Happy Birthday Karl
Happy Birthday Karl. Don't celebrate too much! Love Aunt Marg and Uncle Steve.
Happy Birthday Jim
July/12/2010, St. George's, Grenada
Happy Birthday Jim. Take the day off and do some limin' today.
Happy Birthday Lynne
June/24/2010, Carriacou, Grenada
Pic of Lynne and I. We have shared (and will continue to have) so many a good times ... true friendship will last forever. Thank you.
Yes you said: If it becomes too much trouble to go skiing or camping or having fun... then we know we are old.. well said!
March/4/2010, Palm Bay Beach
Happy Birthday to everyone who has a birthday in March... but especially Fred (March 9th), Heather (March 13th) and Emma (March 29th)... and If I got it wrong, it's because my finger slipped as I'm going up and down with the waves as I steal internet from shore... gotta love being in the basement while underway..lol
Valerie and Glenn visit
We had a wonderful dinner with friends Valerie and Glenn. And I will show you the flag Glenn made us as soon as I get it flying proudly aboard Lion's Paw.
July/5/2009, Still at Dutchmans Cove Marina
I love your emails. You have such a way with words (concise and very true). I hope you don't mind, but I took the liberty of posting your email on my blog.
I too seem to have trouble getting my head around this adventure. What seemed to be such a great idea seven years ago is already a reality today. I'm wondering if I truly disliked my teenager kids back then (doesn't everyone) to have conjured up such a thought to leave the wonderful, normal lifestyle that our family was able to attain and enjoy.
Today I must remind myself that both Thera and Mike have also begun to follow their own paths and create a life for themselves (as they should), never-the-less I do and will miss them (and Benson) dearly. I have been told, countless times, that there is no real good time to go. I leave behind Steve's dad (whom just turned 85) and Betty, my recently widowed mum, our every changing and growing nieces and nephews, sisters and brothers, many good friends and wonderful people I have met through work and community. My life. . .previous life, has ended up on the free table at Dutchman's Cove Marina... along with Value Village and a variety of other places in the city (like schools and charity events). . . but it's all just stuff. I still have the memories.
Memories...during the past year I managed to scan each and every photo that I had taken over the last 31 years and these photos are now on an 8 Gig memory stick, now lying in a safety deposit box. I have a second copy on my computer. The original photos are in a box somewhere in Petra and Colin's basement, as are all the rest of the things from our life that Mike didn't want for his new condo. Kim and Marius are storing a few pieces of clothing for us (just in-case we have to come back during the winter months) and my bike and golf clubs have been lent to Heather (Mike's girlfriend). Someone might as well get the use out of them. Isn't it funny what you keep!
The unfortunate reality, now that I'm homeless, is that I don't have a home that ours kids can come home too, and the lack of contact with them is unsettling. I can rarely keep in contact with Thera (since the use of Skype is impossible surrounded by peering passer-by's) and I truly treasure the occasional phone call from Mike. Another reality is that I feel I have to justify the expense of such luxuries as a telephone or the internet and using a laundry mat has its own set of challenges too.
Throw in a menopausal woman and a newly retired male; put them in a confined box and take away a lot of their retirement income and you've got the picture! Such is the situation and that's why we are in plan c-d or is that plan x-y.
Here's another reality check...I am not the type of person who thinks that the grass is greener on the other side. In fact, I believe in my heart that Canada is truly a beautiful and privileged place to be. Will I enjoy this adventure?
I also have to address my fears, the biggest being that if something should happen to Steve while "out there", how will I cope? It has become quite obvious to me that I do not have all the skills and knowledge necessary to bring this baby home alone. I know very little about the troubleshooting of diesel engines. Funny, I know I can't do it all and yet I expect Steve to be able too. I realize that it's impossible to know everything there is to know, but it sure makes me feel so much better to be able to say that I can do everything. As a matter of fact, we both hope that we have the ability to navigate, trim the sails and do night watches, cope with the swelling seas and figure out the tides. One thing Steve does not have to worry about is the fear of being bored. There is so much for him to do (just keeping the boat in good working order), but he also can relax so easily. This is a skill I will have to learn. I hope I find some purpose as I travel down this new path. I hope it not only is a challenge (as it has bee so far) but also that I find peace and happiness while we embark on this voyage.
Anyway, we are going. You should see the grin on Steve's face when he speaks of his plans the sail south. I know how much Steve loathed going to work (especially the last 6 years) and I look forward to seeing him snorkel to his hearts content...and hope that he can even catch some lobster for dinner.
So here's hoping we sail your way. That's why I want to go. I want to visit all the places where family and friends reside. I hope to be able to stay long and enjoy the life that they have to share. If I can only see these places from a distance (from the water) and not embellish in the culture and surrounding nature of the place; then I will be a very disappointed sailing partner. Hum, maybe that's why I've kept my skis, bike and golf clubs. Everyone knows that Vancouver is the place where one can enjoy all of that. So, keep those extra bedrooms.
Please keep me informed as to what you and your three "young adults" are up too. Love to all.
Typical girls weekend!
Love the boots!
This just in: I hope Lee doesn't mind but I've copied and pasted her email. Thanks Lee. Photo of Lee and family 1989
I'm trying to imagine where you might be for this Father's Day? I've read your email a couple of times and I always marvel at the fact that you thought we were crazy selling everything and going traveling in the early 80's and yet here you are in 2009!
I also recall Steve being unable to enjoy 'yellow rice and maple leaves' and yet here you are adventuring with all the changes in diets, routines and lifestyles. Wonders never cease and I guess that is what makes life so interesting.
I'm also still getting used to the idea of you as a homeless person since a home was so important to you and not to me. You are now free of the responsibilities of home and I am neck deep in it. WOW! But my garden sure looks nice.
Stay healthy and have fun. A big hello to your Steve, Thera and Mike. We have an extra bedroom so perhaps you can sail our way. George Vancouver did it.
Photo: We can learn so much from our parents. Here my mum has finished a bottle of wine..ah, but there is still a drop left.. so it is tilted for a while, so that the last drop can be enjoyed...and you wondered why I'm a frugal sailor type..ha!
Three days of rain, and soaking wet we were fortunate to enjoy the company of Glenn and Valerie. Glenn is a friend of ours from our university days. We may have convinced them to NOT buy a sailboat (ha!). Long time friends, Petra and Colin (whom keep their boat moored at Bay Mooring, next door) joined us. Before you knew it, we were enjoying a wonderful potluck dinner on their boat. Fortunately for all of us, the red wine spill came out of their upholstery. Another stemmed wine glass discussion ensued. I think we have all decided that the new wine tumblers are the way to go.
It must be a women thing!
Here I am again enjoying another beautiful evening but this time, I'm sitting here with some sense of satisfaction. Today I managed to get the internet and I fired off emails to some of my friends (unfortunately, not all of my friends . . as the signal faded away); and some of you got back to me a.s.a.p. Thank you. It must be a women's thing. . to search endlessly for some sort of connection . . . some sort of conversation.
May/30/2009, Mississauga - Burlington
View from Mike's condo...oddly, this view is facing west and has captured Thera's condo (beneath the sunset) .. another rainy night.
Today, Steve and Mike played another round of golf at Lowville. I wanted to go, but thought it best to have a visit with my sister Christine and her husband Fred. I lucked out...Shari, Robert and Vanessa were also at home...while Amy was working (what's that?). It was short but good. I brought my camera, but didn't take any photos. Duh! I hugged them all.. tightly! See you next summer?
May/29/2009, Burlington Ontario
Well, someone has to go to work! Off mum went. Mum help's out at my sisters school each Friday (not bad for 82 eh!)
We spent the day shopping for odds and ends. Before dinner, Steve hung the chandelier while I sorted through the sewing stuff and made another "to-do" list.
This time, dinner was enjoyed with Heather and Mike and afterwards we enjoyed the movie "Slum-dog Millionaire"
May/28/2009, Mississauga - Burlington
Photo: Trying to be cool! Eye glasses on the top of our foreheads....ha!
We met Mike for lunch in Mississauga at the Spoon 'n Fork (a wonderful Thai restaurant). Mike p/u Nana and brought her home to his condo for dinner. Steve, I and mum headed home after spending a wonderful evening... dinner was slightly seared Tuna, Scallops, salad and fresh loaf of bread. We slept in the next morning...comfy beds or pure exhaustion.
Staying focused! Ha!
Golf day - Q107 2009 Derringer Invitational
Wednesday May 27th 2009
Deercreek Golf & Banquet Facility, Ajax
North Course (Diamond/Ruby)
We had a wonderful visit with our first neighbours, Kim and Marius Lacasse..... they tried to escape our friendship from Augustine Drive ... but we've kept up with their various moves from Burlington and are still great friends. BTW: I didn't win the lottery 649...poop!
Steve turned 54! What happened! Thanks Betty and Jack for a wonderful rest and celebration. You both look marvelous!
Another day of running around
May/14/2009, Burlington Ontario
Above is a photo of Steve slumping down onto a chair, while Heather arrives with another load from her car.
Today, we awoke to the knock of the building team...could you come back in a half an hour...
We spent another day running around, picking up alternators, hardware, batteries etc. etc...
We also had a hurried visit with mum. A 5:30 pm oil change appointment in Mississauga then back to Burlington...no worries, but I'm never going to get to visit with my friends from Aquafit...and I brought my bathing suit and everything...boo..hoo..
Do you remember walking into your first home?
May/13/2009, Burlington Ontario
Today Mike, Steve and I cleaned while waiting for the movers to arrive. The builder had been in the night before and fixed most items on our list. Today we saw the electricians, the wallboard in one wall was redone and the painter was in to re-do some trim. On our list we noticed a few tiles out of line in the master en-suite shower stall and today the builder's rep. came by to inform Mike that they were not happy with the tile work in the master bathroom en-suite and had decided to re-do it (the whole shower stall!). I couldn't believe it! Note to self: make sure you deal with a good builder~
More photo's attached in photo gallery.
It has been 2 weeks since we successfully moved out of our home in Waterdown. For me personally, it's been an emotional week of goodbyes. You may hate me when I say this, but I really loved my job and hated to leave behind all my co-workers, clients and participants. As an Aquafit Instructor you would not think this possible, however, I had to keep a stiff upper lip as each group pulled together a surprise "coffee pot luck dessert table" and lavished me with cards, gifts, well wishes, compliments and praises for a job well done... it is unreal for me to think that I won't be on deck anymore. Nine years as an Instructor. . I thought at that time, I was changing my life drastically.. ha!
Thank you all for making the last nine years so enjoyable and being such a huge part of my life! Because of you, I have grown so much in so many ways. Check out the Photo Gallery for more pics.
March/16/2009, Waterdown, Ontario
Me...I'm still packing.
We've only been in this house for 4 years. We downsized in June 2005, from what I still refer to as "home", where we resided for 18 years. It was there that we raised the kids, made life-long friends, enjoyed the challenge of renovating and the art of entertaining. As a family we skied, sailed, camped, canoed, kayaked, golfed, volunteered, worked and lived a full life. Burlington became our home.
We've been packing for months now. We have decided not to pay for storage of our stuff. Steve met a couple who owned a very large motor home. He said he made his living from owning a storage facility. He mentioned that when his wife and he decided to travel, they sold everything. According to him (and others that we've spoken too since), people tend to store their possessions for years, only to come back home and then throw it away. We are mostly giving all of our (newly bought) furniture and most items from this house to our son. He will finally get into his condo in May (which was supposed to be finished last October). The rest of our "stuff" that is worthy of the time spent to pack it into a box and cart it to a basement will reside there until we return. Oddly, there have been many trips to the Re-Use Center and Value Village. I hope we find good "stuff" in Value Village when we come back to Canada ... whenever that is.
Back to packing.