2021

Good Morning ALL!

Yesterday evening, minutes before I was going to attend a Facebook LIVE Fifth Avenue Collection jewelry party, I learned of the passing of a dear friend of mine.

I first met Martin in my twenties as we worked for the same employer. So I have known him for most of my life. He was one of the most sincere, gentle, loving, kind, compassionate, funny, hard-working, human beings that I have ever had the great pleasure to call my friend. He treated each and every person he met with kindness, understanding and compassion. Martin loved to help out in his community and that was evident by the great work that he did for Heritage United Church and with The Downtowners Optimist Club. He never said NO and always found a way to help.

We worked for the same company and over the years were on the company Social Club together in various roles, Children’s Christmas parties, played slow-pitch on the same team, there were Curling competitions (rather parties with the odd curling game in between), the road trips were the best to sporting events were thes best, we both belonged to the Downtowners Optimist Club and worked on some of the same projects, took a road trip together to the States to meet with various Optimist Clubs, our daughters were friends so we attended various birthday parties when the children were young, and even worked in the same department for over a decade. Our children went to the same school. We also carpooled together with some other friends/coworkers for years. There were parties and get togethers. He was definitely a social, active person and that was clear by the life that he led.

His family were the world to him. Grandpa was a handle he treasured and was over the moon proud of his grandson. He loved to share photos and stories.

Martin loved MUSIC. Barb and Martin travelled extensively over the years to various concerts. We were always just a bit envious of his travels.

I am not sure if he ever missed a football game. That would be for the Saskatchewan Roughriders. He loved to go to the games with his family.

Although we haven’t seen each other since I moved to Edmonton over a decade ago, we did keep in touch. There were emails and Christmas cards with a letter.

To Barb and family, please accept my deepest sympathies.

He truly was one of a kind. The earth is a much better place for his time here and he will be greatly missed.

I can see his face in my mind and can only think of all the times we all spent together working on projects or just laughing about something at work.

I miss you my friend. May you rest easy.

Always, Love Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December 2020

Good Morning ALL. I am so happy that I booked today off as a day of vacation. Starting off lazy and just going slow as it was such a rushed busy but glorious weekend. We were up early but then back for extra zzz’s to the sofa. My ears are plugged this morning which happens to me so will take a shower in a few minutes to see if I can hear again. I can hear the rumbling of the fan and I can hear my voice if I speak …. just did not hear the timer on the microwave when it went off earlier. OH WELL! Yesterday was busy with baking SUGAR COOKIES and icing them, chatting with my youngest brother, attending the LIVE for my Fifth Avenue Jewelry party, walking with Alvin, laundry and cleaning. Today I have lots to do but no absolute schedule other than I have to be at the Vet before 4:00 p.m. I want to pick up food for Alvin, toothpaste, his “glucosamine chews,” and whatever else is on his list and drop off some Christmas treats for Dr. Karen and her staff. So around noon or a bit later I am going to take the baking out of the freezer and fridge and start making up some treat boxes. I have about several people in the neighbourhood that I want to deliver some Christmas Baking to and hopefully can catch everyone at home. It will be something that I have to do by myself as is hard to hold onto a bag full of boxes and Alvin ….. we shall see, I might. Also will be masking up. There is laundry that will be dried in the basement that I have to put away. Bathrooms to be cleaned (they did not get done on the weekend), garbage to put out later as pick up is tomorrow. There is always something to do and that is a good thing. Can you imagine if someone did everything for you and you had nothing to do but to eat and sleep and I guess personal grooming (shower etc). Sounds like being a teenager. LOL. I was one of those once but I had lots of things to do. Everything was not done for me. I am so glad that it was not. We did not have video games and all the technology of today. Different time. Each generation has it’s gains and losses for sure. Well.

The sky appears to be overcast to the south. I have not heard the forecast for today and am hoping another good day for my “deliveries.”

Perhaps I shall have time to figure out why I am not able to add photos to my computer. Time for some new photos. It has been forever since I posted some photos.

From the VAULT – December 21, 2010.

What happened to 2010?

I am so pondering while writing up the letter to be enclosed with my Christmas card about where 2010 went?

It came in quietly, I barely was aware.

It snuggled down tightly and buried within …..

Suddenly March, then April and then June.

But where it did go?

As I watch from above …… July and then August …..

Summer came and summer went.

Autumn well it was spent.

Now it’s December and almost Christmas.

If you are wondering what happened to 2010

You are not alone, I share your sentiments along with another eight billion or so people.

If you noticed at the beginning of this “story” I was drafting my Christmas letter – just so that you know – it did get written and sent.

So from me and Alvin, WE WISH YOU A HAPPY HAPPY CHRISTMAS & ALL THE BEST IN 2011.

May you always be surrounded by a loving family and friends.

May you be in perfect health (focus on good thoughts, they keep the body healthy, too)

May you laugh every single day (even if it is at yourself, because if you cannot laugh at YOU, who can you laugh at?)

May you love and be passionate about all that you do..

May your life be abundant in every single way.

May your gift of smile brighten someone’s day.

May you remember to help those less fortunate.

May you always be the BEST that you can be.

Happy Holidays …..

Always, Carol and a very patient Alvin (sniffing around in the hallway,

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

Well it is time to hit the shower and get this day back on track. I hope that you are well and enjoying Monday, December 7, 2020. I guess this means we are “17 sleeps” till Christmas EVE DAY.

Be well, continue to live your life with kindness, respect and compassion.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome to December 2020

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

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

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

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

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome 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

Welcome December 2020

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

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

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

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

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

Always, Carol & Alvin

Welcome December 2020

Good Morning ALL. Welcome to Tuesday, December 1, 2020. December has arrived in my neighborhood with almost gale force winds or at least it feels that way. It is garbage day today and so there have been boxes from recycling blowing down the street last night and today in a steady flow. My decorative Christmas Tree on the front porch has blown over but I have decided to leave it for now as it will likely blow over again.

I am so excited for December, 2020. A time to perhaps take our minds off what is going on in the world for just a moment. Some happiness perhaps. Not to dwell on what we cannot have or do but what we have and can do.

This post is going to be very short as I had to do some other things this morning and the time got away on me, I am sorry for that.

Wishing you a great start to December.

Remember if you are purchasing gifts – support local. Buy from a friend who is selling jewelry made in Canada (Fifth Avenue Collection) or maybe some hand made items from a friend down the street. Support local as much as possible.

Living my life with kindness and respect and compassion for all.

Always, Carol & Alvin

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