2021

Good Morning ALL! It feels like forever since I last wrote a post. Well Christmas is all over for yet another year. We had a fantastic Christmas. My daughter’s friend who just happens to be a pharmacist tested us all on Christmas Eve and yes, we were all NEGATIVE. Definitely one of times when I wanted the results to be negative. No worrying about securing an A+ grade. We ate until we almost burst on Christmas Eve filling ourselves with, let me see if I can remember the menu. Hot Cheese Dip with Baguette, Butterfly Shrimp, Mozzarella Sticks, Boursin Cranberry with Cracked Black Pepper Cheese “Ball”, crackers, Guacamole with corn chips, vegetable tray, and a sweet tray of baking. We also had nuts and chocolate. I see where the CHEESE was the star of the show. Likely not the best plan but oh well. We enjoyed the food. After we ate we played a game that my son-in-law got for Christmas (he opened it early), BLOCKBUSTER. Now we did not have the patience for the rules so we made up our own and I never laughed so hard. We had the best time. The game is all about movie trivia. So much fun. After the game was over we opened gifts. Now this is funny, I am now thinking after we ate then we opened gifts and then played the game. We were up until after 2:30 a.m. No, pretty sure we played the game and then opened gifts, yes that is correct. We played the game until about midnight and then it took us 2.5 hours to open our gifts. We opened one at a time. Then we had fours pups with gifts although the only one really interested in opening gifts was Alvin, Mi-Mi did make an attempt. I always love watching Alvin as he impatiently opens his gifts. He had his paw on the bag and then with his nose and mouth pulled out the tissue paper. So much fun. He loves opening presents. My daughter had a couple of her stocking gifts laying beside her, wrapped and he was tearing open the paper. Cute not someone was not impressed, lol. I was happy to see that the pups got along. Earlier I had been concerned that perhaps Mi-Mi and Cookie would be at odds but they were not. Actually a couple of times the quiet Miss Aspen let out a sharp bark at Cookie when she got too close.

Everyone was spoiled this year. I made quite the haul. I believe everything on my list with the exception of having my mortgage paid in full was under the tree. Some of the things that I had asked for were: Debbie Travis’s new book about life, filled with photos and recipes AND Rebel Homemaker, the first cookbook from Drew Barrymore and Chef Pilar Valdes, filled with photos, recipes and stories. Also on the list were fuzzy Christmas socks, Cuisinart paring knife, Bath & Body Works foaming hand soap, and a Day Planner for 2022. In addition to these gifts, I got a package of Player’s choice scratch tickets and won $5.00. Ecologic Paper Towel which can be used 200 times and is biodegradable and a Packet of tea. I also received a poinsettia plant and turtles chocolates from our guests. Late in the afternoon on Christmas Eve, some friends dropped a card and baking off for me and some treats for Mr. Alvin. We are so lucky. Mr. Alvin received from his sister and family – a cute Reindeer stuffed toy and from his momma – the most beautiful blue and green turtle. He also received more edible gifts. So we were totally spoiled. That was Christmas EVE. We did not get to bed until after 2:30 closer to 3:00 on Christmas Eve. The kids had our room and our guest the “guest room,” me, Alvin and Cookie slept on the sofa except it took awhile to get a little someone to settle down. I had placed the baby gate up so that she could not go upstairs and she whined until I got up from the and placed her on the “green” chair with Rudolph, her favorite sleeping spot. I had to do this about 10 times before she finally stopped. So it was well after 3:00 when we got to sleep.

Alvin woke up at 5:00 and then we were up about 7:30 to stay up. Not much sleep. Most of the house was up about 8:30. We had coffee which we all needed. It was us girls that were up and my son-in-law stayed in bed for awhile beyond us. Amanda’s friend left about 10:00 as she was going to pick up her girls and open gifts with them. We invited them back for supper with us.

We had a late brunch with quiches, the veggie tray and some cheese. Lots of coffee was drank. I made a second pot. Throughout Christmas Day, I quietly putzed. Taking the gifts out from under the tree and reorganizing them. Washed the dishes that did not fit in the dishwasher and once the main floor was tidied up, I went to the basement and put away the gift bags, folded up the tissue paper – all to use another day. The kids had done some wrapping in the basement after they arrived on Christmas Eve. Once the cleaning and tidying was done, I had some more coffee and checked out the recipes for fresh cranberry relish and dressing. We had a quiet but enjoyable afternoon. We had planned to have supper about 7:00 p.m. but our company arrived a bit later, and then she wanted to test her daughters with the rapid covid test (like the one that we did the night before). It was closer to 8:00 p.m. when we had supper. The girls were negative. Thank goodness everyone was negative. We had a lovely supper of roast chicken breasts, whipped garlic potatoes and gravy, dressing, fresh cranberry relish, corn, peas and homemade buns (from one of my friends). Our dessert was baking which consisted of fudge, sugar and chocolate chip cookies, butter pecan tarts, chocolate caramel candy and some cookies from the BON TON Bakery. Anyway, we ate too much but it was good (if I do say so myself). Usually I do not like to make new recipes when there is company but both the dressing and the relish were so good. Will make them again.

The girls opened their Christmas gifts from us.

After clean up, we sat down and had another good game of BLOCKBUSTER. My son-in-law and I took on the other four girls. They won but it was a close fun game. We close on a Christmas movie category. Can you believe that I lost on the category? We named so many movies before we could not name anymore. If I could have included all of the HALLMARK movies that I have been watching – we would have won but they were excluded. Oh well.

Dee and the girls left just before midnight. We were in bed shortly after. This time the kids took Cookie to bed with them. She settled down and we all had a good night sleep. In fact, it was not even Mr. Alvin who was up first – it was the other pups at 6:15. My daughter and I fed the pups and then laid back down again. It was almost 10:00 when we all woke up. I guess we needed the sleep. I was happy that the kids decided to stay for another day.

We had a bit of breakfast and visited. My daughter and I had packed up most of their things.

The best gift of all was not really a physical gift but my son-in-law arranged for me to go to the INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION, to go to space via a virtual reality headset. Both my son-in-law and daughter had tried it and warned me that I may be dizzy or nauseous and that I may not be able to keep the headset on for a long period of time BUT I surprised then when I squealed with delight during my space trip. I got to literally touch the space station, saw the stars and the sun and earth. I felt as though I was an astronaut in space. It was the most coolest experience of my life. I would have stayed there all day long. I loved it. After the space trip, I was able to go Africa and come up close and personal with a zebra, saw giraffes and an elephant and a large cat not a lion this time. I definitely would like to do this again and again. I had no idea that you could buy virtual reality headset – I thought it was only in the movies.

After the VR experience, I packed up food for the kids and they loaded up the car. They left for home in the afternoon. Then it was just me, Alvin and Cookie left. The noise and excitement all done for another year. We had the best Christmas ever. So much fun.

Well I have trapped Alvin and Cookie in the office with me and they are getting a bit restless so time to sign off. I wanted to catch you up in our last two days – in our Christmas.

The outside temperature is bitterly cold. Minus 30 without the windchill. Supposed to be cold all week. I guess we won’t be going anywhere. I am grateful that I asked my daughter to pick up more food for Alvin and as it would turn out that is the only food that Miss Cookie will eat. Yikes. Oh well. At least she is eating.

Time for a shower and to rescue the pups from the office.

I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas, that you are safe and warm and happy and most of all in good health.

Until tomorrow.

Continuing to live this life with kindness, respect, compassion, patience, love, laughter, understanding and gratitude.

Always, Carol, Alvin and Cookie Monster (that is my new name for her), lol.

2021

Good Morning ALL! How are you this Wednesday morning? I just realized that we are now in single digits until Christmas EVE, yes, only NINE sleeps. Don’t panic, there is still lots of time to get things done. Okay, take a deep breath, this is my 64th Christmas, I got this. I have had plenty of practice over the years. LOL. OH, my goodness what came over me. Sheer panic for a nanosecond. I am okay now. Besides, the Cards are mailed, the baking and cards are all delivered except for one. Most of the gift including stocking stuffers are bought, wrapped and under the tree. Except for one item because I am pretty sure that someone might sniff it out and open it up, not because it is for him but because there is something sweet in it and he definitely cannot have what lies inside. I think we all can guess what that is.

Thankfully the skies cleared yesterday and the snow stopped as it seemed as though I would be shovelling forever. It is nice to have some snow on the sidewalks even though we have shovelled ours. Not everyone can or does get out and shovel. Next week will be the shortest day and then each day will get longer and longer. So excited for that. There is something about waking up in the dark and then it being dark when you stop work. Mixes up and plays havoc with my sleep and I am quite certain it does with many others, as well.

This coming Sunday, we will have our little four-legged visitor COOKIE coming to stay with us for two weeks. I cannot wait. It will be great to have another little one in the house. At Christmas there will be Aspen and Mi-Mi, too. As many, four-leggeds as two. We will each have a pup to snuggle with. I cannot wait.

Well I guess I should sign off for now. I would like to wish you all a great day. If you are feeling a bit on the low side, take some time away from what you are doing and if you need to speak to someone, do it. There is nothing wrong with doing so. We all suffer from time to time from some type of depression, especially at this time of year. Ask for help. Please. Reach out.

Continuing to live this life with kindness, respect, compassion, patience, love, laughter, understanding and gratitude.

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. I am going to enjoy my coffee on this second morning of using my Golden Girls “ROSE” mug. I love it.

2021

Good Morning ALL! The sky is grey this morning. Not even clouds just grey. Perhaps the forecast is correct and I don’t even want to think or even say the word aloud or even type it. Today is November 14, 2021 and most of our trees have lost their leaves. There is a bit of green grass alongside the brown. So great to have a nice long fall.

Yesterday was a good day. Our friends came for coffee in the morning and we as always we discussed everything from A to Z stopping to laugh along the way. We planned our Christmas Get Together AKA PARTY for December 10, 2021 which is a Friday so that will be a great way to start the weekend. I have to make sure that I can have their gifts by then but it is looking good. As with other years I am supporting local artists and artisans and those friends that do direct sales. Helping others help me which is a win win. The other item for discussion was baking. One of the girls has had so much baking between what she does, her Mom and others that she was giving it away long after Christmas. So that poses the question – When is too much too much? Definitely then. So I am going to cut back as I have been chatting with other friends and some with health issues who although they love the baking – they cannot eat it without repercussions. I think that I am only going to make to give away sugar cookies and fudge. I will bake chocolate chip cookies for my son-in-law but only one batch. SUGAR is definitely not good for us all anyway so I am going to cut back. I had another good friend give me an excellent suggestion and that was to make some Christmas Tree Ornaments out of my sugar cookies. They would be a reminder of me. Perhaps next year. But it is a great idea. Could write names on the cookies and decorate with red and green paint instead of icing or something. Next Year, I think. Never thought of making them into ornaments. Also the cost to bake keeps skyrocketing and you never know what items may be priced out of one’s reach or unavailable. So keeping it simple. My friend G from the coffee party yesterday picked me up a 10 kg bag of flour and S gave me a ziploc bag of 10 cups of sugar which will make a couple of batches of sugar cookies. I will need to buy mini marshmallows and chocolate chips. So now I have most of the baking items. Just a few items to pick up. Looks like I will be baking on the first weekend of December alongside the Fifth Avenue Jewelry party that I am hosting – am pretty sure that this happened last year as well. Yikes. Anyway, when I was going through the list of people to buy for which by the way has decreased over the years – I am in a pretty good place. A few stocking stuffers for the kids and the pups. Gifts for the pups. I think that I am good. There will be a bit of wrapping to happen but that doesn’t happen to be for awhile. Also yesterday Alvin and I enjoyed a beautiful walk – it was so nice outside. Sunny and the air was warm and no gale force winds which was refreshing. I attended the second Fifth Avenue Jewelry Facebook Live for a friend who was hosting. Will say that I was so disappointed in will say technology as I had been patiently on the page of the party for several minutes before the start time and even after the official start time and somehow still missed the start of both LIVES. Actually last night I was mad. Not disappointed but mad. I love watching the start and even though I was right there – I missed it. Well last night I did have to go outside with Alvin but I had my phone with me and that was 7:09 and the party started at 7:00. Not such how that happens but it is frustrating. Not loving technology at times. I also watched an excellent Christmas movie last night based on a book by Debbie Macomber’s “Christmas with Mrs. Miracle” with Caroline Rhea in the lead role. It was a great Christmas movie. Then it was bedtime where I am continuing to read a book by Ruth Ware. She is another great author. I have read so many of her books.

Well I have a long list of things to do today and my daughter will be here at 6:00 p.m. for supper and to sleep over as we are going to our perspective offices tomorrow. I am a bit anxious about going to the office but it will be okay. Mainly because I don’t want to leave Alvin home alone. He will have our friend and neighbour checking in on him but it is not nearly the same. Thank goodness this does not happen very often. I am so grateful to be working from home now. Best thing ever. I love my new office! Then there is some laundry as I want to wash bedding and Christmas towels. If nice go for a walk. Vacuum upstairs. Calling my sister at 1:00 p.m. and the list is long. Oh, and there is another Fifth Avenue Live at 4:00 which was supposed to be at 3:00 but the Fifth Avenue Jeweler had to change the start time. Busy day. Busy day.

Going to hop in the shower quickly and then I won’t have to worry about that tomorrow morning. Have to make it easy peasy for tomorrow. Alvin is patiently waiting for me in the hallway. I have to get this show on the road. Have an awesome Sunday.

Continuing to live with kindness, respect, compassion, patience, understanding, love, laughter and gratitude.

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. The two hour special with ADELE is tonight. Starts at 9:00 so I cannot watch it all so will watch tomorrow night. I love ADELE.

December 30, 2020 – almost over!

Good Morning All. How are you this fine Wednesday? Alvin and I are doing great. Cannot believe that 2020 is almost over. Most people are so over 2020 that they cannot wait for it to end. Me and Alvin had an interesting year and mainly on the positive side. I am so grateful to be working from home, to be employed and that we are in good health. Actually the good health is number #1 on the gratitude list.

Well I finally figured out how to work this new fangle wordpress photo stuff. Here are some photos from the month or so.

Most of the photos are self explanatory but some may require further explanation. The third photo. Kelly Ripa’s glasses (on my new large screen television set). I fell in love with these glasses and when I went to pick out my new glasses, I wanted something similar to these ones and I found them. Not quite as big as hers but pretty close. Happy about that.

The fridge filled with baking and on the table. This year I made up over 20 boxes of my homemade: sugar cookies, unbaked chocolate macaroons, chocolate chip, raisin gingerbread cookies and fudge and delivered them to friends in the neighbourhood, and to my daughter (she picked them up). There are photos of presents on the kitchen cupboard and that is because as I have mentioned Mr. Alvin has decided to open his presents ahead of time. So anything for him or for his friends stayed on the counter until they were delivered. The photo of Alvin with the orangutan is not the best photo of the boy but it gives you an idea of how he felt about this gift (which luckily was for Aspen and Milo ). I have a photo of him with the orangutan wrapped about him, not sure where it is but he was scared of the furry guy. Photos of my grandpups Aspen and Milo just relaxing. The Elephant necklace from Fifth Avenue Jewelry (FAC) – my most favourite piece of jewelry. I have been wearing it lots. So pretty.

Christmas Project 2020 – a gift for my daughter. I created this gift by using one of her baby bonnet’s and some antique brooches. Creating a bouquet of flowers on the bonnet with a bee close by. My daughter loves bees so the bee pin had to be included. It turned out great and looks so good displayed in a shadow box.

Yesterday I took down the Christmas tree and most of the decorations on the main floor. I did not bring up all of the ornaments that are up for most of the year as I just like the almost bare look for now. I would like to bring in the New YEAR in a simple easy uncluttered manner. The basement has to be reorganized now and that will be my project for today. I also have to run (will walk) to the Vet and pick up food for Mr. Alvin. Cannot run out of that. We will go for another walk. Yesterday while out on our walk we bumped into our friend Malena and her dog Rio. She is staying with her parents for awhile. We of course chatted while social distancing.

I hope that you have an awesome day. Time to head for the shower. Then have breakfast. I think that when I go back to work, I am going to start eating earlier in the morning again instead of waiting until 10:00 a.m.

Be safe, take some time for yourself. Be kind, respectful and show compassion to all others.

Happy Wednesday.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December 2020

Good Morning ALL. How are you doing this wonderful Tuesday? I am doing well. Today marks “9 sleeps/days until Christmas Eve Day. Time is definitely zipping along. Well our cold snap appears to be dissipating which is good for us and I heard on the weather report yesterday that Christmas Eve is to be about plus lower single digits temperatures. WOW! If the report is correct and Mother Nature does not throw a wrench into things we will have nice temperatures until at least Christmas. Oh and I do not blame Mother Nature on our weather as we have done enough damage to the environment ourselves. But let us move on from this spot and keep it light and positive. I have mentioned this before that I send Christmas Cards and letters out each and every year at Christmas. This card and letter writing started when I was very young, the first card I remember making was for my grandparents at age 6. I also made them Valentine’s cards and Birthday cards. When I was 11 years old my family spent the winter in Texas (yes, United States) in a city called McAllen which was located not far from the Gulf Coast. I wrote my best friend back in Saskatchewan, Canada letters as often as I could. When we moved from the farm in Saskatchewan when I was 14 to British Columbia, I continued writing my grandparents and my best friend. I made cards for birthdays, Christmas and other occasions. It was much later that I actually starting buying for special occasions and bought them I did. I send cards to all my family and friends for every birthday, Easter, Valentine’s and Christmas and everything in between. I love receiving cards almost as much as I love to send them. Yesterday I received THREE Christmas cards in the mailbox. One from my Aunt & Uncle who live in British Columbia and the other two were from Regina, Saskatchewan. Both friends and past co-workers. There were letters and photos. One of the best things about Christmas and the Holiday Season is cards, letters and photos. I was hoping that perhaps with so many people being at home due to COVID19 that maybe the art of sending Christmas cards and writing letters would make a comeback. This is one thing that is easy and inexpensive to do. The positive impact that it has on the both the sender and the recipient is huge. So good for mind and soul. We all could use a bit of that right now. Right! It is not too late. You can even write up a nice card or make one and give it to your neighbour down the street OR mail it to your Aunt who is alone.

Last night after work I delivered two more gifts and more treat boxes to my girlfriends. Alvin walked with me to make the first delivery and it was cold out so I brought him home and then I made the second delivery alone. We are going to hold our Annual Christmas get together via ZOOM. I was hoping that perhaps I could figure out how to do it via my new smart television set but am thinking not OR maybe on my phone. I am getting there – for the phone that is. Would be easier that using the computer upstairs and besides would feel more like a Christmas party if I was close to the Christmas tree and decorations. I have a few upstairs. Might have to move my smaller tree that is sitting on the upstairs landing and place it in the office. We will be able to take our walk today as it is warming up.

I wish you a bright and happy Tuesday. Alvin and I are hoping that you and your family are safe and in good health. We continue to be safe, in good health, bright and happy.

Living our lives with kindness, respect and compassion for all others.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December 2020

Good Morning ALL. How are you doing on this fine Thursday? I just had a refreshing, relaxing wonderful shower and am so ready for the day. Countdown to CHRISTMAS EVE DAY brings us to “15” days. WOW. I must have miscounted! Oh well, we got this. Right. Christmas and the Holiday Season will be a bit different, okay a lot different for most of us this year but different is so much better than the alternative. If we can open our eyes and take in that first breath of the new day, if we have food to eat, technology to reach out to family and friends and are in good health – no complaints. We have so much more than so many others. I recognize the fact that I am more than truly blessed at this point in my life. I have a beautiful home to live in and to call my own with a yard and deck and a tree. Mr. Alvin has been my trusty companion for almost 11 years now which I will say the longest period of time that I have lived with a “guy.” I am employed by a employer who was actually prepared for a situation that would call for us to work remotely. Yes, there have been a few hiccups but very, very few. I am so grateful that I am able to work from home with no commute to and from the office, and be with Mr. Alvin who is fast approaching 12 in January of this coming New Year. This gives us the opportunity to go for walks at noon and have more time together. I have more time to read and so much more. More time to sleep as well which has been wonderful. Yes, it is true that there has been much less contact with friends and family. But we have figured it out. There is Facetime, Skype, Zoom and texting and more. So we are good. Right, we are.

Tomorrow after work I am going to have my two year eye checkup and get new glasses. So stoked to get some new shades. I wished that I would be able to have my daughter with me to help me pick them out but that is okay, I got this. New glasses for the upcoming new year. Might have to really whack off my hair and be a really new me for the New Year. Time will tell. I was thinking that tomorrow night might be wrapping the gift night. This is the gifts for my daughter and her husband. I will be stopping at the Bone & Biscuit to pick up gifts for Mr. Alvin, Aspen and Milo after my eye appointment. My daughter has the gifts for the other pups on our list which I realized could have been much longer had I remembered them all. I have the gifts here for Humphrey and Bogart so will get them wrapped and over to them shortly. There may be more baking on the weekend, I have not decided.

Well Mr. Alvin is giving me that look – that look – get the heck off that thing and come downstairs. Okay, I need some coffee anyway.

I hope that you have an awesome Thursday. Remember we shall live our lives with kindness, respect and compassion for all. We will get through this, together!!

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December 2020

Good Morning ALL. Oh my goodness, cannot believe it is after 9:30 a.m.. I was up baking until almost midnight and then Mr. Alvin who had been sleeping most of the evening was up at 5:00 and then we had to hit the sofa for extra zzz’s, well I did for sure. Yikes surely puts a late start to the date. Yesterday was a great day but very busy. Of course, nothing are always subject to change and change things did. Yesterday it took longer to get things started baking wise, in fact I had wanted to start in the morning but it was closer to noon but I did get a double batch of fudge and unbaked macaroons done by noon, my daughter came, put away groceries, had a snack, visited, she left as another friend was stopped by to pick up her tea order which was at the same time as my Fifth Avenue Collection LIVE was starting (I just was attending), I watched and visited with her (COVID19 protocols in place), she left and I fed Alvin and decided what the hey – order pizza for supper, working on laundry in between and baking and then another Fifth Avenue Collection LIVE at 7:00 p.m. followed by more baking. WHEW …. no periods ….. just one long sentence, I know. Poor Alvin missed a walk so will have to get out today especially with this nice weather. My youngest brother is calling me at noon and the last Fifth Avenue Collection LIVE is today at 3:00 p.m. I can hear Mrs. Krank from CHRISTMAS WITH THE KRANKS speaking in my ear as she repeats the list of what she needs to do as her daughter unexpectedly comes home for Christmas EVE and expects their usual Christmas EVE party. On the upside I suppose I have an extra weekend and could some baking next weekend but really would love to be done so that I can wrap gifts and deliver baking only next weekend. Time will tell. Phone calls and company these days are more important. “18 sleeps till Christmas EVE.” Okay breathe Carol Yvonne breathe, there is lots of time. Remember I am working from home and and am off work at 4:00 – so could easily bake something in the evening, okay that is true. I guess I forget that when I was younger I would bake after work and supper on a Friday night while my daughter was sleeping and then get up and finish on the Saturday. Most extra things had to be done in the evenings. I am certain all you Moms out there can relate. I have walked myself down from the at peak of dread and am good now. Funny how small things can wind you up. I am a perfectionist and when I cannot for whatever reason get things done on the schedule ahead of me, which is usually set by my, I get a bit anxious, okay a lot anxious. But the sun is shining and I can imagine birds singing somewhere and life is good. I guess if not keeping my “baking schedule” is the only thing wrong in my life, well I should consider myself very blessed and do not get me wrong. I am MOST BLESSED. I have a great life. My friends and family are so amazing and wonderful. There is this beautiful house, I call home that I can spend each and every day and night in and then there is Mr. Alvin. My trusty companion. Who is laying on his little bed close to me and the computer at this moment. We are both in good health and I have a good job and am able to work from home. So really I should just be quiet. Out there I am sure that there are folks reading this who think OMG what is she going on about and then there are others who think, I hear you. I am not 20 but 63. I set my schedule as though I was 20 not 63. My mind has not slowed down but my body is thinking although in good condition is not 20 and it takes a bit longer to get things done. Not too much slower mind you but some. Anyway, I hope that you are having a giggle this morning about my silliness. Time to just get on with the day.

When I think of how great it was to see my girl and to have a visit with Maria from work. It was so wonderful. I have not had a chat with Maria for months. Very therapeutic. We both needed that. We plan to have a get together with another girl from work during Christmas holidays. Also I love spending time with my daughter. She brought me back a plush Santa that I had given her years ago and it was funny because I had been thinking of that Santa just the day before ….. funny how life works. I am still looking for a photo. I will find it. Next weekend.

Well it is almost 10:00 a.m. so I had better get hopping and have breakfast and get the cookie dough for the sugar cookies mixed up and get to chilling. At least get one batch on the go. I think the plan will be to get two batches of them done today. Chat with my brother, wash a load of towels, walk with Alvin and the LIVE with Fifth Avenue Jewelry at 3:00 p.m. …… that will be enough.

Well I hope that you are well. Happy Sunday Everyone. Remember living with kindness, respect and compassion starts with ourselves.

I will be kind, respect and compassion to myself and to all others.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome December 2020

Good Morning ALL. Well my friends here we are at the end of another “work/school” week heading off into the weekend. It has been a week of many different feelings for so many folks. I would like to start by saying to all those family and friends that have lost a loved one, some two-leggeds and some four-leggeds, we keep you all in our thoughts and our hearts. Alvin and I send our love to you all. I know that it is never easy losing someone and we have all experienced loss.

For some reason it seems more difficult this year and maybe it is because we have endured loss of a totally different magnitude this year. Things we used to take for granted are different and some cases so hard for us. So many different levels of loss. For so many children instead of going to school and seeing their friends – they are learning online. They have not been able to visit grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins this year. For some folks like me, we are working from home. Others, those incredible ones working in grocery stores, retail outlets, fire and police, nurses and doctors and cleaning staff and the list is too long for me to relay risking their lives, just working and doing their jobs is a struggle, and then not seeing their families on a regular basis. Even going shopping is not that “fun” experience that it used to be. No more large gatherings. So many folks have lost their jobs this year and others saw their businesses close possibly forever. There is no doubt in my mind that most folks are looking to the NEW YEAR with hopes that things will be much better. I do as well.

I have a good weekend to look forward to and that is what we must do, look forward. Do what we can. Be safe and practice the protocols outlined by our Health Professionals. This weekend I am baking. I have a 10 kilogram bag of flour and one of sugar and lots of butter and chocolate and coconut and icing sugar. There is no doubt that I will be baking lots of goodies to give to my friends and family. It is what I love to do. Sometimes all it takes is a box of cookies to brighten one’s day. To bring a smile to someone’s face. To remind us all that we do think of each other. I am also one of the hosts of a MEGA PARTY for Fifth Avenue Collection or FAC starting tonight on FB live. So jewelry and sweets for me this weekend. My daughter is dropping by tomorrow with groceries and for a visit. We love to see her when we can.

Well it is almost time to head on downstairs. I booked Monday off as a vacation day so that I can wrap up baking and make some deliveries including to Alvin’s Vet Dr. Karen and staff.

Living our live with kindness, respectfulness and compassion is what we need to do now more than ever. Remember. We all need a little kindness ….. shine our lights on everyone we see.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome December 2020

Good Morning ALL. Well it is Thursday morning December 3, 2020. Another gorgeous day on its’ way to us living here in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. This day is forecasted to be +5 degrees celsius. Our normal temperature is -4 for this time of year. We are to have about another week of these temperatures. I will say that when we were out for our noon day walk that Alvin and I wanted to keep on walking – well I did anyway. There were a couple of times that he wanted to turn around and head for home – not quite sure why but I was able to convince him to keep on trucking. The air was so warm and soothing as it touched my face. The sun was shining brightly in the perfect blue sky. I am so grateful for these days. So grateful.

What is on your “plate” for today. Well another workday for me. Tonight I will almost finish my Christmas project which is very exciting for me. Just about there. I also have to double check my recipes and ensure that I know what I am going to bake and that I have the right amount of ingredients. I know that I have more than enough flour and sugar and butter. More than enough. Somehow in the beginning it seemed like a good idea to buy 10 kgs of flour and I think it is the same in sugar and four pounds of butter. The butter might be more close but the flour and sugar will keep. If anyone needs a cup or five of them, I will have some for that. You never know. I did work on the Christmas project last night. I had to use this strong glue so opening the windows and then I placed the project under the fan for the stove (which had it sitting on top of the stove). Yikes. Not a nice smell and not good for one to breathe in – that is why I opened the windows and turned on the fan.

How are you doing these days? Are you okay? I know that this year or almost year has been so off the charts strange for everyone. Strange is putting it lightly of course. People are either working from home, laid off and receiving government relief benefits or out on the front lines working through this pandemic. For the majority of people having to remain at home and away from large groups of family and friends or even travelling has been difficult. Although I will say there are people travelling and that scares the “crap” out of me. What will they bring back with them? Travelling should be ban until this is over unless you are in the military or some health care professionals. Allowing folks to travelling especially out of the country is absolutely ludicrous at this time. How can you ban people from getting together with family at Christmas and allow families to travel outside of Canada. Does not make sense to me? I do agree that we have to buckle down and stop the crazy increase of this virus and if that means wearing a mask and social distancing until who knows when, well this girl is in. What will happen if we do not adhere to the new “rules.” I do not even want to go there.

I am sorry for the dark message so early in the morning but sometimes I just have to get things off my chest.

Okay how about Christmas? Do you have your tree up? I have heard that tree sales are up and that most people already have their trees up and decorated much earlier than normal. I have also heard that flour and sugar and other baking items are beginning to fly off the shelves. So I guess that I am not the only one that is baking. Isn’t it funny that no matter what I am talking about it all comes back to that darn virus. Anyway. I am excited to get some serious Christmas baking done this weekend. Sugar cookies, fudge, chocolate chip cookies, unbaked chocolate macaroons, raisin cookies and who knows what else. Will depend on time and energy and supplies. I even have some delightful boxes to place the baked goods in to deliver to friends and family. So excited. Thanks to my “personal shopper” and you know who you are. I am the most blessed person on the planet. I know this to be for certain.

Well time to head on downstairs. Put on the coffee and get to work.

If we all continue to live our lives with kindness, respect and compassion – what a wonderful world this will be.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December 2020

Good Morning All. How are you on this fine Wednesday. Wishing a friend from Saskatchewan named Judy a very Happy Birthday today. Looks like weatherwise we are in for another unbelievably gorgeous day. Yesterday after the gale force winds of Monday night, I spent some time during and after our noon walk picking up runaway garbage mainly boxes. I wish that folks would pack their recycling properly. Don’t they know we live in a windy town, er I mean city? I guess they did not recognize that box lying on the street down from their house or perhaps they choose to ignore it. Oh well, I cleaned many cardboard boxes from the street.

Alvin’s vet appointment went well and I am happy to report that his ears are both infection free, thank goodness. Protocol at the vet have now changed. Staff took Alvin to the back area where they do surgeries etc. and they checked his ears, trimmed his nails and checked his anal glands while I waited in the patient room. They have two rooms and in non-Covid times that would be where the patients were examined with their Moms and Dads in tow. No longer. I felt a bit sad and Alvin did not wish to go without me. I will admit that my eyes welled up. When it came time to do his nails I could hear him whimper which is not out of the ordinary. But he is loved there and they would never intentionally harm him. Once done he was returned to the room where I was patiently waiting. The Vet came out and we chatted for a minute. I had given the Vet Tech a Christmas Card to give to her and she came out to thank me. I have given them a card with a photo of me and Alvin since we started going there ten years ago. When I asked about dropping off some baking on Monday she graciously declined as she cannot eat sweets at the moment – her fav is “snap green peas.” The girls were excited to hear that I was bringing baking on Monday. Dr. Karen said just the photo was gift enough as that was the best gift, our photo. We chatted for a minute and then were on our way home. Once home we went out to the deck to put the bag of garbage I had collected in the garage. Alvin had gotten full of energy and started running and jumping down the steps from the landing to the garage and to the middle part of the deck. He was having a great time, I could tell. I pretended for a moment to do the Monster thing and he ran hard. Then he leaped from the top of the landing to the middle part of the deck, airborne for a few seconds and landed almost like a belly flop. I cringed and had closed my eyes for a nanosecond worried he had injured himself but then he was up and ready to go into the house. My boy. In the house, he ran around for a few minutes before settling down on the sofa. What a guy!

Well I had better get on downstairs to work. A few minutes ago, when I was writing about Alvin, the phone rang and it was Humphrey’s Mom, “She said “there is a guy in your backyard,” – my heart went to my stomach. I ran to the window but of course it is dark and what did I think that I could see. Then I said, someone and she said “Bogart” who is Humphrey’s little not so little brother was in our backyard well actually on top of my deck railing. I ran downstairs with Alvin in close pursuit and boots on and outside. Bogart was rescued and back home. He hissed at Alvin who was just wanted to say hi.

Running late. Gotta fly.

Have a great day. Fill it will kindness, respect and compassion for all.

We are.

Always, Carol & Alvin

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