2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you doing today? Another partially sleepless night in Edmonton at our house. I gave Mr. Alvin his very last meds prescribed after his surgery and was hopefully that we could get back to a somewhat routine but alas it did not happen last night. We went to bed about the same time as pre surgery and we were up and down for the next two hours or so. I guess it is possible that his body is now missing the drugs that he was given. Likely similar to when we come off some kinds of prescriptions. I do remember one of the nurses saying when I mixed up the dose schedule remarking that the dosage is not high, is very low. So is this even a thing that he may or may not be going through. Perhaps it is just that his schedule has been all over the place during the last couple of weeks. He is still healing and I need to be patient. It is more than difficult to be patient when you are sleep deprived. Guess what first thing this morning and for the week – I am training a coworker. This will be fun for sure. Perhaps tonight will be different. When we came downstairs last night the first time we just stayed downstairs – on the sofa. Sometime between 11:00 and midnight, when he was up and down and wandering around the main floor, I decided that we would go back upstairs to bed. Hopeful that he would settle down on the bed with more room to spread out than the sofa and he DID. We slept until 4:35 a.m. which was good and then it was up and down every hour until I just stayed up. But some sleep as broken up as it was – is always better than nothing.

The sky is slightly overcast this morning. Even without the sun shining it is light earlier now and that makes it easier to stay up.

I cannot believe it is Monday morning already. Where did the weekend go? Yup, it evaporated as always. I did get most things done like laundry, household and almost finished my taxes. Just a bit to do and I will finish them this week. That will be a big job done.

The weather channel shows plus temperatures for this week and I am grateful. I booked Friday off as a vacation day long before I knew Alvin would need surgery. He is getting his stitches out in the morning. One thing that I did not quite figure out yet is how to get him there. We are not walking as it is muddy and wet. I do not wish to get his belly dirty before the stitches come out. I guess that I have a week to see if I can get us a ride. Hopefully if this weather – most of the ice and snow will have melted and the sidewalks will be dry.

Reminder to myself to be grateful to be alive. Grateful for our health and our home. Grateful for our family and friends. Grateful to be employed and so grateful that I am able to work from home. I would have had to use a minimum of two weeks with Alvin over his appointments and surgery. There is always a silver lining to every story. We often times, lose sight of that or at least last night I did for sure. Grateful for this life as it is all mine, no matter what.

Well time to go and plus in the coffee and get set up for work. Training is ahead of me. First time for me doing virtually with someone. Coffee will taste extra special this morning.

Remembering each moment of each day to be, to show kindness, respect, compassion and patience with gratitude.

Always, Carol & Alvin

2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you today? I, We are well. The birthday party was awesome. We had a great time. Alvin received very thoughtful gifts. He received a beautiful i.d. tag with his name Alvin and our phone number engraved on the back. So thoughtful. From his best buddy and his little sister – two different chew treats. I gave him a toy. The guests all arrived right on schedule. Alvin was slightly overwhelmed when everyone arrived. The kids and grandpups came in the back door from the garage and Teddy & Kobi from the front door. Alvin just ran around barking while everyone said hello. I could tell he was overwhelmed. At one point he jumped up onto the sofa and just barked and stared at me. Poor boy. After several minutes of loving attention from his sister he calmed down. I guess we have not had that many pups in the house since his last birthday. The birthday cupcake and frozen yogurt were a hit with the pups. Amanda had picked up the birthday cupcake and frozen yogurt from the Bone & Biscuit. The cupcake was the same as last year. I should have remembered how hard it was to cut into pieces after being frozen. The packaging said to keep frozen. Even with a hot knife to cut …. it was difficult. Between me and my son-in-law, we managed to get it cut into pieces to share with the five pups: the birthday boy, Aspen, Milo, Teddy and Kobi. I loved how they pretty much all were in a circle around Steven who was holding the cupcake while Amanda and I snapped video and photos. I should say that Steven doled out the yogurt by the spoonful to each pup while I was cutting up the frozen cupcake. At the end of it all …… the pups gobbled down the cupcake and the yogurt. A fine time was had by all. A bit out of order here but we had the pasta salad and garlic bread first and then followed by gift opening. I must say that gift opening is my favourite part. Not because of gifts but I love watching Mr. Alvin open his presents. He has got so proficient at gift opening over the years. All due to the many parcels that our friend Val has sent to us and she always sends a separate gift for the boy. One paw on the gift and with his mouth he rips opens the wrapping. His favourite I think is the tissue paper. Never eating it …. just ripping it, well actually shredding it. So cute to watch. After the pups were all done with their treats – we had the homemade vanilla cupcakes that I had made for the humans. They were a hit as well. The recipe turned out to be a good one. I will keep it in my treasure trove of recipes. Before the kids left for home, my daughter helped me bring the green chair back downstairs from its’ temporary home in my bedroom. I had been thinking that Mr. Alvin was missing sitting in the chair and looking out the window. At Christmas – we took it up as it made more room. For some unknown reason it took us way longer to get it out of the bedroom than it took us to get it into the bedroom. Steven had taken the pups out to the backyard thinking it would only take us a couple of minutes. He had to bring them back in as it took us more than a couple of minutes. Then we had pups running between the chair and the door and under foot. Finally we managed to get the chair out of the bedroom and called the pups to go downstairs which they did. The only ones that had run upstairs were Alvin, Kobi and Milo. In the living room, I moved the brown chair back to its’ spot and the green chair to where it belonged. I would have thought that Alvin would have jumped up but he did not. I placed his blue blanket on the chair but nothing. I guess too much going on.

After everyone had left ….. the house was quiet and still once again. No pups running about. We just sat down on the sofa and chilled. I think that Mr. Alvin was pooped out. Thankfully I made enough pasta salad for an army and will have salad for supper for the next few days. So pasta salad it was for supper. After I washed the dishes that would not fit into the dishwasher – we just say on the sofa and watched t.v. for the evening. Well actually Alvin napped and I sort of watched television. What a great day we had.

We were up early a couple of times before at 5:00 for Alvin to have breakfast and then up to stay at 6:45 this morning. I had the most strange dream ever. Somehow I ended up with these people and I was much younger. Over the course of a few hours I realized that they must be some kind of cult as things just were not normal. The children and young adults were not siblings. The woman in charge was scary. There was a man, that I knew and he was visiting with another adult male. At one point I told him that I was scared and wanted to leave with him. When it was time to go – he was gone. Even the coffee they offered me did not taste like coffee and then I asked for a glass of water and they gave me water with cauliflower. Very strange. I managed to get some plain water. It was all a blur. Very strange and frightening. At one point, I grabbed my belongings which was some books and a small black case and ran out of the door. Another strange thing was that my Mother lived a short distance away. An easy run or walk. Then I woke up. There was also a young girl who was expecting and she was cooking something, I do not remember what at this point. Where this came from I do not know. But definitely woke up with a dry mouth from being scared.

Okay time to head downstairs and put on the coffee and go out and pick up the poop. It is very cold outside. Minus 30 degrees celsius roughly with the windchill. No walking today for us. Likely not this week so we shall have to figure out another means of exercise. Perhaps going up and down the stairs.

I hope that you had a great Sunday.

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

Christmas Morning 2020

Good Morning ALL. Happy Christmas one and all. The air is warm outside. The house is quiet as my fingers clack away on the keyboard. Alvin is stretched out on the carpet in the hallway just outside the office door. My daughter, son-in-law and pups are snoozing in “the master suite” (okay perhaps not what you would consider to be a master suite but for me a bedroom with an adjoining bathroom, is pretty master, lol). What a glorious Christmas we are having. The family arrived in the later part of the afternoon on Christmas Eve, that would have been yesterday. We make some snacks, ate some snacks and ate more snacks and more snacks and then decided to open gifts. We always have enough food to feed about 20 people and there are three of us. Likely we should have gone for a walk but it is Christmas and who thinks of exercise when there are presents under the tree and food all over the place. Even before we sat down to open gifts, actually not long after the kids and grandpups arrived – we heard some rustling in the living room. We were busy snacking in the kitchen. Amanda went into the living room and there was the Alvin getting a headstart opening his gifts. He had found one of his gifts that was way back under the tree, without causing disarray to the other gifts or knocking over the tree – he pulled the gift back out onto the middle of the living room and was beginning to tear apart the tissue paper that covered his gift. How he knew that was his gift we will never know. My son-in-law joked that perhaps he knew how to read. What a guy. After we had some goodies, we settled in to watch the Christmas movie “ELF” which is another little story. Steven wanted to watch the movie which I happen to have on DVD in my massive Christmas movie collection. When the kids gave me the new television just before Christmas – we decided to disconnect the DVD player and put it in the basement. We would have had to hook it up which is not a big deal when the light bulb came on and I checked my PVR recordings and voile, I had recorded it. So no need to bring up the DVD player. We chatted and watched the movie. Drank coffee and eggnog. Throughout the movie, someone was whining so much. Not loud but clearly not happy. When the movie was over and we started preparing to open gifts, guess who was the first one to the tree? Three guesses and the first two don’t count. Mr. Alvin. He was so excited. I think with all of the gift opening that we have been doing and the parcels from our friend Val, he is beginning to put two and two together. He definitely understood about the gifts. I will note that he has been going to tree over the past few weeks once I wrapped gifts and we remember when he pulled my son-in-law’s stocking from under the tree and started to open his gifts. Note to self for next year. I made sure that I safely tucked all gifts with food related items and the stockings in a basket in the basement landing until time to open. We certainly were entertained by Alvin. He was frustrated with me at times. What can you do? He, me, we were all super spoiled. The perfect year to be spoiled. I received clothes, books, special pens, several items from my favourite store “Bath & Bodyworks”, chocolates and more chocolates and more chocolates, a hand held blender with more gadgets than I know what to do with and more. Definitely crazy spoiled. My son-in-law received from my daughter one of those projectors for indoors so we did some star gazing for part of the evening. A great night. Merry Christmas.

Well time to head back downstairs and have some coffee. I am going to call my sister and chat. It is beginning to get light outside. Hopefully the sun will shine. We definitely need a walk or two, today.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas. I hope that Santa was good to you. Not sure that me and Alvin deserved all the lovely gifts that we received but we are grateful to all those folks who showered us with them this year. We are grateful to have all of you in our lives. Truly, we are blessed.

Have an awesome day. Be safe, go for a walk. We will continue to live our lives with kindness, respect and compassion for all.

Merry Christmas 2020.

Love, Always from Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December, 2020

Good Morning ALL. How are you doing this Thursday morning? I am great. We are in serious countdown mode to Christmas. As one week today is CHRISTMAS EVE. Sometimes I forget that I am 63 and think that I am 8. Waiting for Santa to arrive. Believing that good will prevail is what always gets me through each day. Positive thinking – faith – believing that I can force change. We all can. So back to Christmas. Are you watching your favourite Christmas programs and movies? I am over the moon happy to have this 58 inch television hanging on my living room wall. So grateful to my kids for giving it to me as they have a new one. I thought that my other t.v. was great, the colour was great, picture was sharp or so I thought. But I have noticed things on the bigger screen that I never saw before …. it has been wonderful. Definitely going to be spending some time watching more movies over the Christmas break.

Our City has serious restriction protocols in place at this time until into January so we cannot have company other than the people in your “bubble” and my bubble is two extra people other than myself. So my kids are my “pod” for this time. There are so many new words or old words have new meaning in this pandemic. Like pod and bubble to name just a couple. But at the end of the day I am grateful that our government and leadership are listening to the scientists and medical professionals and clamping down. It is not ideal at this time of year for sure but it is for the best, so that we do not have spikes and lose even more dear souls. We also have to remember to reach out to those folks who are struggling. If you have a neighbour who is alone, seniors who live down the street or you know someone who needs help, please reach out. Even if you do not have the financial resources to help, perhaps you can give them information that can help or even just to listen. Now I know we cannot go into houses to help but you can talk from the sidewalk or facetime or phone. We still have phones you know. Please make this Christmas about more than you and your family. Make it about helping someone who is struggling …. you never know what a phone call can do to lift someone’s spirits, to give them hope. Besides I truly believe that we are all here to help one another. If we were meant to be alone …. there would not be 8 billion or so people on this planet. Reach out. Please. Let this be the part of 2020 that brings lightness to what has been a dark year for so many. We can do this.

With kindness, respect and compassion we will get through this pandemic.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December 2020

Good Morning All. How are you doing today? Well we are in the countdown mode now. Can you believe “19” sleeps until Christmas EVE Day. WOW. I guess that means that I better get cracking with my Christmas Baking to ensure it is done and delivered before the big day. My list is bigger than I initially had decided upon. So I will be baking several batches of the following: Sugar Cookies with my special icing, Fudge, Chocolate Chip Cookies, Unbaked Chocolate Macaroons, and Raisin Cookies. So countless of dozens of delectable treats to be enjoyed by my kids, neighbours and friends and Alvin’s Dr. and her staff. I am so excited. I think that I am ahead of my usual curve than other years. Now that is a phrase we have heard this year but in reverse. Anyway, today, tomorrow and Monday are baking days. I even took Monday off as a vacation day so that I would have lots of time. In between the baking, I am hosting a online Fifth Avenue Collection jewelry party for which I only have to show up to the LIVES (whew), laundry, cleaning, my daughter is stopping by today with groceries and for a visit and a friend from work is stopping by to pick up her tea order. The baking and jewelry party is all weekend. My Jeweler Friend does lives at different times over the weekend. There was one last night, two today and one tomorrow. Looking out the office window the sunrise is beautiful once again. Last night after work Alvin and I joined my friend Pauline and her grandpup Georgie for a walk. The sun was setting already when we left the house at 4:30 and was gorgeous. Someone had even pulled their car over to the side of the road and was taking photos. It was very pretty. Alvin and I had two good walks yesterday one at noon which was about 25-30 and then a 45 minute one after work. So if we do not make it out today we will not be behind, thank goodness. The battle of the midsection has definitely been HUGE this year but in all honesty I think it has been a carryover from last year and the year before. I cannot blame it on COVID19. Okay, perhaps just a little.

What are your plans for the weekend? Do you bake goodies for your family and friends? One thing I am excited about is that this year I have nice boxes made just for cookies and other treats and I am so grateful to my friend for picking them up. You know my personal shopper friend, as I like to call her. She is amazing. Not just because of that – she is a kind, loving, generous person and we love her.

Okay, I guess I had better get this train back on the tracks. Throw on a Christmas movie, put on the coffee, go to the basement and put on a load of laundry and change the furnace filter (very important to keep that changed) and then have some toast and coffee and then START BAKING. I would like to have some things done before my daughter arrives. I am excited to have company. Only one at a time.

I wish you a wonderful Saturday. Remember to do something nice for someone other than yourself. It is easy to treat yourself but hey so much more rewarding to treat others. You won’t regret it. Be nice. Shovel a walk, bake a pie for your elderly neighbours, bake something and give it away. The vacuuming can wait. Maybe you have neighbours who cannot leave the house and have a dog …. take the dog for a walk? That would be nice.

Happy Saturday ALL.

See you tomorrow.

Living with kindness, respect and compassion for all.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR – last quarter.

Good Morning ALL. How are you today? I cannot believe it is once again Monday morning. Usually at this time I am working but today is my late start so I am slowly getting up and at things. We were up at 3:00 and 5:15 and then to stay up at 8:09 a.m. What a crazy schedule if you want to call it that. Alvin had to go outside at 3:00 and I gave him one of his glucosamine chews, then we hit the sofa for some more sleep and then he was ready to eat at 5:15. Likely it is not such a good idea for him to eat and then for us to lay down but that is what has been happening now that I am working from home. He has the early time engrained now in his DNA and there is no way that is going to change after 10 years of us getting up between 4:45 – 5:30 to start the day. What a guy he is. Yesterday in the late morning one of my coworkers stopped by to get her tea order and we had a nice visit catching up with all the latest news. She had made a few dates with friends and family and was making the circle as she put it. What a great idea. After the visit and I was done a few household chores, we went for a walk. The walk ended up being only half way ….. he just stopped at one point and I said “Which way?” and he turned and headed for home. Once home I got things ready for his haircut and spent the next couple of hours grooming the Alvin and then a bath. He truly does not appreciate either a haircut or a bath. Poor little guy. This time I had none of his biscuits to treat him with. We spent the rest of the day, Sunday in quiet retreat other than cooking supper. I actually sat down and watched two movies “Must Love Dogs” and “A Dog’s Purpose.” Not quite sure of my Sunday night movie choices. I love these movies and have seen both of them but not for a long time. While Alvin laid sleeping beside me, I sobbed and giggled for a few hours. Especially during the second movie. I will say this, during this past year so many of my friends and family have lost their beloved four-legged family members, and a bit of my heart has gone with each one. I know that when it is time for Alvin to leave me, to leave us, I will be heartbroken and devastated. It has been just the two of us, well for ten years thus far, and I am hoping that for many more but we never know what life will bring us. In fact, it could be me that goes first. No one knows what the future will bring. But I will not dwell on this any further as life starts and life ends. We do have some control but at the end of the day, when it is our time to leave this place, it is our time to go. All we can do is to make the very best of the time that we have here and now.

So now it is much later and the sun is up. The horizon is filled with beautiful hues or oranges and pinks filtering up into the blue. So pretty. How can one not love and admire the sunrise? Appears to be no wind this morning so that is nice.

I was thinking about 2020, the year of COVID 19, the year of a global pandemic, and how this has been such an unexpected blessing for me. I never would have thought in a million years that I would be doing this job from home and actually quite easily. That I would no longer commute to and from the office …. no more early morning chats with the girl that I carpooled with or coffee from the machine at the office ….. or chats with coworkers or shopping …. or any of it, really. I seldom go anywhere except for monthly visits with my friends or once a month to the office and walks with Alvin and to the vet. Of course, I see my daughter from time to time (and today is one of those times). Most of my time is now spent at home. I will say that over the past few months, there have been incredible low points but I am slowly figuring this all out, separating home from work. Which by the way, truly has a new meaning now. I am grateful that I am able to spend this time with Alvin. I cannot imagine him without me being home all of the time now. He likely cannot imagine me not here either. I will say that I DO NOT take anything for granted these days. Nothing. I am more than grateful for my health, for Alvin’s health and for the good health of all my family and friends.

Of course, this virus has changed the landscape of how we work, how we socialize and how we live our lives. Not to be taken lightly is the loss of human life. My heart goes out to all those families who have lost loved ones during this past year. I also think about all those older folks who are left alone and separated from their families due to this horrible virus. I cannot even imagine being cooped up alone in my room all day, perhaps not being able to hear or to see. I cannot imagine. If we look after ourselves and make sure that we are doing what the medical professionals are instructing us to do, then at the end of the day, we are helping those seniors and all others and ourselves.

Time to go now and have a shower. Wash away the night and freshen this mop on my head called hair and get this day going.

May you be blessed with good health, the financial means to live your life and that you are able to share laughter with loved ones every day.

Take Care, Happy Monday.

I will continue to live my life with kindness and respect for all others.

As 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

Good Morning All,

What a great Saturday I had.

To start the day off the weather was just as they had forecast. The sun was shining and it was windy. I as you know slept in a bit so was feeling a bit rushed as I always seem to do this to myself. But I was only about ten minutes short of being ready when my daughter arrived. I wore the dress, the cardigan and the scarf. The only item that I changed my mind about was the shoes and I wore some semi flat sandals which ended up being the perfect shoe to wear (I will explain later).

My daughter wanted to stop and get gas which we did at the neighbourhood gas station. Then we were on our way. We almost missed the first turn off from our neighbourhood to the highway but just as we were almost passed, I mentioned “aren’t we supposed to turn and go south.” Luckily the exit is roomy and there was no one behind us so we “checked” and made a quick turn and then were truly on our way. They have “google maps” and yes it was on but it was one of those times when because Amanda also takes the second exit, habit took over. Anyway we continued on our way. We had to go a good way around the City of Edmonton before turning off. The drive was beautiful. The countryside was a glorious palette of fall colours and some of the houses were amazing. I had no idea. Big, big houses with three and four garages built into the house. When we got to the final couple minutes according to “google maps” we were for a minute not quite certain if we had the right place. It was a leaf covered opening between the trees. But we carried on. There were several cars and I spotted an older woman (likely about my age) all dressed up. We stopped and I got out and it was the groom’s mother. We had arrived! The groom happened to come around the corner of the house and came over to chat. We used the bathroom before my daughter continued on her way to do some “thrifting.” She wanted to go and check the shops in the nearby smaller City of Sherwood Park. I was so relieved that we had found the venue.

The venue was actually a private residence which originally was rented out by the owner for different types of retreats. When COVID19 hit, he changed the plan and started renting out for smaller weddings, family reunions and as a B&B. It was the most beautiful place. In the front, the house was magnificent with a huge porch with steps going up covered in stone. Lots of stone on the outside of the house. The groom directed me to the back of the house where I walked down to the area set up for the wedding ceremony. I had no idea that a lake was within walking distance of the house. I was told the name of the lake but alas I have forgotten. Very nice backdrop with the water and the trees all draped in their fall colours. I took a seat on a chair in the ceremony area and just enjoyed the warmth of the sun on my face. The groom came and sat on a nearby chair and we chatted. I learned that his parents were refugees from Vietnam. His Mother had been a nurse back home and ended up in several places including a refugee camp before coming to Canada. His parents met and married in Edmonton where “the groom” was born one of two sons. I met his younger brother and his wife who are expecting a baby. I also learned that the tea ceremony is Chinese (an Asian tradition), and is a time for the generations to offer their blessings to the bride and groom. They also at this time would hand down items from one generation to the other. The groom, my neighbour and friend was always seeking me out to ensure I was doing okay. Some other wedding guests were milling about and some where playing a lawn game. I was introduced by the groom to the handful of guests that were outside. His cousin’s husband and his son, also formally to the groom’s parents. There was a bit of a breeze but not the gale force winds that we have been experiencing. What a lovely afternoon. Of course, I snapped a few photos of the surroundings.

It was about 2:00 p.m. when we were called into the house for the TEA CEREMONY. A sofa in the living room was draped with a red silk/satin covering. There were red and gold cushions on the sofa with two on the floor. The guests gathered in the kitchen/dining area which was an opening floor plan to the living room. The groom waited patiently for the bride who was to call him to the door of the room she was in. When he knocked on the door, the Mother of the Bride answered the door. She gave him tea to drink and then gave him instructions. He was asked to do a number of pushups for the amount of years that they have been together and one for eternity. A few minutes later a woman in a beautiful red lace dress came running around from a door on the other side of the room and it was the bride. They embraced and then walked over and knelt on the cushions. The groom’s mother was sitting on the sofa. A female cousin handed the bride and groom each a small cup of tea which they in turn handed to the groom’s mother. She drank the tea and offered blessings to the couple. Family members took turns ….. all the parents, grandparents, aunts & uncles, cousins and I asked the cousin (Michelle) if I could participate as they had mentioned friends or anyone who would like to offer their blessings. So little old me was able to participate in the TEA CEREMONY. I was over the moon. The photographer snapped photos of everyone who participated in the tea ceremony including me. I managed to snap a couple of photos of the bride and groom afterwards as we were instructed not to take photos during the ceremony as there was a professional photographer to do this.

Before heading back outside to wait for the Wedding Ceremony to begin, I was checking out the photo tree by the entranceway to the house. The tree was filled with photos of the happy couple from all of their travels all over the world. There was also a table with small coloured cards & envelopes spread about so I picked one up and write some good wishes to my friends. A young woman, best friend to the bride came over and asked if she could take my photo, I said yes. The photos were placed in the envelope with the card as the bride & groom wanted to have photos of everyone in attendance.

By the high point of the sun it was a good 20 degrees celsius and although in the beginning of the day and partway into the afternoon there was a bit of a breeze.

Back outside and down to the ceremony area the guests were beginning to gather. The groom’s cousin Michelle officiated the wedding ceremony and was preparing the sound system. We waited for a little while before the groom came to take his place. It was not much longer before the bride and her mom came down the stairs to the back lawn area where her dad took her arm and the three of them walked toward the wedding area. The bride looking gorgeous in full length white gown and opting for a floral wreath crown instead of a hand bouquet. Her dress had a lace bodice and long sleeves with a skirt of organza and a beaded belt tied with a satin bow at the back. She looked so beautiful. Both the bride and groom wrote their own vows. We all had a giggle when the bride signaled for her cellphone and read her vows from it, followed by the groom who pulled out handwritten pages for his vows. The vows were so moving. Then it was over and they were married.

After the ceremony the wedding photographer took photos of all the guests in one big photo followed by family photos and over the course of time photos of the bride and groom.

I went back into the house for a drink and found they had some special treats laid out in the kitchen for all of the guests. So I chose a barbecued pork bun and some veggies and a can of Sprite. All of the food was individually packaged for the guests. I sat down at the end of the big table which was empty at that time. As the table began to fill up, I gave up my spot to an woman with mobility issues. Once I was finished eating, I went and sat on the front porch. Just enjoying the afternoon air. A small boy came outside with a coconut bun. His name was Evan. We chatted away until a few minutes later his sister Macey came out. This is how it all started with me meeting these two sweet young children. Evan (4) and Macey (6). They told me all sorts of things about school and themselves. It was a few minutes later when a young man came out and introduced himself as Jimmy. Thinking he was the children’s father as he was so good with them. Anyway, I am thinking that I have been writing this post for well over an hour. Sometimes you just meet people and click and this was the case with this family. Not long later I met the Mom, Jenny. We ended up going back outside to the lawn area and then going for a long walk in the area off the back lawn. Walking and talking and enjoying each other’s company. There was sand on the path and posts from an old dock which meant clearly the water had been further out at one point in time. From that point until I left we were together. What an awesome family. I found out that Jimmy was Jenny’s boyfriend and that she was divorced. The children adore Jimmy that was evident. Jimmy was so polite and kind. They even called me Auntie Carol. I was taken aback by this but after realized that in most other cultures they call older females “Auntie.” When I say taken aback, I meant in a good way. After our walk the FOOD TRUCK arrived and we had supper. There was a nice choice of food. We sat together at a table in the backyard and enjoyed our supper as the sun set. I texted my daughter when I was getting my food as it was about a 30 minute drive for her to come and pick me up. Before I left, Jenny and I decided that we had to keep in touch ….. so we are now FB friends.

I said my goodbyes to the family, my new friends and hugged the children. By the way, masks were wore and social distancing was done. As I walked away Jimmy said to the children “would you like to walk Auntie Carol out” so they joined me to the top of the walk. Such cute children and so nice. Best time. As I walked to the parking area, the food truck was leaving. The driver of this monstrous vehicle when backing up accidentally backed into something, I did not see what it was. There had been a pointer out helping but it was getting dark and I could see trying to maneuver something going wrong. As I started to walk around the vehicle the groom came out onto the porch and called out to me asking if I got a donut, I said no. I also said that my ride was here and that I was leaving. In a minute the bride was there. Jess came down to say goodbye and asked if she could come and say thank you to my daughter for driving me. I said of course. So the bride and a few minutes later the groom came to my daughter’s vehicle. We had a little visit before we were on our way.

What a glorious time I had. There are so many moments that I could have included in this blog but time is passing and I have some things to do before Mr. Alvin arrives home. Miss the little guy.

Amanda and I found our way back to the highway and back home with no problems.

I am so grateful for the invitation to my neighbours, my friend’s wedding. Their family and friends are so friendly and wonderful. Just to add the family that I connected with …. Jenny went to University with Eric, the groom. They drove up from Calgary.

Living my life with KINDNESS and RESPECT.

I/We shall remain,

As Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR

Good Morning All,

YAY, today is Friday with the weekend fast approaching.

The sun is beginning to shine brightly here in Edmonton as I type these words.

There is no breeze / wind this morning (which is not typical as of late).

 

Alvin had his regular “monthly” vet visit (about 5 weeks, actually) and all went well.

He fussed a bit less than usual which was a nice change.

At lunchtime we had our second walk of the day.

After work I went with my friend Gillian to COSTCO for groceries.

My second time since beginning of March that I have stepped foot in COSTCO, I have been to Shoppers and Save-On once each.

Slowly but surely I am getting back.

I was surprised when I saw a lady with a mask on but pulled down so that her nose and mouth were exposed.

That was in COSTCO last night.

Not much help if you wear the mask but it is around your neck.

I found that I felt much less panicked by the mask and being around people last night.

However, I was still making sure that I wore the mask and that I social distanced.

I do firmly believe that while in public we should wear a mask and social distance.

If we let up ….. we will be hit again.

With the children heading back to school and flu season right around the corner …. everything we do now and continue to do will serve us well.

If we do not take care and do our part ….. it will sadly be much worse.

Now I am not a Doctor but I can read and I have common sense in abundance.

I think with this virus …. common sense is important.

It is something that over the years has fallen to the wayside.

Too many people wrapped up in me, me, and me to think about what makes good sense.

We have to be careful.

I want to stay in good health and I would like all my family and friends to be in good health.

Everyone that I do not know …. I would like them to be in good health, as well.

This is not just about me and my family or you and yours ….. it is about us all.

When something strikes the planet it has the potential to affect us all.

In a way, it has affected us all, even if you or your loved ones have not actually had the virus.

The pandemic has done this through death, sickness, loss of jobs, financial crisis and more.

Food for thought …. always good to think about what is happening and what can be done better.

We should heed Health Officials and Government but we should always be thinking ourselves what can we do better?

 

As I key these words, I can hear Mr. Alvin snoring away.

It has only been very recent that I have really noticed that he snores while he sleeps.

Perhaps it has been some time and was not quite as loud.

Sorry Mr. Alvin …. you are not loud.

 

As the days pass by and we head into fall, I am ever so grateful to my employer for giving us the opportunity to work from home.

I have been happier, healthier and productive in all areas of my life.

I am grateful for the abundance that showers me daily.

I am grateful for the sunshine and warm days.

I am grateful for walks with Alvin.

I am grateful for my health and his.

I am grateful for my daughter and her family.

I am grateful when I have the opportunity to visit with my family and friends whether in person on via video chat.

I am grateful to have coffee each and everyday.

I am grateful for our country and for being the best place on the planet to live, thank you Canada.

I am grateful for each morning, noon and evening.

I am grateful to have this format to write and reach out to you all.

I am grateful to be alive and for this day and every single day.

Thank you.

 

Well time to head back downstairs and turn on the work computer.

Grab that cup of coffee.

I guess work is on the agenda, of course.  lol.

 

On this Friday, be happy and ever grateful.

Be Kind and Respectful to ALL.

Happy Friday.

Be safe, be strong, and be well.

 

I/We shall remain,

As Always, Carol & Alvin

 

Flowers always make me happy – even photos bring a smile to my face and joy to my heart.

I hope that they give you a great start to your Friday.

It is a NEW YEAR.

Good Morning,

Funny how some mornings you wake up and are full of energy and ready to go and others not so much.

The sky is overcast this morning and this is a “not so much” kind of morning.

We were up earlier at 3:45 a.m. – well actually Alvin had me up at 3:45.

I gave him his glucosamine chew and then we hit the sofa for what seemed like 5 minutes before he was up and wanting to eat.

Guess what time that was?

It was 4:15 a.m.

So I fed the boy, then outside, and we hit the sofa again.

Then it was 7:19 a.m

Thoughts of “Oh do we have to get up crossed my mind.”

I decided might be nice to return upstairs and lay on our bed.

We were there for a few minutes when we hear a loud bang.

Alvin’s head bolted up.

Then shortly after the sounds of a hammer.

Then a electric saw.

ARGH.

So then at 8:15 a.m. which is not early and not late – we are up.

I checked out of the window to see where the noise was coming from and noticed that the neighbours across the street (not directly) were/are working on their fence.

Oh well, I have things to do.

Shower, breakfast, gather up all the laundry that is air drying in the basement, wash the floors, move my flower pots back to their original spots (looked like a big storm with possible hail and more

wind) and at some point walk and move some of the flowers in the front flower bed.

Oh, I have two tomato plants to transplant.

But they are not growing very quickly so I am hesitant to move them outside.

I would like to do some work-work (office).

Today is Sunday so not sure if I want to spend any more time “working” as I already did 3.45 hours yesterday.

We are just so busy that I find putting in extra time here and there helps my peace of mind.

Actually truth be told more than here and there.

I generally put in extra time everyday.

That varies from one hour to multiple hours.

I am quite certain that I am not alone.

Now that we are working from home it is not easy to ignore “work” during off hours.

As it is starring one right in the face.

I see my work computer as I write this post and think I should be working.

Also not just for me but for my clients.

Everyone is nervous, worried and also most people think everything nowadays should be completed in the blink of an eye.

Which is not so.

So many folks now working from home have found their work loads have increased many fold due to the COVID19 pandemic.

So what do we do?

Oh well, I will do as I always do.

Work extra when I can.

Try to relax when I can.

Life goes on.

I do not wish to complain as I know that I am blessed in so many ways.

I have a beautiful home, great family and friends, Alvin and we are in good health.

You know what – no noise now.

I guess that was my wake up call.

Time to get this day going.

The sky looks dark as though it could start to rain anytime.

The bind is blowing.

I hope that neighbour is able to complete everything he needs to do today before the rain.

 

Yesterday was my friend’s birthday.

I did not have an opportunity to see her but we did chat on the phone.

She had just spoke with two of her sister who live in England.

How lovely.

Her gift & card are ready for the next time we see each other.

 

Another friend down the street asked if she could take Alvin for some time on Friday as she has the day off.

She is the Mom to Alvin’s girlfriend Abi, who passed away in February.

I hope that Alvin will go with her as she really needs some company and is missing Abi terribly.

You know Mr. Alvin is such a Momma’s boy and does not like to leave my sight.

 

Well I guess time to hit the shower and get this day going.

A cup of coffee and GO.

Thank you for reading and listening.

I hope that you are doing well in the midst of this pandemic.

So much is happening in the world.

If we can just listen to each other, love and respect each other and treat each other with kindness – the world stands a chance.

Reach out with a phone call, video chat, email or text to a friend or loved one.

Help an elderly neighbour.

Visit with a neighbour over the fence or in the backyard.

Do some volunteer work (yes, there are things we can do even during this pandemic).

We are all HUMAN BEINGS.

 

Enjoy your Sunday.

Living with love, kindness and respect for all.

I/We shall remain,

As Always, Carol & Alvin

Remembering these cupcakes that I commissioned a coworker to bake for my birthday last year.

Looking forward to more this coming one.

They were so o pretty and oh so o yummy.

 

 

 

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