2021

Good Morning ALL. How are you today? We are doing well and still adjusting to the time change. Spring forward takes a bit more getting used to, for sure. But we will adjust in time (before the next change in late fall, lol). Last night it was after 7:30 p.m. and still light outside which was great. I cannot wait until the sun is already up at this time of morning. It is always easier for me to get up when it is light outside. How about you?

Yesterday at lunch we met up with friends Ali and Bailey from down the street and adorned with sweaters on the pups as it was cool at noon, masks on we girls and our lighter winter apparel we headed out for a 40 minute or so walk. We would come across folks with dogs or the pups especially Bailey were sniffing lots so did take all of 40 minutes. It was so nice to have a walking companion and we chatted the whole walk. I will say that walking and talking with a mask on is not the most comfortable thing in the world but I certainly am not going to complain as some folks have had to wear masks and work 12 hour shifts for days on end. I am grateful my mask wearing is not often as I do not go anywhere or see anyone. I have several masks on hand for those times when I must wear a mask and I will always wear one as instructed by our Health Care Professionals. Back to Bailey I cannot believe how long and gangly she is ….. he has such long legs even though she will not get much bigger and eventually will fill in, I would think. Again, nice to have a friend to walk with …. another human being. It was great.

Teddy and Kobi will be coming over at noon for the rest of the day while their parents go out to the farm to tend to some business.

I was wondering about some things. I will be 64 this summer and how I view the world is likely much different than an 18 year old or even a 30 year old. Do you ask yourself questions all day long? What kind of questions? Maybe we all ask this question “When is this going to end?” OR “Is this virus going to ever go away?” I often ask myself or tell myself “Why did you say that?” I have lots of questions swirling through my mind at any given time. Sometimes it is quiet but not often. Most times I cannot even stop the noise when I go to bed. I used to meditate and perhaps that is something that I should get into once again. I wouldn’t say that I am particularly worried or concerned most days ….. just have a busy mind. They say we have 60,000 thoughts each day. That is a lot. I was wondering how everyone feels about all of the social media platforms? How many YouTube Videos are there? How many singers have become world famous during the pandemic bia YouTube? How many organizers and designers? How many cooks? How many makeup artists? The list goes on and on. Now there is Tic Tok (not sure of the spelling as I have not been on there). Instagram and FaceBook and so many more. Food for thought. Maybe it is time to do a video? What do you think? I wonder if the Internet will ever crash? Sometimes it goes down but they always get it going again.

Anyway that is it for this morning. I need some coffee.

Wishing you a wonderful day. In Edmonton for the rest of the week supposed to have temperatures of +9-13 degrees celsius which is a far cry from yesterday’s +2. YAY, perhaps spring is really here. Hope so. Not a long winter but I really want spring and then summer.

Living with kindness, respect, compassion and patience (always working on patience and yesterday was one of those days for sure).

Always, Carol & Al

P.S. last night gave Mr. Alvin some of his new food. We have to, I have to introduce it gradually over two weeks. Now there is measuring 1/2 wet and 1/2 dry but ratio of 3/4 old to 1/4 new for first few days, then half and half and then 3/4 new to 1/4 new. Sure wished that I was better at math, lol.

Sun coming up. Hip Hip Hooray.

December 31, 2020 – last day

Good Morning ALL. Can you believe it? The very last day and down to last hours of 2020. 2020 came in with all of the promise and hope that a New Year could bring and is leaving us with thoughts of promise and hope that 2021 will bring. So we will start and end with the same dreams for the New Year although the in between could never have been predicted. This year has been the same and different for so many of us. I cannot compare my year to that of my friend who lives down the street and works in the healthcare field. We both have had much different experiences this past year. She has faced all of the stresses and anxieties that came with COVID19 and the Pandemic as she continued to work. Me on the other hand, when our employer announced that we would be closing our doors to the public on March 16, 2020, and start the process of having staff work from home, I had mixed feelings but mostly I was overjoyed. On March 19, 2020 I was sent home with my coworkers with a laptop and whatever supplies we required to work from home. Later that afternoon I was set up and March 20, 2020 I was working from home. In the beginning there were definitely some stressful times but over the last nine months I have smoothed out the kinks and working from home has certainly been a godsend. Of course, there are moments of stress, but that is inevitable, as my job can most certainly be stressful at times. But I no longer have to spend a minimum of 1.5 hours travelling to and from work. There are no worries about leaving a senior dog, my Alvin home alone for such a long period of time. We have figured out a few things over time and one being that we will need to go to the office for one day per month as we have some large print jobs where the documents need to be prepared to be mailed. I can handle one day each month. Of course, this may change over time. My friend down the street lost her beloved pup Abi in February and in July brought baby Bailey home. Having a puppy at any time is a lot of work and with the stresses of working during a pandemic has been difficult for our friend. We have kept in touch with porch / sidewalk visits, texts and video chats. We live only a few doors apart and yet our lives that were so similar are so different this year. She was not able to spend Christmas with her sister and brother-in-law who are expecting early in the New YEAR nor her parents. Her parents are in her sister’s pod as she is expecting. I on the other hand was so blessed to be able to spend Christmas with my daughter and son-in-law and pups. In January my friend will be hosting a “virtual baby shower” for her sister. So many firsts this year. This is a reminder that I must check out the registry and chose a gift for the new baby. I always love to buy books for little ones, cannot go wrong with books.

I am grateful that we have the technology to see family and friends. This is the time to use this technology so that no one is alone. Take a few minutes and reach out to family and friends. We are blessed to have the technology to physically see each other.

So as we wrap up this YEAR, I have mixed feelings. I would say for the most part I have positive feelings. Working from home was always a dream, a thought that I had but never thought would come to fruition. I missed spending time with my sister and brothers in August. My daughter and I did not take our annual girls road trip in August. Since March, I have mainly seen my friends from the doorway although we did have a few visits. Our girls Annual Christmas party was done virtually. I never thought that I would not enter a store for several months. From March until August, all of my groceries were picked up by my friends and my daughter. I have since that time been to the store a grand total of 6 times, been to the vet numerous times, to Shoppers once to mail Christmas cards and parcels on November 20, and to the Optometrist twice since August. I will say that the handful of times that I have entered a grocery store have been anxiety ridden for me. For the past month or so I have not been to the grocery store although I was to the Bone & Biscuit on December 11th, to pick up gifts for the fur babies including Alvin. I have been to the office three times, twice in September and once in November. Most of my time has been spent at home or going for walks. Thankfully we are able to go outside. As the time passes, I think that the only way that we can stop this virus is to follow the protocols set out by the Health Care Professionals and Government Leaders. While it is not ideal as we are social creatures, it is imperative to follow the rules. Wear masks when in public, wash your hands, stay home when you can and social distance. I will say that trips to the Vet are different now. The last time Alvin went I was not allowed to be with him, I sat with my mask on in one of the exam rooms while they took him to the back exam room. The Optometrist was definitely different. Two visits one for the exam and the other to pick up frames. They as the Vet only book one appointment per hour. Better to be safe.

Perhaps if we would have taken more precautions sooner and taken this more seriously – we would be in a better place, I don’t know. Going forward we must do what is right for everyone. This is not the time to be selfish. We do want to see our family and friends in the New Year.

The sun is up although it appears to be cloudy. This is the last day of 2020. I hope that 2021 brings us hope and promise. I know that it will take months and likely most of this next year before the vast population can be vaccinated and at this point we do not know if that is the complete answer or not but I remain positive that the scientists will figure it out and we will end 2021 in a better place. To all of those folks who lost loved ones this year, I keep you in my heart and hope that your memories will help to bring you comfort. To all those families who lost beloved pets, I keep you in my heart and hope that memories of them will bring you comfort.

May the New Year be filled with hope and promise. May you find your way through this next year with faith, hope and grace. Continue to be kind and respectful and compassionate to all others. We need each other even more now than ever.

Thank you for taking your precious time to read my words, this post. I appreciate your time.

So from our home to yours, Alvin and I want to wish you and your family a Happy New Year.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR.

Good Morning and it be “FRIDAY” …… TGIF…..

The sky is a pale orange pink colour and there is a slight breeze.

Looks like a nice day ahead.

Not quite as warm as yesterday which for us is good.

Today I have to work from the actual OFFICE.

Yup, first time since March 19, 2020.

I am a bit reluctant to leave Mr. Alvin home alone but there is no choice in the matter.

He has gotten so use to having me here …..

But I am sure he will do fine.

Will take him out again before I leave.

My daughter is working today from her office so she is giving me a ride to mine.

I am hoping that the job I am assigned can be done in less than a normal day so that I can come home.

Fingers crossed.

I am both excited and nervous.

We have quite strict rules to follow and I am prepared with extra masks and even gloves should the need arise.

I am taking my own coffee and water and some snacks.

I have disposable gloves.

So I am prepared.

Just received a text from my daughter who is on her way.

This post will be short as I have to pour my coffee and I want to have a little mug before I leave and look after the boy.

 

I hope that you all are safe and happy.

I hope that you can find a way to do whatever tasks are ahead of you this day.

I hope that you are smiling and in good health.

 

With kindness and respect,

I/We shall remain,

As Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR.

Good Morning and Welcome to Thursday.

So happy that it is payday.

Pay those the bills and wait for the next ones.

What a circle!

I am grateful that I am able to pay my bills in full and on time.

I am grateful to have a roof over my head.

I am grateful that I am able to look after me and Alvin in good order.

I am grateful that I am employed.

I am grateful for each and every day that I am able to get out of bed in the morning.

I am grateful for all of my dear family members and all of my friends.

I am grateful to be surrounded by goodness and light.

I am grateful to have Alvin as my housemate.

I am grateful to have this beautiful weather as we fast approach the first day of fall.

I am grateful to be alive.

 

Last night and early this morning – I had the strangest of dreams.

Unfortunately I remember nothing of them other than they were odd.

How often does this happen to you?

Me, lots.

Sometimes I remember little things and sometimes I remember the dream in some detail.

But not often.

 

I prefer to daydream.

Where I can somewhat control and remember what I am thinking.

What do you daydream about?

I think daydreaming is good for us.

I daydream about things and people.

 

Another beautiful day on the way.

Yesterday was gorgeous.

We went for a walk in the morning as I worked the late shift yesterday.

Our walk was lovely.

Quiet …. not too many people out before 8:30 a.m.

Today at lunchtime I am going to the Vet to pick up food for Alvin, some pain meds and toothpaste for him.

We will walk after work when it cools down.

I guess we could / should have gone this morning but alas I did not get my butt going soon enough.

If I got dressed now and we went …. we could be home in time for me to start work.

But I think we will wait.

Although …… it looks tempting but it would be cutting it close.

We shall wait.

Can always go after supper if it is too warm at 4:00 p.m.

 

Tomorrow I got to the office for the first time since I left on March 19, 2020.

I am a little nervous – I will confess.

Must remember to take a mask or two and some other supplies.

Lunch, I guess.

Sounds like the coffee machine is in use so that is good.

Only for one day.

I shall miss and feel guilty leaving Alvin for a whole day.

He is not used to it.

Perhaps he will be happy to have the day to himself.

Who knows?

 

Well time to get this show on the road.

I have to get ready.

Turn on the coffee.

Actually turn on the coffee first and then come back upstairs and get ready.

I have all of the windows open so that cool air can come into the house.

Smells good.

Not really any breeze this morning.

Happy Thursday.

 

Have an awesome Thursday.

Be safe.

Be kind and respectful.

I shall/we shall remain,

As Always, Carol & Alvin

I am so excited to see the Snapdragons coming up in the pot with the Geraniums.

Orange and pink so pretty.

There are more Snapdragons since this photo was taken.

 

Second Half of the NEW YEAR

Good Morning,

Wow did we ever sleep in this morning.

We went to bed in good time and I read for a bit but could not settle down.

Not too long after we hit the hay it did begin to rain.

I am not sure what time I finally drifted off to sleep but then Alvin was stirring and we were up.

That was almost 4:30 a.m.

So he ate his breakfast and had his glucosamine chew and went outside.

Then back into the house …… I know we woke up again at 8:00 but I just could not get my butt off the sofa…. next time it was 9:39 a.m.

WOW, latest that we have slept.

The sun was shining bright at 8:00 a.m. but the sky has now clouded over and the wind is getting up.

I also realized that although the food is very tasty with the Good Food package ….. there is a lot of “pan frying.”

Also I had not chosen the meats and am not used to eating much pork.  If I do eat meat it is chicken.

Mostly I eat a vegetarian diet with a bit of chicken.

So my tummy was just a bit upset at bedtime as well.

I have one more meal to cook tonight and I think it is pork meatballs which I am going to bake in the oven.

Will increase the cook time but I can do not another “pan fry” meal.

There was a rice dish and coleslaw with the pork chops last night and corn on the cob.

I definitely had learned a few different cooking methods.

I have found that I am a pretty plain cook.

Using spices for sure.

I guess long weekends are for sleeping in…..

We did accomplish several things from our TO DO LIST.

 

Outside I can hear the geese honking as they fly overhead.

Today.

Yesterday, we were so happy to have our girl here for a good chunk of the day.

We had pancakes for “brunch.”

Then we girls gave Mr. Alvin a haircut and I gave him a bath.

Following she asked if I would like to go to GOODWILL and check things out.

We have a fairly new one about a 10 or so minute drive away so I thought why not.

This was my fifth, yes 5th time out in public since March 19th, 2020.

So basically once per month if you spread them over the time since I have been at home.

But actually five times since August.

I will say that people were wearing masks but the social distancing and following arrows in the store.

Not so much.

Every few minutes an announcement would be made to please keep 2 metres apart and follow the arrows.

No one listened.

I am pretty sure that only my daughter and me were actually paying attention.

Sunday afternoons are not a good time to go checking out GOODWILL.

Not at all.

I was checking out some tealights from Partylite and commenting to my daughter on what a great deal for those who burn candles.

They were new ( I checked to make sure ) and a box of tealights was $5.50 and the price from Partylite would be over $15.00 now for sure.

Anyway this girl was right beside me …. as I was going through them.

She did not give me a chance to finish.

I was not happy.

If there is one thing that I cannot stand is people that do not listen to the rules especially in the middle of a pandemic.

I was thinking sure okay you have a mask on but you are not even six inches away from me ….

So I moved.

Rude people.

We kept away and followed the rules.

Some of the older children that were accompanying their parents had their masks slipped down not covering their faces.

I can only imagine what school will be like.

Unfortunately I have a bad feeling about this fall once all the children have been back in school for about a week or two.

Even though there was some difficult moments or lots of them in the store ….. I thoroughly enjoyed the time with my girl.

We found some great things and then had good choices on what to actually buy.

I bought one package of tealights …. cranberry to burn at Christmas.

I love the cranberry scent.

The other was found at the last minute and it was a Kitchenaid roasting pan with a rack in the bottom.

No lid but had good handles.

It was brand new or looked to be new.

Definitely not used.

I figured that I could use it from time to time.

I use my Princess House Lasagne pan to cook the turkey at Christmas so this would be better.

It was a good price so I decided it was a good find.

 

Well I guess I should get this show on the road.

Yesterday at this time we were out for a walk.

Thinking we will not be walking now ….. maybe later.

Oh, goodness my stomach is making horrible sounds.

I have to take it easy on what I put into it.

Definitely toast for breakfast.

Definitely I will be baking the meatballs tonight.

 

This afternoon I want to continue on my quest to delete emails and photos, more photos than emails at this point.

Also I am going to work on my book this afternoon.

But before we get to that point ….. get dressed, bring up the laundry that was air drying, make coffee and have breakfast.

I have a couple of loads of laundry left to do.

So will do them as well.

 

I hope that you had a great weekend thus far.

Perhaps you are as blessed as I am and are able have an extra day off.

 

Take Care.

Remember when you are out and about …..

Wear the mask…..

Keep your distance……

We are not given these instructions for no reason……

If we want to keep lessen the COVID19 cases …. this is what we have to do.

Also sanitize your hands when going into stores and coming out.

Wash your hands when you come home.

Wash your hands at home.

Wash your hands before you handle food.

Wash your hands before you eat.

Enjoy your life.

 

Well Mr. Alvin is giving me that look and I see it is already 10:15 a.m.

I need some coffee.

Perhaps I will make that first.

 

Take Care.

Be safe.

Living 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.

Second Half of the NEW YEAR.

Good Morning,

Thursday August 6th, 2020.

Three days until my 63rd Birthday.

Yesterday I received a birthday card and letter from my Aunt & Uncle.

I did read the letter and was happy to hear their news and that they were okay.

 

Cannot believe how quickly the time passes.

Yesterday I wrapped and had ready to post the birthday present for my friend back in Regina.

I was going to “phone a friend” to see if someone could go and mail the parcel.

But then I thought …. why?

Instead I asked my neighbour if I could borrow her car and go mail the parcel.

We have a strip mall less than a five minute drive away complete with a drugstore and post office.

For the next bit before I actually went over to grab the keys, I felt a bit sick to my stomach.

At first I blamed it on the heat and then I realized that I was feeling a bit anxious.

This was my first time since March that I had been out in public, in a retail store where there could be many people.

I do not count the VET as they were only allowing one patient at a time.

Occasionally someone would come in for supplies.

The staff were always wiping down the doors, handles, windows, counters and debit machine.

Any place where a human could touch.

They always had sanitizer out on the counter so nothing new.

As I gathered my purse, shoes, sun clips, phone and checking to see if I had my debit card and of course, the main reason for going out, the parcel.

Picked up the keys and shortly thereafter I was on my way.

When I arrived at the parking lot I was amazed at how many cars.

Every person I noticed had a mask on.

There were the disposable light blue ones and many home sewn ones of every description.

After parking I grabbed my purse, the parcel and of course, the mask and locked the car.

As I walked to the drugstore, I slipped on the mask.

I have worn it before at the VET just because it is the right thing to do.

It felt hot on my face as I breathed in and out, momentarily fogging up my glasses.

Once instead I saw friendly faces hidden behind the masks.

I called out to the girls in the cosmetic area.

It is an odd feeling not seeing someone’s face when you are speaking to them.

I had a quick chat with the girls, telling them this was my first time out since working from home started in March.

First retail experience.

The young gal that I know the best “told me not to worry, you have your mask on.”

I felt kind of silly.

Then I was on my way.

First stop “Post Office.”

I noticed the arrows on the floor that no one was following.

There were several people in the store and everyone at that point had a mask on their face.

At the Post Office, I was happy to see only one person ahead of me.

The mask was hot on my face as I spoke to the Clerk in the Post Office asking this and him answering that.

I remembered to pick up stamps.

Once I had mailed the parcel, I decided to pick up a few items as I was at the store.

Walking down the aisles, I spotted the hair colours and walked over to them.

The first thing I did was to pick one up.

Then I placed it back like a hot potato.

Realizing what I had done.

What is the protocol for this?

Is there one?

Do you just look and only touch what you are purchasing?

After that I only looked and picked up what I intended to purchase.

 

At the checkout there was a woman with no mask.

No one knows why?

Perhaps for medical reasons, maybe she did not have one or perhaps she did not care.

When it was my turn at the cashier, I saw in front of me, this plastic wall, a shield protecting the cashiers, with an opening at the bottom to push through the products you were buying.

I must have looked stunned for a moment – I think you can tell that even if your mouth and most of your face is covered.

I had heard from others that most retail stores had this kind of setup but to see it in person, is quite another story.

Seemed like in a bank or in our old office before the renovations or in a New York taxi.

I had a quick chat with the cashier as she rung through my items.

I felt compelled to tell the cashier that this was my first public outing since March, my first retail experience.

Also, I commented on how hot the masks were and asked “Do you ever get used to wearing them?”

She said “No.”

This gave me a whole new appreciation for those folks who work out in the public.

Whether in health care or in retail or anywhere really.

 

Then I was done.

As soon as I was away from the building, I whipped off my mask.

Deep breath.

Into the car and back home.

A sense of accomplishment and relief.

 

I wondered how many folks were in a similar situation to mine?

I have been so blessed over the past few months to have friends and family that pick up my groceries and such.

After this, I am not quite certain if I am ready for grocery shopping or not.

If there were only a couple of people, maybe.

 

This morning we were up a bit earlier than the past few mornings and actually left the house at 7:00 for our walk.

I was surprised at just how many folks were out and about.

Riding bikes, walking with a friend or like me walking with their dog.

Another hot day so I must get going.

Time to have coffee and breakfast before getting some housework done.

After lunch it is just too hot to be doing much inside the house.

 

Living with respect and kindness.

I/We shall remain,

As Always, Carol & Alvin

 

 

 

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