Tuesday, December 30, 2014


    In only 33 hours a new year in my neighbourhood will commence. It is always fascinating how we all are on the same planet but because of our rotation and our journey around the sun we have developed ways to  create time mathematically and it means there are different time zones. Midnight will repeat at least 24 times until all zones have crossed into the new day and at this time the new year.
   My orchid blooms each year around this time even though it's winter and a bit cold outdoors. It does not follow a clock or a season, just a warm inviting indoor climate that makes it want to bloom. What a pleasure to see this beauty now.
   Tomorrow we're not going to have the usual party because all our young folks are busy doing their thing. Instead it will be a quiet family dinner at senior in-laws. Buddy is going to be a bit sad but I'm hoping we can enjoy a game or two before the count down. And he can bring some hats and streamers along. It will be fun because we'll make it so.
And how about you??

Wednesday, December 24, 2014


May your holiday be filled with love and joy!

Buddy is excited and very happy the tree done in time for tonight. We managed to get it decorated on the eve of the 22nd which is when it was done in my childhood days in Germany using a real fir tree. 
Times have changed. In the past years I usually had it up sooner including the real ones. This year I nearly didn't put one up. I tossing with the idea of just going to my daughter's but she wanted to come here to make us turkey dinnerd. Also Buddy reminded my about the spirit of the season and Santa. His enthusiasm brought back the magic I was loosing. He must have some angel tucked away in his soul. He is so right.
It is a time to be filled with goodness and to share it. That's what gives us real joy.
From Buddy and myself have a very Merry Christmas as we pause from gift wrapping to send this out into the cyber world via blogger dear friends.

Monday, December 1, 2014


For weeks Buddy has been telling me we are almost at December and it will be time to decorate for the festive season. He has waited patiently.  We've enjoyed a busy last week of November because my daughter and her hubby flew in from UK to surprise his Ma for her 60th BD and it was a huge family event last Sunday. 
 On Wednesday we had my family over for a German style lunch and the then hubby's brother and family for a curry feast while celebrating our niece's M.A. grad!
                Food was a yummy Thai buffet at Ma's surprise party.
 The luncheon was yeast dumplings with a choice of home made beef mushroom Gulasch or Szegediner Gulasch, a sauerkraut style stew.
In the photo is my older daughter next to my sis and her hubby, Buddy's favourite uncle because they joke around a lot when together.
Youngest daughter is chatting with her aunt to her left and cousins to her right. The eve went too fast but all in all it was a big fun family day. Young daughter even managed to add extra chillies to create a very hot chicken curry which was cooked by many and loved by those who love heat!

By Wednesday our wreaths were on the front door. A lovely winter planter at the foot of the outdoor steps came thanks to our garden gal who arrived at 7:30am to spruce up our gardens for wintertime and our family event that day. Thank goodness for her cheer.

And of course the indoor decore had begun in the kitchen family room area and the living dining room. A new table cloth was bought for this year since daughter's kitten managed to get her claws into our previous one adding some unique fabric clumps.

This lovely plant was a gift from Leif Olsen's widow, Linda who was happy to join in our busy day to see us.

Linda is to the left of my sister.
As I type Buddy is busy creating the December calendar for our family events. He's exceptionally cheerful right now.
So how are the things shaping up out your way?

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


Today we've set aside time to reflect about those who have given their lives to protect us. But let us not forget those who continue to serve us daily. There is a handsome nephew, Buddy's cousin, who is very actively serving our country. 
This is ACE. 
Thank you to all who make the world a safer place.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014


Today Buddy is busy preparing our family"s activity calendar. 
It will be full of events. 
Tonight we head to our local BIL's for dinner.
Not local BIL who visited since September 21 leaves October 2 and we have a visit to the dentist at 2.
October 4 we must attend Leif"s funeral at 1, a very sad occasion.
October 6  my sis and I fly to Europe for 10 days visiting family.
October 13 is the Canadian Thanksgiving.
October 21 Stradford Festival for a King Lear special performance. 
October 23 is sister's birthday.
October 24 Madame Butterfly Opera at the Four Seasons.
October 31 is Justin's birthday and Halloween.
Looks like this month will fly by just like all the rest.

Above are photos that Buddy and I have collected. The first two come from our walks in our neighbourhood. We love to walk and talk when the weather is nice. I liked the way the weeds pooped out at us through a fence. He spotted the maple leaf on the sidewalk. It's contrast to the concrete gave me a nudge. I just had to capture it for him. Finally there is one arrangement Buddy sleeked for our table centre because it has fall colours. He likes to help select floral arrangements with a seasonal look. I just love his taste!

How is your October shaping up?

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Spiderman Challenge

There's always something fun happening in city squares.Here's what Buddy and hubby were up to in Trafalgar Square in London, UK on our recent visit.

It was certainly fun for all. Look at the spectators. Buddy and the rest of us went on to watch the movie in a cinema at a big shopping centre the following afternoon.
We were really rather busy in our many travels this year and now we'd like to share some of the rare highlights.
Didn't my two guys do a super job of getting into the moment?
They are my stars at times and this is truly one of those for me.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


I have become a fan of FIFA. Buddy snapped this picture while we were watching a game back in mid June. We watched many together. It was fun.
After today's match I think my chosen team may become the winner. We'll know on July 13.
Are you a sports fan? 

Monday, June 30, 2014


July 1st is our national holiday to celebrate the confederation of provinces into one nation, one Canada. Currently there are 10 provinces and three territories. 
The tiniest province P.E.I. joined in 1873 yet its capital, Charlottetown, was the birthplace of the Confederation in 1864 when it held the Charlottetown Conference the began the porcess.
The actual Confederation took place July 1, 1867. The provinces of New Brunswick, Nova 
Scotia, Quebec and Ontario formed the first union at that time. All the rest joined at their own pace.
Initially there was a Canada West, Ontario and a Canada East, Quebec. To get a handle on internal rivalries of these growing colonial areas it was thought unification might help, hence the idea of one Canada.l
Today Il find myself living in an area of peace and relative prosperity in a very multicultural environment in Ontario, Canada and it feels good. 
It's time to celebrate. Let more red and white flags be raised with pride for the occasion.
Happy Canada Day !!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014


Both rses Buddy and I planted are finally blooming. It is already summer and it took until this week for them to come to full bloom. That they made it through the crazy harsh winter we had is fabulous.
How's your garden doing??

Sunday, May 25, 2014


Buddy was impressed with the bullet train ride from London to Paris and back. On the train he studied the magazine that illustrated how the tunnel was constructed. He then drew his own versions.
Notice that it is dark next to Buddy in his window seat. That's because we are actually in the chunnel at that moment. That part of the train ride lasts only 20 minutes. Once we are out on the French side it takes an hour to reach Gare du Nord in Paris. The train zooms along at a high speed of up to 298 km (186 mph) all the way and links the cities in 2½ hours. The ride is smooth and quiet. Seating is reserved if you wish or you can buy a cheaper ticket and risk finding an empty seat. There's also a first class. We had reserved seats. We didn't bother with going to the dining cars but hubby went to the  snack bar for tea. We had our own food from home.
There is table seating and it was very practical. Each car only has two of these so we were happy guests to have this set up. It makes using an iPad and drawing so much easier.
 After our three day visit, hubby and Buddy checked out the bullet trains from a departure platform in Paris. The Eurostar trains have a separate entrance with extra security similar to that of airports. We boarded the train below through a special set of stairs going down.
The trains certainly are impressive. And the ride was definitely fun!!
Buddy is proud to announce he has travelled under the seabed of the English Channel twice. Buddy loved the whole tunnel thing and hubby loved the train ride. I loved watching them have fun.

P.S. Did you know that Buddy's BIL is a geotech engineer who helps in the construction of such tunnels? He is currently working with a team creating a new tunnel in the London Underground. Buddy finds tunnels very fascinating.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


On Saturday, May 2, my daughter took me to Montgomery Inn Museum for a tour , tea and a concert. The drive from my home was a fair distance as I live north east of Toronto and the Inn is in the south west part of the city, the now infamous area of Etobicoke, the residential area of Mayor Rob Ford, a man whose character I've always had doubts about. He has made light of some serious matters by running a large metropolis without a sound mind since substance abuse does interfere with one's judgement. 
The area is very lovely and so is the old Inn that was established back in the 1830"s along Dundas Street also known today as Highway 5.The picture is taken from the rear east side of the in.
The tour was educational and the guide added some humour that always adds to the fun of learning and recalling things. It's hard to imagine how the people back then enjoyed the use of Inn facilities in comparison to our modern times and our hotel room expectations.
There's the fact the ladies had to have a travel companion to vouch for them and ladies had to use a family bedroom.
The little cot was for children and was stored under the big one when not needed.  When I first saw the room pictured below I thought it was the servant quarters but I was very wrong.
This is the room assigned for the men who needed a bed and it was expected that three men would use the same bed at the same time. The term sleep tight comes from the fact that three adult men side by side was a very tight situation. Privacy was of no matter. It was more a case of survival. Warmth was important as the winters were very frosty cold with no heating provided in the bedroom. But there's also the fact that the mattress sat on knotted rope which had to be kept tight with a tool so that the mattress wouldn't sag in the centre. It was tightened every other day.
This photo shows a bit of the rope (and the porta potty, ha ha ha).
I imagine the Inn would have had less customers in need for a bed in the summer months because it did get warm in the area. Choosing sleeping under the stars was not uncommon then.

Next time you say, 'sleep tight' to someone, imagine the image of three to a bed that were likely not always related and nine to the room. I try to tune out the snoring as I think of it. 

Buddy, hubby and I are off to sleep tight at our daughter's place in Bromley, UK for a bit. And we also have planned a 'chunnel' train trip to Paris. We three will sleep tight at Hotel Henri IV for a couple of nights.
It was difficult finding a room for three. How times have changed.

Thanks in advance for stopping by. We hope you are well and we often think of all our blogging friends. We'll have new stuff to share soon.

P.S.  George and Betsy, one of our roses has fully survived our crazy winter and the other has one tiny branch that is green. We are hoping both roses will bloom again maybe in June?

Friday, April 18, 2014


For our festive lunch on Good Friday with my visiting sister and BIL, Buddy and I shopped for some fresh wholesome food and we added fresh cut roses into our basket. We prepared out home with a few decorations that include our self coloured eggs. We enjoy transforming them. this year we used both white and brown ones in the same colour bath to observe their different shade outcome. It was barely noticeable.
We are thankful for all we have and can share and we are excited to be entertaining. It is still early and rather quiet but soon there will be a hustle and bustle as folks clamour to make their day count. 
Since we are a nation of many faiths and many of us get this day off, with most businesses closed, people find all sorts of activities to do. One Family is busy preparing for their daughter's wedding that will take place on Sunday. They are neither Christian nor Jewish. They are Muslim. We are invited but are unable to attend.
I find it intriguing that those three religions all share a common Abrahamic connection and all arose from a relatively close range to Jerusalem where one can find a church, a temple and a mosque not far apart. 
What is fascinating is that Christians have managed to incorporate bunnies of chocolate, little chicks and all sorts of eggs to be used on Sunday for the fun part of their festivity. We saw lots of goodies while shopping.
Easter Sunday Buddy and I will be back in Cayo Santa Maria. We leave on Saturday. Hubby is very busy with filing client tax returns.
Have a great weekend. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014


   Once again I sit at my laptop hoping to be the inspired blogger I used to be because my eye op has successfully delayed some rapid vision deterioration but I just can't seem to feel that spark.
   Our little get away was fun but also had a darker side. Hubby is slipping into a more serious stage of memory issues and with that comes some very odd and annoying communication issues. He was not able to recall our morning routine after breakfast. Buddy and I would head for the pool while he headed for an espresso and he was to join us when done but he could never find us. Instead he would just sit by a poolside and wait. The place had several pools and we always went to the one closest to his coffee bar. He kept heading to the one closest to our room. While I quietly sorted it out it did have an impact on me. As we age we face so many odd issues that pop up. Still Buddy has a way of keeping us balanced when the going is a bit rough. He's a rock that one just has to love.
   Santa Maria has several large resorts and since the island has an 48 kilometre causeway in the Atlantic Ocean connecting it to the mainland there are no local inhabitants but a shopping area was created. Here's what we found in its parking lot;

Buddy loved the 1930 FORD taxi. It is a love for these oldies that has owners keeping them fine tuned and running. 

Sunday, March 9, 2014


Today we are in the daylight saving mode once again. Spring is supposed to be in just a few days but really here in our area we are still deep in a bitter winter freeze. More snow is on it's way by Wednesday and the cold will continue on for days to come.
In my backyard I shall need to have someone shovel some of the snow away from the house to avoid basement flooding once the melt comes. I am not allowed lifting of heavy stuff yet because the retina is still healing. I just tried a bit to see the depth of the situation and there's a fair bit of the white stuff right up to the patio door.

To get to the furniture will be quite a dig.
The pansies, daffodils and crocus are deeply buried in the back by the fence. My two lovely rose bushes in the front garden are hidden near that lamp that is situated on a small post barely peeping out.
Indoors it's it's quite cosy and the plants are cheerfully and elegantly blooming but it just does not feel right. Spring is not filling our hearts with all it's joys yet. 

Outdoors it was the very opposite last year as everything began early.
Being blessed I decided to use our means to enjoy more travelling.
 We leave in a few days heading south to be able to enjoy some warmer outdoor living. Buddy is excited and happy that I have recovered well enough to take on this journey with the eye surgeon's permission to fly. Hubby is joining us this time. He really wants a break before he'll be bogged down with this year's client's tax returns. We hope to enjoy more of the bright red blooms that grow outdoors all around and are liberally used to decorate. 
And when we get back hopefully a warmer springlike weather will have commenced so we can enjoy our local outdoor gardens again.
Right now the birds have not yet appeared. Usually they would be busy chirping early in the morning. Instead it remains eerily quiet. 
Across the big pond my daughters daffodils are blooming in her Bromley area garden. Some type of palm tree that can survive outdoors in her London suburb has been replanted to another spot and she is grilling in her shorts and Tees..
How is your spring shaping up?