About Me

My Photo
Delta, British Columbia, Canada
I took very early retirement from teaching in '06 and did some traveling in Europe and the UK before settling down to do some private tutoring. As a voracious reader, I have many books waiting in line for me to read. Tell me I shouldn't read something, and I will. I'm a happy, optimistic person and I love to travel and through that believe that life can be a continuous learning experience. I'm looking forward to traveling more some day. I enjoy walking, cycling, water aerobics & and sports like tennis, volleyball, and fastpitch/baseball. I'm just getting into photography as a hobby and I'm enjoying learning all the bits and bobs of my digital camera. My family is everything to me and I'm delighted to be the mother of two girls and the Gramma of a boy and a girl. I may be a Gramma, but I'm at heart just a girl who wants to have fun.

Monday, November 23, 2015


Lots of people who don't live in the Greater Vancouver (British Columbia) area believe that all Canadians live in a very cold climate with lots of rain and snow.  However, some realize that this particular area of Canada is nicknamed "Lotus Land" because of our very temperate climate.  Yes, we have rain in the winter, but it isn't hard driving rain; rather, it's a fine mist or at the most a drizzle.  Natives like me rarely carry umbrellas as we dash from house to car to store or whatever.  Also, because we're surrounded by the ocean and mountains, we're usually spared terrible storms.  Up on the mountains, skiing is a favourite pastime but we rarely get snow in the lower elevations like where I live.  If it does snow (rarely), it's usually gone in a day or so because it's very wet. 


 Thanks to the talented Mrs. Nesbitt, the creator of ABCW and to the terrific "Sir" Roger, our administrator for keeping this very trendy meme alive.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

S is for SORROW

It is a dark and stormy day here in my little village on the south-west coast of British Columbia, just south of the third largest city in Canada (Vancouver).  As I peer through the heavy raindrops, I see the giant cedars, birch, and poplars swaying in the wind as they drop their final few leaves.  Less than a week ago, November 11th dawned clear and sunny, and we headed down to Memorial Park to celebrate Remembrance Day.  That day, I was so thankful that Canada has been spared any real danger in the face of any of the wars being fought across the continent and the oceans.  Today, the sky weeps in sorrow at how quickly things can change.

France is at war now.  France - one of the founding countries of our nation.  Explorers arrived on our shores as early as 1534 when French explorers under Jacques Cartier celebrated Canada’s first Roman Catholic mass, at their camp of Brest on Labrador’s coast.  The following year, Cartier became the first European to sail into the St. Lawrence River, which he believed was a route to Asia. Two sons of Iroquois Chief Donnacona, who were guiding Cartier, referred to their native village as Canada, the explorer’s first exposure to the name.  For more history of the connection that Canada has to France, see here.

There have been wars from the beginning of time, and if you think about it, most have been fought in the name of religion.  Many continue to believe that the terrorists who today sabotage peoples' freedoms and rights are fighting in the name of their religion.  They are not!  The President of France, Fran├žois Hollande said in his speech to the nation yesterday that these terrorist are "uncivilized cowards."  He also stated that "we are going to lead a war which will be pitiless. Because when terrorists are capable of committing such atrocities they must be certain that they are facing a determined France, a united France, a France that is together and does not let itself be moved, even if today we express infinite sorrow.”  I say that these cowards will face a determined world, a united world, that will unite to annihilate them forever. 
There is no deeper sorrow than when innocent people are mowed down by bombs and military weapons.  And I will not even stoop to mention the name by which these terrorists are known.  We all know.  And with the greatest respect to all ABC Wednesday contributors, I apologize for this rant. But we must stand tall and proud and defiant in the face of these tyrants.
Thanks to the stupendous work of Roger, our administrator, to the saintly Denise, the creator of ABCW, and to the sensational team who visit several blogs per week to leave scintillating comments.

Monday, November 09, 2015


This is a repeat performance post from May 2013 but since there are lots of new contributors, I thought I'd repost (since I couldn't think of anything original - sorry about that.)

"Rebel Rouser" is one of Duane Eddy's hit records from 1958.  By 1963, Eddy had sold 12 million records and he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994.  Among other awards, he has received the "Chetty" award by Chet Atkins (2000), the Guitar Player Magazine Legend Award (2004), Musicians Hall of Fame Member (2008), and the Mojo Icon Award UK (2010).  Some of his well-known hits include "Peter Gunn," "Ring of Fire," "My Blue Heaven," "Deep in the Heart of Dixie," "The Ballad of Palladin," "Ghost Riders in the Sky," and "Freight Train" among others.  In 2011, he released his latest album, "Road Trip." If you're a fan of Duane Eddy, you can check out his website here.

I heard the music of "Rebel Rouser" recently and just couldn't help but think of my puppy Tegan and how much I related the music to her rambunctious behaviour lately.  She is almost 6 months old already and has learned the rules well.  However, she is also into that phase where she's testing the rules and sometimes it's quite amusing and sometimes not so much.  I'm still having a bit of a rough time getting her to "come" when called, especially when there are distractions around. But she is so sweet and loving that it's hard not to laugh when she's acting all playful and nicks a sock, a shoe, or an item of underwear from the laundry pile.  Then she rolls on her back in a total submission and I roar with laughter.

This week's video (to the music of Duane Eddy's "Rebel Rouser") shows various stages of Tegan's life regarding the letter R.  Enjoy.
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
We mustn't forget to give a shout out to the ravishing Denise Nesbitt, the creator of ABC Wednesday and to Roger, our current rakish administrator.  Hope you all have a relaxing week.

Monday, November 02, 2015

Q is for QUIET

This week ABC Wednesday is brought to you by the letter Q.  A few weeks ago for the letter N, I wrote about how the noise level in my home had risen due to my daughter and her family temporarily moving in with me.  I was starting to get used to it at the same time the kids were getting used to the change in their lives when my daughter had to go away on a business trip.  Alas, poor daughter "had" to go to the Bahamas where all the costs were covered.  So her husband went along for the ride and they had a fantastic holiday.  They really deserved it as they had only ever gone camping for holidays with the kids and also took them to Disneyland once.  They came home late Sunday night and everything is getting back to normal again.  The kids are at school all day, daughter is at work, and son-in-law and I take the dogs out for their daily runs and then we work on our photography.  We're both fanatics about it.

Anyway, it is now QUIET again!  Peace and quiet abide together from 8:30 am until I arrive home from tutoring (at the library now) until 4:00 pm.  It was a lot of work taking care of the kids while their parents were away and the noise level rose again.  Sometimes it was tough and at other times there were lots of cuddles.  We had fun over Halloween and had the most kids ever come trick or treating at my place while my other daughter took the kids out.

Here are a few of my photos I took when we visited Westham Island Herb Farm to see their scarecrow displays on the morning of Halloween.  Thanks, also, to the quintessential Denise Nesbitt, creator of ABCW, and to Sir Roger who does quality work for us.

Monday, October 26, 2015


This week, ABC Wednesday is brought to you by the letter P, as in pumpkin patch.  We spent the afternoon at Country Farms Pumpkin Patch yesterday, and the kids had a blast going out into the fields to pick their pumpkins.  It was very expensive to go into that particular area where you could have a hay ride, a mini train ride, get an apple and other treats and view the displays.  So I opted to be photographer and caught them as they went by on the hay ride and then went and shot just about everything I saw - from roosters, bunnies, goats, and piles of fresh vegies in the market area.  When we got home, my daughter and son-in-law helped the kids design and carve their pumpkins.  They were leaving last night on a vacation/business trip, so wanted to share the experience with the kids before they left.  So we now have 5 pumpkins decorating my front porch and the kids just need to put candles inside for Halloween night.  Here are some photos of our great day at the pumpkin patch.

With plenty of thanks to Mrs. Nesbitt, our perennial leader/creator, and to the popular Roger, our personable administrator.  Also, plenty more thanks to the phenomenal team who pop by to give each contributor praiseworthy points of view.  See you all next week for the letter Q.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

O is for OTTAWA

Ottawa - Canada's capital city has erupted in joy!  The "reds" (Liberals) ousted the long-standing Conservative government after almost 10 years in power.  It was an extremely exciting night on October 19, 2015, as we watched the results come in.  Apparently, in the last election, only about 44% of Canadians voted but this time, over 68% voted, which was the biggest turnout since 1993 (17 million people voted)!  It was a phenomenal turnout and people were even voting at the early voting stations the week before. 
Our new Prime Minister is Justin Trudeau, son of one of our most famous previous Prime Ministers, Pierre Eliot Trudeau, who always wore a red rose in his lapel.  Young Mr. Trudeau campaigned hard on his platform of "real change" for all Canadians.  It remains to be seen exactly what he has in mind, although he has said that he will use deficits to stimulate the economy. 
Justin Trudeau has lots of supporters, although some feel he is not ready to be Prime Minister.  A good friend of mine posted these comments on Facebook:

"This is the day when the great country of Canada elects a high school drama teacher (and snow board instructor) who has no proven leadership abilities, has a spotty academic record, and has an even spottier attendance record as a Member of Parliament in the House of Commons. However, his last name is Trudeau, and he has great hair. There has never been anyone more unqualified to be the Prime Minister of our country. Who are the puppet masters pulling the strings? That's who Canadians are really voting for. People are voting against our current Prime Minister. When you vote against someone, you get who you vote for. It's truly frightening."

and this:

“ 'Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.' ~~ George Santayana
I have very mixed feelings about last night's Canadian election. There is no question that Canada needed a change. But did we really get it? No, we didn't. Once again we have the ghost of Pierre Elliott Trudeau hanging over our country. I think dynastic politics should not be allowed. In Canada, we now have the Trudeaus, and there will probably at some time be a third. In the US, a country of some 335 million people, they're stuck with either the Clintons or the Bushes. Is that really change?
Is a 43-year-old man with very little political experience and no proven leadership abilities really qualified to be Prime Minister of a country like Canada, simply because he shares the same DNA as a previous Prime Minister? Isn't this how royalty started? I have always said that if monarchies did not exist, we would invent them."

 Now, I don't necessarily agree with all my friend has written, but it is true that Canada needed some sort of change.  I admit that I always thought that our previous (Conservative) Prime Minister Stephen Harper did an excellent job keeping our country economically sound even in the midst of the American recession. 
Notice the areas where the Liberals swept the country.  ALL of Atlantic Canada went red; all of the northwest territories went red; a small portion of Quebec (as usual) went Bloc Quebecois; most of the prairie provinces were conservative (blue); and the rest (orange) went to the New Democratic Party.  It might appear that there is more orange, but one needs to know that the population in these areas is very sparse. 

Canada has spoken loud and clear.  We have made our bed.  Now we lie in it ... and we wait. 

Monday, October 12, 2015

N is for NOISE

Welcome to N week here at ABC Wednesday.  I thought I'd write about noise this week because I have been hearing a lot of it since last Friday.  Why last Friday, you ask?  Well, my daughter and her husband along with two kids ages 11 and 7 moved in with me.  This is a temporary measure as they sold their house and we are looking to buy another one together.  We are all getting along nicely, but it is a huge learning curve for all concerned. 
I have been used to my own routine with a minimum of noise around me.  My constant companion is Tegan and she is used to my routine, too.  So both of us have been displaced.  Don't get me wrong - we all talked at length about this and totally agree on all changes made.  But poor Tegan doesn't understand and was actually sick today on my newly cleaned carpet!  Poor baby!  And she also has to get used to their little dog, Lucy (half Shitzu-half Havanese). 
I have given my daughter and son-in-law the master bedroom and I have taken over the guest room, while the children are sharing my office.  I moved my desk out and they moved a double bed in along with the X-Box.  The kids and I share a bathroom, too. 
So with this past weekend being our Thanksgiving, it's a long weekend in which we all are working out the details and snags.  The kids were so excited to be moving in with Gramma and starting a new school on Wednesday, so the noise level has been pretty high.  They had to try out the X-Box by playing "Call of Duty" and have been either at war with each other or laughing and giggling to the max!  *Sigh*
But I love them to death and wouldn't want it any other way right now.
With thanks to the naughty but nice Mrs. Nesbitt, the creator or ABCW, and to the noble Roger, our administrator.  Also, many thanks to the nutty group of bloggers who navigate over to all the contributors in order to narrate their observations of your nifty notions that have come out of your noggins.