, I have mainly seen my friends from the doorway although we did have a few visits. Our girls Annual Christmas party was done virtually. I never thought that I would not enter a store for several months. From March until August, all of my groceries were picked up by my friends and my daughter. I have since that time been to the store a grand total of 6 times, been to the vet numerous times, to Shoppers once to mail Christmas cards and parcels on November 20, and to the Optometrist twice since August. I will say that the handful of times that I have entered a grocery store have been anxiety ridden for me. For the past month or so I have not been to the grocery store although I was to the Bone & Biscuit on December 11th, to pick up gifts for the fur babies including Alvin. I have been to the office three times, twice in September and once in November. Most of my time has been spent at home or going for walks. Thankfully we are able to go outside. As the time passes, I think that the only way that we can stop this virus is to follow the protocols set out by the Health Care Professionals and Government Leaders. While it is not ideal as we are social creatures, it is imperative to follow the rules. Wear masks when in public, wash your hands, stay home when you can and social distance. I will say that trips to the Vet are different now. The last time Alvin went I was not allowed to be with him, I sat with my mask on in one of the exam rooms while they took him to the back exam room. The Optometrist was definitely different. Two visits one for the exam and the other to pick up frames. They as the Vet only book one appointment per hour. Better to be safe.

Perhaps if we would have taken more precautions sooner and taken this more seriously – we would be in a better place, I don’t know. Going forward we must do what is right for everyone. This is not the time to be selfish. We do want to see our family and friends in the New Year.

The sun is up although it appears to be cloudy. This is the last day of 2020. I hope that 2021 brings us hope and promise. I know that it will take months and likely most of this next year before the vast population can be vaccinated and at this point we do not know if that is the complete answer or not but I remain positive that the scientists will figure it out and we will end 2021 in a better place. To all of those folks who lost loved ones this year, I keep you in my heart and hope that your memories will help to bring you comfort. To all those families who lost beloved pets, I keep you in my heart and hope that memories of them will bring you comfort.

May the New Year be filled with hope and promise. May you find your way through this next year with faith, hope and grace. Continue to be kind and respectful and compassionate to all others. We need each other even more now than ever.

Thank you for taking your precious time to read my words, this post. I appreciate your time.

So from our home to yours, Alvin and I want to wish you and your family a Happy New Year.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR – last quarter

Good Morning All. As we quickly seem to be moving toward the final countdown for 2020, we will remember what a YEAR! There are so many adjectives and likely a few verbs and adverbs to describe this year but in this moment, that is all I have “what a YEAR!” As numbers of COVID 19 seem to be on the rise in many countries all over the planet, I wonder as do likely millions of its’ citizens what will happen in 2021? Will it be better or will it be worse? I tend to lie on the positive side of the fence and I think although it may take some time initially but 2021 will be the breakthrough year. We will finally come together, yes even the U.S. and we will figure this COVID 19 out. It will slowly disappear from our rearview mirrors and we will be on our way. I do hope however that we may have learned as a planet just what can happen and if we join together sharing information that quite possibly maybe even in my lifetime, we will become a peaceful planet working together for every cause and situation.

Well outside Mother Nature once again has decided to let it snow. Yesterday while I was working away in the kitchen I heard something loud banging against the windows and looked up and out to see almost hail like not quite coming down in the bucketfuls. Tiny little snowballs? Lasting quite a while and finally turning into regular snowflakes. Overnight and now it is snowing big fluffy flakes. Beautiful but just means more shovelling. I shovelled the front for both sides of our house after work and the deck. I did not make it out to the driveway. I also took my first and hopefully last slip as I was shovelling my neighbour’s front walk. I was thrown “kind of off balance” as her Mom arrived with coffee and I had only started shovelling and went ahead of her to shovel and then wasn’t paying attention and went down. Nothing hurt not even my pride. Cause it happens. I do find that it takes a bit of effort to get back up. That could have to do with the extra weight and being 63. So that means I should be lifting some weights. Building my arm muscles up, perhaps. Food for thought. Two days in a row no walks for Alvin. Supposed to be colder today. Time will tell. If it stops snowing and is milder, we will go at noon.

Well I truly hit the snooze until 7:00 a.m. and it is now 7:42 a.m. and I start work at 8:00 a.m. – have to go. I have poop to pick up before I have to play “search and rescue” to find it and plug in my coffee.

I hope that you are doing great. Having some laughs and relaxing. A bit of exercise. Chatting with friends and loved ones. Remembering all the while to be kind and respectful. I reminded myself of the same as I was perhaps a bit harsh with a couple of clients yesterday on the phone. Not bad but just not as I should have been.

Always, Carol & Alvin

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