Sunday, December 31, 2017

Happy New Year everyone!

Might as well start the New Year with a bang.  This video of Hong Kong's celebration came up on BBC for me.  They put on quite a show!  And it brings back fond memories of my time in Hong Kong even with the heat and humidity in the summer.  It's frosty and sunny here today.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

The sun appears!

It's wonderful to see the ocean and mountains again.   I knew they were there but...!

Friday, December 29, 2017

Such fun with everyone...

Richard and Grace brought the raclette cheese and also some wonderful!  A raclette was a new experience for Naomi and Ray and they loved it.  It was very cosy in our place and such fun to talk about old Vancouver times.   Grace and Richard,  you were very good putting up with the aged parents and their stories.

I'm glad someone managed to get some photos that weren't blurry....thanks,  Richard!

A bit chilly so wearing my hummingbird sweater I bought in Palm Springs.  Would you believe hummingbirds were flying up to our patio today.

Naomi and Ray.

Richard and Grace.

Of course,  we had to have a photo of the empty table.

Busy, busy....

Medical appointments,  lab tests (yeah,  those early fasting ones today),  getting caught up with  correspondence but the best is getting ready for our raclette dinner with Richard and Grace and Naomi and Ray.  Things are pretty much organized.

I was recently wondering how long i'd had my Macbook Air.   This memory on FB from 5 years ago.

Your Memories on Facebook
Janice, we care about you and the memories you share here. We thought you'd like to look back on this post from 5 years ago.
And not a creature was stirring...not even a mouse.
I never thought I'd give up my computer mouse but the trackpad (I think that's what it is called) is so great on the MacBook Air you just don't need to be mousing around. I love my new computer as you can tell!

Thursday, December 28, 2017

The best laid plans of mice and men...

Well,  the plan was for Donna to come here for a drink and then we would head to the University Golf Club for dinner.  Good thing I thought to make reservations as the restaurant is unusually closed this week at 5pm...and everything is closed for the first two weeks of January.

So,  we planned to go to Mahoney's Pub after a drink.  I checked the website and they were open until 1am.  The weather started to get bad so Donna thought it best not to drive.  I was relieved since I was worrying about her driving in questionable conditions.  We decided to go to Mahoney's anyway so walked out with full rain/snow gear on.  They closed at 6pm today!  Ah well, it was good to get out in the fresh air and get a bit of a walk.

We did have a steak and frites available at home but no wine.  Good thing the local wine store was open!  We haven't got round to getting to the Liquor Store so were out of wine.  We're learning what's open at this time of the year.  Our wonderful Indian take out was open yesterday and we had a super curry combo yesterday...supplemented with extra Naan, poppadoms, and mango chutney that I bought that day at Safeway.

Jim always does the steak...chef extraordiaire!

We put on Jean Redpath's  Robbie Burns.  Great to hear "old Scots".  The first time I met Jim's delightful grandparents when we were engaged,  they were given strict instructions  from Jim's mom not to talk  "any old Scots to Janice".  It is somewhat incomprehensible but lovely.  And we remembered all the wonderful Robbie Burn's dinners we had at the Union Club in Victoria with Don and Elaine.  We raised a toast.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Light snow falling this morning

You can't really see it falling in these photos...hope it stays like it is and changes to rain as the forecast predicts.  Everyone who experienced the Blizzard of "96 in Victoria is a little wary of snow predictions....


A frontal system advancing from the Pacific will result in snow developing this morning over Metro Vancouver with snowfall amounts up to 5 cm today. 

Meanwhile a low developing southwest of the region will allow snow to reintensify this evening. Snow is expected to change to rain near the sea level late this afternoon while snow will continue over higher terrain with snowfall amounts up to 10 cm tonight. Freezing level will rise further and the snow will change to rain through the region Thursday morning.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Back safely to our lovely home...

It was very cheery driving in from the airport with the Christmas lights and a dusting of snow in parts.  Quite different from last year when we were amazed by the large amounts of snow on the side streets particularly.

Our manager had turned the heat on for us so we arrived to a toasty home and began immediately to enjoy our Christmas decorations and our surroundings.  Dinner was a Hungry Man Salisbury Steak.  I don't think I had had a TV dinner for decades but it seemed like the easiest option and it really wasn't too bad.  Wine always helps, of course.

We sat by candlelight and our fireplace and enjoyed a Calvados.

This morning I was surprised there actually was a newspaper...a great treat!

Outdoor photos taken from our is just so wonderful to have all this light ard views we love.

My beloved Pacific Ocean and Coastal mountains.

On Christmas Eve day we dropped into Revivals after dropping off our library books.  It was packed!  It seems it's a popular place for last minute shopping.

I hope Elvis finds a good home...couldn't fit him in my luggage.

I just went on Facebook and picked up this memory....Richard made the whole dinner all by himself.

And speaking of a White Christmas.  This also came up on Facebook.  The blizzard of 1996 in Victoria.  We'll never forget that!  Our block of 12 houses had 3 snow shovels between us.  Like most Victorians,  I just used a broom to sweep off the odd dusting of snow we occasionally got.

This snowstorm was not predicted and caught everyone off guard.  I remember I was reading "Snow Falling on Cedars" which is about a big snowstorm.  No one could get around and it was rather nice to just stay home and not have to go anywhere.

There's a lot to be said for these peaceful Christmases!

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas to family and friends.

 Christmas, 2004,  in our home in Victoria.  Obviously the days of a "real" tree.

We're thinking of family and friends spending Christmas in all sorts of ways and in various parts of the world.  Some are having large gatherings with family that has travelled to be together and some are having quiet celebrations.  We have had the good fortune to enjoy both although being on a plane will be a first but we will have Christmas in our two homes that we love very much!

This is always a time of reflection and for fun I looked back on my post of Christmas 2002....the first year of my blog.  I knew we were off to France in January but had forgotten we had Don and Elaine for Christmas dinner that year.  It seems appropriate to post that this year in memory of our dear friends.


Merry Christmas everyone! Just taking a little break...turkey's cooked, gravy is made, Richard did the vegetables.  Richard  and Jim are having their Christmas chess game. Our very dear friends, Don and Elaine, will arrive in about an hour. We're all really looking forward to having a quiet Christmas together and remembering family, friends, and being thankful for being so blessed. 

Sunday, December 24, 2017

La Tablita....finally

This is our favourite Mexican restaurant and we usually wait for a rainy, cloudy, or cool day to go since it's so cheery.  Bit of a wait for that this year but it was cloudy all day.  Back to glorious sunshine today.

The tortilla soup is amazing and was even more shock full of chicken and avocado than usual.  I was almost full after this so lots  of leftovers for dinner last night.  This is their "cup" of soup which at $2.95 with their lunch special of $8.95 is a great deal.

Jim managed to finish everything,  of course.

Then to return our library materials at Rancho Mirage.  I see they're on Amazon now selling their premium used books....good on them!

I have all my Christmas books now.  Jim is patiently waiting to open the book I bought for him.

And some close ups.

Jim making spaghetti the other night.

And just for fun,  this blog post of Christmas Eve day two years ago came up on Facebook  memories.

And for more fun,  Linda's post about their experience at Canada Place and all their Christmas decorations including Christmas store window displays from back so many memories!  We'll have to get down there when we're in town.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Downtown Palm Springs yesterday

I wanted to catch the display at the Architecture and Design Centre since it ends early January.  It's so wonderful to have this facility as part of the Palm Springs Art Museum.  We pass this building all the time on our way to various places.

Current display:  Albert Frey and Lina Bo Bardi:  A Search for Living Architecture.

A few images:

Then to See's Candies for peanut brittle, bridge mixture, and white chocolate cashew brittle.

Then to the Ingleside Inn to see Melvyn's and their new renovations.  We didn't really notice much difference and we were rather disappointed by the lack of Christmas decorations.  We felt there would be a real festive feeling there.  We had planned to go for a Chateaubriand served and carved at the table (old time meal and service that has a lot of meaning) but glad we didn't.  Maybe best to leave those memories as they are.

Roger and Kerry,  we remember very fondly that endless Champagne brunch you treated us to when you were staying there.

We had fun walking the grounds.  It is still a very charming place and you can almost imagine the "Rat Pack" lounging by the pool.