A New YEAR 2023

Good Morning ALL! How are you this Thursday morning? We are okay here in windy Edmonton or at least it is breezy here in our neighbourhood. We were in bed by 9:30 and I read for a few minutes. I am rereading THE SECRET. At this point, I need some positive reinforcement in my life. Our office is filled with negativity and not by choice. Sometimes when choices are made – how it is reflected by the staff is not joined with the same enthusiasm. This is the case. But I have noticed over last decade that change happens on a regular basis with this employer, almost daily. So after a time, people are just deflated and tired. It always irritates me when we get told about “change is good” and blah blah, well change can be good but sometimes it is difficult to embrace. Anyway, I am going to stop there. I am grateful everyday by all the goodness in my life. I am grateful to be surrounded by loving, supportive family and friends. I may have mentioned that once or twice. I am so over the moon grateful that I had the opportunity to buy and live in this house and hope to continue to be here for many many years to come. Gratitude for the wind, for the snow, for the birds and the bees. Grateful for life, for the good health that I am blessed to have and grateful that Mr. Alvin is my trusty companion through this stage of my life. I am grateful that retirement is just around the corner, that will be the next step in my life. I look forward to that time where I can snuggle with Alvin, it won’t matter if he is up during the night because we can sleep in, walks whenever we choose, I can write more and perhaps get that book done, go through my photos and learn some technical stuff.

I wanted to share this with you. Are you older like me or just not tech savvy. Somedays I feel like life is just changing at a pace that I can not keep up with ….. who knew that watching hours of my beloved “Disney + channel” would result in an extra $55.00 on my cable/internet bill. Well it did. I was shocked when I saw how much my bill was and immediately contacted my provider to find out why. I learned a valuable lesson …… “streaming” …… well I guess streaming has nothing to do with water and more about extra money. Anyway, my provider gave me for six months free “unlimited” something or other, I just forget what it is called at the moment and I want to say this before I have to sign off. Oh, “unlimited data” that is the term. I guess to have unlimited data there is a $20.00 charge or at least with Telus. The young man on the phone explained everything and was very patient and kind. Lesson learned. So I need to get all of these terms figured out and make sure that I know what is going on. I had no idea that watching a day of Disney or many days of Disney would end up costing me $55.00 extra when I had already paid $125.00 for Disney. They find a way to take your money – all of these billion dollar companies. It is sometimes over the top frustrating.

Time to fly. I hope that you have a great day. Keep the positive thoughts coming in. Thoughts become things. That is my mantra once again. I kind of got away from it. It is so true. Keep positive.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. it was raining last night after supper and it is plus 4 or so here in Edmonton this morning. WOW.

A New YEAR 2023

Good Morning ALL! How are you this Wednesday morning? We are doing well. Definitely Mr. Alvin has improved vastly. This morning was first meal with his regular food although I did throw a bit of chicken on the top as a treat. We had a pretty good sleep. I think it was around 4:00 a.m. when he needed to go outside and then we hit the sofa for a couple more hours of uninterrupted sleep. So I am very happy.

Tomorrow and Friday, I am back to the office. Hopefully Alvin will do okay. I think part of his anxiety stems from me having to leave the house. Even with someone coming to check on him, it is not the same. He still has to hold himself until someone comes at around noon. I get that. Can you imagine if you had to go to the bathroom and had to hold it for hours? Not me, I would have an accident. In all of our years together he has only had two accidents. Both were poop. First was the very first morning that he came to live with me and really that should not count and the second was years later. He pooped on the floor in the upstairs bathroom. That is it. No peeing accidents.

So off the above topic and something important. Tomorrow is Mr. Alvin’s 14th Birthday. If you would like to wish him a Happy Birthday – I would definitely forward the wishes to me. I cannot believe that we have been together for 13 years. Longest relationship with a male. He does wear the pants in this household and I am grateful. What a good guy he is and I am so grateful that I adopted him back on that cold night in January of 2010. It was a leap of faith, I suppose. The first month was not much fun for either of us but we got through those long days and long nights. Here we are!

I am hoping that perhaps after work or maybe at lunch time we can get out for a little walk. It has been since Christmas time, I think. Beginning of January for sure. Hopefully this mild weather will hang in for awhile longer.

Time to head downstairs and plug in my coffee to perk. I carried Mr. Alvin upstairs to be with me as I was having a shower and then writing this post.

Have a beautiful day and remember even when things seem their darkest, there is always a streak of light at the end of the tunnel. Things always work out. Sometimes it may take a bit of time but if you can remain positive, life will be good.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

A New YEAR 2023

Good Morning ALL! How are you this winter morning? It was snowing outside earlier. So nice to have these warmer temperatures but with them comes moisture, meaning freezing rain or SNOW! Well this has been a trying morning thus far. It took me 40 minutes to get likely about 1/2 of Alvin’s medication into him and the rest landed on the sofa or in his fur. So always cleanup after the medicine. This was the least amount that he has ever taken. What a guy! Not sure what else I can do? Thankfully he does not have much left to take. Hopefully there is enough to at least coat his stomach. I don’t know. He will be eating breakfast in a few minutes which is 30 minutes after he had the medication. I am praying to whomever may listen to please make him well. Between the demands to go into the office and Alvin’s health, I am super frustrated. Not the best way to start the work week. Okay, I have vented time too “let it go.” Best line ever and from an animated movie, no less. I know the words were from the song in the movie “Frozen.”

On this Monday, I am grateful to be working from home. I am grateful that we have good food to eat. I am grateful to be surrounded by supportive family and friends. I am grateful to be employed. I am grateful to be living this life.

Is my life perfect? Well, no. Is it pretty great for the most part, well YES! So I will get over these moments this morning and get on with the day. Alvin needs to have breakfast. I will need to finish this post first. I will work and do the best job that I can. I will be a good human being. The best that I can be in any given moment.

This will be short. We did have a great weekend in between the medication episodes. I wonder what he is doing downstairs as I left him. Just needed to put some space and time between him. Yesterday, my friend Signe came for coffee & visit in the morning. It was nice to see her – feels like a long time.

Take a deep breath and have a great day. That is what I am doing.

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

Looking forward to the coffee this morning.

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. even though we have our moments, I love Alvin with all my heart. Always trying to do the best for him. Just in case you had other thoughts!

A New YEAR 2023

Good Morning ALL! Another busy day ahead. My daughter slept over last night and she is still sleeping. We are having my cousins over for a visit and supper today. So I have lots to do. Cooking and cleaning. Alvin has taken the corner in major improvement. He had a good poop or poops yesterday so that is such a relief. I will continue with his regiment and hopefully by next week he is back to his old self. Next Thursday is his 14th Birthday. We will celebrate not next Saturday but the following Saturday with our family and perhaps even a friend or two. I am grateful for all of the many blessings in my life. Family and Friends.

Speaking of friends, just a special shout out to my dear friend Gillian who helped me out in a major way yesterday. After work, I had to go to the vet to pick up something (treats, yes I know – not like Alvin can have them now but they are a hard commodity to secure), my eyeglasses and some groceries. She picked me up shortly after 4:00 p.m. and we had all three stops done and back home by 5:00 p.m. How is that for getting things done. I am so grateful for her friendship, love and support. She saved me time and walking and carrying.

Another dear friend received good news about her pathology report and we are forever grateful.

Just good news all way round.

Freezing rain earlier ….. yes ….. raining in Edmonton ….. in January. Go figure. The next days and virtually all week are to be mild. Perhaps Alvin and I may get out for a walk yet before the temperatures change.

I will post a few photos tomorrow but need to get this show on the road.

Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedules to read my posts, it is so appreciated. I love to write and to share my life with you. Maybe some of the pooping stories are a bit much but they are part of my life, unfortunately or perhaps fortunately! Take some time for yourself on this weekend and have a good one. Be safe and take care.

Continuing to live this life with kindness, respect, compassion, patience, love, laughter, understanding, gratitude, focus, possibilities and coffee. I have already enjoyed a mug of that good stuff, lol.

Always, Carol & Alvin

A New YEAR 2023

Happy New Year. Well it was an interesting end to the year for me, how was it for you? Did you go out and celebrate with friend(s) or family or both? Did you stay at home? Order in food or cook something special? Watch a movie and New Year’s Eve program? Well on December 31st, I received a phone call late in the morning from one of my friends asking me if I wanted to go for a walk. My friend Lucy. She is a neighbour of another friend Pauline. When she asked I thought she meant in the neighbour and with Alvin but she had other ideas. We finally got it sorted out and what she was really asking was if I wanted to walk near the River Valley. There is an access point less than a 10 minute drive from my house. I had never been there and had no idea what to expect. But I figured, I should get out and let her know that I would take Alvin out first and then I could be ready for 2:00 p.m., if that was okay with her. A plan was set. I went over in my head a list of items that I should wear for my 1-2 hour walk. Winter boots of course, winter coat, scarf, lighter gloves and pair of mitts and a hat. I normally do not wear a hat but this time, I figured that I would wear one and it worked out well. In hindsight, the only item that I could have used was my ice picks for my boots. The trail was not icy but it might have given me a bit more traction climbing up the slopes/hills. Back to the beginning. Lucy picked me up just before 2:00 p.m. and I said goodbye to Mr. Alvin. He had been outside for a pee and had water so he was good for a few hours. I also put up a baby gate to upstairs. The thought of him slipping when I was not at home, was not one that I wanted. We chatted during the course of the drive. Then we were there. Two cars were parked at the entrance so we pulled in behind. Next thing I know we were walking downhill taking in the most exquisite sites of nature. The trees were covered in frost and as the sun was shining but not too brightly they appeared to be almost grey. Such a beautiful sight. We both stopped to take some photos. We did a couple of selfies along the way. There was a bridge along the way over the river, the North Saskatchewan River, I believe. The trees were so thick and with the water being frozen over; it was not easy to see the “actual water” but we could see the bottom. We were walking up and down and down and up and then came the greatest incline and I could feel the breath being sucked out of me. Definitely not in great shape. I can walk on a flat surface for a long time but when you add an incline, man, I could feel it. But I did it and was very proud. Once we came out on the other side, Lucy asked if I would like to keep walking and take in the neighbourhood which was filled with huge brand new homes and some even being in the midst of construction, so we continued. Some of the sidewalks were shovelled and others were not. We both were in awe of Mother Nature. Decorative grasses were heavy with frost and looking more beautiful than during the summertime. The branches of trees were heavy with the frost and in some places, the frost was so heavy on the small branches that the slightest of breezes was making it snow. The air was warm for this time of year. I believe it was about minus 9 celsius which is perfect for walking. When we came to the end – we turned around and went back. There is something about going home that makes it much easier than going. The incline did not seem so high. We stopped along the way out taking photos and admiring Mother Nature’s achievements. I am so grateful to Lucy for calling. She had wanted to take one last walk at the River Valley for 2022. Then I was home. We said our goodbyes and she was on her way. Lucy will be at work and already working for a hour and a bit. Alvin was happy to have me back home.

I let Alvin outside for a pee and then we snuggled for a bit before time to think about supper. I think it was about 3:45 when I arrived home. Suppertime arrived and I feed Mr. Alvin and then prepared my supper. After deciding on roasted vegetables, I prepared them and popped them into the oven. During the time supper was cooking, I decided to see if I would be able to transfer the information/data from my old computer to this one. Well I was able to do so but was sad to find out that my new computer does not have enough memory to hold my 45,000 + photos. They are on the cloud and on another online data storage facility but I no longer have access to them at my fingertips. I will have to figure something out. Clearly I need to go through them and weed out the poor shots and the duplicates. I know that for a time some of the photos were duplicated when uploaded/downloaded whichever it is called. Anyway, I was able to set up the new computer all by myself. In between, I went downstairs and checked on dinner.

I am having company for coffee at 10:00 a.m. and it is almost 9:00 so I need to sign off as the shower is calling me.

The sky is painted pretty oranges and pinks this morning. Oh, we did not stay up until midnight last night. I was too tired. I watched Guardians of the Galaxy before heading to bed about 9:30 and sent off a few texts to family and friends wishing them a Happy New Year. Of course, after I was tucked away in bed, I remembered a few more that I forgot but I just could not drag my body up to send another text. Today I will send messages with wishes for a Happy New Year. Also, if someone calls you out of the blue and wants to do something that is a bit out of your wheelhouse, say “yes.”

I did try to see if I was able to “air drop” my photos from yesterday’s adventure onto this new computer but Miss Siri was not too helpful. I will try again later.

Happy New Year. All the Best for 2023. This year is going to be the best one yet.

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

Happy New Year with Love Carol & Alvin

Last Days 2022 – December 28th

Good Morning ALL! Well Mr. Alvin was up and down all last night. So we slept in until just a few minutes ago. The phone rang at 9:00 and it was my Optometrist’s Office. They left a message as I did not get to the phone fast enough. Jennifer was calling to let me know that they processed my insurance towards my new glasses and that the balance was XXX amount. Two years ago when I went for my eye checkup I had gone on the 11th of December but for some reason had gone back again on the 28th therefore my insurance used the 28th as the date for payment of insurance. Anyway, does not matter but at this appointment they were not able to process my insurance benefits until today which they did and were calling me to give me the news and the final balance. In the message Jennifer said “cute message” which was my Christmas message. A reminder to change that sooner than later. I called and spoke to Jennifer and mentioned that the balance did not seem like it included my sunglass clips, she checked and said you are correct, it did not. She recalculated the total and gave me the amount less the insurance. I said that I would be over this morning to pay the balance owing. After this post, I will be walking over to their office which is a few blocks away. Not too far.

Well yesterday I decided to take down the Christmas Tree and most of our decorations. I left up a few things so it still looks like Christmas. Feels better to have the chair back where it belongs opposite the other chair by the window. Opens it up inside. I love Christmas and all the decorations but it was time for me to put things away. It took the better part of the day to do so. Bye, Christmas 2022 was great.

In the background I was playing Disney+ ….. Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, 101 Dalmations and other classics. I love those movies. One day I will sit down and watch each one from beginning to end. Last night I watch the Taylor Swift conversation about the album that she put out in 2020. I do not remember the name of it but it was made remote during Covid. Really enjoyed it. Quite the departure from her usual albums which I love. I am a fan of Taylor.

Mr. Alvin needs a haircut and bath. The plan is to do it when I get home from paying for my new glasses. Looks like the sky is brightening so perhaps the sky will clear and it will stop snowing. I called the Vet office to make an appointment for Alvin but no one was there or maybe busy. They may be closed a few extra days, will try again. Alvin needs his nails trimmed and the usual.

I am waiting until I get home to make coffee so I need to go as I NEED some coffee.

Have an awesome day. Wednesday.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. looks like we are back to our normal, lol.

Last Half 2022 – December

Good Morning ALL! How are you this morning? Well still bitterly cold here in Edmonton, I don’t even want to check to see what the windchill is this morning. I am sending out gratitude to the Universe for my furnace who is working overtime to keep the house warm and for my coat, boots, scarf and mitts that keep me warm when I am outside. Gratitudes for meltdowns and quick pick me back ups and back to business. Gratitude to my body at the cellular level that keeps me healthy. Gratitude that I am able to smell all the scents of the Holiday season. Gratitude for my hands and feet and body that I can feel the warmth and the cold when it surrounds me. Gratitude for my eyes that they can see my family, my friends and all the beauty that surrounds me. Gratitude that I can taste all of the good food and the treats that enter my mouth. Gratitude that I can hear the sounds of music, of the voices of family and friends and the world that surrounds me.

Sometimes during the holidays we tend to overreact to situations and yes, at other times of the year. There is something about the holidays that makes us emotional. I think it is due in large part to the high expectation that we put on ourselves for perfection. We want the gifts to be magical, the food to be the best ever, the company to be kind and the house to stay clean with no unpleasant surprises along the way. Of course, does this happen? Sometimes but not always. So this Christmas be easy on yourself. Let the perfection stand aside. “Let it go.” Your guests will love whatever you make and if they do not, well that is okay. If there is one thing that I have learned over my 65 years on this planet is “that you cannot please all of the people all of the time.” If they are not tickled pink by the gift that you spent hours selecting – smile and walk away. DO NOT ENGAGE. It is always in how we react to a situation. We cannot change people – no matter how hard we try. This Christmas do things that make you HAPPY and in turn all around you will be okay. I do not want to promise that they will be as happy as you because “their happiness depends on them.” Okay, you got this! WE got this!

Time for me to head downstairs and get ready to leave the house for work.

COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS EVE: OMG, only four sleeps, I am so excited to see Alvin, Aspen and Milo, Amanda and Steven. This is going to be a great Christmas. I am ready!

Have a wonderful Tuesday. Take some time for you!

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

Last Half 2022 – December

Good Morning ALL! How are you this morning? I am doing well. When I looked out of the bedroom window I saw more snow so there will be more shovelling in my future. The sky is grey so more snow. I was pretty sure that the temperatures were getting colder so not sure why the snow but not much one can do about this situation. Mother Nature does what Mother Nature does in the winter on the prairies in Canada. Happy December! I am grateful that today is Sunday and that I do not have much on my plate today except putting my winter coats back in the downstairs front entranceway closet and emptying the dishwasher. Oh, and shovelling! I have done lots of cleaning last weekend and on Friday and earlier on Saturday preparing for Christmas parties each weekend.

Last night was so much fun. There were five of us in total. Two ladies cancelled at the last minute. That did not stop us from having a great time. We laughed, we “cried”, we ATE (oh my goodness did we eat), drank and spoke about our ups and downs, some about work. I was actually surprised that we held off talking about the “W” word for most of the evening and then we had a good chat. We were all feeling the same as we shared our anxieties and all of that. Next time I ask people to come over – I will not ask them to bring food as I made enough for about 20 people. We laughed about that …..

Well, I am keeping this short as I just want to have a lazy day and I want to get that started now. In fact, I am going to stay in my pj’s for awhile until I go out to shovel, might as well wait until the snow stops.

Tomorrow is back to the office. I was thinking last night and shared, “Wouldn’t it be great if our employer decided to change our “schedule for back to the office” down to one or two days per week. Dependant on whether or not your job required you to actually be in the office” What a morale booster that would be right before Christmas.” A girl can only hope. Maybe changing my thoughts will change the outcome. Oh that would be so nice. Fingers crossed. Changing my thoughts to change things!

Have an awesome Sunday. Coffee here I come.

Countdown to Christmas: only 6 sleeps until Christmas Eve. Only 6 sleeps until ALVIN comes home. I cannot wait to see him, Aspen, Milo, Amanda and Steven. YAY. Happy Christmas to me!

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. last night was a reminder, if you are feeling something, it is very likely that others feel the same way! Always reach out and know you are never alone.

Last Half 2022 – December

Good Morning ALL! How are you on this Thursday? I am well. Receiving great report about my boy. Missing him but glad he is doing well. Still dark as night outside. We are nearing the shortest day of the year.

Are you ready for Christmas? Do you bake? Do you entertain? Do you wrap gifts in paper, bags or something else? What special dishes do you make during the holidays? Are you having a big crowd for Christmas? Do you put up an artificial tree or a real tree?

I am ready for Christmas. Shopping done and most wrapping done except for a few items that have yet to be delivered, Christmas cards mailed and still have a few to hand deliver and that will be on Sunday, house and tree are decorated (I keep fussing with the tree, looking for perfection, lol. Yes, I bake every year. This year I made Sugar Cookies and iced them, Chocolate Fudge and Chocolate Chip Cookies. I will make some Mincemeat Tarts for Christmas, as well. Yes, a bit although this year I am hosting more (which is lovely). My daughter, son-in-law and pups mostly come here for Christmas although I have gone to their home a few times over the year. Sometimes good for a change. I wrap gifts in paper, bags and sometimes use brown paper, Christmas towels, and sometimes put a gift within a gift. I started making this Hot Cheese Dip for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day as an appetizer. I like to make some different twists on the traditional Christmas Dinner meal. Like chicken instead of turkey and one year we had tofurkey. Homemade cranberries instead of out of a can. Garlic whipped potatoes instead of just whipped potatoes. This year we are having Chinese Food instead of the usual. My friend Lucy gave me some Chinese Dumplings that she made so I froze them to have at Christmas. Christmas is usually me, Amanda, Steven and the pups, Alvin, Aspen and MiMi. This year we may have a couple of friends. We also leave an open invitation to anyone who does not have a place to go to for Christmas. The thought of someone alone makes me sad. I am having what I call a big crowd this weekend for a Christmas party, the second weekend in a row for parties. YAY, me. I have been putting up an artificial tree as I had a tree lose all of its’ needles. But I used to put up real trees. I love the smell of a real tree.

So there are my answers to my questions. I hope that you have fun thinking about your answers.

Countdown to Christmas: OMG only “9” sleeps until Christmas Eve.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

Last Half 2022 – December

Good Morning All! How are you this Wednesday morning? I am grateful to be working from home today. We had a small amount of snow last night, actually I think before I went to bed. So the once cleared sidewalk now has a light sheet not even a blanket covering.

Last night right after I arrived home from work, I set my backpack and work things inside the house, locked the house and then carried on for a walk. It was so nice last night that I thought it would be a great idea to get out for some fresh air and exercise. On the way home, I stopped by the mailbox and picked up the mail. Inside were some Christmas cards from family and friends. I was doing an internal happy dance as I love to receive Christmas cards in the mail. I love to receive them period but most especially in the mail. Once inside the house, I took off my boots, set down the mail and carried on to the garage where I brought in the garbage bin as yesterday was trash pickup. Back in the house, I had a few things to do before supper so got them out of the way. Then supper (leftovers from Saturday’s Christmas party) went into the oven to warm. Once supper was done, I sat down on the sofa and munched away at my delicious supper. Missing my boy thought, it is way too quiet in the house and I have no one to snuggle with and not having him to go to bed with or to wake up to, seems very odd. My daughter sends pictures and videos often and he is definitely thriving in his new temporary surroundings. I think he is loving having two friends (Aspen and Milo) with him all the time and of course, his sister and brother-in-law. No stairs. New toys. Someone home all of the time. Good setup. One more week from Saturday and he will be back home. It was a good idea as I believe that we both needed a break but I will be SO EXCITED to have him home.

After supper, I did the dishes and turned on the dishwasher to wash the load that had been accumulating over the past couple of days. Then I just relaxed and watched some t.v. Quiet evening.

Countdown to Christmas: 10 days until Christmas Eve (and Alvin comes home with Aspen and Milo while the kids go to St. Albert for Steven’s family’s Christmas.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

P.S. have a wonderful Wednesday ……..

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