2021

Good Morning ALL! I thought that I would share what my life was like on this day one year ago on July 11th, 2020. By all accounts it was definitely more active. I hope that this finds you well and enjoying your weekend. Perhaps you are watching the rerun of some of the STAR WARS movies. Always enjoy re-watching them.

From July 11th, 2020:

Good Morning All,

We just arrived home from a nice walk a little while ago.

There is ever so slight of a breeze as the temperature is already begin to climb.

Supposed to be +26 degrees celsius today.

Which is warm considering the temperatures that we have been experiencing this summer.

In the some of our Canadian provinces east of Alberta the temperatures have been ugly hot.

With the humidex it has been almost too much.

I cannot imagine being a dog or cat or any animal including human in +40 temperatures.

Not for me.

While out and about we bumped into Humphrey and his Mom.

They were also out for some fresh air and sniffing.

Mom for the fresh air and Humphrey for the sniffing.

He likes to go into everyone’s front yard and sniff the trees and plants.

In a little bit after a late breakfast for me and a cup of coffee, I have decided to move up Mr. Alvin’s haircut.

Might as well get it cut before the heat of the day.

Last night after work Humphrey visited.

After supper and clean up I went over and picked up Bogart to introduce him to Alvin.

Alvin wanted to say hi but was a bit reluctant but the kitten just hissed and did a baby kind of growl.

We did go into the backyard and I placed the kitten down at one point but he was scared so I picked him up.

We spent a few hours just chilling on the sofa.

The kitten draped loosely around my neck, Humphrey dozing on Alvin’s doggie bed and Alvin stretched out on the sofa beside us.

By the time that I took the boys home, Bogart was hissing a bit less.

Alvin was panting so he clearly had some anxiety over the whole thing although he wanted to get close to the kitten.

I don’t think he has seen a kitten before in his life.

Not so easy taking photos with a kitten in your arms.

I snapped these photos earlier in the day from my office window.

The deck was still wet from that wicked storm the night before …

I love my backyard.

Flowers have survived.

******************

Unfortunately the only photo that copies over from the above post was the one of Alvin. I do love that one of him.

He almost always takes a great photo unlike someone I know.

So in contrast, we are not out for an enjoyable walk enjoying the sights and the smells.

We did spend some time on the deck as I was retrieving the flower pots from the garage.

By the way, the storm did not amount to much here in my neighbourhood.

I just brought the laundry upstairs, got washed and dressed and writing this post.

Alvin is downstairs and is making it know that he is not happy.

Such is my life.

Looking ahead, I am thinking that this is going to be a good memory compared to after his surgery.

Trying to keep him from moving and being able to go upstairs, do laundry, make meals, water flowers, even go to the bathroom will be an undertaking until we figure it out. I hope that the surgery goes well. Still two weeks away. Which is good and bad. Good for us and bad for him, I think.

Well he is barking and I do not wish to make him more anxious, he is the boss, so downstairs I shall go. Time to have a cup of coffee, anyway.

Thank you for sticking with us on this journey we call our lives. Not too exciting but never a dull moment.

Have a wonderful Sunday. Remember to check out the STAR WARS movies on television.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Good Morning ALL! Welcome to Thursday, July 1, 2021 – Canada Day. The sun is shining and the birds are singing. We are just home from a walk a few minutes ago and I wanted to write this post before it becomes too hot upstairs in my office. At the moment there is a cool breeze wafting in through the open window. I have all of the windows open the house and the temperature is 81 F, which is the lowest it has been in the house for more than a week now.

Last night when I was going to sleep I starting to compose this “poem” if you will and wished that I had got up and wrote down the words as they have changed and evolved as the morning goes on …..

O CANADA

I was born in Canada, raised in Canada and love my country.

I knew early on that some people were treated differently and not always because of skin color.

As a child, I knew of Indigenous peoples.

We hired some of the men from nearby reservations to help out on the family farm.

Why they only lived on the reserves?

I did not really know.

Why there were no Indigenous children at our school?

We learned where the different Indigenous peoples lived, like the Cree, the Sioux and the Blackfoot.

By the time I was a teenager and we had moved to other provinces,

There were some Indigenous children in our rural schools.

No one spoke of or mentioned “residential schools.”

Our history with some being of recent times,

Not written in books for us to read,

Is filled with acts of violence that we find reprehensible and horrific of other countries.

But it is not other countries that fills the news feeds,

Not places where there are religious wars or tribal wars but here.

In this place we call home.

This place called Canada.

This Canada Day we cannot celebrate,

We must not,

Celebrate,

Without acknowledging the hundreds of Indigenous children ripped from their homes,

In the name of religious beliefs and with government approval.

These children suffered more than we could ever know,

They missed their families.

They were not allowed to speak their languages.

They were abused and neglected by “pillars of our communities.”

Many were murdered by these same members of the church and government.

While others were experimented on by the military.

The children that lived through the abuse, neglect and horrors of what was done to them and others,

Continued and continue to suffer as adults.

Their families threatened to silence and worse.

The time has come for us all to stand up.

To stand beside our fellow Indigenous Canadians,

Speak out to the atrocities that they have suffered and continue to,

Recognize and acknowledge,

We cannot go forward without looking back.

O Canada.

My heart hurts for the babies, for the children.

We must hear them, now and forever, and never forget!

Written by CY Lewis on July 1, 2021.

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As I continue to live my life with kindness, respect, compassion, patience, love, understanding and gratitude.

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Good Morning ALL! How are you this Friday, March 26, 2021. It is the weekend, yay. I love the weekends. A chance to do some of the things that you did not have time for during the week. Even though I am working from home, I do the laundry for example of Saturdays and sometimes finishing on Sundays as I have always done. That goes for everything that I have traditionally done on the weekends still is completed on the weekend.

One thing away from the joy of weekends and that I was thinking about earlier this morning is the recent loss of life in the U.S. from shootings in a public place. I will never understand why the Americans keep clinging to the The Second Amendment of their Constitution that reads: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” Why is that a fundamental right of the people? Why has not been amended in 2021. This was ratified on December 15, 1791. I am never quite sure why any country clings to outdated laws. This does not make sense to me in 2021. I know that this is very important to the Americans. We share a border with the U.S. and are similar in so many ways. In fact in the early days many people populated Canada from the U.S. – coming in from other countries. So why did we not have a similar Constitution? I wonder. We do not have a “right to bear arms.” People in Canada can apply for a license to own a gun for hunting and such. But there seems to be a lot more control over guns and a lot less mass shootings. Not to say that we have not had them. When will there be a breaking point where the people just say “enough is enough” or will they ever say this? I wonder? Incredibly sad for unnecessary loss of life. Most especially sad during a pandemic. I have always wondered these questions and perhaps because this is not something I usually write about in a public forum, today seems like the day. I believe that there are always going to be people that are able to obtain guns in some manner or other but why make it so easy for them. Also some of these guns that can spray what seems like a million bullets …. why are people able to purchase them? I wonder how many people are afraid to send their children to school, afraid to go to the mall or go pick up groceries?

Time to head on downstairs and get to work. Excited for my morning coffee. The sun is beginning to rise for a new day.

Always good to think about things that do not make sense to still be an active law, if you will.

Living my life in kindness, respect, compassion and patience.

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you this morning? Today is my late start / shift so we slept in which was lovely. The sun has rose, the sky is a brilliant blue as we begin our day. We went to bed perhaps a bit later than usual and then Mr. Alvin had to go outside at 11:23 p.m. but then he slept until 5:00 a.m. – which was truly a bonus. Yesterday after work we went for a walk just inside the park and then back home. Not very long but that was okay. Our temperatures are warming up. I was grateful that we were able to get outside and breathe in some fresh air. The past two weeks or so have only been trips to the backyard and shovelling when there was snow. So this was great. Good for the body, mind and soul. Clear the cobwebs so to speak. Anyway, I am truly grateful for our walk together. As we both age, even though I do not think of either of us as “really old” – I am always in a state of gratitude for each and every day we have together. Each day that we can enjoy each other’s company and even perhaps get outside for some fresh air and a walk. Time flies when you are having fun and that it is. Can you believe that today is Thursday, February 18, 2021. Hard to believe I know. Next month on March 19th – it will mark one year since our office sent us home to work. I have been truly grateful for that decision and for them continuing to have us working from home. The next check date is June, 2021. I have been wishing and praying and praying and wishing and crossing my fingers, eyes and toes that they give us the choice whether to go to the office and work or work from home. With Alvin getting older, I need / I want to be home with him. I cannot imagine putting him back in that situation where I leave at 6:30 and get home after 5:00 p.m. and that is providing I can carpool as taking the bus would put me home even later. I am going to continue to think about how much I love working from home and how good it is for me, for Alvin and has been for our clients. My thoughts also go to the folks in the U.S. who are in the midst of a huge winter storm with another one coming in before they have even recovered from the first one. Many of them do not have furnaces, pipes are bursting in homes and businesses, there is no electricity and no water. My heart goes out to them. We are actually pretty prepared in Canada for winter storms after all we have them during our winter months. Our winters can sometimes be more than half of the year. Sometimes we joke about all the different outer apparel we each have here in Canada. Most of us have a jacket for early spring, for later spring, for summer, for late summer, for fall, for early winter, for bitter cold days and so on. We have boots for rain and snow. These things that go on the bottom of our boots for when it is icy. There are also hats, mitts and scarves. We all have furnaces and some have air conditioners. We have family living in Houston, Texas. They were without electricity. I hope that no more lives are lost and that everyone is safe and warm with clean water and food.

I am grateful everyday to be safe, to be warm, in good health and have good food to eat. To be surrounded by family and friends even though I do not physically see them often, they are still there. I am grateful that Mr. Alvin found me, all those years ago.

Continuing to live with kindness, respect, compassion and patience for all.

Always, Carol

2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you today? Alvin and I are doing well. I am in the mood for composing a poem just for you. Here goes.

WINTER

The sky blending into the white topped garage roofs fills my sight.

On this weekend morning as I write.

There is no denying it.

Winter is upon us.

From morning until night.

The lawns are covered with snow, the streets and the decks.

No pavement or wood is showing.

Frigid temperatures take away our daily walks.

Stories of cold in years gone by, fill our talks.

When we do creep out of our home to shovel the snow from the sidewalks.

The warmest of coats, boots, mitts and scarves cover our bodies.

Our natural inclination, our feeling is the longing to snuggle on the sofa.

With the heat turned up.

With a toasty warm blanket and sip on a warm beverage, perhaps hot chocolate.

And mindlessly watch a favourite movie.

We don our warmest sweaters, sometimes even “long underwear” beneath our pants.

Thick, warm socks cover our feet.

Our energy level is low.

To get our chores done is slow.

This I know.

Our life is simple during this time.

We do what we need to do.

Usually nothing more.

Except for those who do not seem to be affected.

By these more than deep freezer temperatures.

We call winter in Canada.

Written by CY Lewis, February 6, 2021

Wishing you a great day. No matter the temperature, be safe, take care.

Continuing to live with kindness, respect, compassion and patience.

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

Second Half of the NEW YEAR – last quarter.

Good Morning ALL. A bit colder outside this morning. Well I had a good day downtown at the office. My daughter picked me up in the morning. Alvin was not really sure what was going on as I have only been away for the entire day twice since March 19, 2020. Can you imagine? I have been away to the office three times since March 19, 2020 but one was for a few hours to attend a meeting. My neighbour Sonja came over and checked on him a couple of times letting him outside and giving him one of his cookie/biscuit treats. The parcel from Steeped Tea did not arrive and the status went to pending but finally this morning it is showing an arrival date of today. For some reason they pushed it to today. Likely got behind in deliveries, I get that. It was nice to see a few people. Three in fact. That was all of the people that I saw at the office. Everyone practicing the COVID 19 safety protocols. I am grateful. I was able to get everything done early and then had time to actually put the postage on all of the letters / packages I had stuffed. First time using that fancy new machine. It worked pretty slick. I was so happy that I could help out our Support Services team. They work so hard. My daughter picked me up about 3:50 p.m. and we headed to Shoppers before going home to Alvin. I had a couple of parcels, card to go overseas and other Christmas cards within Canada. So happy to get everything posted. The gal in the “Post Office” said that it was so busy earlier and she was working alone. Isn’t that always the way? Also, I remembered to pick up extra stamps just in case I forgot to send a card to someone. Amanda and I always have good conversations on the car rides. I mentioned to her that one of the Support Services team was curious if I was following politics. I asked him “do you mean the U.S. elections.” He said “Yes.” So we chattered about the results. He thinks that there is voter fraud and I was very surprised to see that he sided with Trump. Not necessary Trump himself, but the Republicans. Anyway, I shared my knowledge of the U.S. Elections and was shocked by my articulation of the process. I have done lots of reading and I actually know stuff. Everyone is entitled to their thoughts and opinions. Realizing that I don’t know as much about our own government, I have vowed to do some research. I used to know the details but over the years have kind of forgotten. Time to do some reading.

The Pampered Chef order arrived yesterday so that was good.

Well it is time to head back downstairs, put on the coffee, put on the poop and get to work. I had to hit the “snooze” button this morning.

Living with kindness and respect for all. “Even when people do not have the same beliefs and opinions as ourselves.” (most importantly then).

Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR – last quarter

Good Morning All. Wow, can you believe it is Friday already? Time flies whether you are having fun or not. I always like to say “time flies when you are having fun.” I would like to think that for the most part I am a positive person trying to exude positive energy. Of course, there are times when I am positively not positive. We all have our little moments and we hope they are just little moments. Life zooms from beginning until end and if we don’t stop and enjoy it ….. well it is gone and there are no do overs. My life is pretty sweet. I own my home (well the bank does but I will ), I am surrounded by great neighbours, I have wonderful friends and family, I am in good health, I have my trusty companion Mr. Alvin always at my side, I have a job and I can work from home, I live in the best country on the planet, we have 20% of the world’s fresh water in Canada (just thought I would mention that fact), I am able to write everyday (love to write), I can see and hear, touch and feel and smell, I well, the list could go on forever. Needless to say I am very happy and happy within myself. That is important. Absolutely. Joy within before you can spread that joy.

Alvin and I went for a lovely walk yesterday at lunchtime. The air was warm on our faces as we walked along. Alvin only needed to wear his sweater yesterday and I could tell he was very happy about that.

This morning Alvin’s best friend Teddy and his little sister Kobie are coming to spend the day with us as their parents are going to their farm. Alvin is excited and wants to go downstairs already ….. Mr. patience, remember?

Gotta love this guy ….. he is truly spoiled ….. he wants what he wants when he wants it….. oh well …… what can a Momma do.

The sun is beginning to rise and clear away the night sky. I can see light ribbons of orange and light colours starting to fill the horizon. Love sunrises.

Well I guess time to go and put on that pot of coffee to perk. Go outside and pick up the earlier little parcel of poop. I haven’t mentioned that in a bit. LOL. I wish you a wonderful day …… don’t worry about the date ….. I believe it to be lucky as my youngest brother was born on Friday, the 13th of January, 1965. Happy Friday. Be safe and healthy and spread that kindness and respect wherever you go …..

Living my life with kindness, respect and love. Goodness shall prevail.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR – last quarter

Good Morning All. Well it is dark here in Edmonton and raining. The one good thing is that the temperature is warm so not freezing rain and does not appear to be icy outside. The deck usually is a good indication and it was okay earlier when Alvin and I were outside. What a night with the U.S. Elections. Looks like it may be a long day or two while waiting for the results. I have been doing a lot of reading about their election process and it is complex. Popular vote does not mean you win the election. You must have the majority of the electoral college votes in order to win the Presidency. The Democrats appear to have won the House of Representatives but the Senate could go either way. Also if no candidate reaches 270 majority of the electoral college votes then the House of Representatives elects the president, choosing from the three candidates who received the most electoral college votes; each state delegation gets one vote. The Senate would elect the vice-president through each senator casting one vote for one of the remaining top two candidates.

Apparently this has only happened once before in 1824 when Quincy Adams was elected president by the House of Representatives. Interesting. Note that was made: unless there is a strong third-party candidate, it’s unlikely that 270 or more electoral college votes would not be achieved.

So time will tell. It is interesting to note that record number of citizens got out and voted.

Back in Canada, we sit back and patiently wait to see what happens.

Also, back in Canada, Mr. Alvin is waiting “un” patiently to go downstairs while his Momma writes this post. Okay, I am coming “buddy.” Just a minute.

Time to go.

Time to plug in the coffee percolator and have a mug of that delectable nectar called COFFEE …… yum. Need that this morning.

We shall continue to live with kindness and respect for all others and ourselves.

I/We shall remain, As Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR

Good Morning All,

Another gorgeous fall day on the way.

The mornings are usually on the cool side but by noon the temperature is warm.

I went for a walk yesterday at noon.

Figuring it was the first walk by myself in close to a decade.

Usually I walk with Alvin or I am walking with someone or to somewhere.

This time totally on my own ….. just enjoying the beautiful fall day.

I saw a few folks that we know and first thing everyone said was “Where’s Alvin?”

He is definitely known and loved.

The leaves on the trees are the most colourful hues of yellow and reds.

Not too many green leaves left at this point.

Despite the many attempts at the wind to blow off the leaves they are hanging on.

There is something about the smell of the air in the fall.

Perhaps my imagination ….. goodness though …..

Even the wild roses at the entrance to our park are still blooming.

I love their fragrance.

 

Last night I had a good sleep …… even though we both get up during the night and Alvin gets up early …. I sleep better with him than without.

My boy, my boy.

I know that he is well cared for and hopefully enjoying his time at his sister’s house.

He is such a homebody …… always takes him a few days to acclimatize to new surroundings.

But on the other hand he does seldom leaves home so it is a big deal when he does.

 

I will say that it takes me a while to get used to the dark mornings.

In the summer it is light at this time …. bright sunshine…..now not.

Although it does look like rain ….

I will start to clean up some of the garden that is starting to go.

Always amazing how long some of the flowers and plants last as the temperatures fall.

 

Oh, last night I was watching “THE MASKED SINGER.”

WOW, I love that show.

Not sure why I haven’t been watching it but it is great.

Okay sometimes I am slow to the table ….. they are starting their 4th Season.

Incredible costumes and talent.

The only downside is all the costumes ….. what happens to all of them.

More items for the landfill.

Okay, perhaps should not go there.

Sometimes hard to think any differently.

 

Well I guess it is starting to get closer to work time.

It always seems to creep up faster every morning.

Likely in my head ….. I know.

 

I hope that wherever you are …. that you are safe and in good health.

Wishing you much kindness and respect.

From here in Alberta, Canada.

Living with kindness and respect,

I/We shall remain,

Always, Carol & Alvin

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