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Tuesday, 4 May 2021

First World Problems

    I didn't bother with a walk today as it has been on and off rain almost all day and I had a good long one yesterday. Zoomed with my Bridge friends this afternoon then went on a fruitless trip to bring another friend some yarn for her knitting project - went to the wrong building - but I'll try again tomorrow.

   My handyman, God bless him, came yesterday in the rain and patched the place on my roof that lost its shingles to the wind last week. He used the shingles that landed in the yard but will come back to do a more permanent repair later. At least my attic will stay dry until then which is a big relief! I can't believe all the house problems I have had in the past year, just hope that is the end of them. My savings account has taken a beating! I guess I should be happy I had some money put by for emergencies - it wasn't earning much interest anyway! 

This was the only tulip from my header photo that survived the rampage of the squirrels!

My neighbour's magnolia tree- it is further along now so I will try for another photo.



Friday, 30 April 2021

Nothing to Write About

    I have been absent for some time just because nothing interesting has been happening in my life. 

   Today is cold and very windy (snow forecast for overnight) so I haven't been able to even work in the garden although the grass badly needs cutting. We had a great deal of rain over the last two days (the last of the April showers) and the garden is still very soggy. I have just noticed some sheets of roofing are scattered around my yard. Another job for my handyman!

   I had a couple of errands to run this morning (by car) and didn't have my daily walk. Luckily I have a good book on the go and a DVD to watch tonight. Tomorrow is another day!

Friday, 23 April 2021

New Purchases

    I had to drop off some paperwork at a friend's house this morning and, since I was near the Garden Centre, I decided to pick up some supplies. I managed to get the last rhubarb plant - last year I missed out and they were all gone by the time I went looking. I also bought some pansies for a display at the front door. They should be OK if we have a slight frost. Otherwise I will bring them inside overnight. I still need to get some manure for the vegetable plot and fertilizer for the lawn but the garden centre is not the cheapest place for that, so it will have to happen on another day!




Thursday, 22 April 2021

Looking Ahead with Fingers Crossed

 There was hail this morning and a few snow showers today (high of 4C) so I have stayed indoors and started to work on my tax return. I seem to be getting a bit of a refund but will double check all my numbers before I send it off. Always good news if my calculations are correct.

  The next day or two will be busy with prepping the house for company on Sunday - our delayed Easter meal! The family have been pretty much isolated for the last two weeks as schools are closed so we should all be safe. I can't wait to have some company even if it means doing some housework. No hugs, though!

Wednesday, 21 April 2021

A Nasty Surprise

    This is what greeted me this morning!




    It kept snowing until late into the morning but has pretty much all disappeared by now. The early Spring bulbs seem to have survived but it was a bit of a shock to both them and me!

Wednesday, 14 April 2021

My New Haul From the Library

    It has been some time since my last trip to the library so there were several items waiting for me when I walked up there yesterday. 


   Four DVD's - another two episodes of "Detective Montalbano" which I am really enjoying despite having to concentrate to read the subtitles, and three seasons of a new treat, "Silent Witness". I did see one or two episodes on TV but there are several sets available now in the library so I will work through them. They are excellent!


A friend lent me the Sandra Brown book but the other two I ordered and hope I will enjoy. I have read other Ian Rankin books so I'm pretty sure I will like it but the other one, not so sure. Someone must have recommended it!

   Judy and Natalie came over this afternoon as they were in the vicinity and brought me these homemade delicacies as well as another box of Girl Guide cookies. Didn't take me long to consume the first one!


   Dental checkup and cleaning today and my mouth still feels tender. Not my favourite way to spend an hour! However, I have a nice new toothbrush and other essentials for good dental health. Should be fine for another six months!


Monday, 12 April 2021

Signs of Spring

   I keep saying that and then we go back to winter temperatures. Today I reverted to my winter coat for my walk up to the library and was glad of the extra layer. It was windy and spitting rain. We had a nice day on Saturday and a good hour of tennis but more rain is forecast for the rest of the week. 

I cut the forsythia back last fall but it has till produced quite a few blooms.

Slightly out of focus buds on the Mountain Ash (Rowan). I can't wait for the trees to green up. They are mostly all still bare. I did see buds on a neighbour's magnolia, that is always one of the early ones.
 

Friday, 9 April 2021

A Culinary Masterpiece

    I made a lasagna today and it looks sooo good I can't wait to tuck in. It's rather labour intensive but will feed me 6 meals, one today, another on Sunday and four for the freezer. Today I will have it with a salad as I have romaine lettuce to use up. Have you noticed how long romaine lettuce stays crisp in the fridge? I'm sure it is at least three weeks since I bought this one, just taking off a few leaves at a time. 



   It was a cloudy wet day to start off with, just the perfect time to stay indoors and work in the kitchen. Now it is full sun which bodes well for tomorrow. 

Thursday, 8 April 2021

More Books from the Library

    My latest haul from the library - thanks be that they are to remain open for pickups during our latest lockdown!



     I have finished "The Sea Gate", a quirky but entertaining adventure spread over two time periods, WWII and present day with lively and endearing characters. 
    
   Currently reading (and thoroughly into) "The Butterfly House", a crime/detective story set in Copenhagen by a Danish author. The translation is a little awkward in places but doesn't detract from the overall quality of the writing.
   
   Dipped into "The Forgotten Sister" but not really entranced by it, although I do love historical fiction (this one is Tudor times and present day). I will certainly give it a go.






Sunday, 4 April 2021

Easter Sunday

    A new date three weeks hence has been established for our Easter meal and today worked out rather well. We were blessed with wonderful weather, treats were exchanged (and consumed) and , all in all, everything worked out to perfection. 





  
 As you can see, it is definitely T-shirt weather. and lots of lovely treats. (computer refusing to let me rotate a couple of shots so just turn your computer sideways!) The tiramisu was delicious and I can't wait to get in to the truffles after a month of abstaining from chocolate.

Saturday, 3 April 2021

Best Laid Plans.....

    Easter lunch at my house has been postponed -  daughter's class had a COVID exposure and, although none are sick we decided to err on the side of caution. So the leg of lamb and other goodies have been consigned to the freezer and we will just meet outdoors for a brief visit.

    I have been assured there will be chocolate treats if I am willing to provide coffee. No complaint there, just hope it's sunny and a little bit warmer. A photo or two will be taken but no hugs yet!

Friday, 2 April 2021

Braving the Elements

    The daffodils have finally opened so I will have a nice bunch to bring into the house for the Easter lunch table. Now the big clean up begins!



   It was sunny but bitterly cold today, not much above freezing. I did manage a walk and came home to a warming bowl of soup which had been bubbling away all morning. My favourite carrot and lentil concoction with some crackers and cheese makes an easy lunch.

Thursday, 1 April 2021

Preparing for Easter

    Two crusty French loaves baked for Easter lunch on Sunday - if I can resist taking a slice or two (just to check they are good, don't ya know).



    Today I went out early on a hunt for a nice leg of lamb, reasonably priced, and lucked out at the last store I tried, then had to go out again for garlic and Mint Sauce! Also hit the liquor store to stock up as I had cut out alcohol for Lent. I will have a big glass of red on Sunday to celebrate a month of abstinence. Ditto with chocolate so I hope the grandkids bring me some.

   Lamb is our tradition for Easter Sunday and nothing will prevent us from indulging, not even another lockdown. Praying that the family stay healthy until then - one school had a case of COVID but it remains open so caught in time, thank goodness! 

   In case you are wondering, I had no side effects from my shot last weekend - just a stiff arm for a couple of days.

Sunday, 28 March 2021

Whoop-te-doo!

 

Just the first dose. We have to wait four months for the second one!

Friday, 26 March 2021

Books

     The other day I (roughly) calculated I have read 150 books during lockdown. I wish I had kept a list but never thought it would go on so long. Who knew what we were in for!

   Anyway, here are my current two. 


    This one I may have written about before as it is my own copy. I was between library books last week so picked it up. I love the Commisario Guido Brunetti stories as they are replete with descriptions of beautiful Venetian vistas and wonderful food (his wife, Paola, is a remarkable cook). The plots are never complicated so don't tax the brain, which I also like.


   This one from the library (don't remember why I ordered it, someone must have recommended it) is a bit of a challenge. It's a multi-generational story with themes of classism and racism intertwined with family dramas. One of the reviewers described it as "epic and sweeping without ever leaving behind the personal and profound" I don't know if I entirely agree and I find some of the characters rather disagreeable in their complacency. 'Nuff said!

    It has been damp and dreary today but I did manage a short walk between showers - also much colder.  Still haven't had to cut the grass but the rain may bring that along pretty soon!

Thursday, 25 March 2021

Signs of Life

    Things are finally starting to bloom in my garden. Actually this is quite early for here - we often don't see anything until April. 



   I'm not sure what these little blue flowers are but they come up faithfully each Spring.

    Today we had a high of 19C but it is going to be cooler tomorrow - back to single digits - and next week we are expecting overnight frost. Still too early to start planting!

Sunday, 21 March 2021

Exciting News!

 Yippee!! The tennis courts are open. Susan and I played singles for almost an hour this morning - first time ever in March!



Saturday, 20 March 2021

A Tricky Puzzle

   This is my most recent jigsaw puzzle - it has taken me forever, mainly because it didn't have a border. And all the pieces were irregular shapes. I only stuck with it because oldest grandson was able to complete it (couldn't let him outsmart me!).


    It has been a gorgeous day and I have spent quite a bit of time outdoors, wallowing in a surprisingly strong sun. Tomorrow I must get started on sprucing up the garden but, for today, it was lovely just to relax!

Thursday, 18 March 2021

A New Book

    Finished the second "Atticus Pund" book by Anthony Horowitz today and started this one:

I have just read the first couple of chapters but already it has grabbed me.
   Today wasn't particularly cold but I didn't feel like a walk so took the car up to the library. I did this early as I had two Zoom meetings today.

  The first was a Probus Club meeting with a very entertaining speaker. Her subject was "Royal Scandals, Scoundrels and Betrayals". Did you know that Princess Diana's 4X great-grandmother was an Indian servant? Lots of other juicy anecdotes. Over 40 people joined the meeting.
     The second was a welcome meeting for new retirees who have joined RTO. Only one person signed up but, nevertheless, we all talked of the activities we run and hope to start up again in the Fall. It was just nice to see old friends and catch up somewhat.


Monday, 15 March 2021

A Typical Day

    All go here today. Workout first thing this morning, then a stroll down to the drug store to mail a letter. Met a friend but didn't stop to chat too long. It was quite cold so didn't stay out too long, but it was sunny.

    After lunch and a nap I had a visit from another friend to pick up some knitting materials. She was thrilled to get some fresh supplies and stayed for a short chat, both masked, but it's the first person, other than daughter, who has been in the house in ages. She is getting her shot on Wednesday, lucky thing.

   In a fit of energy I opened a can of paint and did some touch up work that has been bothering me for a while. After that was cleaned up it was time for dinner (leftovers) and an evening of TV. I am binge watching "Marvelous Mrs. Maisel", it's hilarious! So that's my day and one more day closer to getting my shot.


Friday, 12 March 2021

Crazy Weather

    It has been very windy for the last couple of days, mostly sunny but with a short but heavy downpour yesterday. But the crazy part of the weather has been the temperatures. 

    After several days of plus numbers, yesterday reached an unseasonable  high of 18C and it was still mild overnight. Early this morning it was still in positive numbers, reaching a more seasonal high of 8C. But overnight the temperature is set to fall to -8C. That's a range of 26 degrees in just 36 hours!

   Yesterday I wore just a sweater for my walk and sat outside for quite a while. Today I wore a spring jacket but it was too windy to sit outside but I was able to potter in the garden. Tomorrow it will be back to the winter coat, hat and gloves. With any luck the wind will have died down and the sun will shine so it will be bearable. It's hard for one's body to adjust to these fluctuations!

    The reason for all this changeability is the wind direction. Normally we get winds from the west or north west. Since Wednesday the winds have turned around to the south so we started to get balmy breezes coming up from the Gulf of Mexico. That really warmed things up. Starting today the wind has returned to its normal direction and it feels like air is being pushed down from the Arctic. Who knows what the rest of the month will bring but at least all the snow is gone. That's not to say we won't have another snow storm but at least the ground is no longer frozen so it won't hang around too long. Still a long way from planting time!

Tuesday, 9 March 2021

Ramblings

 Two Zoom meetings today - this afternoon with Bridge friends and this evening with the family, both local and across the country - the wonders of technology! It is oldest grandson's 15th birthday and, even though we can't be together in person, we will celebrate together this milestone as a family. Judy dropped off a giant cupcake which I had to promise not to eat until we were all together.



   More excitement!! Ahmet, my handyman, came today to fix holes in my roof caused, he thinks, by squirrels. I'm just glad it wasn't the dreaded raccoons as I first thought, as they are big and make a huge mess! The holes have been there since early winter (he spotted them while cleaning my gutters) but it was too dangerous for him to get up on the roof. However, mission accomplished and just in time before the Spring rains.

     It has been a gorgeous day and I ate my lunch outside for the first time this year. Later I had a walk and, after, sat on the back patio until the sun went down behind the trees. It felt so good!

Sunday, 7 March 2021

Getting Geared Up

    Sunny today but still cold ( high of -2C) it's supposed to warm up later this week. I had a really long walk today, almost an hour, and sat outside until I got chilled. Things are looking up!

   On my walk I noticed that the tennis courts are nearly snow-free. It will still be a while until we get to play as the gates are still padlocked by the city. I will keep an eye on things and get my tennis group organized as soon as the nets are up. Can't wait!




    You can just see a rim of snow along the shaded side. It will be gone by the end of the week, I hope!

Saturday, 6 March 2021

Gadgets

    I'm sure everyone has a cupboard full of useless gadgets bought or acquired in a fit of weakness. I have two slow cookers, one bought when the family still lived at home, and now too big for one person meals, and another smaller one perfect for cooking just for myself. I keep the bigger one for just one reason - I use it to heat up a big batch of apple cider to serve with Christmas lunch for the grandkids. Of course, I didn't need it this year as that event didn't happen.

   Here are two of my most useless gadgets:


    Have you guessed what this is? It is, in fact, an avocado slicer and pit remover. I have to confess to buying this myself (It seemed a good idea at the time). I also bought one for daughter and DIL but I'm sure neither of them has used it either. The pit remover is useless - easier just to whack the pit with a knife and remove it that way. The slicer is much messier than using a knife so it has sat in a drawer and will remain there until it is recycled to an unsuspecting buyer in a charity shop.


     This gadget is supposed to slice, dice, spiral and chop vegetables and fruit. I have yet to get it to work on anything, although daughter says it is useful on zucchini. I don't like zucchini! It was a gift from her as she never uses it - 'nuff said!

    Still very cold here so I have not "cast a clout" and won't until at least the end of the month. The wind was bitter on my walk to the mall and I was so glad to get home again. Not even any sun to warm my face!





Tuesday, 2 March 2021

A Lion or a Lamb?

    March definitely came in like a lion here yesterday - snow squalls, high winds - and today has stayed sunny but very cold. Wouldn't it be wonderful if, according to folk lore, the month goes out like a lamb with some mild, balmy weather? We can only hope!

   Our neighbouring region of York started booking appointments for shots to the over 80's today and there were pictures on the news of the seniors standing in long lines in the frigid weather. Not good planning on someone's part! At least by the time my turn comes the weather will, in all likelihood, have improved or I will be very reluctant to make an appointment.

   I managed a walk this morning and on my way back, ran into a friend whom I haven't seen in some time. We stopped and chatted for a while, getting caught up on this and that (we used to work together), but by the time we had exhausted our conversation, I was chilled to the bone. It was pleasant enough out today with the sun shining as long as I was moving but I quickly cooled down while standing. It took a hot bowl of soup and half an hour in bed with my book to warm me up!

Monday, 1 March 2021

This, That and the Other

    Snow flurries and gale force winds today so I have stayed indoors except for a quick trip to the bulk food store - I needed bread machine flour to make a loaf otherwise I wouldn't have ventured out!

   A new book to tell you about - "Moonflower Murders" by Anthony Horowitz. I was interested to read that, as well as having written seven other murder mysteries, the author is also a screenwriter, having created "Midsomer Murders" and "Foyle's War" - a talented and prolific writer indeed!


I often mention my family and thought you might like to see them for yourself. This photo is a few years out of date but is my favourite one with daughter, SIL and Grandkids.




   

Sunday, 28 February 2021

Missing the Sun

    Dull and dreary here but the snow is gradually receding and some rather dead grass appearing along the edges of the lawn. I was quite chilled when I got home from my walk and spent the afternoon snoozing in bed. Hope I'm not coming down with something!

   It has been rather amazing not to have had a cough or cold all winter - probably due to wearing a mask on all outings. I guess we don't realize just how much infection we pick up from other people! Also washing hands well is a very good habit to continue once the pandemic is over.

   I got an interesting DVD from the library yesterday, "Detective Montalbano", and watched an episode last night. It is a mixture of drama, humour and relationships but, as it is subtitled, requires more concentration on the viewer's part. I will watch another episode tonight, I highly recommend it, but one is enough at a time. 

Wednesday, 24 February 2021

Winter Not Gone Yet

   Although we have had a couple of days with sun and above freezing temperatures, the snowbanks are so high I can barely heft a shovelful of snow over the top! Just praying we don't get another snowfall any time soon.




    However, the icy patches have more or less melted so taking a walk is not quite as hazardous as it was a few days ago.

   I kept busy today by making a batch of shortbread cookies which, unfortunately, I will now have to eat. Boredom leads to naughty things! I will keep them in the freezer which will make them slightly less tempting and easy to pop in my mouth. 

     I heard today that my age cohort will be allowed to book a vaccine in the last week of April but sounds as if the booking system has yet to be created so, once again, not holding my breath!

Tuesday, 16 February 2021

Chocolate Overload

    Out early for a slippery drive to the grocery store. We had several inches of snow overnight and I really should have stayed home until it had been cleared. However, a chocolate bar given out by the cashier at the store made it worth the effort - a customer appreciation gift. The store was surprisingly busy considering the driving conditions but I guess, like me, people were out of essentials after the long weekend. Trying valiantly to work through all the chocolate I have received this week.

   On returning home I got stuck on the slight slope of my driveway but dug my way out eventually. My neighbour's son came over to help and we got the driveway cleared by lunch time. Just as we finished the plough came by and left a considerable windrow across the end of my driveway, so more digging! I sincerely hope that is the last dig-out I have to do this year. We have got off pretty easily this winter, all told.

Monday, 15 February 2021

Family Day

    This is a Provincial (as opposed to Federal) holiday so the mail came today but I haven't ventured out to see what else is open. I had a walk this morning while the sun shone but now it has clouded over and snow is forecast overnight.

   Since I was staying home (and reluctant to do any housework) I decided to make marmalade today. I go through a lot of marmalade on my morning toast and it isn't expensive but home made is so much nicer. 

   A lemon, a tangerine and two cups of sugar gave me two small jars and it seems to have set well. Removing the pith from the rind and slicing it finely was time consuming but the end result was well worth the effort. I have to say I couldn't be bothered making a big batch - too much preparation required!

Now I just have a messy kitchen to clean up.


Sunday, 14 February 2021

St. Valentine's Day

     Had a (socially distanced) visit from D and GD today, bearing gifts for St. Valentine's Day. We sat on the back patio in the sun for half an hour and chatted until we got a bit chilled.  Have already got into the Truffles, the wine will be next and the foil container holds a chocolate brownie which will be my dessert tonight. All good stuff - they really know my faves!


   I just realized that Lent is coming up and I will have to finish the wine (and all the other liquor in the house) as well as the chocolate before then as I usually give up both booze and chocolate for Lent. I may be a bit late in starting this year! I do this just to make sure I am not becoming addicted to either of them so no point in keeping temptation around. Wish me luck!

Friday, 12 February 2021

This And That

    Not much to write about but thought I had better get a new post done before everyone thinks I have died!

   Still not much progress on the vaccinations here - less than 1% of the provincial population with their two doses. The weather has been sunny but cold but I have managed a walk most days. Yesterday I made a loaf in the bread machine and today some raspberry oatmeal bars. Reading lots and working on jigsaw puzzles fills my days.

   Something trying to get into my attic woke me last night and led to a disturbed night, just hope it hasn't set up home there and I get a proper night's sleep tonight. Stay tuned for a further update!

Sunday, 7 February 2021

Ticking Along and Staying Safe

    A cold few days and I have hardly been outdoors. I shoveled the driveway today and the sun helped dry it and melt the icy patches. There were only a couple of inches of snow so it wasn't much work but my fingers were frozen by the time I was finished.

   I made a big pot of stew today which should last me a while. As it is Sunday and "cleanliness is next to Godliness", as my mother would say, my one chore today was to clean the toilets! Lots of time for reading and I am well into my newest library book. Currently we have to pick up our requested books outside the library and, with yesterday's strong wind, waiting to have them checked out was a bit of an ordeal. However, I survived!


I am almost finished the Joanna Trollope book, not sure about the other but will give it a go. It's about Jesus' wife!


Thursday, 4 February 2021

So Much Better When the Sun Shines

   Felt like Spring today as the temperature was above zero and the sun shone in a brilliantly blue sky. There was definitely some warmth to it and I had a long walk and a sit on the back patio just before lunch. It should be nice again tomorrow but we will be back in the deep freeze again on the weekend with minus numbers.

    Home made lasagna for dinner tonight and I got 6 very large portions out of it  -two to eat today and tomorrow and four for the freezer. I really must do more batch cooking as my freezer is pretty empty at the moment. The spur for making the lasagna was some frozen spinach approaching its "best before" date. It looks and smells delicious!

Tuesday, 2 February 2021

Groundhog Day

     A very weak sun today so I don't know if the groundhog will see its shadow. I hope not as that will mean an early Spring, something we really need this year.

   I got in a walk this morning although it was very chilly. I didn't go far, just around the block, and was very happy to get home. This was also my once-a-week shopping day and I decided to use a double mask as that is being advised. It was quite comfortable so I will continue with this regimen until I get a shot.

Monday, 1 February 2021

"Don't Eat the Yellow Snow!"

     I was reminded of this admonishment while out on my pre-lunch stroll today - every pile of (by now) grubby snow seemed to have been decorated by the local canine tribe. Of course, in days of yore, it was quite acceptable to grab a handful of fresh snow to slake your thirst; nowadays, not so much!

   The fire is lit and I am snuggled under a blanket to watch tennis from sunny and warm Australia. Talk about living vicariously through others antics!

Saturday, 30 January 2021

A New Toy

 


   New to me, anyway. I have inherited a cell phone and finally entered the 21st. Century! I have been holding off as long as I could but finally gave in with the offer of a cast-off from the family (even the grandkids didn't want it although it seems pretty up-to-date to me). The plan they set me up with seemed quite reasonable too, so I will see if I use it enough to make it worth while. I can text as well (a new skill acquired!) and my photos should improve if nothing else.

    We've had a couple of pretty cold days but the sun was shining today so I set off for a walk around the neighbourhood. It was good to get out in the fresh air.

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

Finished!

 Ta-da!!

   It took longer than I expected to finally put in the last piece, but it's done! Started a new one today.

    We have had two beautifully sunny but chilly days separated by a snowfall. So, today was a day for shoveling and getting my Vitamin D at the same time. It wasn't very heavy snow so it only took me an hour to get the driveway cleared. The sun shining on the blacktop helped dry it completely. 

   That's my first shoveling stint this winter as son did the last couple of snowfalls. It probably won't be the last.

Sunday, 24 January 2021

Another Weekend Survived!

   Haven't been outdoors today except for a trip to the composter in the back yard.  Yesterday I walked up to the library and it was sunny but quite cold. The return trip wasn't too bad as I was walking into the sun with my back to the icy wind. It takes me around an hour depending on how long I am in the Mall.

   I picked up some DVD's at the library and have a good book on the go - Philippa Gregory's "Dark Tides" - so, with my current jigsaw puzzle, I am keeping busy. We aren't able to go inside the library but can drop off and pick up items we have ordered. Also, there is usually something decent to watch on TV on a Sunday evening. Thank goodness for that!

   Tomorrow is Rabbie Burns' Night and we would normally have a party at my dance group, complete with "piping in the haggis" but that won't be happening this year. Judy is having her own celebration (with haggis and other goodies) at home with her family tomorrow and has promised to drop off some for me too. Something to look forward to.

Not quite finished but getting there! I am trying to stretch it out.


Friday, 22 January 2021

Vaccination Woes!

    Still no vaccines available in Ontario at the moment and, according to today's newspaper, the percentage of people in the province who have received both shots is 0.27%. That's right, less than one percent of the 15 million people in Ontario! You can see why I'm not holding my breath until I get a shot. On the upside our numbers are down a bit - only (!) 1,690 new cases yesterday and only (!) 14 deaths. I guess we have to be thankful for small mercies. You can see why I'm not venturing out much.

   The temperature was set to drop this afternoon so, before that happened I managed a short walk. The sun was shining but the wind was nasty so I just went around the block. At least I got some fresh air. Needless to say I have been spending quite a bit of time working on my current puzzle.

It's coming along nicely - not too difficult, This time I started with the sky! I expect to finish it on the weekend.


Tuesday, 19 January 2021

A Good Book

    I have just finished this book. If you like something with lots of family drama and dysfunctional relationships, you will enjoy this one.

The subtitle is "Sometimes Your Parents Don't Know Best"

   I have started a new jigsaw puzzle and will post details as it progresses. 

Early days! It's 1000 pieces!


      It is my youngest grandson's 11th birthday today so we are having a family Zoom meeting to sing him "Happy Birthday". He had a "virtual" party with his friends on the weekend which was a great success. They played video games and other fun activities. They are still in lockdown so no school or in-person meetings which must be very difficult for the youngsters. Do so hope it ends soon, our daily numbers are still high and they have run out of vaccines!




Sunday, 17 January 2021

I Give Up!

    For the first time ever I have given up on a jigsaw puzzle - not because it was too difficult but because I couldn't face the task of filling in the sky!


   This is as far as I got. It was quite a tricky puzzle but, enough's enough! Besides I have a new one waiting to be started.

    I haven't been outside at all today as I am taking very seriously the instructions to shelter at home. I have to pick up some groceries tomorrow but will go very early in the hope that the store will be pretty empty. I haven't been to the store since last Sunday. Our numbers are still high but not increasing - over 3,000 new cases in the province today of which a big chunk are here in my city.

Friday, 15 January 2021

A Successful Departure

    My house guests are on their way to (mostly) sunny Victoria - at least there's no snow!

   We had a socially distanced farewell visit from the other family on my porch this morning. Who knows when we will all meet again. I drove Steve and the cats to the airport this afternoon and have just received a text that they are all checked in and on board the plane. Still quite nervous as to how the cats will cope with the flight (and a second one from Vancouver to Victoria) so I will be very relieved when I hear that they have arrived safely.

   It has been a long haul since they came to stay in September and, although it was lovely to have the company, I am quite happy to have the house to myself once more.

Wednesday, 13 January 2021

Things Are Moving Along

     My son (and two cats) have been staying with me since September and it has been lovely having their company. However, that is about to come to an end this week as their new home in Victoria B.C. is finally "cat-proofed". DIL went in October to oversee the renovations and it was not supposed to be such a long process! Their horse and dog travelled there in November, one by road and the other by air. Can you guess which went which way?

   Their furniture, which has been stored in my garage since their house was sold, was loaded in a giant van this morning and should arrive in Victoria some time next week. Ditto their car, which is going by train. Steve and the cats fly out on Friday, fingers crossed! We have new, more stringent lockdown rules in place but, hopefully, they won't prevent him form leaving. Stay tuned!

    All this has been horribly expensive but living in Victoria will make up for all the cost, hassle and inconvenience, I'm sure. I am already planning to visit some time soon!

Friday, 8 January 2021

Mission Accomplished!

    Managed to complete the puzzle. However, if you look closely, you will see a few pieces don't quite fit! Try as I might I couldn't get it to come out correctly so finally gave up.


    We have had two brilliantly sunny days (albeit quite chilly) so I have been able to get in some walks, and some Vitamin D. The secret is to dress appropriately. There were lots of others out enjoying the sunshine and I saw a cardinal in a tree. He should have gone south by now.

Tuesday, 5 January 2021

On My Bedside Table

     The library has been a godsend this winter with me making frequent calls to pick up books I have requested. Here's what is on my bedside table at the moment, not all library books.



   I have dipped into all the titles in the first pic. Am really enjoying "Dickens and His Carol" as it is witty and well written. I'm having a harder time with "The Prisoner's Wife" as it is a rather bleak and horrific description of life in a POW camp in Germany toward the end of WW ll. The Isabel Allende book I think I have read before but it is so interesting that I think I will continue with it, but first I will read "The Paris Hours" as I only have it and the other library books for 3 weeks. Happy days!

   The second photo is books that I have for backup, in case I run out of anything from the library, mostly borrowed from friends. I, luckily, have several friends who are also keen readers like myself.