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Thursday 29 September 2011

My New Etsy Account

Hi everyone,

Just a quickie to tell you that I have just opened my very first online Etsy account where I hope to sell my jewelry, etc.  Please check it out and please link it to your other friends' blogs (I yet have to learn how to link, LOL).  I hope you enjoy your visit there.  Let me know what you think of it please.  Here is the link... 

Thank you so much,

Tuesday 27 September 2011

Rainy Day in Paradise

It's another rainy day here in the Soo.  Nothing much to do.  I'm still waiting for all the information I need to begin my Etsy account where I am hoping to sell my Crafts.  I am very anxious to start - don't know where this will take me, could be successful and give me something to do during the long winter months or I could be a dismal failure.  I certainly will give it my best shot anyway.  I have been busy taking photos of everything I need to set up and hope in a day or so I will enter into the world of Etsy.  Keep your fingers crossed for me please.  I will try and post a link on my blog, but that will take time as I have to master all the fundamentals first.

Just changed the wreath on my apartment door to reflect the season.................

The trees outside are beginning to change colour and I can't wait for the full-blown effect.  My friend Laurie will probably beat me in posting gorgeous pictures of our Fall - her hubby takes really great photographs - you can check out her blog here if you are interested, she is a wonderful artist also.......... 

I'm off to the movies this evening with the ladies from work.  I'm so happy to still have them in my life even though I have been retired for three months.  They very kindly include me in things like this.  I'm not sure who all are going, but I do know that Janis, Helena and Maddelena are.  Hopefully they have chosen a decent movie - some of the choices, well, at my age let's say, I can do without watching, LOL

The rain isn't letting up and I need to get out to the Library to pick up a DVD, so here I go, umbrella to the ready............

Of course I got drenched, but it sure does look pretty out there.  Now to while away some time before going out to the movies!!  I'm thinking of going to visit the family again in a couple of weeks.  I'm hoping this time I will get lots of cuddles from Rhys but will try and not be too disappointed if it doesn't happen - terrible two's and all that!!!! but who could resist trying to sneak a cuddle from this little darling..............

Apparently the movie we are going to see this evening is called "I don't know how she does it".

"I Don't Know How She Does It" follows a Boston-based working mother trying desperately to juggle marriage, children, and a high-stress job. Kate Reddy devotes her days to her job with a Boston-based financial management firm. At night she goes home to her adoring, recently downsized architect husband Richard and their two young children. It's a non-stop balancing act, the same one that Kate's acerbic best friend and fellow working mother Allison (Christina Hendricks) performs on a daily basis, and that Kate's super-brainy, child-phobic young junior associate Momo (Olivia Munn) fully intends to avoid. When Kate gets handed a major new account that will require frequent trips to New York, Richard also wins the new job he's been hoping for—and both will be spreading themselves even thinner. Complicating matters is Kate's charming new business associate Jack Abelhammer (Brosnan), who begins to prove an unexpected source of temptation."

Sounds like fun - it had better be, LOL.  I'll let you know later.  I'm home now from being out with the "girls" and I have to say that the movie was cute.  We had a few chuckles and it was good to spend time with them.  I'm hungry now, so I think I'll dig in the fridge and see what I can come up with.  Nighty-night and have a wonderful day tomorrow.

Monday 19 September 2011

Now that Fall is here (almost)

As dismal as it would seem to be, being the fact that Summer is almost over (officially that is), Fall is quickly coming to our neighbourhood.  I find Fall to be one of the most beautiful seasons of all and I treasure the cooler temperatures, not being a sun lover and never having been.  This is what I like, it sure beats pictures of the beach, at least this is my opinion - check this out - this is what we have all around us at this time of year...........

Now, isn't that GORGEOUS??  I'm not an outdoors type of person, except for my continual walking to the Mall (does that count?) but I sure do have an appreciation for the beauty all around me.  Today, it's a very wet day and, believe it or not, I do enjoy rainy days, as long as I am looking out of the window and not having to go anywhere........................

View from my window, looking towards the Library where I worked until three months ago.  Now that I have been home from my trip visiting family and missing my darling grandson so very much (another trip perhaps?)....................

I have to find things to fill my days because shopping at the Mall and losing at the Casino are just not good enough for the long Fall and Winter days ahead.  I have some very lovely friends with whom I spend time going for dinner, theatre and different shows throughout those times, but I also need something else.  I have decided to open an Etsy account and try and sell my handcrafted jewelry.  I have begun the process, but just like everything else in my life I need a push to continue with it and I think the PUSH is the change in the weather, which will keep me home more often.  So, look out dear friends, I just might be pressuring you to purchase my creations, LOL  This is a photo of a friend wearing one of my creations, I don't think she will mind if I show off her neck, LOL

Anyway, back to reality.  I was talking about how beautiful it is here during the Fall but I have to say that we are very blessed with lovely scenery all year round.  A while back I featured a few of our local historical buildings and I found that most people enjoyed reading about them, so I thought that I would add a few more this writing.

This is our beautiful Courthouse.

The Sault Ste. Marie District Courthouse, completed in 1922, was designed by Frank R. Heakes at the height of his career as Chief Architect of the Ontario Department of Works. The courthouse is a fine, and largely unchanged, example of Beaux-Artes Classicism combined with fine workmanship, material and attention to detail. The imposing nature of the structure demonstrates the economic confidence of the Sault at the end of the Clergue Industrial Period (1894-1911) and the Provincial desire to symbolically demonstrate the power of the judicial system.  (Thanks to Linda Burtch).

This is our local Museum.  It used to be the Post Office.

Designed in 1902 by David Ewart, Chief Architect of the Department of Public Works in Ottawa, the Old Post Office is a fine example of turn of the century federal architecture, combining Victorian Classicism with excellent workmanship. Its significance as a symbol of the authority of the Federal Government is conveyed by its size, its dominant location in the downtown core and the use of the Classical Style as expressed by the use of pediments and pilasters. This building now houses the Sault Ste. Marie Museum.  (Thanks to Linda Burtch).

Here is a beautiful picture of St. Andrew's United Church (actually, my Church) and if interested, you can read up it's history from the Church website, it's too long to include here.......

This is a picture of the Sault Ste. Marie Canal Administrative Building.

The Administration Building was completed in 1895-1896 and housed the administrative functions of the canal.

I began with a beautiful picture of our area and I shall end with one (or two) also.  Another beautiful place to visit here in the Sault and which is very popular, especially in the summer for walking and the winter for cross-country skiing, is Hiawatha Park and it's gorgeous Falls................

These are called the Crystal Falls, worth a visit.  Now that I have you all excited about the Sault, perhaps you would consider coming for a visit and taking the train tour - it really is fabulous in the Fall....................

This is where you can read all about it.  I have taken the tour with friends and it truly is a wonderful experience.

That's about it for now.  Have a wonderful day.  Talk to you again soon.

Wednesday 14 September 2011

Trip down South

Wednesday evening I travelled on the Greyhound bus from my hometown of Sault Ste. Marie to Kitchener/Waterloo where my twin sons live.  My one son Dave, along with his darling wife Niki and his even more darling son Rhys live in Kitchener and his twin, Phil, lives in Waterloo.  I look forward so much to visiting them and now that I am retired I can and shall visit them more often.  Many of you would never dream to take the Greyhound bus but you would be surprised at who takes it.  It's not just students and drifters, on the contrary, there are many people my age who choose not to drive that long distance and there are even some who find it kind of "freeing", where they can just sit back and let the world happen - no worries.  Anyway, I arrived in Kitchener at approximately 9.00 a.m., it was a little bit late but considering the construction on the roads between Toronto and Kitchener it wasn't surprising.  Waiting for me at the terminal was my dear son Dave and I couldn't wait to get to his house to see the rest of the family.  That was Thursday morning.

Phil came over and had supper with us and hung around for a while.  Dave and Niki had also invited a friend of theirs to join us, along with her cute little daughter Rosa as her husband was out of town at a conference.

Friday Niki had doctor's appointment so we went together and then did a little shopping.  Niki wanted to go to this little "greasy spoon" type restaurant because she had heard that they served the best grub and so we did and, yes, they did.  We both had a toasted bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich made with Texas toast and it truly was delicious.  Later that day, they sprung on me that they were going to Belleville to celebrate Niki's dad's 60th birthday and that everyone wanted me to go as well.  They didn't tell me in advance because they know how much I hate travelling by car.  This way there was a chance that I would agree to go and I did.  Niki's family on both her mother and father's side were so very hospitable and I enjoyed visiting with Niki's mum and family and her dad and family.  The food served at the party was superb, barbequed jumbo, garlic shrimp, then souvlaki, Greek feta salad and a potato dish.  Dessert was those fabulous Greek pastries.  That party was Saturday afternoon, into the early evening and then we left to take Rhys home for his bath and bedtime.

Niki's mother is a very exceptional lady.  For a while she has been battling a serious illness and with her courage and strength she is coming out on top and we pray that it will continue to be so.  This lady, Laurie has so many talents and I got to see one of the most beautiful pieces of her work.  It is called "felting".  This art form is where you take a piece of silk and lay pieces of felt all over it.  Wikipedia says it better than I can - it's called "Nuno Felting".

Nuno felting example: a shawl with poppies
Nuno felting is a fabric felting technique developed by Polly Stirling, a fiber artist from New South Wales, Australia, around 1992. The name is derived from the Japanese word "nuno" meaning cloth. The technique bonds loose fibre, usually wool, into a sheer fabric such as silk gauze, creating a lightweight felt. The fibres can completely cover the background fabric, or they may be used as a decorative design that allows the backing fabric to show. Nuno felting often incorporates several layers of loose fibres combined to build up colour, texture, and/or design elements in the finished fabric.  The nuno felting process is particularly suitable for creating lightweight fabrics used to make clothing. The use of silk or other stable fabric in the felt creates fabric that will not stretch out of shape. Fabrics such as nylon, muslin, or other open weaves can be used as the felting background, resulting in a wide range of textural effects and colours.

This is the piece that Laurie made, I should say, tirelessly worked on.  How fabulous...............

I think Laurie is going to turn this beautiful piece into a bolero, or something like that, to go over a beautiful dress she has for an upcoming wedding she will be attending.

We spent a leisurely morning with Laurie and her partner Chris having breakfast under their vine covered pergola.  Chris is a sign writer and he does great work in and out of the home and between them, they have created a beautiful home, not finished, it's a labour of love.  Made me wish that I was back in my home and had my garden to work in.  We packed up the van and off we went, heading home to Kitchener.

When we arrived "home" we found Phil waiting for us.  We had previously decided that for supper we would have the famous "Cameron's" Chinese food.  It's a local eat-in/take-out restaurant which is quite well known in this area.  Supper again was great.  Phil stayed and we watched a "scarey" Stephen King movie.

Monday Niki's Nana who is into her eighties and smart as a whip, drove herself from Guelph to have lunch with Niki and I.  We went to a lovely restaurant called Borealis - it was worth the visit.  You would think that I would be adventurous and pick something I hadn't tried before, but, no - I had good ol' English style fish and chips.  The rest of the day was spent lazily in the garden and then relaxing in front of the gogglebox.  The cooler, darker evenings are just perfect for an evening watching movies.

Tuesday, my last day here!!!!  Niki hasn't been feeling too well with this pregnancy and it has affected her plans for this week.  Love her heart, she had planned on doing so many neat things with me and has put in a valiant effort and I sure do appreciate it, but I don't mind if she needs to just lay low until this awful nausea passes.  Today we had planned on going to St. Jacobs, so we'll see how that goes.  She and Rhys are having a nap right now so I am spending some "quality time" with Dave.  I remember what it was like being nauseous whilst pregnant.  When I was preggers with the twins I was ill for nine months and couldn't eat and lost so much weight - best diet I had ever been on, LOL  Actually, I only put on 13 lbs and the twins weighed 6 lbs each when born.

Niki woke up feeling a little better and decided on taking that trip to St. Jacob's.  Of course we gravitated towards the upscale toy store and ended up buying Rhys a new riding toy.  Isn't that what grandmas are for?  Here is a picture of it, but in a different colour, it's called a PlasmaCar.
I also found two gorgeous tops for myself at the Red Coral boutique.  On the way back to Kitchener we stopped and picked Dave up and then headed to Swiss Chalet for our last supper together.  Yummy.  Now we are relaxing in front of the TV, my case is packed and I'm psyching myself up for my trip home.

Just to finish off this blog, I'm now home after a very long trip, 15 hours, the bus was behind schedule.  It's good to be home.  Gareth and Chelsie were waiting for me.  Of course I had to unpack and get everything put away before thinking of going to bed and it's now 2.30 a.m. and I think it's time for me to hit the sack.

Thanks Niki, Dave & Rhys for having me visit and Phil for spending time with me.  Love you all.

Monday 5 September 2011

Summer's End

Well, it really isn't the end of summer, not officially anyway, but the weather here today was absolutely, downright cold.  The temperature was 10 degrees celcius and that's pretty cool for around here at this time of year.  I notice from the weather forecast that it will get warmer for the rest of the week and for that I am grateful because this week I am heading down south to see my darling grandson and his mummy and daddy on the Greyhound bus and nice weather would be a blessing.  The evenings are drawing in and it gets darker much earlier now.  In some ways I like this as it is cozy indoors but not good if you still want to be out and about.  Living downtown I always make sure that I am home before sunset, unless of course I am with a friend with a vehicle.

I was not very happy today, well, actually it was yesterday that it started, but the bus that I have been catching home for years is not going to make it's usual stop at the Mall.  It was so handy, especially if one had made lots of purchases, to catch the bus just there, where it is also protected from any bad weather.  From inside the mall entrance one could watch the bus approaching from the Main Street.  I was so upset by this that I wrote a letter to the local Transport Manager and I said that I was writing on behalf of myself and others who are not familiar with voicing their opinions.  I don't suppose it will change anything but at least I think they should be told, afterall, it is the general public who keep the wheels turning, right? 

Well, that is off my chest, now what next?......................

As I said earlier, the evenings are drawing to a close much sooner.  It's dark now by 8.00 p.m. whereas just a short while ago it was at least 9.30-10.00 p.m. before it was dark.  I don't really mind, I certainly make sure that I am home before it starts to get dusky.  Living downtown it's not a good idea to be out alone when it is like that, so I make sure that whatever I do, I'm home when the sun starts to go down.  Here are a couple of pictures of what it is like around at 8.30 p.m..................

Okay, now onto something else.  I had just typed in a whole load of stuff and the blog said it was saving it, all disappeared.  Don't you hate it when that happens?  I have to try and think of what I wrote now.  So, if I have repeated anything, you'll understand why.  Darn.

Recently I told you that I had sunburned my face whilst doing a craft show last weekend in the "country".  The burn on my face is okay now but my lips are still sore and swollen.  They are better than they were, the pain was something awful, can't believe that such a small area could cause so much pain.  Here's a pic of how much better they are, still somewhat swollen but healing.  Who needs Botox?...............

"I feel pretty, oh so pretty" - do you ladies remember me singing that to you at work and how much you used to hate it?  I miss those days when we had so much fun with Jane, Doreen, Marlene, Joan, Gloria, Nancy, Helena, Beth, just to name a few.  We would get into some mischief, but all in good fun and we ALWAYS got our work done.

Last evening one of my sons, Gareth, came over for supper and brought his lovely girlfriend, Chelsie, with him.  Supper was delish, at least everyone thought.  I served: porketta, new baby potatoes boiled in their skins, broccoli, mashed turnip (Gareth's favourite), gravy, Italian style tomatoes and cucumbers and of course the regular garden salad and garlic bread.  We finished it off with walnut pie and cream.    Gareth's girlfriend is of Italian background so is not used to my cooking, but then again, who is? LOL  She really did enjoy the new potatoes and gravy and couldn't get enough of them.  How sweet and to think I was worried.  I know what to feed her next time she visits!!!  I've already been told what to serve the next two times they come over.  Gareth told me that he would like ham and scalloped potatoes and then another time, roast beef, roast potatoes and Yorkshire pudding.  Of course I will oblige.  Oh, I made this little arrangement for a centerpiece for the table...................

After their visit, I moved the arrangement to the living room.

Something special I have to mention.  A dear friend and neighbour Laurie has just opened an online Etsy shop where she will be selling her beautiful art.  I think it would be a great idea if you popped on over there to check it out.  Here is the link...........

All the very best and much success Laurie.  I'm sure that you will do very, very well.

Oh, three friends, myself and two others, made it to the September issue of SNAP which is a local magazine depicting many interesting events in the community.  We had been at a musical evening where a very talented young man (Joseph Kargi) played the piano and sang, very well I might add.  Anyway, here we are......................

One last thing, I sold another of my "Chats" to a lovely lady who volunteers at the library where I worked.  I hope you have fun with it Sandra.

Well, that's it for today - I sure have waffled on and on.  I hope you find something of interest here, or at least have a chuckle.  Until I talk to you again, be safe and God bless.