Thursday, June 30, 2016

Violin and bow appraisal, messages in a bottle....

So,  we got the appraisal today.  The violin came in at $1200 and the bow at $800 so that will make a nice little tax receipt.  

I guess I'll put my "Pay it in Kindness" project on hold since it looks like there is going to be mail disruption.

When Richard was around 3 years old,  we launched his first (and I believe only and you'll see why) message in a bottle at Willow's Beach.   Now,  I probably sent hundreds of messages in bottles as I was quite fascinated by the whole idea.  I sent them from Stanley Park beaches, White Rock,  on the ferry to Gabriola,  loads from our beach at Gabriola and never got a response.   Would you believe that Richard got a postcard from a couple on Lopez Island who found the bottle!  

Now,  around that time there was a big mail strike.  My mother and I exchanged letters every week after they moved to Gabriola to retire and Richard enjoyed hearing them read and he participated in the content for my letters.  He was quite disappointed not to be getting these weekly letters from his grandmother and not be be sending them but then he had a bright idea...."Mom,  we can send it in a bottle!"

You gotta take the time to listen to this....very, very funny and so true.

And we certainly need some humour about Brexit.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Well, just had to share this memory on Facebook from three years ago...

And we still see all these people at The Sylvia and at the beach...

Susan and i made today!

Susan sent the story.  And great timing to pick up her email about the posting after reading today's headline in The Sun "Istanbul attack kills dozens"  Yes,  making a small difference makes a difference.

Susan's Post:

 I make bookmarks and tuck them into the books I return to my local public library (in Vancouver, BC). I’ve been doing it since March. Each bookmark is signed on the back with the email address: Last week I received my first email; it was very encouraging. I too started a new blog for it:
A friend of mine was so inspired by this project that she started her own project and her own blog. Her first post describes her project:
She saw your site and wrote about it too.

Pizza night with Derek

Always great fun!  Jim walked him by our new place.  Well,  pretty impressive that you have a little walk in the forest to get to Haro and even from Lagoon Road along Haro to Denman,  there are parks,  lovely old apartments and lots of trees.  As Derek said,  you really don't feel like you're in a big city.

From Derek:
Haro Street is like the Enchanted Forest.  You walk through a path lined
with west coast trees and end up at the Joe Fortes Library.  It's an
enviable location.

Susan has started another blog and is currently discussing Brexit and what makes communities fail.  Take a look at:

Ocean swim definitely on the agenda for this afternoon!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Gretchen Rubin's happiness quote today...

“Humor is the antidote to overthinking. It’s a way of saying that life is paradoxical. Humor contains contradictions; it does not resolve them but revels in them. It says that the right way to exist among the contradictions, paradoxes, and absurdities of life is to cope with them through laughter.”

Jim,  Dick, and Susan and I recently had a discussion about how girls didn't find the three stooges the least bit funny and yet boys loved them and Dick and Jim couldn't stop laughing just thinking about them.  Susan and I remained bewildered.  I was recently complaining about my doctor and Jim said he had some doctors for me and we watched a clip.  I actually found them very funny!

Wow.....Susan seems to have won an award for her "etegami"

Well,  it's a Japanese contest and so she's not quite sure what she won or what the deal is....but how cool!  The etegami idea sounds really neat too.  I love the idea that you can send these as postcards and spread the joy.

So,  I'll be expecting a postcard at our new address!

Here are some of things she did:

Monday, June 27, 2016

Bistro Pastis

We took Richard and Grace here last night for dinner.   We were impressed with the food and really liked  the owners who are French.  They have managed to source their bread from a place in Coquitlam and it is like the real bread of!   It was a Travelzoo offer so we each had an appetizer,  main course,  and split two desserts.  And for all 10 items we ordered different things and tasted from all plates.  These are the kind of dining companions I like!

(Oh,  and Richard ran in the Scotiabank run so I guess it couldn't have been all that bad....)

Apples:  Ris de Veau for me (well,  you can't beat Le Crocodile for this dish but a different lighter take),  white asparagus for Grace,  frog legs for Richard,  and boudin rouge (blood sausage) for Jim.

Mains:  duck a l'orange for me,  rib steak for Jim,  halibut for Richard,  scallops for Grace.

Dessert:  trio of sorbets and a special crepe

The asparagus with a very yummy sauce.

My duck...perfectly done.

Richard's halibut...and even came with clams in the shell.  They are from Brittany and  when we were in Concarneau I had an amazing white fish that was served with tiny little clams in the shells so perhaps a specialty of the region done like this.

What a super site!

Seth Godin pointed to this on his blog today.  Just love the concept!

Shannon Weber decided that there wasn't enough love, recognition or connection in her world, so she did something about it. When she finds an unsung (don't say 'ordinary' hero) she makes them a cape.
Caping people, catching them doing something right, shining a light on a familiar hero. 
It turns out that this is way more difficult than being cynical, or ironic, or bitter. Being closed is a lot easier than being connected. It takes guts.
What kind of impact does one act of kindness make? It can last for years.
Go, cape someone.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

The good, the bad, and the beautiful...

Junuary seems over so a gorgeous day....the beautiful.  The very noisy Scotiabank run is on (at least they didn't close down Beach Ave. so we can escape)....the bad.  And it will be the last race we have to put up with.  And Susan from Yorkshire called this morning....the very, very good!

We had a good chat about various things and of course,  Brexit.  They're upset about it but life will go on.  Poor Madsie,  one of their grand daughters,  early 20's is devastated as many young people are.  Susan is advising getting involved and doing something...going to a protest,  signing a petition,  start a petition.  Good advice.   It helps to do even a modest gesture.   It sounds like London is talking about separating and keeping in the EU.

We move a week today so next Sunday we will be sleeping in our new apartment.  I have our swimming stuff separate so we can have a swim in our new wonderful pool.  I don't think the ocean is going to be warm enough for us for over a week.  Some of our beach friends have recommenced swimming today,  though.

Photos from today....last run....this historic moment had to be documented!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

First 7 cards out....42 to go.

I felt lighter after doing this.  There were lots of people out today so next "delivery" I'll pick a quieter time.

Friday, June 24, 2016

New project

Dear Blog Readers,

You will now have a new blog to read if you want to under a pseudonym of Barbara Fleming (my middle name is Barbara and my maiden name is Fleming).  I want to remain anonymous for this project.  Take a look at:

I would also love it if you,  dear readers,  would send a card (maybe even one of mine that I gave you if you still have one...) and email me about your experience.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Garlic Ginger for dinner...and home to bad news

Well,  great meal of pappadams, samosas,  butter chicken,  naan,  basmati rice washed down with Kingfisher beer....and leftovers for lunch tomorrow.

But returned home to learning that the Brexit forces have won.  Even though I like the Tyee article  and there is some sense in it for sure,  a sad day.

Sun coming out a bit...

These two birds were quite delightful to watch.


Well,  the sun did poke out a bit....but....


I have been rooting for the "Remain" side but this article in The Tyee today gave me pause.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Thinking of Palm Springs...

Nicki had to come to Vancouver General yesterday for a followup on her knee surgery....great news....she doesn't have to see that doctor for five years!   So,  we met with Nicki and Stan and Brian and Susan for lunch.  Since we're in full Junuary,  we are all longing for Palm Springs.

I looked at the blog I created to show friends our place.   Made me happy!  I guess the sun will eventually shine around here.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Glad to see Marilyn is keeping cool

The "Forever Marilyn" statue was removed from Palm Springs a couple of years ago to go to central New Jersey.  Well it's 120 degrees is PS today and looks like Marilyn is enjoying a cool rain.

Gifts left behind...

I just had to repost Carol's blog today....something for us all to ponder.

Our new observation deck...360 view!

We were very impressed with the observation deck at our new place.  It's very large and you can take chairs up so we can keep our invitation to Grace and Richard and Naomi and Ray for the fireworks!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Sunset in Palm Springs last night

Kevin Thomas photo

I wonder if the sun will be setting at all in Alaska?

Greetings from Richard

Well,  can't find those videos..

Happy Father's Day from Alaska!   Love,  Richard.

Memories of Donegal

Well,  I was looking for some old little videos to do with Father's Day....I know I have them of Jim's Dad,  my Dad,  and Jim.  But in the meantime I found this one that I made with Susan and Alan when they were visited us in Donegal.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

The Happiness Equation

I just gotta love a book that states at the beginning:   "Three Ways to Get the Most out of this Book"

#1 is "Agree to Disagree"

Well,  of course i didn't even both reading the other ones.

So far the first parts are mainly how I live my life anyway but I did really like a story about the Buddha about deflecting criticism and resentment.  I realize I do react too much to criticism and resentment and feel I need to own it.  Not the Buddha....

I think my blog readers are smart enough to get the idea from the last paragraph (and I don't feel like typing it all out....)

"Whoever returns insult to one who is insulting,  returns taunts to one who is taunting,  returns a berating to one who is berating, is eating together,  sharing company with that person.  But I am neither eating together nor sharing your company.  It's all yours.  It's all yours."

Friday, June 17, 2016

Over to West Van today

I love going over the Lion's Gate Bridge and we really haven't got into a tie up.  We do plan our times,  though.  We went over to use our gift cards at Indigo that Elaine gave us and to take a look at the new Simon's.  I wanted to go mainly to see the local art but there didn't seem to be much of that in the end.  They do try to incorporate local art.  At any rate,  we were both impressed with the store in terms of very attractive and stylish items but prices didn't seem to be over the top.  Seems like they have a combo of designer and more reasonable items so folks can mix and match.

Well,  Jim had a had a bad case of "sticker shock" with the book prices.   We are used to paying 10 -25 cents for a book.   I went specifically to buy the Vancouver Tree Book which was in stock a couple of days ago but now sold out.  But I found something:

I was attracted to the equation (probably the only equation I have been attracted to...) and then I turned to a chapter called "The Single Best Piece of Advice  You'll Ever Take"

Drum roll....

"Don't Take Advice"

Well,  everyone who knows me would know I couldn't resist a book that advised that!

And then we went to White Spot to try their halibut and chips since now that halibut is in season,  they offer this on the menu.   Ok,  but you can't beat C-Lovers and you can get mushy peas there  to boot.