Sunday, December 6, 2015

Nothing better in my opinion......

than turning on the Christmas tree lights in a morning when it's still dark and eating my breakfast and checking my email:

I love the warm glow of the lights coming from the tree.  Makes the room feel really cozy.

Of course we had to have a tree themed song today:

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Fashion Santa?

That's him in the picture above.  Not exactly the image of the usual Santa, he does have the white beard I guess, but otherwise not much else is the same.


He even has a blog, here.  He is a handsome chap though.

As we are talking about Santa, here is a lovely Christmas song for you:


Friday, December 4, 2015

New music group......well too me that is.

Never heard of this group before, but really enjoy their style of music.  This will become one of my Christmas favourite tunes I can see:

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Giving credit, where credit is due........

I mentioned the other day about online shopping.  One of the places I shopped at last Friday was Land's End.  I needed a new light jacket and with 50% off outerwear, it seemed like a perfect time to have a look.  I ordered this jacket:


It arrived Tuesday night and it is perfect.  As the other people reviewing this jacket said, the sleeves are a tad long, but nothing that you have to change.  I am so pleased with the speed of the delivery and the quality.  I have ordered a couple of the men's cardigan's for my dh so looking forward to seeing them arrive also.  So if you are in the market for some new clothing I would recommend.  I have not been paid for this post, this is all just my personal opinion and experience.  

Another place I order a lot from is The Gap.  Sign up for their site as you get coupon codes sent to you.  Combine them with the sale items and you can get some fabulous deals.  I buy a lot of the grand kids clothing from there as the quality is good.  Both the mother's of the grands, appreciate it when you buy a season ahead of the game, so they are all prepared.  

As I have been talking about clothing today, I thought this Christmas song was very appropriate:



Always brings tears to my eyes.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Tree Lighting Ceremony

We were invited to a tree lighting/wine and cheese last night.  It all started out as a bit of a joke, when I turned on my Christmas outside lights before December 1st.  When I mentioned to the neighbours why they didn't have their outside lights on; they said they didn't turn them on until December 1st. So I suggested they should have an official Christmas tree lighting ceremony for their outside Christmas lights.

The phone rang on Monday evening inviting dh and I to the ceremony.  As two neighbours were having the ceremony (they live side by side) I figured we had better not go empty handed.  So after I got the winter tires put on the car I popped to the store to pick them up a Poinsettia each.
Popped into the dollar store and picked up a gift bag each.....they cost $1.25 by the way not $1, some candy canes and the little Santa ornament.
It's not a lot but it says we are thinking of them.

Today's Christmas song I thought should be about Christmas lights.  Although this is really neat to look at I would absolutely hate to live next door to this!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Yes, it's been a while.........

been busy with bits and bobs and my blogging mojo just wasn't there.

I am hoping to post something every day this month, even if it's just a Christmas song.  I can say I am more or less done with my Christmas shopping.  I have discovered I LOVE online shopping, as the older I get the more I dislike crowds in the stores.  Dd and I went shopping a week gone Monday and the mall was so busy, which surprised me.  I guess gone are the days where people work Monday through Friday from 9 am until 5 pm?

Here is a Christmas song for today:




I will be back tomorrow with more thoughts and music.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Just call me Olive.....

Had our book club meeting this week. Our book this month was Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Stout; I read and reviewed the book here.


For the most part all the members enjoyed the book, a couple didn't but that's not unusual, not everyone likes the same thing.

The main character was Olive.  She was a no nonsense, crusty woman, who spoke her mind, didn't suffer fools gladly, but underneath had a softer side that occasionally peaked out.  I said I could so relate to her and thought I saw a lot of me in her.  Turns out a few others felt the same way.

So now if someone is grumpy, we're going to call it an "Olive" moment.  Turns out there was an HBO series as well that was based on this book, which you can read about here.

Have you ever read a book and thought "that character is my twin?"

Our November book choice is "Ru" by Kim Thuy

Monday, October 5, 2015

Unsettled, uneasy, maybe a bit of both..........

Went for a walk after supper last night and bumped into a few people.  What should have been a 20 minute walk turned into an hour.....LOL

The builders are still building houses on our subdivision/estate.  In fact the houses are selling like hotcakes, both the brand new ones and the previously lived in ones/resales.  I think the builder is building too fast, and I am sure down the road it may affect the quality of the product.  I have no proof of this, it's just my thoughts, as I have lived in a home where the builder was overwhelmed and closed two phases at once and the houses suffered from this.

We have been watching the resale prices carefully and are surprised and shocked at how much they are going for.  Now for us the higher they go the more money we make on our home.  If I haven't mentioned it before I will now.  This is not our forever home, I want to move.  I LOVE, LOVE the house, and would pick it up in a minute and move it out into the country onto an acre or two tomorrow if I could.  Realistically though that's not going to happen.

Back to why I am unsettled, uneasy or what ever.  The builders are in a heck of a hurry to finish one particular house that backs onto the golf course, just along the road from us.  It turns out the couple have paid over $900,000 CDN for this house.  This is not gossip, this is a fact.  As I said I love my house but would not pay that amount of money (couldn't afford too) for a house with basically no land, that you have to pay a condo fee on top of that, and have semi-detached houses opposite you.  

For that money I would expect a lot, lot more.  It shocked me to say the least when I heard this.  It also made me question whether or not we are "good enough" to live amongst these kind of people.  They obviously have money, but what will we have in common with them?  There are a number of people who live on our subdivision who do have money as the house on our subdivision is their summer home and they winter down south in the States.  Some even have a cottage up north, so the house on our subdivision is their "in between" home.

The majority of the people on our subdivision are great folk, but I have never lived anywhere in close proximity of others where houses can be worth close to $1 million CDN.  We are your average middle class type of folk, worked hard all our lives; dh is still working hard.  Paid our bills on time, paid for everything we own, and enjoy the once a year vacation and the odd treat here and there.  I budget, I use coupons, I try to save a buck or two as much as possible, as far as disposable income we don't have much.  

We have always lived in subdivisions where we are all on a level playing field, everything felt right with the world.  Here I am not too sure?  I am feeling a bit unsettled right now because of this.....

Thanks for listening.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Couple of things to mention:

We finally found a piece of art for the stairs:
 It's a good size at 60 inches wide and 40 inches high.
Pig to hang, but pleased with the look.  Got it at Pier One Imports.  Ordered a piece of furniture from there at the same time, will be here in a couple of weeks.  Sucks how much more we have to pay here in Canada.
Got a baby set finished.  A gnome and a newborn hat.  Knit with Bernat Softee Baby; which was a pleasure to knit with.
I have at least another two sets to do, but have a more urgent project to do that involves this colour yarn:
Yep that's Bubblegum Pink.  I hope this works out as it will be a fun thing when it's done.  I will show you more as soon as they are done.........yes there are plural of them, and they have to be finished by the middle of November!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Thank you

for all your replies.  Your comments have given me food for thought.

On a more cheerful front I got a lovely parcel in the mail this week:
I am making a baby quilt for a baby due in April 2016 in New Zealand.
I got this lovely lot from Fabric Spot a great Canadian company.  They have a super selection of fabric at great prices.

Mind you I am busy with a knitting project at the moment, so not sure when I will get around to doing this.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Decisions, decisions..........

I am up and down about my blog at the moment.  Should I continue with it or should I say goodbye to it?

From my lack of posts recently I have been leaning towards saying goodbye.  I am finding it more of a chore than a joy at the moment.  Writing a blog should not be a chore, it should be done with joy and because you want to do it.  I think you can tell when a person is writing a post because they feel they "have too," and I can even see it in my posts.



I still haven't come to a decision whether or not I will carry on, but would love to hear how you feel about your blog and if you have had those times when you say enough.........

P.S. Life is good, busy but good.  Got a lot going on though.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Do you remember my gnomes?

Look what we saw on vacation:
"The Gnome Project," by Jessica Peill-Meininghaus

I didn't pick it up, but maybe I should have as the reviews are on the whole good:

What do you do when life is too chaotic? How about felting a gnome? Or 365 of them, one for each day of the year.

Artist and wool crafter Jessica Peill-Meininghaus decided that she needed a project to teach herself follow-through in life. She settled on making one of her popular felted-wool gnomes every day for a year. With pipe cleaners and wool roving, amidst the chaos of raising four children and moving cross-country, Peill-Meininghaus felted her way through hundreds of charming, pointy-hatted, often bearded characters.

Lavishly decorated with photos of each charming creation, The Gnome Project is the surprising and magical story of what happens when we commit to something small. (Hint: It's something very big, as in making life more meaningful.) Here is her inspirational tale, complete with gnome-making instructions. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Lititz, Lancaster County

This is actually a cute little town with a very picturesque main street with lots of little stores.  We had a cup of wonderful loose leaf tea at Cafe Chocolate of Lititz.
We were not in love with these mugs, our old bones need to use handles.
Had to check out Ewebiquitous.  Great little yarn store.  Didn't buy anything though.

Saw this dog who is actually cocking his leg at another store.  If it hadn't been over $200 would have bought it and put it on our front step as a joke.
The town square of Lititz.
The building behind the sign is the Wilbur Chocolate Factory and Museum.  We did bring home some of the milk chocolate for the kids.  It wasn't too bad we were quite impressed.  The museum needs work, but it doesn't cost anything to look around.
Saw this sign for this store.  We decided we would give this place a pass.  
We ate lunch at The Tomato Pie Cafe and it was really good.  We had quiche, salad and a herb scone, and really enjoyed it, would highly recommend it.

We did stop by Julius Sturgis Pretzel Bakery, but didn't do the tour.  I did buy one of their hot pretzels and thoroughly enjoyed it.  It's the first I have ever had a hot pretzel and it was good, and only cost $1.

Overall a good way to spend a few hours.  Lots of on street parking costing 25 cents per half hour!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The mystery of the elevators.

I swear some things just puzzle me and then get on your nerves..........

At the hotel we stayed in there were two elevator doors in the lobby:
When we left our room on the 7th floor, there were three elevator doors:
Never noticed or thought much about it to start with but I did eventually notice how odd this was after going up and down a couple of times.  Just could never figure out where the third door went too.  Then add in we are going senile and couldn't remember if we had got on all elevators; we swore we had, this was turning out to be a puzzle.

Finally asked the guy behind the desk and the door furthest away in the photo above, is not in use.  The hotel has 9 floors and only floors 3 through 9 are in use and floors 1 and 2 have not been renovated yet.  They have put a false wall up on the ground floor so you only have access to the two doors and the third elevator doesn't work at all.

We then got talking to one guy and he said had we noticed how the middle elevator door always stopped at the first floor, which is where the hotel admin is at the moment.  I said I had figured it was ghosts or something???  He said that floor was where the old lobby was.  It is now on the ground floor.

Glad I got all this sorted out as it would have driven me crazy!!

Monday, September 21, 2015

Some thoughts about our trip.

We love going to the States.  They are such a patriotic bunch, flying the American flag everywhere. They truly believe their country is the best and I admire them for that.  Only once did someone mention how bad Obama is and as I said to him, "who would you prefer him or Donald Trump, running the country?"

He muttered something and as I then said, I was from Canada, and honestly we are no better off with the bunch of "misfits" we have running to be the next Prime Minister!

As many of you know, we are British born and as we came to Canada when we were in our 20's, we still have our British accents (dh and I;) the kids though sound as Canadian as the next person.  It totally confuses everyone and for some reason American's love hearing us talk?

Anyhow, we have got our response down pat now when people ask where we come from:

"We are British born, but live in Canada."

I must admit I think I blushed bright red from head to toe though one day, as I was talking to a cashier when I noticed another lady standing next to me, just looking at me.  I thought I was holding up things, and of course I apologized......I am Canadian after all...LOL  We apologize for everything, whether it's our fault or not.  Anyway she said no she was enjoying listening to me talk, and then turned around and told her friend to come and listen to me talk.  At that point I just clammed up, as I couldn't think of a thing to say.  

I honestly don't think about my accent and it surprises me when people notice I speak differently, as I never hear it.

The majority of the people are so well mannered; at least with us.  I guess it helps that we always say please and thank you, and if a job is well done I will let people know.  Whenever I talked to the ladies who took care of our hotel room, I always said thank you for a job well done.  I did find though that some people were just plain rude with people especially in the fast food places.

We were in one place and the daughter who was my age or older and her mother, were just plain bloody rude to the girl behind the counter.  Now granted she was as slow as molasses, but even so, don't be rude and disrespectful.  

I finally said to the mother and daughter, "you both seem to be having a bad day?"

Now I am not sure if it was my accent or someone spoke to them, but they both stood there with their mouth's open!!!  I don't remember what they said, but their attitude didn't change with the poor server.....LOL

My only gripe........I wish the exchange rate had been better, as I couldn't/wouldn't/didn't spend anywhere near as much as I normally do when do there.  The one thing we did find cheaper was the gas/petrol; they have super cheap prices for gas and we paid as low as $2.26 USD per gallon.

I look forward to our next visit to the States.  

Sunday, September 20, 2015

More photos from taken from the train in Strasburg.

Corn maze, with a person watching over so you don't get lost.
 A barn with the sides open to let the tobacco dry.




We couldn't see a lot as the corn was so high. 

 Getting ready to do some work.

Spreading cow muck....in the background those are "hotel rooms." 
 A closer up look at the tobacco drying.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Back Home........

Tired though.  Had a straight forward drive back.  The only "exciting" thing that happened, we got stuck with the custom agent who had too much time on his hands!!!

As well as the usual questions about where we stayed, he wanted to know why we went there.  So mentioned the Amish and Mennonites.  Asked us if we were Amish or Mennonites how many British accented Amish or Mennonites are they in the world?

Asked how much we spent and then wanted to know what we spent it on.  So then I started on about the Peppa Pig ball pit, and Thomas the Tank Engine.  That shut him up!!  I guess he was only doing his job, and you know two "middle-aged" people with British accents would look a bit dodgy!

Will need to rest up and will get back to normal in a day or two.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Thomas and Percy...........

We went to Strasburg to the have a ride on the train.
And who did we bump into; Thomas the Tank Engine:
and Percy......
There were so many excited children there.  We didn't go on those trains, we decided to go on the regular train.  We decided first class was the way to go:
Very comfy seats and air conditioned.  Plus there was a wood stove for the winter.



 I will post more photos from the train ride.  We enjoyed it, but will admit to enjoying the looks on the little kids' faces when they saw Thomas or Percy.  If you want to learn more about the Strasburg Railroad Company, please click on this link.


Thursday, September 17, 2015

St. James Church, Lancaster

My photos will not do this place justice but it was a lovely church from the outside; it wasn't open to go inside.  Plus the church yard was very interesting.




 I have never seen raised graves like that before.
 There was a number of graves with the informational plaques and flags beside them.

 I thought this plant was pretty.  No sure what is is.
We were talking to a local guy...............no shocker there for people who know me and he was saying that all the stained glass windows are lit up at night and are stunning.  However despite the fact this is a very safe city I have no desire to wander around when it's dark!!

You can read more about the church here and see what the inside looks like.