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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Thirteen

 

As the year 2011 draws to a close today we are heading out this afternoon for the  final  meet and greet of 2011….hard to believe that we are at 13 bloggers  already…

Each blogger we have met has been like meeting an old/new friend..and we are sure that #13 will be like all the others before…

Lucky # 13 on our blogger meet ups??

Well..it is Allen and Lolita from Corona, California..

 

We are meeting at the Olive Garden in Langley…a favourite restaurant of ours and theirs…

armed with our token gift for our new ‘blogging friends’..

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We dropped Tucker off at his favourite place..for a  New Year’s eve “paw-ty’!! ..and then we headed towards Langley..

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Allen and I had spoken on the phone on Thursday night to confirm the lunch date…We waited outside for a bit..it seems that the directions they had gotten had them a bit ‘lost’

Doug was thinking..oh no..the number 13..were they actually going to show up?

But a few minutes later they arrived..the #13 is once again a lucky number…

We all headed inside  the restaurant  and we were  seated and chatting  in no time…the subjects ranged from life, working, rv purchasing/rentals, kids, travelling , blogging and bloggers…not to  worry it was all good, of course…

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Our thirteenth meet and greet was a success.. I really had no doubt that it would be…

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Another set of new ‘friends’..our list is growing….

Some have said.. ‘won’t you be lonely when you hit the road?’..and our reply is..’not a chance we have ‘friends’ all over the country’…

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Thanks for taking the time to meet with us,  Allen and Lolita!..we hope that our paths will cross again, one  day soon..

Safe travels to you as you head south towards home and sunny California..

and thanks for treating us to lunch and the bottle of wine!!!

Cheers to you both!!!IMG_7752

Friday, December 30, 2011

‘Bear’ naked?’

 

When I was growing up the family tradition at Christmas time was not to take the tree and all the decorations down until January 7th…Ukrainian Christmas…I was told it was bad luck…??

Never being one to stick to the old  tradition..we made our own..or rather I did..I just liked the idea of starting the new year off with a clean house..void of all the Christmas Clutter..

So this afternoon was the day for the ‘major clean up’…

First I brought out the bins…

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..then it was time for every thing to get ‘naked’!!..even the sundeck railing….you first..

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..so long Christmas tree..you were pretty while you were ‘dressed’…but into the box you go….

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..banished to the bins for you, my pretties…till next year.…and down to  the storage locker you will go…

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..it is time for semblance of ‘normal’…

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..the ‘bears are back’..

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and the ‘office’ even looks sort of organized…

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..the dining room nice and tidy..

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..and the living room looks so big now…’bear’ naked’…

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..now  we are ready for 2012..but we have one more adventure tomorrow…

..Lucky thirteen??

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Life lessons…

 

There are many life lessons that I have learned over the years…

  • eat your vegetables
  • be polite
  • say please and thank you
  • hold the door for someone
  • mind your manners
  • wipe your feet before coming inside
  • if you don’t have anything nice to say..keep your opinions to yourself

These are some rules that I do try and abide by..but you know of course some days you wind up in the ‘dawg house’..

now speaking of the ‘dawg house’…

I found the ‘15 rules of life’ that we can learn from our four legged friends on the internet today..and thought that I would share them with all of you…

  • clean your plate..

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    All too often we let our food go to waste, throwing out wilted vegetables and days-old leftovers. No canine worth his or her chunks and gravy would ever let such a thing occur! Learn from your pooch and lick that plate clean. Just make sure you portion properly before eating every last kibble and bit!

  • take naps..

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    We live in a fast-paced society that doesn't value the power of unplugging. Learn from your dog and take some zzz's to replenish. Napping is heart-healthy and may also help you learn. Maybe it's time to try that new trick after all!

 

  •    sniff it out…

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    Whether it's a new business deal or a potential mate, the power of research cannot be underestimated. The first thing our furry friends do when they meet each other is sniff to approve. Learn from your dog and don't jump into any commitments without first sniffing out the situation. If it smells fine, it's OK to play.

 

  • see your partner with new eyes..

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Ever feel invisible to your partner but not your dog? Learn from your pooch and welcome your honey home with lots of excitement. Who wouldn't want to be greeted by a jumping, kissing, tail-wagging lover? Your partner will feel appreciated, and you will benefit from practicing seeing him or her with new eyes.

 

  • find something you love and do it over and over again..

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Just like dogs can play fetch all day, find something you love and start doing it --over and over! Not only will it be a lovely joy-trigger each time, but you'll also get better at your passion the more you practice.

 

  • breathe deeply…

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While canines pant to regulate their body temperature, we too can create balance by remembering to breathe deeply -- in and out. It might not make you any cooler, but doing so can regulate our emotional temperature and bring us some much-needed stress release.

 

  • speak up…

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Why did your pooch just bark? Whether it's to warn you of a foreign invader (falling leaves count!) or to tell you something (most likely that they are hungry), our furry friends speak up. So listen to your instincts and tell someone how you feel and what you need -- you might just get it!

 

  • learn to receive..

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For many of us it's easier to "do" than to "be." pooches know how to give love, but also how to receive it! Instead of doubting your self-worth and keeping love at arms-length, practice receiving it in all its many forms. It may even feel better than that belly rub your pooch asks for!

 

  • know who you are..

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Whether your dog is named Charlie, Munchkin or Mo, your pup quickly learns its name. And whenever that name is uttered, you-know-who will come running over. Explore who you are -- when you find it you will recognize yourself (hint: it might not just be your name!). Learn from your pooch and know who you are. Then let your freak flag fly!

 

  • take lots of walks..

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pooches know how to laze around the house, but they also know how to get up and move their bodies. Take a walk a day with (or without) a friend, and enjoy the benefits of the outdoors.

 

  • drink lots of water…

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dogs know that they need to drink water after they've exerted themselves. This simple act is true for us too. Keeping hydrated is healthy for your body and your mind. So drink up, the water's fine!

  • go ahead and get dirty…

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Don't over think it! Want to join in? Just do it. Like the dog park, the world is filled with many games -- some cleaner than others. If you want to play, go get dirty!

 

  • shake it off…

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Stuff  happens. Whether you're caught in a physical or emotional storm or simply had to do something you don't enjoy (not another bath!) shake it off and move forward. The sooner you can do so, the sooner you can forget all about it!

 

  • good looks will get you anywhere…

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Did your dog steal a lick of ice cream out of your bowl? Or perhaps ripped your favorite  shoes to shreds? While you might be tempted by anger, most likely you will eventually look at your furry friend with love and forgiveness. Learn from your pooch! Play up your cuteness-factor -- it can get you out of difficult situations!

  • don’t hold grudges…

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Know that crushed look that crosses your pooch's face when you say "no" in a stern tone? A few moments later it's like they have forgotten. When we become permeable like a pup, we can experience our feelings then move forward. This way we can enjoy the new moment instead of reliving past pain.’

 

So for me, after reading these 15 life lessons from a dog’s perspective..time for a little re-evaluation of my own life lessons…..

time for a nap.. have a drink of water…shake it off  and then I am going to fly my own ‘freak flag’..and find out who I really am!!

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This is why I ___?

 

What is the definition of ‘family?’

fam·i·ly/ˈfam(ə)lē/

Noun:

A group consisting of parents and children living together in a household

The  Christmas season brings most families together…

Most of us are fortunate enough to have family to spend some quality time with over the holidays..

I am the first one to admit that I have the unrealistic desire  to have what is deemed the perfect ‘Hallmark Christmas’..

The perfect tree, perfectly wrapped gifts,  perfectly presented dinner and everyone getting along..

Our family consists of my parents, and my sister and her boyfriend, daughter and son-in-law, my brother and his son..and the three of us..

We are a small group of very different people but we come together for the common goal of spending quality time together at Christmas… 

Oh, sure we have had our moments over the years but on the whole we do get along and this year was no exception..

We laughed like we have never laughed before..the discussions centered around the family history..and as each tale  was told we all said the same line?

‘This is why I ____?’

A lovely evening spent with the only people in the world who truly understand  ‘why we ___?

Cheers to my family!..no family is perfect…we agree to disagree and move on…

 

‘Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family: Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.’
Jane Howard

 

I do believe I am on Christmas stuff overload…my mind is going in every different direction..…I am starting to repeat myself….

time for some retail therapy…

this is why I _____!…

I could fill in the blank with a different word everyday depending on the situation or the mood!..

last day of a four day weekend..where has the time gone!..

On this day three years ago?..our ‘golden boy’ arrived home…our lives have been enriched because of him!..

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This is why I _____?

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday, December 25, 2011

It’s a wrap…

 

Or is it an ‘unwrap?’…..

Christmas morning was spent at Carlie’s..armed with our coffee and steamed vanilla milk we went over to see what ‘Santa’ had left for all of us…2011_12_25

with the ‘fireplace’ going on the TV..we had everything unwrapped..making quick work of all those pretty packages!!

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Christmas breakfast was the standard..eggs benedict with a few potatoes on the side…delicious as always!!!

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..even Oliver was wondering what was up this morning!!

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..not exactly a normal Sunday at our house…

..well , normal for the other four legged boy…we broke a rule up at Mundy Park..off leash time ends at 10 am but we didn’t arrive until 12..

a quick run on the trail for our ‘golden boy’..we weren’t the only ones breaking the rules..I know it doesn’t make it right…but it’s Christmas, after all!!!

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The wind was blowing and rain was coming down but Tucker doesn’t care..as long as he has a stick to carry and some water to  swim in he is one happy boy…

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…our family portrait …one wet dog and two soggy dog owners!!..and we are standing in a muddy area filled with ‘landmines’!!!..watch where you step……

This afternoon our Christmas dinner is at my parents in Coquitlam..

but not before a ‘clean up’..and we clean up pretty fine!..

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..time for the token family in black to have their picture done…

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dinner at my parents was a lovely affair..the food..the wine…the company was all good!!

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an all round great evening to end Christmas 2011!!..we couldn’t have asked for more..

We had some laughs about the family history and the comment of the night seemed to be ..’this is why I _____’..I guess you had to be there but we all had some fun!..thanks for a great evening Mom and Dad…we love you both!!

so that is a wrap of our 2011 Christmas!!..thanks for reading along!!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

our Christmas Eve..

 

The day before Christmas has always been a busy one of sorts..the last minute food  items purchased..the housework and laundry complete..

Our evening was spent with our daughter watching a movie and eating appetizers..

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..the presents are all placed under the tree over at Carlie’s  apartment next door…

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the only thing under our tree?..is Oliver..he seems to enjoy sitting under there?..I am sure he is wondering where are the gifts are?..

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but if he didn’t chew on the ribbon and the pretty paper our tree would be occupied..

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On this December 24th it also seems to be a time to pause and reflect on what the true meaning of Christmas really is…we saw this video on the news tonight..and I felt the need to share it..

this video has been playing every Christmas Eve on our local new station since 1998..and tonight was the first time we had seen it..

we consider ourselves most fortunate to have a great family and a warm place to live..we know there are many who struggle everyday of the year..

if only it could be Christmas time all year long…be kind to your neighbours and strangers on the street..

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!!