Friday, December 28, 2018

A New Year Awaits

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas Day.
Since Christmas Day is the beginning of the 12 Days of  Christmas I know some of you will celebrate
until January 5, 2019.
Some people have already reported back to work as they don't get a lot of time off.

Wherever you are and whatever you are doing, I hope you are able to slow down the pace a bit and enjoy this season.

I also wanted to wish each and every one of you a fantastic year ahead in 2019!

I  will be taking an extended break from the blog as
I pursue some personal plans and goals.
I hope to write about it in the months to come.

Wishing you all the best
until I see you again in Blogland!


Sunday, December 23, 2018

A Quick Annual Trip

A few family members and I took a quick road trip to visit my niece.  We had a lovely time and took her to lunch, a movie and dinner as well as had a nice visit and delivered presents. My niece didn't let me forget any of  my promises right down to the popcorn at the movies and the hot chocolate before taking her home. She is so cute and we had a brief but loving visit with her.

We rushed back to Vancouver Saturday to try and avoid the snow that was forecast for the mountain highway. I was very pleased that we beat all the bad weather and traffic though we certainly saw a lot of traffic heading north. We made a stop at Harrison Hot Springs to try and find eagles that were resting there before making their annual migration but we didn't find any. Along the highway two passed us in flight overhead and I spotted one young one (at least 5 years old because it had a white head but it's body was small) perched on a tree as we rode over a bridge. I couldn't get a photo.

Since there were no eagles to be found we stopped at Wal-mart in Chilliwack. It was super busy with long line ups at the cashiers in all lanes including express lane check out. Even the self-service aisles were full which is saying a lot because Canadians really dislike self-service as a check out option.   My companions decided to skip shopping but I didn't know that so I wandered about buying a few groceries. Fortunately the express lane I was in was moving along quickly.

I stayed at the Thompson Hotel downtown and it was the first time I've stayed there. I enjoyed my short stay. All the staff was friendly.  My room was quiet and the bed was comfy. It was a bit cold overnight and the shower wasn't very hot but it was good enough.  I could have adjusted the heating but I was too lazy to figure it out.  I was disappointed that the pool and hot tub were not functioning but there is nothing the hotel can do about a pipe problem except to fix it. The breakfast was very satisfactory.  I would stay at the hotel again if the price was right but I do also like to check out different hotels.

Over the years I've stayed at 6  different hotels and 4 motels In Kamloops. I prefer several of the hotels (Sheraton Four Points, Holiday Inn on the North Shore, Pacific Inn & Suites and the Thompson) and have stayed at the first 3 on several occasions each. I would not recommend other hotels (unnamed) I've stayed in because of cramped rooms, dark rooms, poor breakfast set up or bit sketchy area. I also recommend the Fortune Motel on the North Shore.  It is very clean and roomy and they have a rudimentary kitchen set up if you like or need to cook or have snacks that need refrigeration. You need to specify that you want a kitchenette or you will get a standard room. They also have a swimming pool though I haven't used it.  Across the busy street you will find a small mall with a full scale grocery story, fast food,banking and so on. The only drawback is it is on a busy street though after hours the traffic is really not that bad. You can ask for a room facing toward the mountains and you should be fine. Also the motel is a cinder block motel just in case that is important information to you.


A nice breakfast was included in the room cost.  Sausages, scrambled eggs, waffles, cold cereals, various breads and muffins, yogurts, fresh fruit, juices, water, coffee and tea were all on offer.

I took my swimming suit but unfortunately a pipe had burst in the hotel's new pool area so it was not usable while I was there. I can't count the number of times this has happened to me while visiting various cities and towns. I wasn't too upset though as it allowed me to get more sleep before breakfast.

My view looked out over the parking lot, the shopping mall, the bus transit area and the industrial park and mountains beyond. The last several years these mountains had snow on them and there was lots of snow in the valley. This year there is none but that can change rather quickly. The first year I spent in Kamloops the snow didn't fall until December 24th on Christmas Eve.

The residential development on the mountains is located on Indian Reserve lands. There is a wonderful view of the city from up the hill.

Sorry for the blurred photos.
You can see how the weather changes dramatically.
All the snow you see is less than an hour south of Kamloops.

Linking in with

Our World Tuesday this week.

Enjoy your Christmas holidays.
 Christmas Tree on Google Android 9.0

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Time is Passing So Quickly

We've been having gray skies and buckets of rain all week.
The news reports a lot of flooding in various parts of the city.
Other than a trip out on Sunday and some errands on Monday I've been staying inside so I am snug and dry.
A wind storm has now been forecast so I spent a bit of time today moved the patio furnishings and storing the patio umbrella so it doesn't blow away and damage things.

I've noticed how very dark it is now. Morning light comes later and evening dark comes earlier.
Thankfully the Winter equinox will arrive soon and gradually the days will become longer and lighter.

My blog post is entitled "Time is Passing So Quickly" because despite my early preparations I don't feel ready for Christmas.
I did complete Christmas shopping and wrapping and Christmas cards both paper and electronic. I also did the Christmas decorating. I've managed to meet with a few friends before the holidays and have one or two more to see in the next week.
 But there is still a lot to do: cleaning, sorting, paperwork, a bit of cooking and preparing to travel out of town.
I am not able to get much done each day.  I only do what I feel like doing so my list of things doesn't change much from day to day. At least I'm enjoying the Christmas lights during these dark days and I'm sure I'll get everything done that is important.


My latest read is Becoming by Michelle Obama, former First Lady of the United States of America. I read it quickly and I found it very well written and interesting.  I shared the book with a number of friends all of whom told me they had the book on their reading lists.
Mrs. Obama will be here in Vancouver on March 21st and there is a lot of excitement around her visit. 
I'm not sure what I'll be doing then so I haven't purchased a ticket which means I'll probably miss out altogether. These kinds of events with well known people always sell out here.

I've read 57 books so far this year. My original reading goal was only 35 books but since July it seems I've been reading a lot of books.  I just kept increasing the goal as I read more and more books.
I am hoping to complete another 1 or 2 books before the end of the year.


I haven't had time to work on crafting too much but I did manage to make 2 globes out of a few craft items from the Dollar Tree, Michael's Craft store and jars from my cupboard. I enjoyed this little craft and will know how to do a better job if I make some again in future.

A few weeks ago I also started the pink and berry afghan. I'm still not finished and I've run out of time to make the black, gray and white afghan I was hoping to have finished by now.
I guess that means I've made 8 afghans this year rather than 9.
Next year I may only make 1 or 2.
I'm not sure yet what craft I will focus on. Perhaps I will finally knit a pair of socks or make more doilies to use up some of my crochet string.

Little by little I tie the loose ends in the back. There are so many of them that I'm still working on it. I would say I am about 2/3 done. It's not my favourite thing to do so I don't work at it that often.
Once I've done that I have to block the afghan to help give it proper shape.


I've also been catching up on watching several movies during the wet and gloomy weather.

Here are the movies and a brief summary of each:

Nancy - A strange story about a young woman named Nancy who becomes increasingly convinced she was kidnapped as a child. When she meets a couple whose daughter went missing decades earlier, the couple's doubts give way to willful belief.
By the Sea - Written and directed by Angelina Jolie while she was still married to Brad Pitt. The scenery and the costumes are very appealing but the story itself is very shallow and not my cup of tea. Set in France during the mid-1970s, Vanessa, a former dancer, and her husband Roland, an American writer, travel the country together. They seem to be growing apart, but when they linger in one quiet, seaside town they begin to draw close to some of its more vibrant inhabitants, such as a local bar/café-keeper and a hotel owner.
A Star is Born - with Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga. I saw this story years ago with Barbara Streisand and Kris Kristofferson. I liked it at the time but I wasn't that enamoured of this newer version. Lady Gaga has received a lot of accolades for her acting role but personally I wasn't that impressed. Her acting is very flat and monotone however her singing is just as impressive as always I was very impressed by Bradley Cooper who does a wonderful job of playing an alcoholic singer. The movie however has a very sad ending.
The Girl in the Spider's Web - Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist find themselves caught in a web of spies, cyber-criminals and corrupt government officials – both in Sweden and in the United States – whom are only known as The Spider Society. A movie filled with many twists and turns. The role of Lisbeth is very capably played by Claire Foy who you may remember from her performance as a young Queen Elizabeth in the series "The Crown".

I'd be interested in your thoughts if you have seen any of these movies or read Michelle Obama's book.


Given that most people, including bloggers are very busy right now with Christmas plans or travel plans, I probably won't be posting much before Christmas. It will depend on how much I get done in the next short while.

Wishing you all a wonderful next few weeks


a very Merry Christmas!

A card I purchased from a Kenyan artist on the streets of Nakuru.


Joining in with


Tuesday, December 11, 2018

A Few Seasonal Images

The tree this year is much narrower and a bit shorter so it can be squeezed into small spaces.

I made these two winter scenes in jars but it's hard to keep the stickers stuck to the sides.




Today in Vancouver we were supposed to have record rainfall of between 40-60 centimeters. I stayed indoors and watched television and internet news to learn about street flooding in various parts of the Greater Vancouver area.
These photos were taken from the safety of my balcony.

 Joining in a bit late with

Thursday, December 6, 2018

November Ended on a Bright Note


Where I live I seldom see a rainbow even though it rains a lot.
I'm not sure why that is.

So when I do see a rainbow it is an exciting event.


Rainbow (source Wikipedia)

A rainbow is a meteorological phenomenon that is caused by reflection, refraction and dispersion of light in water droplets resulting in a spectrum of light appearing in the sky. It takes the form of a multicoloured circular arc. Rainbows caused by sunlight always appear in the section of sky directly opposite the sun.
Rainbows can be full circles. However, the observer normally sees only an arc formed by illuminated droplets above the ground, and centered on a line from the sun to the observer's eye.
In a primary rainbow, the arc shows red on the outer part and violet on the inner side. This rainbow is caused by light being refracted when entering a droplet of water, then reflected inside on the back of the droplet and refracted again when leaving it.
In a double rainbow, a second arc is seen outside the primary arc, and has the order of its colours reversed, with red on the inner side of the arc. This is caused by the light being reflected twice on the inside of the droplet before leaving it.
It is difficult to photograph the complete semicircle of a rainbow in one frame, as this would require an angle of view of 84°. For a 35 mm camera, a wide-angle lens with a focal length of 19 mm or less would be required. Now that software for stitching several images into a panorama is available, images of the entire arc and even secondary arcs can be created fairly easily from a series of overlapping frames.

As I sat at my computer desk and was looking out toward the mountains I spotted some colour just beyond the leaves of my bush.  I went out to the balcony to take a closer look and discovered a rainbow.

I went out 3 different times to capture photos.
Though it started to pour rain I wanted
to be sure and get at least one or two decent ones.
I didn't take the photo as instructed by Wikipedia notes above. I just went out and did my best to capture the rainbow while it lasted.
On my 3rd attempt I was blessed to see two rainbows!
As it states in Wikipedia, the 2nd arc does have the colour red on the inside of the arc.

I felt very blessed and extremely excited to see one rainbow but even more excited to see two of them!

In the Bible there is a scripture
 where God promises Noah he will never again wipe out the population of the earth by flooding. He says the rainbow will signify his promise.

There are a few other verses that deal with the rainbow.
One of them is Revelation 4:1,3

"After these things I looked, and behold, a door opened in heaven . . . 3. And He Who was sitting was in appearance like a jasper stone and a sardius stone; and a rainbow was around the throne . . ."

This is a beautiful and happy image.

I feel expectant after seeing the rainbows and am looking forward to a wonderful month in December.


I know the Christmas season can be a difficult time for many who are hurting and lonely.
If that's you and you are reading this I share this thought with you.

Linking up with

Skywatch Friday


Friday Foto Friends

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Enjoying a Clear Day

When it rains a lot it's always a pure joy to see the sky on a clear day.
Even better when the view is so lovely

*Total rainfall to date in 2018 1008.6 mm 
Source: Vancouver Weather Stats

I also love the twinkling light at night 
the cross on the top of the steeple.

Even though I've done a lot to prepare for Christmas I feel the advancement of time.
So much to do yet but the most important thing is not to stress and to enjoy the Christmas season.

Linking up with

Our World Tuesday

 Enjoy your week ahead.


A Few Days in April

April 6, 2024  April 8, 2024 April 9, 2024 I'm linking up with Skywatch Friday this week. Thank you for stopping by!