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Time Passing.

Time Passing.

My son and I were talking about old times this afternoon….brought back lots of memories. Maybe I’ve already written about these things before… I don’t know.

Back in the old times…I was sixteen. I had been wearing hand-me-down clothes for a few years because there just was no money around.

I picked strawberries… for one cent a pound, and they had to be hulled as we picked because they were for jam. The  most I ever picked in a day was 146 pounds, and got $1.46  for the whole days work.

I drew Christmas cards for ten cents each, or a dollar a dozen.

And I learned how to play a 24 base accordion that my brother gave me. Turns out he bought it on time, and didn’t pay for it. They came to take it away, but my Dad payed the amount owing and I got to keep it. Later on I had a 120 base accordion.

The community at Otter had a Whist and Dance every Saturday night. They played Whist for two hours, then danced for two hours.  The accordion player was leaving and that left just the drummer.

They asked me to take his place…so every Saturday night I played for two hours, and made $2.00

I eventually had enough money to buy a beautiful plum coloured coat. I was so proud of that coat!

Here For A Good Time!

Good Time.

“We’re here for a good time…not a long time…. The sun can’t shine every day.;

“When you don’t like what you’ve got, why don’t you change it?”

Words from a couple  of  “Trooper” songs…written by my son, Ra, some time ago.

When is the ‘good time’ over? And where do we go from here? I have many thoughts running around in my head…trying to give me the answer to a few of my questions. Like…Why have I been here on this earth?

My son Ra and I had a two hour meeting with a nurse today for her to tell me what my new classification will mean…and what they can do to make me comfortable. I have now been placed in “Palliative”.

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Ra and I

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Popcorn Balls

A Fall Day

It’s Hallowee’n today. All the little ones will be out gathering treats…or giving out tricks. The sad part is that it is raining and doesn’t look like it will clear up. Fog has rolled in, and it even looks like a Hallowee’n day

Do  you remember when your kids were little and they went door to door…. when they were too small to go alone! All the excitement of having a costume. My husband was good at making costumes, and each year we saved the three costumes, and the following  year when kids came to the door without  a costume, they would leave our place dressed in one if these.

He was also good at painting faces… so before it was time to go out, they came to our place and he would paint their faces.

We lived in a section of Vancouver called Fraserview…

there were at least two kids in every home, a stipulation of our rental agreement, and they were Veterans homes.   We would have well over a hundred kids. As time went by  some of those kids became too old to go door to door, so we didn’t have to supply quite as many treats.

I started making popcorn balls. It took me quite a while to make enough, but well worth it as the kids appreciated them.

When we were moving away from there, one little boy knocked at my door.  He said “My mom told me that you are moving away. Do you suppose that you could give me your recipe for the popcorn balls that  you give us at Hallowee’n?”

Popcorn Balls     (microwave)

1cup sugar
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup margarine or butter
1/2 cup popping corn, popped

Combine first four ingredients  in micro safe casserole Cover with plastic wrap. Micro High 6 minutes. Stir. Microwave uncovered for 4 minutes. 235 degrees F (*soft ball). If not to this point, High for another 2 minutes.

Place popped corn in large buttered bowl. Pour syrup in a thin stream over popped corn. Stir well. Rub hands with butter to form balls. Place on waxed paper. Wrap in waxed paper to give  out.

Makes 12 to 15 balls

It  looks like it is clearing up. The rain has stopped, the fog has gone away, and the sky is brightening.. The little kids will be happy!

Rambling

Rambling!

For more than two weeks now, we have been putting up with one elevator  to move us  up and down as we need to travel up and down, or meals andw activities.  It has become more annoying as each day goes by.

I probably told  you that we had a new, five Star chef,,,,boy, is she good. Last night at supper was a ‘topper’ as far as I’m concerned.

Souvlaki, Tzatziki  (spelling?) and a Greek Salad…with her home made ice cream, which was served in either a bowl or a cone! Talk about delicious! Things are looking up around here!

My niece and her husbands’ black Lab became ill on the weekend, and had to be put down.    Reading her blog about Tynan brought back memories from our little ‘Skippy’. His legs were so short he had to skip to get up the curb. He was a ‘Heintz 57 breed’……you know, a mixture!1978:00:00 Our dog, Skippy.JPG

Shortly after we put a new carpet in the front room, my husband ended up with a broken leg. He was lying on the chesterfield… and called Skippy to come to him. Now Skippy knew that he was not allowed on that new carpet. He also knew he had to ‘come’ when he was called.  What                                was he to do?

You could almost see the wheels turning in his head!

There was an easy chair between the couch and the hall. So, Skippy jumped up on that chair and walked across it and right over to the couch…and  on up to the other end and gave my husband a big LICK. He did not touch the carpet!

Flowers On Display

Flowers on Display.

Along with the Fall decorations that I used in my last post, we have a basket full hanging on the wall. I took a picture, but I was sitting on my motorized chair…and the basket  is not straight… and I cant remember how to straighten it! Tilt your head just a little and that will straighten it for you!Fall decorations

Have you seen those Phony flowers? They come in all shapes and sizes. We have some of those, but also ‘live’ plants. The real thing!

Time to wander!….

My friend Janice has two green thumbs… and she loves her ‘garden’. A lot of it is in large pots out on her deck, but more fill up the spaces in her suite. She is generous in sharing, and when there is something special in smaller containers, she takes them down to the craft room, or the main lobby for all of us to enjoy.

Amarillas 1Right now she has three fabulous Amaryllas in bloom!

They all belong to the ‘WOW’ family! All three are on display where we can enjoy them. She was really pleased to get the photos I took for her records.amrillas3 copy

I am so thankful  that I had figured out how to use my camera in time to get photos in the past couple of days.ama3

I have just started taking pictures while sitting in my ‘mobile’ chair…not that easy! I do stand up to take some of them, but I am a bit shaky working that way.

Today is Thanksgiving, and is a holiday. We had our turkey dinner and stuffing with pumpkin pie at noon yesterday…At supper tonight we had a delightful surprise. Cream cheese and lox on a croissant. Our new Chef is really making a difference!

Fall Season

Fall Season

Something much brighter than what I have been writing about…you know, elevators that don’t elevate. or descend!

This is the fall season here in Canada… not sure what season it is where you live! Our Thanksgiving Day is Sunday. We have decorations up all over the lobby, dining room and Tree Top Lounge (on the main floor).

Here I go…all over the place again. Come on along!

I haven’t used my camera in a long time. The camera was not broken…but the cord thing that I plugged into it would allow me to transfer my photos to the computer quite easily. Well, then I had to use the card thing…. and that took a while for me to find out (through my son) how to use that. And even more time to know how to transfer them.

Believe it or not…I finally figured it out a few minutes ago!fall dec 1

So what has that got to do with fall decorations?

When I was down for supper, I took my camera along, and snapped a few photos so I could test it out. I hope you enjoy seeing these handsome fellows.fall dec 2y

As I wrote this a few days ago, it is  bit out of place…Today is Thanksgiving day! Will save the rest for a new post!

Back In Time

Back In Time

Memories! Little things spark some of my memories. Like having my shower this morning… it took me back to eighty years ago!

This morning, I stepped into the shower, sat on the stool, and turned on the tap…. Oh, Oh,…that’s not true! I have help with my showers, so all I have to do is step in and sit on the stool! I’m allowed two showers a week!

Back then… someone went to the well, drew two buckets of water and proceeded to carry them up the hill to the house. The well was by the barn, which made it easier to water the horses and milk cows.

We had half a water tank attached at the back of the wood stove. When the cold water was poured in, it was like guns going off for a few minutes! While the water was heating, a wash tub was brought in and a sheet was hung across for privacy, and that’s where you had a bath. No showers! And you only had a bath once a week!

Where did the week go? It was shower day again this morning, so I know I started this a week ago! That’s about all I know!

I did do some work on those little cards…each one done individually by hand… and painted some of them…I did some of the drawing, as well… so that’s where part of the week went.

Another part went waiting for an elevator with room for me.  One of our two elevators is out of order. The person that came to fix it on Friday found that he needed a part…but the office was already closed, so we have to wait until they open after the weekend to see if they have it ‘in stock’, or if they have to order it from somewhere!

In the meantime, it is quite the scramble to go down or back up, for meals. When the ‘first sitting’ is heading for home, others are going down for the second sitting. A lot of people!…about eighty!

Another week has gone by, so I had better post this and see if I can come up with something to write about!

Sorry, no pictures!

And More Changes!

And More Changes!

For the last while I’ve been having problems with my oxygen. It’s complicated, but finally, as of this morning, it got “fixed”.

It goes like this. The cylinders were not filling properly part of the time. My setting is 3.5, and they turned it back to 3 so that the machine would work properly…but I didn’t! This has been going on for a couple of weeks or more. We had to supply a paper trail to prove what my setting was supposed to be.

Okay? Once we got the paper trail (via computer email and fax machines,) they brought me a different machine that would handle the higher number.. Clear? Maybe not? All I really know is that it makes a big difference in how I feel with my oxygen setting at the right level for my breathing.

Here I go again… wandering all over the place.Danielle, Louise, Quinn, Norma and Elsie

I have a niece who lives in Quesnel, B.C. About five hundred miles or so from Vancouver… in the Cariboo. We hadn’t seen each other for a few years, although we’ve kept in touch by phone or emails.

I got a call to let me know that she and three of her family were coming down and would come for a visit. I thought there might be some illness requiring a doctors appointment…but no, they came to visit me!

The first visit included Ra and Debbie, my son and daughter in law and was very special… Five generations were here! Of course I’m the oldest, then my niece, Elsie, her daughter, Louise, Louise’ daughter, Danielle, and Danielle’s daughter, Quinn…a sweet little miss who is four years old.

They stayed in a hotel down by the beach, and the second day just my niece and her daughter came, while mom and the little one got to play on the beach. And the third day, they all came in the morning, and left for Vancouver at noon, and flew home the next day.

I love them dearly, and this visit proved just how important family is.  Hard to hold back tears when you think that we might never see each other again. I feel so blessed that they came to see me this time.

As my son keeps telling me “You’re a lucky girl”!

Yes, I am!

September.

September

It’s already September, 2014!

Time to get back to some sort of a routine.I love September…usually still beautiful weather, but minus the heat!

Most years, it means that kids go back to school… not this year in British Columbia.. Teachers strike.

I remember the first day of school for each of my three boys. Gary was so proud that he could now go with his two brothers!  And even more so when he could come home at lunch time and tell us “I got A in spelling!”1958-09-00 - Gary's going to school!

While the three of them were at school, we had gone out and bought a tape recorder, with only one tape. We hooked it up under the table and didn’t tell them it was there, and turned on all through lunch. When they had finished eating we played it back for them. Pretty funny!

I would like to have saved that first tape, but we only had the one, so it got used over and over. Ra used it to record his puppet shows, then all he had to do was operate the hand puppets when the show was on!!

We recorded one of our sing-a-long sessions…and my husband said he would never sing again after hearing himself on that tape! Instead, he would play the mouth organ…blues harp. He was really good at that.

Here I go off in another direction….want to follow?

You know, sometimes when you sit down to write the words just seem to flow through your fingers…. other times…nothing. Tonight is one of the ‘nothing’ times. So, I might as well go and do something else for this evening…might even watch some TV.

Another day….maybe it will get in the mood today.

One  of my friends at our assisted living place is a pretty good card customer of mine….she is always asking me if I could do smaller cards to minimize the postage on cards being mailed to Europe or Britain. And I have told her, each time, that I don’t do smaller cards.

Well, things have changed a bit.

There’s a table in the craft room down stairs… anything you don’t want, leave it and anyone that comes along can have it .

The other day there were two packets of different sized card stock, and envelopes…Guess who got them?I’m doing the smaller cards, but have to do each one by hand. Not putting them in the  computer, or I would have to set up a whole new system!

Doing these smaller cards by hand triggered a long lost memory! I remember when I was sixteen, seventeen doing cards by hand and I sold them for ten cents a piece or a dollar a dozen!…That’s how bad the money situation was back at that time.

PNE

1958:08:24 career, PNE Gate designed and built by HArryPNE.

I mentioned that the PNE was on now. (Pacific National Exhibition)

That was a very busy time for us as we built some of the booths. One customer wanted a ceiling put in their booth. I got a bright idea that we could use pea vine , tacked all around the sides and gathered to the middle.

We went back out after supper, and took the boys with us.

They got pretty tired while we were trying to get the ceiling in there… so we drew up some chairs, covered them with newspaper and they went to sleep….while we struggled on. It wouldn’t drape like we  thought it should, so had to take it all down and come up with a better idea. I don’t remember what the better idea was.

Another customer was a furniture store. (Not the one that wouldn’t pay us!) We got burlap and had it dyed black and fire proofed. I cut it and sewed it together for a large drape. Our house looked like a barber shop after a full day of cutting hair! We draped the back of the fairly large booth. Mickey cut “frames” out of plywood,and even though they were flat, with some painting they looked three dimensional.

He wired large branches into the three frames…and I made large flowers from some kind of foam, and wired them onto the branches…some leaves, as well. They looked pretty good. It was a very attractive looking booth.

The first year we put the paintings in the PNE we were on our own. We were set up across from a food court, and they had an organist playing there. He got to know our favorite songs. He would look over and see that we were tired, and starting to sag a bit, so he would come on really loud with “our” song, and it helped to get through very tiring days.

The following two years we went as part of a group. MIckey had a broken leg during one of these sessions, so I had to do all the “bull” work.

Before this time, while the boys were around six or seven, we would take them to the PNE. I made sandwiches to take so we could save on food. They had a pretty good time, even though they didn’t get to ride on the train that took you around the areas.

One year we had ‘seen everything’ and were heading for the exit gates. Ra found five dollars on the ground, and was so excited… he paid for all of us to go on that train. What he didn’t know… his dad  dropped the fiver for him to find!

The PNE runs from the middle of August until Labour Day, and then School starts. For the exhibiters, it is a long stretch… we were there from before ten in the morning when the buildings opened to the public….until late in the evening. I’m not sure, but I think it was ten at night.

When I was a kid, the PNE booths would give out small boxes of their samples… that was fun to collect them and then we could play ‘store’.

The PNE parade used to go through the main part of down town Vancouver, ending up at the PNE grounds. Even that has been changed!

My husband designed the view that greeted patrons as they came to the main gate one year…., and quite a few of the booths.