Inspiration for this blog came from my cousin Roy. His daily reflections of the events in his life have been thoughtful and interesting. Family, friends, colleagues are welcome to read my blog.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015


And children at heart. So parents have the pressure to make memories! So take the pressure off. Planning, planning and organizing will help to get through this very busy season for children and parents. Choose your events! Can you make it to everything, probably not! So one local parade, the school concert, the Santa picture, the Christmas picture,  family parties will fill the time. Then making sure the Santa gift is the right gift! Prioritizing daily and weekly helps to get through everything. Buying the school teacher and the lesson teachers and the coaches theme gifts. Remember to buy a couple of extra ones as children often want to give to someone else you did not think was necessary! Since it is for children at heart, put some events that you enjoy as parents too! Making memories with the children is important. Do you need holiday baking to feed an army or is one batch of sugar cookies decorated with the kids enough and fun? Making a gingerbread house can be fun and edible too. Having Christmas music in the house and sing along. Watching a favourite movie together- okay you can write the cards or wrap a gift at the same time too. Trying not to be a busy frenzied parent is difficult. But remember creating memories that are enjoyable is not ever easy! Did I say it take the pressure off! Decide what is important for your children and family system! Please do not get caught up in comparing with others who are trying to do more. If you are a working mother, you can not compete with the stay at home Mom so don't even try! Do the best you can with the time you have! For children, candies in the house and presents under the tree is the best start! The rest is just icing on the cake!  Oh, your presence is more important than presents in the long run. So hugs, kisses, letting your children know the best thing about Christmas is having them!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


Lights in a blur like the frenzy of the season as it speeds up. So much to do! So how to manage it. Slow down and focus on one activity at a time. Christmas shopping can have themes. Rather than something different for everyone- a theme of tops or books or even gift cards to favourite places. If a crafter, making the same item but in different colours so no need to learn a new pattern every time. Remember it is not just about gift giving so the family events can bring lots of fun too. Everyone makes a dish or baked good so the load is off any one person to do it all! My children often rent a playground place close to Christmas so a group of friends with children can all enjoy an evening out with no one taking on the mess of clean up! However part of the season is to feel the frenzy and fun. Parties, dinners out or taking a small present to a special person in your life can bring a smile to your face. I remember walking home from work last year and seeing people with  little gift bags in their hands. The joy, the fun- when someone receives something it can bring a smile. I like to try to wrap with a little flair. This year I have lots of string ribbon so have devised a way to put 6 strands in the middle for a little extra something on top of a gift. Easy and I will use up lots of the ribbon I have. So sort through the Christmas stuff you have stock piled and use up your resources at hand. I found by pulling everything out, I found stuff I forgot I had. Of course having an area in your place where you can leave the wrapping so it is easy to grab what is needed. That space is my balcony and a corner of my bedroom- messy but only temporarily! The Christmas lights on the streets and businesses always bring me pleasure. I love the colours. Happy colours! So if stressed, stop and find something in the season you love- the lights? the music? a movie? or just a favourite drink- sit by the window and watch the snow come down! The season is just picking up. So if the heavy work is done like the outside lights, decorating the house, finalizing plans- December can begin with fun rather than just stress. Well there is always some stress but it means you are alive!

Saturday, November 21, 2015


Sorting, wrapping- two out of town boxes ready to go, 1 more to do. An early work Christmas/holiday dinner out at a restaurant in Newmarket- Made in Mexico on Wednesday evening with Secret Santa gifts for everyone to share. Yes they serve Mexican food. Received the list from my second daughter on what the kids need for Christmas. Seeing what has been bought and what else to buy. The Festival of Lights at the McConagahy Centre, Friday evening to celebrate our Veterans. On Sunday the local Santa Claus parade will occur. Time to go and snap some photos with the grandchildren- if they attend. Plans at work for a pot luck lunch in mid December. Listening to Christmas music on one radio station but really too early for me to put my CDs with non-stop Christmas music playing in the house. Usually like to listen as I decorate which will occur next week. I have so much Christmas stuff that once it is hauled from the closet, hours of decorating or a minimal this year. I'll see what my mood is when I review my stash! Some TV channels have movies now but not really in the mood for those shows yet. I have two drafts of my Christmas newsletter done so it is time to write the final draft and print them to put in the Christmas cards. I have bought the Christmas stamps to use locally, US and International.  Trying to put away all the clutter that has accumulated in the corners of my house. With all the yard work and hubbie's surgery, the clutter got a little out of hand. My poor den has become the repository for stuff. It will be a January job to sort, sell or give away! The weather has become cooler with some snow in other parts of the country but not locally yet. Some towns an hour or so away have had some mild snow flurries but here in Richmond Hill, just getting a little cooler! My boots and winter coat are ready when needed. I am still the only house on the street with lights so far.
One float from Aurora's parade last year!

Friday, November 20, 2015


What is it about Friday? The day before the weekend. Plans for a dinner out for many people or at least take out to make the start to the weekend pleasurable. Time away from work and colleagues. If bad weather, can stay home. Or take time to get to an event. More shopping- groceries or otherwise! Of course gifts for Christmas and birthdays! Fridays at work are usually busier than other days! Trying to organize the weekend for the people there! Friday let's us know we made it through the week. Getting ready for the plans for the weekend. Time with grandchildren-actually helping with babysitting this weekend! There was a Mama and Papa song about Mondays! Perhaps it is time to write a song about Fridays!

Thursday, November 19, 2015


We all have situations in our lives where there can be no relationship. With billions of people on this earth it is okay to pick and chose which people will be our friends and those to whom we are polite. Families can make it very difficult. Some siblings do not get along and never will. When parents are alive children often try, but once parents pass away, many siblings make the choice to go their separate ways. It is the civilized thing to do. But there can be those in the family system that like the drama and expect all parties to attend all events together. Forget it. If the relationship is toxic then stay away from each other. Then the in law situation. No blood, just married in! No real commitment to the original family. To try to make family traditions continue that no longer have any meaning is rather futile. Couples and their children make the new family unit. Decisions can be made for them. The extended family works around each couple. With my work in family history, it is often interesting to see how history does repeat itself. Each generation may have had some family members that were toxic and affected how events happened. For me, I would rather have happier smaller gatherings where people sort of enjoy being with each other, then contrived "we must be together for the sake of Mom" events. It does not work. Perhaps a simple meal at a restaurant rather than a big event at one person's house who takes on all the work, could be a compromise. Christmas is a huge event where these old conflicts often start to present the ongoing family conflicts. Smaller events on the days in and around Christmas may work so everyone sees everyone but not at the same time or the same event. Get real. Be honest. If you do not like each other then stay away. A friendly Christmas card to all family members should be more than enough. Even to the toxic people in your life!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015


Beauty can be all around us. A simple neighbourhood walk can give us opportunities to reflect on life. A look to the sky through the leaves.
A visit to a church and the beauty of the windows. Actually Richmond Hill United Church in well- Richmond Hill Ontario Canada.
Stained glass with a story to tell about the Christian faith.
Streamers from a light with the colours of the rainbow- indoors of course. How nice- an indoor rainbow!
Not art but an interesting crosswalk that could be seen as art!
Fall flowers bring colour to the changing season.
Take a walk around your community. Look for the images that bring some pleasure to you. Life can be big landscapes and famous locations or just simple pictures nearby. So what are you waiting for- get your camera and take some photos!!

Monday, November 16, 2015


With all the tragedies in the world, peace and hope for a better world begins with one. Share with 2 others who can share with 2 others. 2 to the power of infinite will help solve the problems of the world, one person at a time. Trying to suppress all the negative thoughts against others including our enemies takes incredible love and hope! Loving all the children of the world! Working towards education and health for all so they too can have a future! Peace, love, charity but the greatest of these is love. I work and struggle every day on trying not to judge others but it is a difficult task when I view events like Paris. But peace starts with one so I will do my best to live up to my own words!