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. I hope that you are doing extra well on this Sunday, December 13, 2020. Our temperatures took a nosedive last night and with the windchill it is hovering around the minus 30 degrees celsius mark. YIKES, what a change from a few days ago at minus 3-6. Winter in Western Canada. Changes faster than I can change socks or drink a glass of water. Are you feeling some humour in my remarks? I am trying. It remains dark outside at this time. No sunrise just yet. Not sure if it is cloudy or not as I have not checked. Are you counting down the days? We are now at “11 sleeps/days” until Christmas Eve Day. I am almost ready for the big day. I made another double batch of fudge and 5 dozen unbaked chocolate macaroons. The macaroons were perfection, just the way they should be which is unlike the last batch. I mean don’t get me wrong they were not not tasty but just not the way that I like them. The fudge was perfection last time and this time why I decided to add the last of the marshmallows without adding more chocolate chips is beyond me. Now again, taste is good but it is a much lighter unchocolate looking fudge. Disappointed to say the least. It kept me awake last night trying to decide if I should make more. Alas, I have decided that “no more” making fudge for this year. This batch of fudge is more marshmallow than chocolate which is not bad. I am going to bake another batch of sugar cookies, which will be around another 100 or so today. This week in the evenings I am going to bake double batches only of the chocolate chip and my newly arrived at recipe of “raisin gingerbread cookies.” Which were a big hit. It is always funny how each and every time you make something even after making it for say 40 years it can turn out just a bit different. But of course, if someone adds more marshmallows, what can you expect, lol. Oh well. I am most sad about this because I made up treat boxes for my friend “Amber” and she loves fudge. Okay enough woe is me about the fudge. So this morning Amber is dropping off my jewelry order from the mega party last weekend and I will give her some treats followed by my daughter coming by with a new television for me and Alvin, most of the groceries for Christmas and some of the pet gifts that she picked up for me. Okay back to the television as I know you are thinking “new television set.” Well it is not new as is new from the manufacturer but it is new to me. My kids got a new t.v. and are giving me their old one which is not really old and get this is “58 inches” which compared to my 42 or 45 inch (cannot remember exact size) television will nicely fill the wall. So excited. Bonus Christmas present as far as I am concerned. So now I have three televisions. Where to put it? I have one in the family room and then where to put this one. Maybe we can find someone who needs a television. We are planning to have a pancake breakfast later this morning. Busy, busy. Later on this afternoon I will be baking the Sugar Cookies followed by wrapping Christmas presents. Other than delivering gifts to some friends of both the two and four-legged persuasion we will be DONE. Yes, done. Completed. Finished.

Yesterday afternoon after the fudge and macaroon baking/making – Alvin’s best friend Teddy, his little sister and his Mom stopped by for a visit. We masked of course and social distanced. They brought us, well me actually a poinsettia plant so nice and red and some caramel popcorn twists. Their gift to Alvin is coming later. Much better for the pups to exchange gifts together. I am feeling very spoiled this year. Actually every year I am spoiled and am very blessed. So love when the pups come to visit. Both Teddy and Kobi run and jump up to give me some love whenever they come or I go to their house. So happy to have had that visit because the extra visits end today with the new COVID19 restrictions.

Time to go and have a shower. I definitely need COFFEE this morning. Oh, looks like the sun is starting to rise.

I wish you an awesome Sunday. Perhaps you will be relaxing and watching a Christmas Movie or three OR reading a book or maybe you are baking some cookies. Just remember fudge is not something to defer from the original recipe.

Be kind, respectful and show compassion, this is more important now than ever before. All creatures big and small are important to this planet of ours.

Always, Carol & Alvin

Second Half of the NEW YEAR

Good Morning ALL, yay it is Friday.

Alvin and I enjoyed a full walk last night after work.

He didn’t stop or walk slowly.

I could tell that he was enjoying each and every step.

Sniffing and walking.

Walking and sniffing.

 

Just transferred the money to the gal that is baking my birthday treats.

Those treats are a delectable carrot cake with cream cheese icing and cupcakes.

The cupcakes are one dozen vanilla with key lime icing and the other twelve are chocolate with salted caramel icing.

I can hardly wait to bite into these sweet amazing treats.

My friend is one of the best bakers, I know.

I have met up with a few of them over the years.

My paternal Grandmother was one of those women who could bake the socks off anyone.

She made the best jelly rolls, angel food cakes, orange chiffon cakes, cookies and homemade bread.

I can taste them now.

All the gloriousness (I guess that is a word).

The jam in the jelly roll.

The thin layer of icing on the cakes.

The smell of the bread baking in the oven.

That was a long time ago and I can recall those smells.

It is funny how much food plays a role in our lives.

We have to eat to maintain health and energy and to live.

But food has become over the centuries so much more.

We eat when we are happy.

We eat when we are sad.

We eat to celebrate.

We eat when someone dies.

We eat, eat and eat.

Christmas cookies.

Thanksgiving pumpkin pie.

Easter bread.

The list goes on and on.

We have channels all about food.

The industry is crazy.

There are bake offs and cook offs and grilling championships.

The list is a mile long.

Every celebrity that can cooks has their own television show.

We blog about food.

We have YouTube videos about cooking and baking.

We put photos on Instagram.

FOOD, food, and more FOOD.

Sweet and Savoury.

 

Well with all that goodness now instilled in your brain, I have to go to work.

I baked a coffee cake …. second one with this new recipe that I found in one of my favourite recipe books.

The night before I baked a few dozen peanut butter chocolate chip cookies.

For an outing this evening.

I am still a bit nervous as this is my first larger than 3 people gathering.

But I am prepared.

I made separate packages of the cookies and will come up with something for the cake using cupcake holders.

 

With kindness and respect, we live our lives.

I/We, shall remain,

As Always, Carol & her Alvin

 

It is a NEW YEAR.

Good Morning.

Hello Monday.

The sky is overcast between early morning and snow.

There are no colours in the sky to the east.

We will not see the sunrise from this vantage point.

I feel sad as I missed seeing the SPACE STATION in the night sky.

I believe it was last night.

That would have been cool for sure.

 

Alvin is resting on his little bed beside me.

Coffee is brewing.

Work awaits me …. my start time is 8:00 a.m.

I always sign on before so that I can be all set up and ready to go and yes, sometimes I start early.

I am 62, it is a hard habit to break.

Being early and giving a job 150%.

I am trying to stick to taking breaks and lunch.

Alvin is a great reminder as he already knows our schedule.

Thank goodness, do not even need a watch to be reminded.

He is one smart cookie.

 

The next few days are to be cooler than previous ones.

Yesterday we enjoyed a nice walk.

On our way home I had to put up the hood on my coat.

But other than that it was pleasant.

The streets / sidewalks were frozen in the morning when we walked so easy on the paws.

Friday Alvin was a big muddy mess when we arrived home from our second walk of the day.

Weather, Canada, Alberta, end of March …… it is always a surprise.

Are we really surprised?

No, not really.

After all, we are Canadians and the weather changes sometimes within an hour or less.

 

Yesterday I had a video chat / facetime (I don’t really like that term) with my daughter.

It was great.

We walked around our houses …. showing anything that changed.

Showing all the pups, Alvin, Aspen and Milo.

I took the opportunity to show off my plants.

They are doing great.

Big and bigger.

 

We had a quiet day after the chat with our girl.

Watched television and I worked on my bead painting that I started on the 14th of March when we had a girl’s night.

That seems like forever ago.

I am still not finished the painting but it is coming along.

I will post pictures when I have finished.

 

Hopefully you had a great weekend.

Able to rest and recharge.

Perhaps did some video chatting with family and friends.

Maybe cleaned out a closet or two.

Read a good book and likely finished.

Watched a movie or zipped through a taped t.v. series or on demand.

 

Whatever you are doing on this day be safe.

Think about yourself and others when you go about your day.

Stay in the house unless you are walking or absolutely have to leave for work or food.

It is really important that we follow the instructions set out by Medical and our Leaders.

If you think it will not happen to you, you may be surprised.

Keep an eye on the young ones most especially the teenagers who always think they are invincible.

No one is ….

So follow the instructions.

Get lots of rest, keep hydrated, eat properly, get exercise, keep commonly touched areas clean.

Keeping your anxiety/stress levels low is also important.

 

Okay on that note, I am going to have that cup of freshly brewed coffee before I get signed onto my work laptop.

Please look after yourself and those around you.

Do the social distancing …..

We have the technology so there is no need to be running about to visit your best friend for example.

You can see their pretty face ….. video chat.

 

In kindness and with respect,

We shall remain,

Always, Carol & Alvin

It is a NEW YEAR.

Good Morning All.

How are you today?

Alvin and I are well.

For some reason beyond my expertise, Mr. Alvin was up and down every couple of hours.

He does not appear to be ill or in pain.

Perhaps he just senses all the madness that is going on in the world around him.

I have tried to ensure that I do not bring the “worry” home with me.

Looks like I will be working from home starting tomorrow.

That will be different.

 

One of my neighbours braved a trip to COSTCO and was able to pick me up a bag of coffee beans.

The necessity …. cannot go without coffee.

I usually don’t make coffee during the week at home as our office supplies us with free daily coffee (we are so lucky).

So that will spending more on coffee.

 

I am grateful though that we can do most of our jobs at home.

Working on a laptop instead of a computer will be strange.

I am hopeful that it will all work out.

 

Alvin will be happy to have me at home ( I hope ).

Last night we had a nice walk.

We did not bump into many folks out walking.

 

At the end of the day we need to remain as close to normal or to the new norm as possible.

Start a new routine.

Make sure if you are working from home that you set up a comfortable work space.

Work your same hours.

Take your breaks and lunch.

Likely a good idea to be away from any family members.

So that you can concentrate.

Go for a walk after work.

If you have a daily exercise plan – like going to the gym.

There is always some form of exercise show on television.

Follow along.

Eat your meals on time.

Drink lots of water.

They say it is very important to remain hydrated.

If you have a neighbour that lives by themselves, check on them daily.

Being isolated on your own terms is one thing but when family and friends are not able to visit on a regular basis, isolation can be a threat to your well being.

So reach out.

Do not spend much time on SOCIAL MEDIA.

There is so much negativity out there and false reports.

No one needs to worry unnecessarily.

I think we should be concerned but not to let it keep you awake at night.

Wash your hands and stay away from crowds.

Stay home if possible.

All we can do at this time, is be good to each other.

Treat all around us with kindness and respect.

 

I am so grateful for the warming trend over the next week or so.

Perhaps SPRING is close.

Babies ….. buds on the trees …..

I love spring.

The smell of melting snow and our world returning to life.

 

One of the gals that I work with is giving me a ride to and from work today.

It is laptop day …… something new to learn.

Should be interesting.

 

Well time to fly.

Take Alvin downstairs and finish putting things together.

 

Have a wonderful day.

Be safe.

 

Always, Carol & Alvin

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is a NEW YEAR.

Good Morning and Welcome to Monday, January 06, 2020.

Almost typed/keyed 201 ….

Alvin is laying on his blue blanket beside me.

The strangest thing happened a few moments ago.

I was in the main bathroom putting on my jewelry when I heard someone yell my name.

I ran to the bedroom window and looked out, no one.

I went to the office and opened the window and called out, nothing.

It was so crisp and clear, now I am thinking, “am I hearing things.”

There were no thoughts crossing my mind at the time I heard someone calling out.

No reason at all.

I guess just one of those unexplainable moments in time.

Alvin did not flinch so I should have known.

If someone would have been yelling he would have ran downstairs.

Note to self.

 

We had a great weekend.

Lots of walks in and the weather was beautiful.

Yesterday between the beginning and ending of our walk, right in the middle.

We dropped in for a visit to Alvin’s best friend’s house.

Don’t worry I had been texting with our friends to make sure that it was okay.

When we arrived at their house our friend was just arriving home.

She said that she had ran out to the mall (said busy for no real reason, I said good for business.)

We had tea and a visit before continuing on our way.

I cannot believe how much Teddy’s little sister has grown.

So cute.

Alvin was as always on the hunt for food and a chewie.

He found both.

Thankfully not much food as he does not need to be eating at his friend’s home.

They leave the pups food dishes out all of the time with food as Teddy is a grazer.

Not sure about the little one.

 

We had a good sleep and Alvin slept almost until the alarm went off.

Actually I woke up at 4:43 and he got up at 4:53; so we did well.

I think it was almost 9:30 when we were in bed.

We, I watched the GOLDEN GLOBES with Ricky Gervais hosting.

He brings a different light to the show.

I like him.

Some surprises but really I did not see many of the movies so I could not really “vote.”

Most of the television movies and specials were not on regular cable.

Anyway it is always interesting to see which “stars” are going to speak out on what is currently going on in the world.

Lots of mentions about the fires in Australia and that is no surprise; especially with so many actors from that continent.

Also a few mentioned the U.S. election coming up.

That is going to be interesting.

 

Well here it is almost time to finish getting ready.

Then go outside and clean up the little parcels Alvin left behind this morning.

 

I hope that you have an awesome day.

Perhaps all of the positive energy going to Australia will bring them some much needed rain.

I said that it cannot hurt.

We are all made of energy and if we focus the energy collectively we can change the world.

Collectively to make good changes of course.

 

Happy Monday.

Always, Carol & Alvin

It is a NEW YEAR.

Good Morning and Welcome to January 1st, 2020.

I was thinking that I have to come up with a new “title” for my morning posts and all I can think of at this time is “It is a NEW YEAR.”

Can be subject to change.

Alvin and I stayed up until after midnight.

Some of our neighbours (not real close by) were setting off fireworks which for second time gave Mr. Alvin a start.

Actually just before bed, I opened the back door to let him out to the backyard and there was a loud bang which startled both of us.

I was kind of happy that I had slept a bit longer yesterday as I normally do not stay awake / up until after midnight.

Actually we even on most weekends are in bed no later than 10:00 p.m.

Last night we both brought in the New YEAR, 2020.

I wanted to be awake for that first second of the New YEAR.

It was great to hear Bryan Adams sing.

These are the photos that I took on December 31st, 2019.

One of our neighbours and friends stopped by to give Mr. Alvin a Christmas gift.

Is he not the luckiest boy/dog on the planet?

He opened it like a pro.

My photos that I put together for our NEW YEAR WISHES on social media (ok, just facebook).

Fireworks in Edmonton at the Legislative Buildings …. I snapped the photos from the comfort of my home (via television).

Today is the first day of our New YEAR, a new decade.

Perhaps a time for new beginnings.

 

Happy New YEAR Everyone.

Me and Alvin are just going to hang out together on this beautiful day.

We were already outside and it is beautiful so a great day for a walk.

Perhaps a longer walk if Mr. Alvin is up for one.

Back to work tomorrow so will get my clothes together and make a lunch.

 

Wishing you all the most glorious New Year.

The best of all things for 2020.

 

Always, Carol & Alvin

 

P.S. now when to take down the Christmas decorations, I cannot decide (but not today) and time to start planning Mr.Alvin’s 11th birthday party.

Also this is going to be a pancake breakfast kind of first day of the New Year.

 

 

Living … One day at a time.

Hello, back to work as it is Monday morning.

What a grand weekend!

 

Happy Birthday Wishes going out to my niece on her 35th Birthday.

 

Alvin had his best friend sleep over on Saturday night.

We enjoyed Humphrey’s company for the day on Saturday.

We had the distinct pleasure to meet the newest member of the extended family “Miss KOBI” on Saturday afternoon.

The weather held out so we enjoyed wonderful walks with an extra long one today with Teddy (one hour even though the wind was cold, we held on).

The laundry and cleaning was completed.

I had tea with Teddy’s Mom not once but twice this weekend.

Texted with my brother J.

Put a serious dent in my Christmas cards.

All of the cards to be mailed are addressed, some letters written and should be finished by end of this week so that I can pop them into the mail.

Even enjoyed a few shows on television.

I am gloriously happy and content at this moment.

Life is wonderful and I am so grateful.

I even submitted a good sized STEEPED TEA ORDER which was nice.

 

Sometimes, no most times it is the small things in life that are the most wonderful.

Like tea with your friends.

Meeting a new member of the family.

Walking in the sunshine.

Being Alvin’s Mom.

Writing letters with Christmas cards.

Meeting up with Alvin’s girlfriend and her Mom when walking with Alvin & his best friend Teddy.

 

I hope that you had an awesome weekend.

Be it filled with love, kindness and respect.

Mine was.

 

Have the most wonderful Monday.

 

Always, Carol & AL

 

 

 

 

Living … One day at a time

Hello, it is Saturday, the day after …

I had a great 62nd Birthday.

Spent the day with Alvin and Humphrey.

Alvin and I had an early morning walk.

We pretty much lazed around the whole day long.

Listened to music and watched some television.

Sort of had a nap ….

My daughter came for supper and sweet treat.

My co-worker, the baker dropped off the sweet treats (photos coming).

Invited her for coffee …. we three girls had a great visit.

Here are some photos from my BIRTHDAY DAY.

The boys lazing around.

Nothing like mug of coffee and BISCOTTI

Humphrey in his favourite spot on the stairs.

Looks like I have a spot or two to repair … he did not chip the paint.

THE CUPCAKES

The green ones are:  Vanilla cupcakes with KEY LIME ICING and chocolate ornaments

The others are: Chocolate cupcakes with umbrellas and Teddy bears relaxing on the sand chocolate icing.

Only tried the Key Lime iced one and it was DELICIOUS.

This morning at another birthday bash I will have a chocolate one.

A friend and neighbour dropped by later in the evening with a lovely gift of shower gel, body lotion and a pumpkin apple candle ( I love that fragrance).

Snapped some photos of the boys.

A great day.

Now today one of my young friends is hosting a party for me.

We take turns.

I am taking some of the above cupcakes.

Special Special TREAT.

Humphrey is already in the house.

Teddy is coming this morning.

Almost time to hop into the shower and get dressed for the party.

Might have time to brew a mug of coffee before I leave ….

Lots of time.

Well it was a great BIRTHDAY.

Lots of birthday wishes via Facebook, phone calls from my siblings, a visit from my daughter and friends.

Hung out with two of my favourite fur boys: Alvin and Humphrey.

Does not get better than that.

 

Well time to fly.

Happy Happy Saturday.

 

 

A day filled with kindness and respect is a great day.

 

Always, Carol, Alvin and Humphrey.

Thought for the day …..

Good Morning and Welcome to Sunday the 14th day of April, 2019.

The sky is partially covered with clouds.

I am planing to go and pick up the trash in our neighbourhood as this week the street cleaners are coming.

I like to have the garbage picked up at least once before they arrive.

Then they can get the leaves, sand and dirt when they give it the spring cleaning.

My daughter mentioned she might be coming for a visit.

I have the ingredients for pancakes so I will go and prepare them in a few minutes.

Another busy day on the way.

I took Humphrey back home while Alvin and I went to his regular five week appointment at his Veterinarian.

He had his pedicure done and his ears checked and “stuff.”

Once back home, I went and picked up Humphrey and brought him back to our house.

Then put on the coffee and called the girls to come on over.

At one point Mr. Humphrey was trying to make a getaway as he started to move the rocks from beside the back gate.

I caught him in the nick of time and put the rocks back in place.

What a guy.

Now have to keep an eagle eye on him.

Had a great visit with the girls.

One of the girls surprised us with an Easter Treat.

Chocolate of course.

I am going to save mine for a bit.

After our visit with the girls; carried on with the laundry.

Raked the back yard once again and swept the deck.

Over the course of the day went for a walk with Alvin; our neighbour and the doggie that she was away looking after, Luna.

As she had come back home to spend the night.

Luna is a big LAB and is full of energy.

We only walked our new route before returning home and they continued.

Once back home I raked the front lawn and made a big pot of chilli.

After supper and the final loads of laundry.

Went to the grocery store with my neighbour.

I drove her car on her insistence.

Seemed strange but always good to keep up your driving skills.

Then back home.

We had a quiet evening.

Watching a bit of television before heading off to bed.

That is our life.

Pretty low key but I love it.

One of my favourite parts of the weekend thus far was Humphrey the Cat digging the rocks out by the fence.

He has done that at his home.

Well I guess time to get dressed and get the pancake batter made.

Ready for company?

Yes, we are.

Always.

 

I hope that you are having an exceptional weekend.

Maybe a nice relaxing mug of coffee on the deck.

A walk to your nearest park.

Snuggles with your puppy.

How about giving your puppy a massage (Alvin likes his neck and upper back massaged).

Maybe you raked your lawn.

Finished all the laundry yesterday so that you can walk today.

Reach out to a friend or loved one.

Reading your favourite book.

Cleaning out your closets and preparing bags for charity.

Happy Sunday.

Have an awesome day.

 

Special Hello to: all the women in my life ….. my daughter, my sister, my aunt, cousins and friends and co-workers.

Always, Carol & Alvin

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