February 28, 2022
February 27, 2022
He spends a lot of time in front of our vintage
AGA, making all of us the most amazing dishes.
Everyone tells me how beautiful "my" kitchen
is and I always say I built it for him! I do use
the kitchen, but my area is baking. Truthfully,
he is my hero and this kitchen is all for him!
February 26, 2022
This photo caught my eye and I kept going back to it. I'm still in the process of figuring out why it won't leave my mind. Part of it is the shredded cheese on the asparagus. Yum! And the lemon slice in the upper left corner. I think though it's the plate, with the pottery feel to it. There is something very 70's about this shot. Something earthy and homey. I recall dishes like these at our neighbors down the road in the mid 70's when I babysat the kids almost every weekend at their house. Our home, with a bit of English style on the outside, was very modern on the inside. The neighbors house down the street was modern on the outside but full of antiques and really cool items on the inside. So eclectic. And I loved exploring their house once the kids were asleep. The owner had a health food store, the first of it's kind in our area at the time, so they also had the most interesting things in their cupboards and their fridge. These images would bring me back to my own childhood in growing up with then hippy parents in all our tiny little houses. When I'm tired or feeling anxious or trying to fall asleep at night, I often go back and replay memories in my mind. Somehow, this is one of many techniques that will ground me. Whatever works, I will do!
This post has me now thinking. Hmmm. I have vivid, ongoing memories of a life before mine. Or that's what I have always called it. These started when I was very young, barely walking and talking I'm told. I would share, with my limited language, stories of people and places that didn't exist. And tell my mom often that I wanted to "go back to the other place." She didn't know what to do with this but thankfully, she never shut me down. I'm not trying to write these down as they come back to me, with the details and hope I can somehow make sense of what these memories are all about. The really interesting part is the details never change. My mom did share with me several years ago that she became intrigued because there was no way I could have known the things I did. Like naming a street that I wanted my parents to go down without having ever been down that street and certainly not ever having said that name out loud. She would ask me questions and sometimes I could share more with her. But other times, I couldn't and the one that stood out is I wasn't able to share my name. The name I was born with has never sat well with me for many reasons but sometimes I wonder if that is the key as well. For now, I'm going to record what I have in my head and then see if there is some way of making sense of it all.
Not sure if you'll ever really want to read these memories, this memory filled "past life" but you can always skip over those posts. I just feel the need to finally take them out of my head and put them down somewhere I can look back on them. Or maybe I'll record them elsewhere, in case someone is put off by this path, this journey I'm on, and chooses to step away. Yup, decision made. For now, they'll be private. I'm off to sit in the warm sun and dream about Spring!
Starting in March, our "babies" will begin to celebrate
birthdays. I was thinking of that and decided to post
this sweet Susan Wheeler print of a mama holding
her tiny baby. Love the vintage carriage and the quilts.
When do your children have birthdays?
February 21, 2022
My new desk finally arrived from Wayfair.
And this corner in my tiny office is now ready
for intense but compassionate work. I am so
looking forward to heading back in tomorrow.
What do you think of my new cozy space?
Isn't this the sweetest desk and comfy chair?
It's a long weekend here in Alberta and though it's chilly today, more than last week when we took our jackets off, the sun is out and the sky is blue. Our Family Day weekend is always a favorite as the timing is perfect. In the midst of still darker days, we have a few extra days off to do whatever our heart calls us to do. For us, we chose to stay home as the cold and the snow did return the other day. We filled the fridge and the pantry with food, bookmarked some new shows to watch, ensured the cottage was tidy so we could relax and made a very conscious effort to not do any work. We did drive over to hospice on Saturday as I'm having a hard time putting the filing cabinet that was ordered for my new office together. Dh was able to help but we did run out of time as we had an appointment at the bank to do our annual RRSP contributions (Registered Retirement Savings Plan for those who do not live in Canada) and we had to leave the last few steps for another day. But it's almost done and I feel better that it's not sitting in a million pieces all over my office floor! We got to the bank on time and set up our contributions for 2021 so now we can get our taxes in to our accountant. Taxes must be filed in Canada by April 30th and though we rarely have to pay, we like to get them in as early as possible as we typically get nice refunds between our RRSP's and our donations and any write offs for the year. Dh has just accepted a new job proposal and he will be working from home 100% of the time now so not sure what he will be able to use as credits but too good of a position to pass up so we'll have our accountant figure out those pieces. All his job!
After the bank appointment, we headed over to our other house to ensure the walk was clear of snow and the heat was up a bit for the cold that was settling in. Dropped off some supplies for my mom at her care home (outbreak again so no long visit), picked up office supplies that were low, stopped in at HomeSense and bought the sweetest 2 pack of Easter hand towels for our guest bathroom (photos to come), bought a few groceries, treated ourselves to a danish from Cobs Bread, then headed home for the rest of the weekend to just chill. Today, I have a few items to put together for work tomorrow but doing that while I'm watching "Escape to the Country." It's been a lovely time and I feel like I've caught up on some rest. More energy now!
I should explain the photo above. Dh loves to find jewellry for me at Christmas and this year, he outdid himself, in my opinion. This necklace sparkles in the sun and the wings feel like a hug. The back is beautiful as well. I should have taken a pic of that. Another time, as the necklace is hanging upstairs on my jewellry hanger. I love that he puts so much energy in to finding the right piece and every one has a connection to our life in some way. I wish I could find him gifts with so much meaning. I try and he's always touched but I feel he just does it so much better.
Hoping you had a lovely weekend as well.
Back to work tomorrow but looking forward to it.
February 20, 2022
February 19, 2022
At the hospice, I've started a new program to provide family members with a sweet "Bereavement Box" after their loved one has died. The boxes are filled with items we hope will bring some comfort in those extra tough moments ~ a book to read and get inspired every day; a candle to light when the World feels dark; kleenex to capture the tears; tea to soothe the soul. We also include a suncatcher in a tiny organza bag ~ something to hang up that on sunny days offers reflection from the sun that covers the room with rainbow beams. The feedback from the families has been heartfelt and though we can't make this experience all better, we can help a difficult time feel less lonely with the knowledge that we think of them often and we understand how they feel. A tiny sliver of hope when the tears, the heartache and the loneliness are more than abundant.
February 17, 2022
February 12, 2022
We just finished watching the 1st season
of "The Woman in the House Across the
Street from the Girl in the Window." It
was intriguing, confusing, funny, very
dramatic and intense. And we did keep
saying we had to stop watching it, then
we'd click on the next episode. Now I
need to see season 2 once it is released.
Did you view this show?
What did you think?
In November, December and January,
we experienced so much snow, we
were worried where it was all going
to go in the Spring. Blizzards, strong
winds, mountains of the fluffy white
stuff and bitter temperatures. But then
February began and we've had super
warm temperatures, and now all our
snow is melting away. Typically, in
November, it's warm with very little
if any snow. It arrives in December in
little bits, always before Christmas.
January and February will be bitterly
cold with tons of snow. So this year,
it feels backwards. For now, we are
truly loving the warmth, the sun and
the melt. We know that we will likely
have at least one more blizzard. Until
then, we'll lap up the warmth and the
sun. Spring is only 5 short weeks away!
February 5, 2022
Our sweet vintage buggy from the 1920's, so I'm told. The stories this piece could tell. All the babies it has held. Crying, cooing and everything in between. I'd love to see if we can redo the wheels this year as the rubber is quite worn. Or maybe leave that as part of the journey. I love the look of worn so it may stay this way. A decision for down the road.
On top of the buggy is the beautiful blanket my neighbor made for me at Christmas. I've used it every day since when I'm cozied up on the couch to watch a show or read. Soft and thick, it's perfect for cold Winter nights. The ribbon had glitter on it and my dd quite enjoyed watching me try to get the glitter off the blanket. I'm always wrapping up anything for her with glitter tissue paper so this was her revenge!
Plans for this very windy and snowy day:
* a quick workout on the treadmill and some weights
* a warm shower and fresh clothes for the day
* a load of laundry in the machine before the others
* a few computer things to sort out including trashing
* rejigging our office to now house dh's new job at home
* a quiet evening at home ~ maybe working on the dollhouse
It's one of those days that staying at home is more appealing than going out. We did venture out yesterday after spending most of the week at home. I wanted to pick up my work laptop to get my files off of it so I can pass it along to my new hire (I'm getting a new one in it's place) and we timed it so I could spend some time with my staff as we honored the 1st Anniversary of our new hospice building. Then we visited a contractor for our Festival and handed him our deposit. Stopped for some goodies from Cobs Bread. Mailed a few items. Took 2 deposits in to the bank. Went to our old house to measure the cabinets (getting ready to start renos so we can sell). Picked up dd from school and then dgs on our way home. In between all that, dh accepted a job offer and that was a lot to think about, talk about and then respond. He's so excited as am I. Likely his last position before he retires. He's been in this industry for 30ish years and it was time for a change from his current position. Lovely company but not really his style and this new company has already in 24 hours proven to be amazing. And he gets to work at home all the time. The only thing I'll miss is our morning commutes together but we'll be fine. The flexibility is incredible, the bonus pieces amazing and the pay is phenomenal. All good things. He has already tendered his resignation to his current company and know they won't be happy he's leaving. He's their top guy. But at the end of the day, he needs to end his career in his dream job, as I am in mine, and now it's his time! So proud of him for taking the leap and we look forward to this new adventure. Now, to rejig our tiny little office space ....
Hope you have an amazing day!
Stay safe. Be well. Cozy up!
February 2, 2022
The Winter storm that hit our region on Monday has cleared away but now the cold has settled in for a few days. How cold is it? A few of the school buses out here in the country had to be cancelled due to the extreme bitter cold. Not our little guy's so thankfully he's now on his way to school. And dh is driving dd to her school for work. Me? Tucked in to bed with my wheat bag, my bowl of popcorn (my brekky today!), the tv is on for some quiet noise and my laptop. Today, officially day 2 of my holiday is going to be spent on tidying up the laptop (lots to delete), searching for a new one (a direction by my organization as my Mac is now 8 years old and starting to slow down), pay February bills, working on a project, creating a new schedule for my new grief team and then after either a shower or a hot bath, I'll tackle putting the laundry away (purging the closet at the same time), then dh's meetings should be over by then and we plan to watch a couple of episodes of a show we started watching on Netflix. Quite a busy morning!
This afternoon, I'd like to do something fun ~ probably work on dgd's dollhouse. It's almost done but still needs some work to finish up the last bits. Her birthday is in a few days and I'd love to get it to her on the weekend. Hoping to do some purging in the studio as well. Once it's nice out again and we venture in to town, I should have a few bags and boxes to donate to our local charity shop. Spring cleaning before Spring! I also have some letters to write. I may start that tonight while we're watching hockey. It's a game that makes me stressed so having something else to focus on while it's on always helps me. A good distraction if it's tense.
Wishing you a beautiful and warm sunny day!
February 1, 2022
Welcome February. A new month! We've noticed that our days have been getting longer and the sun is out a bit more. Despite the Winter storm yesterday, today is chilly but sunny, with blue skies and sparkling snow. My first day of a week off and I have so many tasks on my long list to look at and then decide which ones to do, in between naps and working on the dollhouse in the art studio. My list:
* create new schedule for my new hires (2 new grief counsellors) while incorporating my other counsellor and myself in to the mix. We are now a lovely team of 4.
* re~organize our home office. Time to do a little purge and reset the desk at a different angle. I have a lot of Zoom calls through the week and I'm ready for a change of scenery.
* take down the Christmas trees this coming weekend. Family is not happy and trying to convince me to leave them up. To be determined. I've stated that gifts of white chocolate will entice me to move the take down dates to another time.
* gather receipts and documents for our accountant for our taxes. In Canada, taxes are to be filed by April 30th at the very latest. We usually do this in March but I'm going to get it in earlier this year as the next few months are going to be crazy busy with renos, landscaping and the Festival.
* figure out our RRSP contributions (Registered Retirement Savings Plan) for 2021 (you can contribute up to February 28th for the year) and set up my auto withdrawals at work on our ADP platform. My employer is now doing matching contributions and I'm excited to double my amount each year until we retire. Getting closer all the time.
* purge our master bedroom closet and front door closet. Lots of clothes are sitting and it's time to pass them on.
* work on our half bath to get it ready for the board and batten. A little wallpaper, a little paint and wood pieces to fit.
* we're super ahead of the game for the Festival but there is still a few things I'd like to tick off my list while I have the time. The more we do now, the less we do later. I'd really like to sit back this year and actually enjoy the Festival. I want to do this with our preschool too. Get ahead of the game and then when the weather is great again and we're outside more, I won't feel torn to be enjoying myself when things need to be done. My new motto for 2022: do it well before it's due to be done! I truly have the time to do this well.
You might be wondering why I chose the photo above for today's post. It just spoke "Spring" to me and it feels like we're getting closer to the season of renewal and change. Part of my week is also to take some time to "reset" how I look at work. I now have a chance to stop working so incredibly hard and start to give my team more tasks, especially with new energetic members on board. I shouldn't have to work at night and on the weekends. Though that time is at home, I don't see other staff members doing extra work on their off time. Here and there, yes. But every day, no! I've put a message on my email and will do the same with my phone and nothing will get done until I'm back on site next week. We'll see how long this lasts as I've become a bit of a workaholic ~ easy to do when you love what you do and you're always trying to achieve the best ~ but it's not sustainable. I'm so very tired and worn down and I'm sure why I haven't been feeling the best. Here's my chance to make this change. Wish me well! I'm on it ....
What to you do to make changes in your life?
When do you know changes are needed?