The New YEAR 2022

Good Morning ALL! How are you on this rainy Saturday morning? Perhaps the sun is beaming down upon you? Not at the moment here. It was raining when we were up earlier and we were up early. I decided to go to bed a bit early and read so when the lights went out it was likely about 10:00. Mr. Alvin was up at Midnight and I took him outside. We settled on the sofa and he was up on the hour after that starting about 2:00 a.m., very restless. Last night before bed, he seemed like his old self. Not quite as anxious and not whiny. Perhaps this cooler weather is playing havoc with his paws. I can imagine arthritis is not much fun. He seems to be okay this morning. I was wide awake at 6:00 so stayed up for a bit doing a few things and then decided to come back upstairs and just rest on the bed. We both fell asleep until a little while ago. Okay not such good sleep routine, our patterns are definitely bordering on the “off” side but it is what it is. If we don’t get 8 hours or close to it, we lay back down. Sometimes it is funny how a couple of solid hours of sleep can make or break the day. Anyway, all is well.

The trees are really coming out. Th leaves I mean, so green and beautiful. The grass with this added moisture is starting to turn green. Our poor grass/lawn out front has finally got some patches that are alive and not dead/dormant. Looks like the sun may shine after all. The clouds are breaking up and I see some clear patches.

Well you are likely wondering how we did yesterday with me going to the office. In addition to Gillian coming over at noon, our neighbour Sonja popped by about 3:00 p.m.. He ate, drank water and went outside at noon and did the same at 3:00 p.m. The girls did notice that he was a bit more anxious than usual. I can see that. Going into work is against our routine and as we get older, as dogs get older, routine plays a very important role. So I get that. He was having an off week. Hopefully he will continue to feel his old self. Oh my gosh, I pray for his old self. Anxiety and all. So the office. One of our group had hurt her knee and is unable to do much walking so we were down another body and our Manager was ill and did not attend the office. So no meeting. We did our mailouts as per schedule and then worked on mail etc. Our cubicles and desks are set up in squares with two desks and staff facing each other with dividers in between. The group that are the most vocal are all together, the gal that I came to work with faces one of them and then I am in another group where there is no one at present. My back faces them. So two of us found it very distracting. But I get that they wanted to catch up and some are more chatty than others of us. Not to say that I do not like to talk because that is so far from the truth. But at work, I like to do my job and not “visit.” With these low rise dividers and open air, it can get loud. We are not the only ones on this floor and it can get very loud and distracting at times. So I just tried to tune out the noise and get some work done. I did manage to get a few days worth of mail completed which was great. I still have more to do but getting closer to being current. Although where I am at is acceptable in our job. I am one of those old school bodies that just needs to have everything done and I do not like having things undone. Anyway, it was nice to see the team in person but other than that, I would have liked to have been at home at my kitchen table. I did notice that my chair did not feel comfortable and the lights were annoying. I am very grateful that for the most part I can continue to work from home. I am very grateful for that.

So today, I am thinking of working on the basement. I started going through things during the last two weekends and need to finish before the garage sale in June. It would appear that the forecast is not looking great for planting my flowers, tomatoes and oregano. So will keep inside for another week. My kitchen table looks amazing.

My girl friends are coming for coffee tomorrow morning. So I will pull the leaves out on each end and push the plants to the far end so we have room for our coffee. It will look like we are in a flower garden. How lovely! Today I want to bake something. I am thinking of a banana loaf with pumpkin? Not sure.

So a few things to do. Working on that book in my head. I do have lots of notes and stories already written down so really it would be just a matter of putting them together. So I am getting my mind wrapped about that. I think we need some good stories. We have stories about dogs and people but how many about an older woman and a dog. Not many. I have often joked that there should be a movie about Mr. Alvin as he is just so charming, sociable and magnetic. He has had that effect on people since I brought him home. Just something about him and his name always brings a smile to people’s faces. No one forgets his name. I am and will all remains Alvin’s Mum and I am good with that.

Okay, time for coffee and I definitely need that this morning.

Have an awesome day. Hug your family and pets if you have them. If you are on your own, look in the mirror and say “hello you awesome human being.” Be kind to yourself and to all living creatures.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. sometimes a mirror is a good friend …… look at your reflection ….. you are your own best friend. We need to treat ourselves like we are our own best friend. Start with you and see what a difference your other relationships will be. Love thyself and then you will love others.

The New YEAR 2022

Good Morning ALL! How are you this Thursday morning? What a gorgeous morning. I was outside with Alvin just after 6:00 a.m. in my pj’s and jacket and as I waited for Alvin to do his “business,” I realized that I could see my breath. Well it may be a little longer before I can plant my flowers, oregano and tomato plants. I sure hope that it is sooner than later. I cannot wait to see dolops of colour on my deck and in the front of our house. I love summer for the flowers and winter for Christmas. I have a thing for colour, I love bright colours.

Yesterday at lunch time we went for a full walk. Alvin was sniffing and sniffing and sniffing the whole walk. He does love to sniff. I think actually that as he gets older he is loving it even more. I also do worry that he is starting to lose his sight or has the onset of dementia. But these are things that I am putting in my mind and I need to think positively about him. Sometimes googling things is not a great idea. He is eating well and drinking lots of water and pooping and peeing as he should. I am happy about those things. I worry about him.

As I look out of the office window the leaves are quickly becoming noticeable. Green is the main colour on our canvas. So many different hues of green between the grass and the leaves and plants. I love green. Makes me feel good, makes me feel alive, makes me feel renewed.

With everything going on in the world, sometimes it is hard to feel good about things. It is at these times that we must do everything in our power to change, to retain our positive, good, kind thoughts. Somedays I am afraid that we are losing the battle. But I am not going to give up. We must not give up. If there are enough good thoughts in the world we may be able to change the balance. It is a thought!

I was also thinking that I have been going to write a book or books about me and Alvin. I have started many times and have lots of notes and perhaps this would be a good time to get going on them. We need to keep filling our lives with good stories.

Well time to go and turn on the coffee and start work in a little bit. Tomorrow I have to go to the office. Part of me is kind of excited and the other parts are not. Our friend Gillian will come and check in on Mr. Alvin. He has been a bit more anxious and whiny as of late so I certainly don’t want him to be alone. I have been watching him to make sure that it is okay.

I hope that you have a great Thursday. Keep those positive thoughts and stories flowing. Please. I shall do my best as well. Affirmations are great to help us in this regard.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. Hello this morning to Cindy, Val and Gillian. You know I love you all! Thank you for reading these posts, this blog.

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 am well, we are well. Alvin is upstairs with me as I get ready for the day. I even got moving extra early this morning which is great. Had a nice soothing shower and am ready for this Wednesday. I am always amazed, not sure why, as to how quickly the days pass by. Mostly they appear to be moving at lightning speed. It seems as though everyone is living my dream. My dream is to be a published writer. Drew Barrymore’s new book “Rebel Homemaker” debuted yesterday and Dr. Oz has a new one out. So many people that I can think of. I had the idea to write a cookbook with more than just the recipes and it would appear that so many people are writing what I thought of a long time ago. Looks like it was a good idea and I am sad that I did not have the “drive” to get it done. I have started many books but never seem to get further than the first chapter. Over the years I have written quite a lot of poetry and I could definitely add that to a book. I have thought of writing about life’s experiences and what they have taught me. So many idea. I guess as I turn 65 next year there is no time like the present. There are so many books about Alvin that I could write – a complete children’s series, I think. Maybe I will one day soon be coming to a bookstore near you. That would be an absolute dream. But in the meantime I will endeavour to keep writing this post each and every day. It does help fulfil the dream to some degree for sure. I think most of us get stuck in a rut and just marvel at those who seem to have it all. The ones that do everything. When do they sleep? Some of them have help because let’s face it – it takes a village to do most everything in this life. It truly does. Did I mention to you that on Halloween night – I was surprised when someone that I did not recognize said “Hi Alvin.” He has a following for sure. I tried with all my heart to figure out who she was and of course, did not have the gall to ask.

On the days where I feel less than stellar and all days, I am going to continue writing notes and poems and this post. I have lots of recipes and I know that my life mirrors a movie in some respects. So one of these days, I will finish that book and it will be published, but in the meantime, I will carry on. That is all we can do.

Yesterday I learned of a friend whose beloved pup passed on Monday. I could not help but cry most of the day after she told me. She is lonely now as she lives on her own as well. My friend remarked about going for walks but they were not the same without her Sadie. Sending hugs to her.

Well Mr. Alvin has patiently waited for me so I should sign off and get downstairs to prepare the coffee. I love that first cup of coffee and note to self to get drinking more water again. Somewhere along the line I fell off the water wagon.

Have an awesome Wednesday. Be safe and work on those dreams. I will if you will!

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you this morning? Another cold cold morning here in Edmonton. I noticed a light blanket of snow gracing the deck. Surprise, surprise there is not extra snow out front. How can it snow at the back of the house and not at the front? Mother Nature definitely has a sense of humour. Another morning where Alvin got up about 4:00 ….. had his breakfast ….. did his outside business and then we were to the sofa until my alarm went off at 6:45 ….. so much better.

This morning I was thinking ….. I am going to do a top 10 or 12 list of my favourite things around the house. Not living creatures or Alvin would top the list. These are in no certain order ….. just as I think of something.

  1. My sparkle ball earrings from Hillberg and Berk which were a 60th birthday gift from my sister.
  2. Photo books of Alvin, Elton & Penny and my Daughter & Son-in-law’s wedding which were gifts at different times from my daughter.
  3. Geranium plants a gift from a friend (they bloom all year round).
  4. Christmas Star with removable red charm from a friend.
  5. Hand towels made by a friend to hang on the oven door.
  6. Book, Becoming Michelle Obama given to me by a friend.
  7. Purple crossbody ROOTS purse given to me by me.
  8. Hand made, hand painted dough Lady given to me from my Mom and made by Mom.
  9. Lavender Rose Bone China Dish Set that was my Grandmother’s.
  10. Little wooden car painted by great nephew (given to me when I moved to Edmonton).
  11. Royal Doulton figurine of a lady in white holding a flower, a Christmas present long ago from my sister.
  12. A wok type pot/pan that my kids gave me for Christmas a few years ago, it is the perfect pot.
  13. A bookmark made my longtime childhood friend when I moved to Edmonton and it was signed by friends of a ladies group that I belonged to ….

Well that is a quick list. Take a few minutes and look around your house and jot down your favourite things.

Makes you think.

Well time to head on downstairs. Have a wonderful Wednesday.

I think today is going to be “bra free” day ….. okay perhaps a bit more information that you need or wanted. Other women I know have spoke of this and I have not done this in the past. Today is the Day. “Bra Free Wednesday, February 10, 2021.” This is the day.

Living with kindness, respect, compassion and patience. Always working on patience.

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you today? Both Alvin and I are well. He/We/I were awake just after midnight and up and out and then back to “BED,” yup the actual bed not the sofa until guess what time? I was so excited “5:00 a.m.” Felt like I actually slept through the night. So that was a great way to start the day. Oh no, we did not stay up. The sofa always calls our names.

I am so happy that our sunrises seem to be happening earlier each day and I guess they really are, so nice. No snow yesterday that actually accumulated which was good. No walking. Seems to be a lots of no’s happening. We did some up and down the stairs. Alvin does get fresh air more than me when it is this cold as he has to go out for the obvious reasons and sometimes he likes to just go out on the deck for a few minutes under the careful eye of his Momma. Have to watch that the pads on the bottom of his paws do not freeze. It is something that most folks do not think about when they are out walking their dogs in the winter time and in the summer they can blister/burn on hot pavement and sidewalks. We rescued a dog on a hot summer day who has his/her pads badly burned. My family took the pup to the Emergency Vet for treatment. Unfortunately we never did find out where she belonged. Very sad.

Today is the Happy Birthday of one of my two nieces. Happy Birthday KENZI. Alvin and I are hoping that life is treating you well. Best Wishes.

As I look around my office, I see that I am surrounded by my favourite inanimate objects such as cards, photos and books. I love to read. Every night when I go to bed – I read. I love all sorts of books. My daughter also has a thirst for reading books and quite often passes hers to me which is great because right now who gets out to shop for books. I have another friend who reads with a passion and she sometimes passes a book or three to me. Books are so very important to us human beings. They can lift you up and take you to places that you never imagined. The power of words. I am grateful to have a room filled with the things that I love. A thank you card from the CEO of a company I used to work for, a very beautiful birthday card from my sister, lots of cards displayed, photos of me and Alvin, my daughter, places I have been and favourite sayings. All hanging up on my wall size bulletin boards made my talented daughter. I must say that my office upstairs is my favourite room in the house. Truly. Makes my heart sing and my heart warm. Do you have a favourite room/place in your home. I also had this room painted the most glorious shade of green. I love this room. Truly I do.

Well I think that it is time to head on downstairs and plug in the coffee. Busy day ahead. Alvin is being patient this morning. He went outside just before we came upstairs. We both had a good sleep.

Wishing you a wonderful Thursday.

Oh, my Chef’s Place meal delivery order is coming today. This is the third one that I have tried. Fresh (cannot remember the name at this moment), GoodFood (which I love) and this one Chef’s Plate. Nice to try things that I would not normally cook and to have all of the ingredients. Just remembered it was called Hello Fresh.

Remembering to live with kindness, respect, compassion and patience. Oh, I am working on patience, every day. Alvin will attest to that for sure.

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you doing this morning? We are great. Alvin slept pretty much until 3:00 a.m. or at least I was able to get him to lay back down on the bed until then…..up and has his glucosamine chew and outside for a “bathroom break.” On the sofa ….. until 5:00 a.m. although I think I remember him wanting to get up before then but again I coaxed him to lay back down. So at least this morning although choppy – I do feel like I had a decent night sleep. I guess for the most part I am so used to this routine of get up in the middle of the night although I understand why. We are both getting older. I have been getting up and going to the washroom for years and he just started maybe in the last year or so PLUS he dozes from about 7:30 p.m. until we go to bed at 9:00 ish. So by 3:00 a.m. he has slept long enough. Anyway, this is not breaking news and likely not interesting to anyone but me. I am sure that actually a lot of people can sympathize with me. If you are getting older, if you have a pet or children?

We are back into a deep freeze. We had quite a bit of snow yesterday morning but by the time I shovelled snow which was at a late lunch break for me; the falling snow had stopped. No more snow has accumulated. YAY. I still have to shovel the driveway. That is one thing about having the garage detached from the house and not having a car – I sometimes do not think of it right away. I will say that shovelling is a good source of exercise when one cannot walk. I did start walking in the house ….. on the spot ….. using weights but that lasted three days and then I stopped. For no real reason. It would seem that I cannot seem to do anything consistently as of late. Are you feeling this way as well? I think it is the WINTER TIME BLUES. Really all I want to do is to snuggle up on the sofa with Mr. Alvin. Hibernation. Hibernate. Sleepy time. Yup, that sounds good to me. I have to find something to perk me up and get me out of this funk. I am so grateful that I do not have to go to work and can get up and stay warm in the house. Although I do have to go outside from time to time each day. Once the cold weather subsides a bit and we can get back outside and walk ….. that should help. I have also been thinking and thinking and pondering the reasons why I cannot seem to get a “book written.” For many many years I have been wanting to and saying and wanting and saying that I want to be a published writer and then I do not go anywhere with that ….. I have more than enough ideas and actual data to write several books but somehow I cannot seem to get any further than that. Well I guess that is not quite true as I have started the first chapter of a book about Alvin and me. I have to get my butt in gear. Perhaps I am afraid. Of what exactly I do not know but likely that is the reason. Fear of failure, perhaps. Fear of the unknown, although that is never really bothered me before ….. I honestly do not know. So please bear with me as I navigate this dream of mine. I know that I will get it done ….. sometimes procrastination gets the better of me. Isn’t it always easier to say that I will start tomorrow and that I have lots of time. Well at this point in my life …. even though I feel that I have a great many years left to live …. one never knows. After all, I somehow write this post almost everyday. In the almost 11 years that I have been writing this, I have only missed a few days.

Okay time to head on downstairs and get this work day going. Coffee sounds like a plan. Maybe I will listen to hits from the 80’s again as the soundtrack of the 70’s seemed to be repeating. I have been listening to the Stingray Music (Telus) on the television. T.V. Such a great selection. Every type of music imaginable. Perhaps it is time to try something new???

Continuing to live each day with kindness, respect, compassion and learning to be more patient.

Wishing you a wonderful Wednesday, yes it is mid week already.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Christmas gone, Boxing Day Done.

Good Morning All. How are you? Someone I managed to miss writing this blog post yesterday. We slept in a bit after being up earlier, then the kids were up and we were visiting, having breakfast, then packing up their things and then they were gone. The morning was gone and then we were alone and it was early afternoon. Boxing Day used to be the day where I would pop out and pick up Christmas cards and wrapping paper for next Christmas. We did not leave the house except to the back yard. After the family left, I did laundry, put things away and did more dishes. We also had FACETIME with one of our friends down the block. She lives alone with her puppy Bailey. She only briefly saw her parents as they dropped of Christmas Dinner and her sister who is expecting could only visit from a distance outside. Very different from mine which actually did not change from other years. We chatted for almost two hours. While Alvin snuggled beside me on the sofa and just rested. I think that he was plum tuckered out. We had a great Christmas. Weather was amazing and we had a one hour walk all of us on Christmas Day. The sun shone and it was beautiful. Yesterday and today are overcast. Temperature not cold compared to other years. I spoke to my family on Christmas. Texted friends. We had baked chicken breasts, whipped potatoes and gravy, vegetables, cranberries, dressing (stovetop stuffing) and for dessert key lime pie and chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches. My daughter and I had the pie and my son-in-law was too full for dessert. So they took the ice cream sandwiches home with them. I gave them the lion’s share of the baking that was occupying my fridge and freezer. Not that any one of us really needs more “sugar” but I definitely do not. In fact, I may freeze the small container that I left in the fridge. I am tossing about freezing the chocolates that I received as well. Never thought that I would be saying this but I am “sugared out.” Too much. I feel like a large sugar cube. Now that Christmas is over and I was going to visit with some folks this week but the restrictions are on and I am following the rules. I want this VIRUS gone. It will only be gone if we follow the rules. So this week, I am going to stay home except for going to pick out my new glass frames tomorrow (they have massive protocols in place at my Optometrist’s office and Alvin will need food, so there will be a trip to the Vet likely on Wednesday. Will have to check and see what hours they are open. That is other than some walking. No visits from or visit friends. But that is okay. I want to do my part. What did you get for Christmas? I was spoiled by everyone this year. I received every kind of chocolate you can think of, baking, pj’s, two pair comfy pants, lots of beautiful scented items from my favourite store, Bath & BodyWorks, candles, a pretty top, a hand held blender with so many attachments (something new to learn), books, about ten different kind of hand creams (I think we all had them on the brain as we used so much as a result of washing our hands so often), towel for my stove, and I know I am missing items as that is why I am going to sit down and write down everything I received. After a few days ….. I don’t seem to remember everything. Alvin was spoiled and loved his toys and treats and his new leash.

My daughter helped me figure out why I could not upload photos to the computer. Remember when I decided to use my photo library as my screensaver, I guess it was too much and prevented me from uploading/downloading from phone to computer. So nice to have my photos from my phone to my computer once again.

Well cannot believe we are now two days past Christmas. Time flies. I am needing a shower. Then will get this day started. We were up early as usually about 3:30 and then again at 5:00 and then back to the sofa until 8:30. I needed that extra sleep.

I hope that Santa was good to you and that you were able to celebrate Christmas even though it may have been different.

Wishing you a great day. Hopefully you can relax on this Sunday. Take a breath. No cooking (I have enough food for several days with no cooking). I will be chatting with a dear friend a bit later.

We will continue to live our lives with kindness, respect and compassion.

With the different format on WordPress I will figure out again how to post some photos but that will be later.

Always, US, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR – last quarter

Good Morning ALL. OH my goodness! we were up at 4:13 and yes, the boy had an early breakfast and then back to the sofa for some more sleep. I woke up just before 7:00 and decided as it was still dark and I wasn’t ready to get up for the day, we laid down and then it was 7:30 and we came upstairs, then we laid down on the bed and I just looked out the window thinking about things and looking at the street lamp. All of a sudden it was much lighter out and I came into the office where I had turned on the computer when we first came upstairs and it was 8:48 a.m. WOW, time flies. Guess I should have stayed up at 7:30 as this post would have been done, a load of laundry would be washed and in the dryer and a second load would have been in the washer, I would have had the coffee on, the bedding would have been changed and I would be starting to eat breakfast. WOW, how can that happen. There is something about it being dark and the weekend that keeps me from wanting to get up and at it. I don’t have this problem during the work week but then again I know that I must get up and work. I guess that is the difference. Likely I am not alone in this but I wished that I would have stayed up. Oh well, it is done. Now to get this day cracking.

Another gorgeous sunrise. I do love when the horizon seems to be filled with hues of pink and orange. So pretty.

Alvin is sitting in the hallway just looking at me and likely wondering why?

We had a great Friday. Alvin’s bestie Teddy and his little sister Kobi spent the day with us from 8 to 5. Kobi is such a little character. Still very much a puppy and so full of energy. Alvin and Teddy well they do have their moments but mostly they are happy to just hang out. Thankfully it was nice outside as she wanted to go outside and just investigate the snowbanks in the backyard. So cute. Despite the interruptions I managed to get lots of work down. Also our parcel came from our good friend in Regina. Chalked full of delicious treats and this very cool cookbook, actually more than a cookbook. I am going to give you all the name as the author and chef is going to give a portion of the proceeds from the sale of the book to help support the Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital Foundation. How wonderful is that. The book is “One Loaf at a Time” by CJ KATZ and on the other side “One Bowl at a Time” ….. virtually two books in one. There are stories of the Pandemic and how it affected CJ and her family, the province of Saskatchewan and Canada and the world Photos of the folks who graciously gave their recipes for this worthy cause. She even mentioned the “toilet paper” hoarding, the shortages of flour and sugar and other baking ingredients as those of us who were at home started baking and cooking. Some people had nothing much to do with having to stay at home, so they learned to cook and to bake. Have you heard the term “the COVID 15” which relates to the weight gain over the past few months which I think may have been early on and is likely more more. I heard that phrase somewhere and not note that I have not read that in the book thus far. She mentions how retail placed arrows on the store floors to try and move people in the same direction and keeping them 6 feet or 2 metres apart. This is a great book. The photos of the food are so good that they make you want to start grabbing the ingredients from your cupboard/pantry and start baking/cooking. I am so proud of my friend as she has a recipe in the book as well. They are friends, how cool. In addition to this great book I received a “cinnamon bun loaf”, some little muffins for Alvin which he shared some of which Teddy and Kobi, butter tarts, apple tarts, shortbread, moonpies (I think they are called), and more. There are packages of different kind of cookies and other sweet treats and some goldfish crackers that I have never seen before and more. Totally spoiled we are. One quick story. You know that Mr. Alvin is a master gift opener. If not, he is. I placed his wrapped gift (which was the muffins) on the floor. Of course, Teddy and Kobi, most especially Kobi circled nearby as he very deftly with his nose and mouth and holding the gift with his paw opened it. I took the video and once he got it mostly open, I grabbed it quickly before he accidentally ate the plastic that the muffins were in. So cute. I am so grateful to be blessed with the most generous friend(s) on the planet.

Well I guess it is getting way late here and Mr. Alvin is not changing the bedding nor is he gathering the towels for the laundry nor is he putting on the coffee for his Momma. He is leaving it all up to me. What a great guy!

I hope that you are doing great. We are getting close to DECEMBER now. Only couple more days now. YAY. Next weekend I will start and finish the Christmas baking. Pretty sure I have all of the ingredients that I require as the pantry and cupboards are jammed packed full of items.

Have a great Saturday.

Enjoy your morning coffee, tea or juice. Go for a nice walk. Don’t forget to do something nice for someone. There is not a better feeling than to help someone in need. That way you will have more energy and feel so much better about things. Show some gratitude. It works. Believe me, it works.

Alvin and I will continue to live our lives showing kindness and respect and compassion for all. We might be having a “sidewalk” visit today with our friends Ali and Bailey down the street. Bailey is no longer that little puppy. She is getting big. We see her sometimes out walking with her Grandpa.

Happy Saturday.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR – last quarter

Good Morning ALL. Wishing all of our neighbours to the south, yes you United States of America – a very Happy Thanksgiving. Now I know that sounds a bit frivolous but no matter what is going on in our lives, we always have so much to be thankful, to be grateful for.

This is my list for 2020:

  1. Firstly, I am grateful to be in good health, that Alvin is in good health and my family and friends.
  2. I am grateful that every morning I can swing my legs over the side of the bed and feel my feet touch the floor.
  3. I am grateful that I can walk into the bathroom off my bedroom use the sink with running hot and cold water to wash my face and brush my teeth.
  4. I am grateful that I have indoor plumbing with no carrying any kind of pail outside to dispose of or have to go outside to an shack to “go.”
  5. I am grateful that I have eyes to see the beautiful sunrises and sunsets and to see the stars on a clear night and the glorious moon high in the sky. That I can see the faces of my dear family and friends.
  6. I am grateful that I can hear Alvin when he barks or cries, that I can hear my the birds chirping in the early morning, and that I can hear my daughter’s soft lovely voice. That I can hear.
  7. I am grateful that I have the means to have my own home, my own home for the first time in my live. Something that is mine.
  8. I am grateful that I can afford to eat good food.
  9. I am grateful that during this pandemic my daughter and my friends have graciously and without a second thought, added my shopping needs to their own.
  10. I am grateful that I live in Canada.
  11. I am grateful to be employed and that my employers have been so considerate of their staff during this pandemic.
  12. I am grateful that I am still employed and that I am able to work from home. This is the best thing to come out of 2020 and that is being at home with Alvin everyday.
  13. I am grateful that I have the technology to keep in touch with family and friends and to write this post everyday.
  14. I am grateful that my son-in-law’s brother “D” who had the heart transplant one year ago, is doing so well and able to continue to live a great life and to celebrate another Christmas with family and friends.
  15. I am grateful for each breath I take and that they are easy.
  16. I am grateful to have books to read.
  17. I am grateful that I can help animals and humans when needed.
  18. I am grateful that I have the strength to shovel the winter snow.
  19. I am grateful to be surrounded by kind, loving, supportive and compassionate family, friends and neighbours.
  20. I am grateful for my life.

Well time to go to work. I am grateful for my job. I will continue to live my life in gratitude, with kindness and respect for all others.

Always, Carol & Alvin

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