Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Blue moon

Didn't see the moon.  I thought I also read that there was an eclipse visible on the west coast just before dawn. Really a once in a lifetime event.

The weather has been bad, snow and wind gusts.  We had planned to go to see Star Wars, yesterday, at St. Vital Centre, but by the time David had blown the driveway clear, it was to late to make the 12:45 show.  We had discussed whether we should even leave the house, but he really wanted to go.  As I had a couple of errands to run, we left at about 4:45, and headed to Kildonan Place.   Once we were out in the snow, and very slippery streets, he was a little less enthusiastic about the drive south on hwy 59, so I suggested that he check to see if it was on at the theatre there, while I visited the tea store. He caught up to me just as I was paying and said that it was on but we were five minutes too late for the start. with my encouragement we bought tickets anyway, just missing the first few minutes of the show.  Looking around I thought there were only 5 people in the theatre, but as we were leaving, I counted 6.  Enjoyed the show, but there were places where we couldn't hear what was being said.  I think we missed some of the nuances.  I also think that I would like to see it again.  With all of the action, and all of the plot twists you can miss a lot. I remember seeing the early episodes several times before feeling that I had caught everything.

Yesterday, when the men of the neighbourhood were out clearing snow, we noticed a fellow across the street shoveling his walk.  Their house has recently been put up for sale, and being neighbours, we take an interest in the process, watching people who come to view it, and whether they look excited or disappointed leaving.  We've also wondered why they are selling.  Well it was almost painful watching him trying to shovel.  We knew he had Parkinson's, but had no idea it had affected his balance so much.  Just carefully shovelling his short walk, he almost fell a couple of times.  I think we have our answer, and it's not pretty.

My hexie quilt, Oreo Inspiration, is quilted, and marked for binding, which I hope to get done today.

Hundred year wait....

Just went out with the dog for his first outing ( early) and wanted to observe the Super, Blue, Blood moon. Unfortunately it is overcast and I could only make out the silhouette of the moon in the south sky. So I will have to wait for another 100 years before I can witness this phenomenon again. It was also too cold to hang around to see if the sky would clear any for a better view. Maybe you folks have clearer skies this morning and have a chance to see it?  Have a good day.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Eye Appointments yesterday

Pleasantly surprised with Optometrist as I had remembered him from 15 years when we last went to him. Harry will get new reading glasses so he can sit at the computer and see the screen. This was his worst complaint so I hope it will work. As for me I do not need a change in lenses, but I do need to take care of myself better because of my dry eye problem (long going issue for me) The cataracts will take their own course but I will leave them for now. I must use eye drops and drink water (which I was also told to do by my Opthamologist) and I must put a humidifier in the bedroom at night, and I must put warm compresses on my eyes at least two times a day. He had a nice gel set for this purpose but it was $40.00 so I said I will try a warm cloth for starters.  I pulled up an old vaporizer we had way back when the children were young. i cleaned it up but it would not work No wonder as the insides were all rusted together. OK, so Harry went to the hardware and bought a new humidifier which I set up. During the night I realized the fan was not going so I turned it off and will check the instructions this morning to see if it functions this way by cycling off, or if something is wrong? Hope this will help and it will be entirely up to me to maintain so I have a vested interest in doing just that!
Cold here again and not even nice to go outside right now. The dog persists in wanting to go for a walk but doesn't last long, poor thing. Harry has all sorts of seeds planted and out in the sun room by the windows and he still says the greenhouse will be heated on Feb 1 - not really paying attention to the weather which is to be cold for the next week. Oh boy, here we go....
Time for my breakfast and coffee and relax before the day begins. I'll also put a warm compress on my eyes ( I'm trying to be good!) Take care

Saturday, January 27, 2018

A well written synopsis of a day gone wrong

Thoughts of support for you Pati, and Dave - many a day for me has been similar and I couldn't possibly have outlined the salient points as well as you. Or maybe I feel I couldn't possibly share my stories - I don't know?  I may just do that one day - look out folks haha! Anyway, hoping that things settle down a bit.  Have a better evening (TV anyone?) and tomorrow will shine bright.  I, too, am anxious to see the hexi quilt finished and your progress doing it. It is so beautiful. 

Not a good day

Just one of those days when nothing works out as it should.  Unfortunately, I can't blame the woman in red.

First thing this morning we re-arranged the upstairs studio so I could start machine quilting my hexie quilt. Despite my enthusiasm ( not!) nothing worked out as it should.  I started with black specialty thread on top and and a dark grey bobbin thread.  I will often use slightly different colours, so I'm able to tell the top thread and bobbin thread apart.  I decided to use black on top, as this is what worked best in hand stitching the hexies.  Well, my machine doesn't like the top thread, and fought every inch of the way, breaking and snarling. This is also the largest quilt I've ever attempted to quilt on my machine.  Not an easy thing for me to do, and very awkward. ( Yay for long armers!)After an hour, I accepted that the workmanship was never going to be good enough to enter into a judged competition-my ultimate goal. A disappointment, but this allowed me to accept the level of work being done, and relax.  I took breaks, and worked very slowly.  Finally, I changed the upper thread to a basic 50wt cotton poly blend.  That problem solved. After about 4 hours work, I had about 25% of the quilting done. Now I've quit for the day.

But I had wanted pictures of me working, to put on the other blog.  Got one, and then the camera says the batteries need charging.  David goes to get the battery charger out of the dresser, and the whole drawer falls out and breaks.  He's now trying to fix it.    I bought the dresser, when we were living in Edmonton, 43 years ago, while he was in Cyprus.  It doesn't owe us anything. and he's never really liked it.  Not sure where this issue will end up.

For several weeks we've been having trouble with our tv remote.  David finally decided to do something about it, and phoned the Shaw Cable help line. After waiting, and a call back, he spoke to someone but said the line was so bad that he couldn't hear anything and gave up.  It's very cold today, and snowing as well, despite this  he had went to the mall to get help.  He came home with a new remote, which had to be programmed.  First step--make sure the tv is on.  Well, of course it's not on, and the old remote had been turne din.  Now lately, on Saturday night I've been watching tv most of the evening, and I was visualizing trying to amuse myself without it. So onto Shaw Cable help line again, another long wait and call back.  I could hear them talking, and recognized that David was having some sort of problem.  But he had found the original remote that went with the tv, when we first bought it. Thank Goodness, as we could never have solved the problem with out it. Still, there was an issue with the actual programming of the new remote. After a bit David put me on the line, and we got the problem solved. 

So we're both now tired, and frustrated, and it's not yet time to think about supper.  I hear crackers and raisins calling my name.  Ar-g-g-g-h!

Friday, January 26, 2018

The journey, not the destination

Isn't that what creativity is about?  I love to play with my fabric, and fondle my threads. My stash reduction process is slow because I spend time going just that.  Every time I find a part-done project, or a collection of supplies that never went any further, I take the time to think about what they had been intended for, and to remember what I was thinking about at the time.  I wonder if it's our age, that we allow ourselves time for reminiscence--and take pleasure in it. 

I'm now ready for the workshop I signed up for Feb 10th.  I have my stock priced, and inventory prepared for the changeover in the gift shop in Selkirk. This means that I have no excuse to procrastinate about quilting the hexi quilt.  My machine is prepared, and the upstairs studio re-arranged.  Unfortunately, all this work has left me exhausted, so the actual quilting will wait for tomorrow.

My acquaintance, Dianne, phoned today.  We haven't spoken in maybe 4-5 years, although I have e-mailed her, and received a quick response.  We've both suffered with health issues, and are both prone to depression, so maybe the lack of contact has an explanation. 

A Tea break afterall

Just a quickie addition to my previous message:
I went over to Daisy's place today after I received a call from her granddaughter who was going to Daisy's cabin in the bush outside South River to check on it. So since Daisy was going to be alone, I went over and visited with her. She seemed to enjoy the time and was fairly vocal about not being allowed to drive anymore. This is the one aspect of the changes in her life that she is focused on mostly. Hard to rationalize with her about this as well. 
I did more tidying up in the "studio" this morning and found the box with the crazy quilt that I started many years ago. It looks promising and so I plan to focus a bit on it once all is said and done (hexi quilt notwithstanding haha!). I can visualize some nice techniques so thinking about it is as good as doing it, right?
All for now, time to close up for the night. Take care

It's Friday!

Here we are at the end of another week. Soon Jan is done. Harry has decided to get the first greenhouse going on Feb 1. It seems to get earlier and earlier every year - soon I may be heating it all through winter - maybe I could move in.... haha!
More fun in the "studio" and finding all sorts of treasures. It takes a long time because I find a box and then sit down to have a good look and then make plans and before I know it, time is up and not much really accomplished.
Harry has Dr appointment today and then on Monday we both have appointments with an Optometrist. This will be new for us and he works in the next town of South River two days a week (we went to this one years ago when he first opened this office) Hope it will work out as I really need new glasses. His main office is in Huntsville.
Today it is to become mild and possibly rain again. So I shall be on water alert!  I was supposed to go over to Daisy's for tea this week but never made it. She is up from Toronto for the week and then back to her son's. I saw her briefly at the Hardware the other day and had a short talk but she so enjoys sitting at the table and having a cup of tea. Oh well. I should also go over to the neighbour Ruth - she has had one awful time with her hip replacement done Dec 18 including a required second surgery and when I saw her last a few days ago she was anxious about recovery and feeling house bound.
Take care all - have a relaxing weekend. 

Wednesday, January 24, 2018


Yesterday we decided it was time to see the new Star Wars movie.  We usually go to the late afternoon showing, as the theatre is usually not filled, and the price is right on Tuesdays. David had found the info in the paper, so off we go to the 3:30 showing at St Vital Centre.  Bought our tickets, bought our popcorn, but had to wait until the theatre had been cleaned before we could go in.  There is a nice woman who collects the tickets.  Not necessarily a very intelligent woman, but always helpful and always cheerful.  We tend to chat with her every time we go.  So she comes over to where we're sitting to tell us we can go in, and provides helpful info, such as, the glasses are inside the theatre.  Say what?!  Turns out we have bought tickets for a 3D movie.  David immediately goes to see if he can get our money back.  Ho Ho.  She and I continue to chat and she assures us that we can use the tickets, in 2D, today at 1:45, but, of course, we would have to pay more, so maybe we couldn't use the same tickets.  But, David prevails, and we get our money back, but are still holding a large drink and popcorn.  So what do we do?

Well, going in I had pointed out a scrap booking store across the street from the mall, and said that I would like to visit it someday.  Yesterday was the day.  David came in with me, and the clerk wasn't busy, so I got to chatting with her about various inks.  So, of course, we both get a lengthy demonstration on how to use distressing ink, in all it's various forms.  I thought of you, Beth, and your unexpected adventures into unusual stores.  David then went to the car to eat popcorn, and I chatted with her for a little while longer, but of course, ended up buy inks.  I had actually been looking for ink for my stamp pads, but hadn't found it in Micheal's.

A very pleasant time spent, and I have ideas percolating.  Maybe next Tuesday we will get to see Star Wars.

Has winter returned?

Snow and zero F this morning. What a day yesterday. And over the weekend it is forecast for above zero and more rain. Cathy I think your weather may be preferable to this roller coaster we are on here? But I agree the lack of moisture for Spring and Summer can be problematic.
Congratulations to Rrain and her friends. Of course you must be very proud of her accomplishments. I remember seeing the parade on the computer - likely a UTube that Harry had on and I remember seeing Rrain but not you Cathy.
Harry bought planting soil yesterday so I can see the clock ticking away faster until it will be seeds and pots and heaters and issues haha! Maybe this year the weather will cooperate and the temperatures will remain steady enough outside that one heater in each greenhouse may be enough. 
I have my sewing machine cleared and a chair all ready to sit at the machine. That's some progress and hopefully I can find my box of squares so that I can actually sew something and feel as though I have accomplished a miracle haha!  I liked your latest Charity quilt top Pati and was inspired to do the same - I know I have a box already started with small squares with some already sewn in short strips. I like the colours you used to make it lively, and wish I could do the same. I don't use any new and large pieces but scraps that I have, which is just fine with me. I am still chipping away at the hexi quilt I have - doing the border now and that should take some time to do at least two rounds of little hexis.
Well, breakfast time for me and then on with the day.  Take care all

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Her I sit

Looking at my work computer and sighing deeply.  I'd rather do this than work cause it seems all we are getting is crap these days.   I still have a cough and no energy at all, but other than that life goes on.  We are  no longer baby sitting an extra dog.  She was with us for over 4 months, but she has gone home again.  She has a younger dog to play with at her home and I hear that all they run is run and play from morning til night.  She will be much happier back there than with our old dogs.  Rrain and 3 other ladies were selected as the Chamber of Commerce Volunteers of the Year.  I am really proud of her.  When we made the national news because of racist graffiti on our town signs, the 4 of them organized a community pot luck supper and parade in support of the new comers.  There were a few hundred of us in the parade and I have no idea how many ate supper.  I think it is really nice that they have been recognized for their work.  We have missed all the bad weather, but since the first downfall of snow in the fall we have had very little.  It is quite dry and I wonder how the spring will be with no moisture in the soil.  I don't want a massive snow storm, but we need some moisture.  Lunch is over...... back to staring blankly at my computer.

Oh my...

Never thought it would be this bad. Raining now after a snow storm yesterday that left piles of snow. The walk is sheer ice and filling with water. Poor Bailey - I had to put sand down to get down the stairs and sidewalk and then had to pick at the ice to make a foothold and a place for him to do his morning thing and all the while rain is coming more. I feel like crawling back to bed and put a pillow over my head. 
Hope you folks didn't get it this bad in your area? I'll feel sorry for myself for awhile, have my coffee, and then get my clothes on when the morning light appears over the horizon and get at it outside!  I'll write more later......haha!  Take care

Monday, January 22, 2018

Sounds like there is life again...

Nice to hear Pati, that you are up and out again. Now we need to ensure Cathy is also up and at it? Are you better Cathy?
I await a real storm today with snow, freezing rain and rain. I hate the forecast for rain at this time of year as it means I must be vigilant outside. When it gets light outside I shall have to go out and prepare. Wish me luck.
Did some more clean up in "the studio" again yesterday. My goal is to chip away at it step by step - then it won't feel so overwhelming. I would love to clear it up enough to get at my sewing machine and do bit of sewing.  I have enjoyed your postings Pati of your projects and it makes me feel anxious to do something. I have found some treasures and organized some of my special books. I need to uncover my machine and then as you have been mentioning Pati, I may need to consider taking it to be serviced. I know there is a store in North Bay that can do it ( at least there was, so I'll have to check)  I would like to locate my original old Singer portable machine again - it's here somewhere and I loved that machine so much. Pati, you and Dave helped me buy it before I was married so it is special for me, and I'd like to keep it working best I can. It would be my backup same as you have one (although much better quality haha!)  Cathy do you have a machine? I remember that Rrain sews so maybe you do?
Well, on with my day. Porridge for breakfast. I'll have to get over to the local Foodland for some items today - Harry has a meal planned that needs some items I don't have. I may have to walk if streets are too slippery. Actually I may be safer if I drive. I'll have to think about that.  Take care

Sunday, January 21, 2018

computers and sewing machines

My computer is trying to update Windows 10, and having no end of problems.  Finally, yesterday, I got fed up and took it into the Geek Squad.  He fussed with it for a few minutes,and then said there you are, take it home, hook it to the internet, and it should be okay.
Nope, it wasn't okay.  So I played with it some more, and then tried again this morning.  No luck.

While we were out, I took my reliquary, "Frivolous Intent", into the MB Crafts Council, as an entry into their Members Show opening on Jan. 27.  There is an official opening reception Feb 2 ( First Friday), and knowing that David isn't interested in that sort of thing, I invited my friend Gail.  It will be interesting to see how it measures up to other items in the show.  I took a look around the gift shop, when I was there for a meeting a couple of weeks ago, and I think my stuff should measure up quite well.  Not that I expect anything to sell-(snort).

Friday, with both of us feeling better, and beautiful weather, we followed up on the aborted plans for our wedding anniversary.  We had saved money and coupons, and went out to South Beach Casino, north of the city.  The money lasted for several hours, and we enjoyed a lunch buffet, thanks to a coupon.  But knowing that with the warm weather and rain ( yes, rain), things could get dicey as it cooled down after sundown, we headed home early, and went to Club Regent for the seafood buffet, for supper.  David thoroughly enjoyed some wonderful shrimp, as I knew he would. I indulged myself with a small piece of White Chocolate, Cranberry truffle Cake. Oh My! It was a wonderful day.  

As mentioned before, with the big sewing machine gone, I'm spending time with some intricate piecing.  I have two strips done, but looking at them this morning, I can see that some adjustments are needed.  I'll probably blog on that elsewhere.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Back online again

Not able to get online for anything late Thursday as the mouse decided not to work. It is wireless and no attempts to find an alternative mouse of the thousands we have somewhere in the house proved fruitful. Of course, the event created much discussion between the both of us which is always interesting.  So Friday morning it was off to Huntsville and into Walmart where a new fancy mouse was purchased. Once home and ready to set up it became apparent that there was a problem. I read the instruction manual but apparently missed the important small print clues completely. No NANO device was found in the box. And one has to plug this NANO device into a USB port for the darn thing to work.  So back to Huntsville ( read more mileage and time) and into Walmart I went. The man at the counter of the Entertainment Dept just sort of chuckled and opened my box and opened the battery compartment and there was the NANO device hidden inside. And with my shocked facial expression he then took out the manual and pointed out the small picture where the location of said device had been highlighted. I admit it was not very clear in the manual. But I also admit that if the situation here at home had been conducive to quiet reflection and time to absorb the instruction manual completely I would have found this information myself. Chalk it up to yet another interesting day as Pati said in her previous message haha! So we are back in business (until the next crisis hits)
Lots of wash to do this weekend and I never look forward to this time.  I made liver for myself yesterday but had to leave it for our second trip to Huntsville and then when I got home I did not want to eat any so into the fridge it went. So today I have that to look forward to. I really like liver and enjoy it with some onions and a little bacon. I cook it nice and tender and it is moist so very palatable. 
Very mild again as I see is also the case in your areas as well. Without any precipitation maybe some of this snow will melt away? Wouldn't it be nice if Spring cam early this year. Not withstanding all the planting woes that comes with Spring mind you, but I do love to get outside and putter.
Have a nice weekend assuming that you are all on the mend. Am I right?  Take care

Thursday, January 18, 2018

An interesting day

And I can't really blame it on "that woman in red".  This morning I was feeling well enough to clean up three days of kitchen mess.  An added incentive was the need to make the pastry, and finish the turkey pot pies.  We got everything out.  David took a look at the turkey stew that had been in the freezer over night, and made the decision not to proceed.  It went in the garbage, and we're left with 3 pounds of shortening, 5 k of flour, and two packages of tin foil pie pans.  Not sure how any of that might be used, but it'll all keep in the freezer, until I figure it out.

This left me with a little free time, so I spent awhile trying to access a picture off my blog, from last August, to save and forward to a woman who is putting together a sort of catalogue of the show that we held in Selkirk last November.  With a lot of help, and some not so helpful help, I gott'er done!

Yesterday, we had to take my big sewing machine in for servicing.  Always a scary time, especially, as the day before, I had got a message on the screen that said "E2 error".  According to the manual this means that the machine must be taken to a repair depot as the problem originates in the control module.  $$$$$$$$  When the message came up, I re-booted the machine, and it worked just fine, but I knew it was overdue for servicing, so bit the bullet.  The fellow said that it should be serviced after every 100 hours of use.  I told him that I couldn't afford to have it done monthly.

So today, out came the old machine, and I started doing a technique that I haven't used in years, and barely remember how to do.  This gave rise to memories from 35 years ago, and the people who were around then.  I've also spent some time, the last few days, thinking about Phyllis.  I don't know why.  

Hello out there...

Hope that time is helping you all to recover and get back to feeling human again?  Any signs of that yet?
Took all three cats to the Vet yesterday. The Vet loaned me a second carrier for my last trip so in fact only two trips were necessary. I still have to return the carrier but can do that today or tomorrow.  Our oldest cat is too fat by many, many pounds (which I knew) He wants me to put him on a nutrition regime. That can get tricky with two other cats and a dog eating at same time and place. I don't know what to do yet. And the middle cat has a mole on her eyelid that needs to be removed now. Just one more worry to consider. 
Today I am going to try to make an appointment with an Opthamologist for me, and hopefully for Harry. My old Dr has retired (he was from North Bay but had an office in Sundridge open one day a week which was very handy) But there is one in the next town so I shall call there - we actually have been there many years ago when kids were young, Harry really needs to have his eyes checked but needs to come to consenting to an appointment in his own time. 
Our ice machine gave up the ghost Tuesday. I went to Hardware but nothing there so Harry went onto Amazon in the afternoon and ordered one that was suitable and reasonable. When I went up to the mail Wed morning at 11 am, there was the box waiting for pickup. Now I ask you, how did it get there so fast? I figure that is pretty good service haha! Now on the other hand, there was another box for pickup with two items that we had ordered middle of Dec and had actually received Dec 28 and have paid for already. I phoned Amazon Card and was reassured that no charges appeared on the account for these two additional items - so an error has been made, and wonder what should I do about it?  Too much to worry about these days, and none of my own making!
So I am about to have my oatmeal for breakfast, and have a recipe from "the book" planned for my meal - hoping it will turn out. Substituting eggs for tofu Pati, has opened up a whole new world haha!
Reading about all the curling events in Manitoba lately in the Free Press. Cathy now I know why Jim needed the remote so badly! So it is the "Men's" on now from Charleswood Curling Club. And good old Jennifer Jones did her thing again to go the National Scotties eh?  How I wish I could get it on my TV. And with the Olympics coming next month there would be so much to watch. Oh well.
Now you folks take care of yourselves and get better soon. 

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Hang in there....

Not much I can do to help with the health woes but to send all my best wishes to everyone of you ... Cathy, Dave, and Pati ...anyone else down with this flu/cold ?  Is Jim feeling OK?
At least you got your turkey done Pati and with both of you to do it! I think time is on your side - you need to give it time to disappear and that means laying low. Cathy, even with your work requirements, going home and vegging out sounds like a plan.  Please take care of yourselves. Love XX 

Monday, January 15, 2018

Quite a day

David announced this morning that he's sick too.  Well, that's too bad, because I was in no shape to pick up the slack.  And we had planned to cook a turkey, so as to make pot pies for the freezer.  So we're both stumbling around most of the day.  But the turkey was cooked, and I made dressing, and that was supper.  The stock is on, to be used as a base for gravy.  It's good that this was all we planned, because the cupboard is getting pretty bare, and all I had to put in the stock was half an onion, and half a dozen baby carrots.  Someone definitely needs to get out in the next day or so, both to the store, and to the library.

Cathy, I sure feel for you having to work through this.  I putter around, but really accomplish nothing.


I can understand how you are feeling Pati.  I was only home for 3 days, but after one day at work I went home and vegged from Friday night to Monday morning.  I still have a cough and I am really tired.  I want nothing more than to go home and put on my jammies and sit in front of the tv.  Speaking of which, Jim phoned me a few minutes ago and asked where the TV remote was.  I, not knowing what he was talking about, asked where he had put it.  Wrong question.  It seems that about a month ago I cleaned all the pictures off the shelf in the rec room and the TV remote was there and where did I put it?  I barely remember getting out of bed this morning.  How the "heck" can I remember a month ago.  Meanwhile, here I am, sitting 6 miles away from him and he is waiting for my answer.  I guess I will look when I get home.  How could I have been so inconsiderate as to move the TV remote a month ago.  Obviously this is going to worry me all afternoon.  Maybe I should take the rest of the day off and go home and look.  :)

Think happy thoughts...

Whether you are cold bound, or have cabin fever, or are just plain miserable (me?) lets all think happy thoughts on this day - the one they are calling Blue Monday!
I got up early again but had a much better sleep than the last few nights so hoping I will feel brighter today as well. And it is not so cold now so hoping our weather will balance again and bring us back to seasonal temperatures.
This is the week I make appointments for all three cats to the Vets for their annual check and needles. I borrowed one cat carrying cage from Mike and hope to shuttle them back and forth individually to the Vet if I can manage.
So here's to a good week for all of us. Take care both of you.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Arg-g-g-h! Cabin Fever!

Which may be a good sign.  I've been sick for 10 days, and haven't  left the house for a week.  Sure don't feel any better,  Spent yesterday in front of the tv--just vegging--which is not something I've ever been comfortable doing.  Don't feel like doing any more than that today either, although most of the day so far has been at the computer.

Cathy, how're you doing?  Any better?  This is not fun!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

My feelings, exactly

I can't imagine Winnipeg without the Conservatory!  When I first heard, I had all sorts  of thoughts about the family events and memories, and how to preserve the image in my mind, or in fabric.  Yes, I would like to visit again, and yes, I would like to take pictures-inside and out.  I can only hope that they replace it with something as visually significant, that can also serve as a symbol, in some way, to future generations. 

Conservatory closure

Now this caught my eye this morning and caught my breath as well. The Assiniboine Park Conservatory to close for good April 2.
Memories flood back - happy memories. Amber/Darren's wedding for one. Many visits with special people like Dad. Mom loved to go. I loved to go. Visits with old boyfriends even!
What are your thoughts? Would you go one last time just for old times sake? 
Cold here now so I guess it is back to the usual for awhile. I have to do a long overdue washing today so I'll have to look out for wallets and such. Enjoy your coffee Pati - it will still taste the same whether from the bottom of the bag or the top, won't it? Have a wonderful day with family Cathy and waiting for your story and maybe a picture?  Take care

Friday, January 12, 2018

The trauma of changing wallets

I went through it a few months ago, and I'm still dealing with the frustrations associated with changing habits, because of the changed configuration of a new wallet.  Well, today that darn woman in red threw David's wallet into the washing machine.  ( Although I'm a little suspicious it might have been the bald guy she sometimes shows up with)  Luckily, David had a new one hidden in a dresser drawer.  I had been using my old one for about 13 years when it broke, but he's been using his old one for as long as I can remember. It may even have been one that Daddy gave him. I know what he's looking at, as I'm still not that familiar with my new one, even now.

Somehow, she also cut the bottom out of a full pound of ground coffee.  Her excuse was that she couldn't find the opening, but it was right there on other other end of the package. Gosh, how I wish she would run away from home.

Speaking French

I don't think speaking French will be a problem as both of Amber's girls have been in full French immersion from the beginning.  They are also living in a fairly French area.  They have been in contact with the other family, and have an idea what she'll be getting into.  All of my Grandchildren are bilingual, and we celebrate that.

While I've been sick this last couple of weeks, David has been wonderful, going to the store and library, as we've needed.  But this morning he's turned up with the start of it, so now we're basically housebound. I'm no better, and maybe a little worse.  Didn't sleep well last night, despite lots of chemical help, and pretty well non-functional this morning.  Still able to play Candy Crush, though.  Today is laundry day and it's a joint effort, as just getting down the stairs is a bit of a challenge for both of us. 

So now we're trying to cook a little soup for lunch.  Oh Boy!

Episode of Spring is over....

and what a ride.  This morning the temperature literally dropped 30 degrees in three hours - talk about a flash freezing!  And it is still falling. It was still hovering around 40 degrees F this morning when I got up (I was up until after midnight shoveling water as it was raining but had to give up and go to bed.) and then the temp fell. And now it is a bit of a blizzard with blowing snow all over. I won't even attempt to snow shovel until the worst of it is over.
So nothing to do but stay inside - I have done a bit of tidying this and that, and changed the bird cages again ( always something to do with the birds) We have the two newest chicks into their own cage now. This gives the mother and father some alone time to fertilize and lay more eggs (oh goody goody!) So there are now four separate cages in the bathroom.... just try to get to the toilet in a hurry, won't you?... haha!
I called over to my friend Ruth this morning. She had to have mores surgery to close off a bleeding vein severed during the original hip surgery. Now she has a PICC line in her arm, and a pump administering antibiotics 24 /hours a day. Not a happy camper.  She would love some company but today I am in no shape (or mood) to be happy happy so told her I wouldn't be over.
Here's to the weekend. Cathy I shall be thinking of you and the family celebrating Christmas. I know how excited I was last weekend when we did the same with Mike and Erin so know you are feeling the same - anticipation, right? And Pati you take care of yourself and back on your feet.  Harry found a picture of Jessica on the Facebook ready to leave for her student exchange trip. They must be excited about this as well, and then the other student comes to stay with them?  Lots of fun. Will she be able to speak French do you think, when all is said and done?  Take care

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Surviving-minute by minute

At least that's what it feels like.  I'm still laid low by my cold/flu.  
Don't know which it is and have symptoms of both. David has laid down the law and told me I'm not going out anywhere, and I feel too miserable to call him on it, just to assert my independence. What a pair we are!  But, we're not spending money foolishly, as we aren't going anywhere. At least I know better than to try to work on anything important when I'm like this, so I sit and sew squares together.  I can't concentrate on reading or tv, and bone and joint pain limits the time I can spend lying down.  Don't I sound sorry for myself!  At least I'm not shoveling snow!  Of which we have very little.  That seems to be the one blessing of this very, very cold weather.  And I know the whole continent is suffering.  I saw a picture on the news of manatees in Florida crowding around hot springs to keep warm.  How sad!

So for today my goal is to empty the dishwasher, and to, somehow, acquire a new package of Poise.  I've found that the best way for me to get any sleep is to not have to run to the bathroom every time I cough. There is no dignity when an old woman gets sick.

Early update

Early in morning right now, but very mild and drizzling all night. I had to shovel some accumulated water at the front of the house, and the walking is treacherous with icy surfaces. I will wait until it is light outside and then assess again and put down sand for walking. I just hope that the rain will not come in earnest. But I shall deal with what I get - no choice.  Hope all is well with you folks.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Rain? what rain?

For whatever reason we lucked out on the bad weather.  It seems it went in a circle around us.  ten miles east, west and south were hit and we were high and dry (except for the wind.... and temperature drop).  And now they expect me to work.  I think they should pay me just to show up!  Oh well.  Kris, Sandi, Chloe and Rrain are all coming over on Saturday.  Looking forward to it.

Ach...this weather is something

Just reading the Free Press and the ALERT notice for weather disturbance in your areas. (Usually a hint of what I can expect) Cathy sounds as if a real bummer went through your area - hope you made out OK? We expect the freezing pellets and then rain and then cold again with snow.  I am as ready as I can be here, with the outside, as the roofs are mostly shoveled up so far, and the walks cleared a bit. I have a bit more to do this morning and then it will be wait and see what happens. My poor old body is feeling the exertion from the shoveling and wonder if it is really worth all the effort to prepare. Now Harry is talking about starting up the small greenhouse which means a whole other set of issues ( and jobs haha!) I do not like this time of year at all. 
Take care everyone with your colds and sicknesses. 

Monday, January 8, 2018


Best place for you Pati is in bed resting and recovering. Cathy is going through the same thing right now as well. So I shall have to remain healthy so we don't make it a McGrath hat trick.  Take care both of you.
I started the tough work outside today and hoping to beat the weather that calls for rain maybe tomorrow, or Wed but surely Thursday. I got the out buildings roofs done, and have the back of the house roof done. The worst job is trying to clean away the snow piled on the ground and the doors. I am anal about keeping exits clear and safe for use if necessary. I hope to do the front roof and hopefully the other side of the back tomorrow but, I am finding my energy and resilience waning quickly - I am not the person I was last year or the years before and I guess this is bothering me terribly.
Have either of you registered for the Loblaws $25.00 card they are offering for the many years of bread price fixing scandal? I went on and followed the instructions. Harry is registered and received confirmation of registration, and I am about to register. Apparently not all registrations are accepted and I do not know the reason.  However, I wonder if it is that only one per household is eligible? I'll soon find out.
You two take care and get well soon. XX

Sad news

Hearing a strange noise outside, we took a look and found a newly installed "for sale" sign on a neighbour's house across the street.  This fellow has been quite friendly with David, and we'll miss his sense of humour.  This will leave only two neighbours that we talk to, and then not often.  I can understand them moving.  The fellow suffers from very obvious Parkinson's, and really struggles to keep up the yard work.

I went to bed last night and spent a horrendous night with coughing and stuffiness, getting very little sleep.  I was up this morning, long enough to have a shower, but couldn't stomach any food or drink.  So back to bed for about 4 hours.  It's been a long time since I was this sick,  so I've cancelled any social plans for the week.  Not good.  I've been  up now for about an hour and a half, ate a container of yogurt, and drank the cup of tea I made this morning, but now I think it's back to bed.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Loved this message

I logged on to tell you that we visited with Mike and Erin today and had a splendid time. Then I read this message about remembering and it was so relevant to my day that I got lost in the pictures and musings. Thank you Pati. I remember this visit very well. May Long Weekend, and Mike and I flew to Winnipeg just for the weekend to be with family.  He would have been 15 going on 16. And wore that Army jacket everywhere and all the time!
I have many pictures from this visit and it wasn't long ago that I looked at them again. And I remember each of us writing on your patches.  You are right Pati, that it was the reality at the time and in spite of life in the coming years, and changes made, it "was what it was."  It is a lovely quilt and a lovely part of the McGrath's in 2000.  I also still have the wall hanging you made from a previous visit with family - hanging on the wall in the hall. I often look at it with fondness, and laugh at most of us in the large room with guns (? paint ball?) and another picture of us all climbing a wall. Great fun.   Thanks for the trip into the past.  Take care


Since we aren't going out anywhere, because of the cold, I have a lot of time on my hands.  This means much time spent in the studio, which results in me talking about little other than that, as I don't expect you want to hear about the dishes I washed this morning.  (or didn't wash, as the case may be)  With getting my hexie quilt basted yesterday, I took on a much older quilt top--actually labeled  McGrath family reunion, 2000.  My hands gave out before I finished pin basting it, but I spent time looking at the pictures, and remembering--or trying to--problem with getting older. Many things have changed over the years.  Grandpa Doug has died, Loren and Pat's marriage has ended, and other relationships have changed.  I think I've probably procrastinated over finishing this because I wasn't sure how to deal with that sort of thing.  But then it is supposed to represent a specific point in time.  So these pictures tell a story of our family.  Everyone, even the children (only scribbles, but someone labeled them) signed a plain block, all of which were incorporated into the quilt.

  Here's what it looks like.  Why I chose pink, I'll never know.

Here are Cathy and Keri-Rrain--at least that's how she signed it.  Sorry for the pin through your belly, Cathy.

Here's Beth with Jeremy and Gillian.  Were they ever really that small?

This is the three of us with Jeremy

Loren and Pat, with their children, Jeremy and Gillian.  He's getting quite bald now.  I'm glad he could grow hair at one time.

I'm also glad that Amber never had any trouble growing hair.  I remember her friend Amanda once saying that you could always tell Amber in a picture, because she was the one with "big hair".  I have to say that I look a little "out of it"

This is precious to me.  Mike, just a teenager ( How old was he here, Beth?) but already head and shoulders above anyone else.  This is the only picture, that day, of either Mike or Grandpa Doug.

 And how could we have pictures without one of the three of us and our wine glasses?

Friday, January 5, 2018

dieting incentive

I appear to be just about over my cold.  Sleeping better, more energy, but still stuffed up more than I like. With the cold weather, the studio "to do" list is getting done fairly quickly. But I'm also trying to keep myself busier, and more active, as I went back to phase 1 of my eating regime on Tuesday.  I am attempting to make it more challenging and interesting by making sure that I give all of the recipes a good try.  It's probably pure laziness that makes me go back, so much, to my favourites, and the ones I have memorized.  Also, every time I re-read portions of the book, something new catches my eye.  I had never really looked at substitutions before, as nothing in the diet bothers my allergies.  But I did find, this time, that tofu in recipes can be substituted with egg.  I've also recently fallen in love with roasted chick peas, as well as an organic hummus that I found in Costco.  So I no longer wrestle with my blender to make it the hummus, but use little portion packs.  Additionally, on the news the other day, they were discussing spinach, and the difference between cooking it and eating it raw. Both are good, but cooking it releases a different proportion of nutrients, than eating it raw. 

So--this morning I ate the spinach scramble you speak of, Beth. Never be one of my favourites, but much improved with a light dusting of salt.

So far, I'm doing well.  No indulgences, and I'm going to avoid that as much as I can, as I've learned that the first bite is certainly the thin edge of the wedge for me. I felt great getting out of Bulk Barn yesterday without a licorice bar. So-o-o, I've promised myself that once I get under my previous low, I'm going to buy a new pair of trousers.  The black ones I use for better wear are getting quite faded, and really do need replacing.  

We went to Walmart this week, and had time waiting for prescriptions to be filled.  I found myself a very nice T-shirt, and long sleeved pull-over sweater, both for less than $12, and both in shades of purple.  The T-shirt actually came in at $2.  I've been wearing it today, and am surprised at how comfortable and warm it is.  David picked up a couple of new pair of sweats--not before they were needed.

Cathy, our bodies tell us when we need to slow down.  Give yourself the time you need to get your strength up--and expect that it'll take longer, at our advanced years.  Also, we all need to remember that this is the time of year that SAD looms on the horizon, and we're all susceptible. Time to spoil ourselves.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Starting off the year

At home sick since Tuesday.  I had a doctor’s  appointment on Tuesday morning and left with antibiotics and orders to go home. Since then I have been lying on the couch watching Bones reruns. I hope to go back to work tomorrow.  Jim and I were supposed to work meat draw tomorrow night but I told him to tell them I couldn’t make it. After a day at work I think I will be far to tired to stay at the legion til 8:00 at night.  I haven’t eaten any real food since breakfast Tuesday. Just some Apple sauce and jello.  I think I might try some good tonight. Not the best way to loose weight.   Anyway, I have done nothing all week. I know I really needed the rest but I must be feeling better cause I am noticing all the dust and housework that needs doing.  Time to return to work so I can avoid the housework 😊.

Gosh darn for sure.

Hey Pati, for a few days this past week I thought you had packed the lady in red off and sent her my way! Some crazy things occurring to me here, and I can only blame it on "her".  Cathy, do you think Pati is trying to get rid of her at our expense?
A bit cold again - not nice at all. I have shoveled past few days as it did get a bit warmer and therefore did snow off and on. Enough for the plow to go by and enough that I had to shovel.  It was a bit of a reprieve for my poor little dog who really could not tolerate the cold on his wee paws, but unfortunately he is back to the quick walks and lifting his paws.
I watched The Quilt Show latest guest show last night - she was so fast with speech and actions and so efficient it left me swirling. I wanted to get more out of it but it went too quickly..... like a big blurrrr. But I know that I like her type of work, and it is something that I think I could do. Maybe I should watch it again?
Tomorrow I will be busy with last minute preparations before we go to Markstay early Saturday morning to have our Christmas with Mike and Erin. As I think about it now, I am not sure that these later celebrations are to my liking, but to see them is to my liking. It seems a little less exciting to think of it as our Christmas though.
I telephoned my old friend Daisy this afternoon at her place in Toronto with her son and family. She hasn't been back to Sundridge since I last saw her in the Fall. She stated that she felt like she was in prison. Her difficulty with her "word find" was very pronounced and the conversation was not easy but I spoke with her as long as I could. It was disturbing for me to think of her in this state but "there but for the grace of God go I"?  Must go now...time to try my dog outside again. 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Gosh Darn!

I had hoped that with a new year, that the woman in red would have moved on to torment someone else.  No so.  I worked very hard, in the studio, this morning, and finally, was able to take break to make some lunch.  She joined me, and for some reason, known only to her, tried to make egg salad with raw eggs.  Then she took it upon herself to look for frozen codfish for supper.  Tore apart both freezers without finding it, and then there it was --right on top , in the very first freezer she had looked in.  David, of course, had been trying to help, but even he got pissed off at her.  Same sort of thing happened earlier in the day.  I needed cellophane bags for the bookmarks I've been making, and she had hidden them in a pile of junk on a chair in the basement.  Now,  I always make a point of putting my cellophane bags in a large envelope on top of the wardrobe in the basement studio.  I've done it that way for years.  What right does she have to move them?

Got an e-mail yesterday reminding me that I had committed to teaching a beading class this month.  Whoops!  Best I start preparing for that!  There is a small blessing in the very nasty cold weather we've been having.  Since we aren't disposed to going out, there's lots of time to work in the studio. But, gosh darn,  I can only ignore the housework for so long!  Oh well, at least the laundry got done yesterday.

So there are about forty-five minutes before I have to get busy with supper.  Goody!  Studio time!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

An early morning treat

Logged onto the Free Press as usual this morning with my coffee in hand, and found an entire photo gallery of winter pictures of Winnipeg. Trevor Hagan, WFP photographer took aerial photos called Winnipeg from the Air.  I have to admit that little was familiar to me at first, but I looked for landmarks that I could recognize and was then, in a small way able to orient myself. 
I was thrilled to see the pictures and wonder if they had been in the paper copy of the news for you folks to see as well?  i picked out the Radisson Cathy where you say you stay sometimes. And of course The Bay. The Health Sciences Centre was overwhelming but I did pick out the old Nurses residence haha!  The Miseracordia looked the same, and St Boniface was massive from the air. Lots of fun for an early riser!
Now I guess it is back to usual now that the festive season has come and gone. The cold remains though and would be glad if that improved a bit.  Here's to the rest of 2018!! Take care