happiness

Come to my window

The boy and I went for a walk with the dogs and when we came back found my niece sitting on the deck, visiting through the window with the girl in her bedroom. Brilliant. I’m so happy these cousins had the chance to have a bit of a visit – everyone is getting a bit lonely. Everyone except the pets who all think us being home is the best thing that’s ever happened

Who’s a good boy?
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Pizza and Shepherd’s Pie

Usually when I finish a class we celebrate with pizza from Community Flatbread in Cochrane.

My last class ended March 15 which was just when things were beginning to get real here.
In the last 5 weeks things have changed and Community Flatbread is offering pre-made food for sale (as well as some grocery type food).

These little things are what brings some normalcy to a situation that is anything but normal, and I’m so grateful we are able to enjoy them.
(We also bought Shephard’s Pie from them that is absolutely to die for).

Community Flatbread is also one of the businesses in town who are taking donations so that those in our town who can’t afford groceries at this time can receive some as a gift.
I ❤️ our town and the amazing people in it!!

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Easter 2020

Like most of us, we had a much different Easter this year. For the last few years we have been creating a new tradition by going to Victoria and attanding service at the Christ Church Cathederal -which really is ressurecting my old childhood traditions (see what I did there?).

So, while we dream of a moment like this one

Instead we have a moment like this one

And that kind of sums up 2020 so far – not exactly what we expected or had really wanted.

However, instead of walking the logs on the beach, having tea at Murchie’s, going to Buchart Gardens, and having my annual visit with my dear friend, we are doing different things. We are studying, playing cards, visiting, playing, and spending time really talking about the deep things in our lives. That is also a blessing. We are healthy – that is a huge blessing. We are home, safe, and loved.

We are also thinking of those who are sick, or home alone, This is a time for hope and celebration, but also a time for love and showing kindness where possible (and it’s always possible).

Happy Easter – everything will be ok ❤️

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happiness

The sun is back

The sun is out, snow is melting, and mud is everywhere. Springtime in Alberta (which means it could still get cold and snow at any time).

It also means the cows are calving and it brings much joy to my soul to see those babies. We took the dogs out for a walk today and checked out some of the new arrivals.

Even though the three of us have always done a lot together, I’m finding that we are spending a lot of quality time with each other and I consider that a blessing.

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Bears and eagles and calves (oh my)

The boy and I took the dogs out for a walk today which made us all smile. It’s been so gross the last few days we haven’t really wanted to go out at all, but we decided it was good for our mental health to get some fresh air. And it was good for us, and for the dogs who didn’t stop smiling the whole time.

I feel very blessed that although we are unable to go anywhere with social distancing, we are able to get outside here and kind of reset our souls. We came across my nephew and the cousins got to have a distance appropriate visit yelling at each other. I saw two bald eagles fly overhead (I love those birds). And we got to see the pregnant cows and a few of their new babies. All the signs of spring except for the snow on the ground – and in Alberta that is also kind of a sign of spring!

Happiness can be found in tiny moments during the day. I remember discovering this when I started this blog years ago and I would spend the entire day searching for a moment of happiness in the dark life I was living. Sometimes those moments just happen, and sometimes we make them happen. But what I know for sure is that true happiness, the inner peace kind of happiness, that comes from within and from our connection to God, or our Higher Power.

Bear- happiest dog in the world!
Cousin visit social distancing style
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Staying connected

It seems that often in the darkest of times we see the most beautiful rays of light. People are calling each other and checking in. People are using Facetime and Skype to visit and catch up. We are able to spend more time with our families if we live with them, or virtually if we are not.

Of course, this is a more dangerous time if you’re living in a house that was unsafe to begin with and I am mindful to say prayers for those people often.

I’ve got a cousin who is on lockdown in Rome with her family, and over the last few days we’ve been sending videos back and forth instead of texts. All pride goes to the side as we stop caring how our hair looks or what we are wearing, and just send our faces and voices back and forth sharing little moments of our lives.

That human connection is important, and while we may feel isolated in our homes we are so lucky that we have other ways of communicating with each other and we need to take advantage of that.

As an introvert I often find going out of my way to socialize uncomfortable, but I’m discovering that for my extraverted friends being forced to stay at home is the same level of discomfort I experience at loud parties or busy places. These extraverts in my life I’ve allowed to “adopt” me and look after me in stressful busy life situations, and I feel now that it’s the job of us introverts to adopt our extraverted friends and show them how we live life on the inside.

I love all of you, my friends and family. I’m so gratfeful to have a strong circle of love support.

Everything will be ok ❤️

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Checking in

This morning the chaplain at the school the girl goes to called home to make sure she was doing ok and to let her know that she could call at any time if she wanted. We all ended up talking to her for a good 10 minutes and when it was over the mood of the house was much more peaceful. I’m sure part of that is because she goes to a smaller, Catholic school, but part of that is that their chaplain is just really awesome. My kids have both always spoken so highly of her. But to think of the time she gave to call all of her “kids” just to make sure they were doing ok – that’s a pretty exceptional teacher.

And actually, one of the boy’s instructors from SAIT set up video calls with each student individually, and when he got off his the boy said it also was a mental health check in. He said the instructor didn’t talk about class, but wanted to make sure he was doing ok

I’ve been seeing some really beautiful things in this, people reaching out, people really sharing. I’ve had many of my people check in on me (virtually), and I’ve been trying to do the same. There really is a lot of love in the world and it seems as though that light shines even brighter in this darkness.

Everything is going to be ok ❤️

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Social Distancing – ranch style

I got myself out for a drive today. The last few days have given me a lot of insight as to how mom must have felt most of her life- not able to go out and be with people with out a lot of planning going into it (not that I’m actually seeing people, that was her – but I’ve been able to understand a lot better now how she felt). Granted her reasons were different, but it was a virus related (polio) illness that changed her life.

However, as far as isolation goes, we are socially distanced at one of the best places in the world in my opinion. As I was driving, I looked at the cows getting ready to calf, the snow, the mountains, the mud even. I felt an appreciation for things that I haven’t felt in a while. God really gave us a beautiful world to live in and to look after.

The Homestead
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happiness

Pink blankie

Some of you may know that I started off my life with a beautiful blue blankie. Much like Linus I took that thing everywhere – it was my security and comfort. Until one day when blankie was stolen from our hotel and never seen again.

It was traumatizing. Seriously. I was 5. My poor parents had the hotel on high alert and even drove back the next day to look for him. But blankie was gone.

Mom tried to give me her old pink blankie that was the same style, and a few of her old stuffed animals, but nothing did it. I have mourned the loss of blankie my whole life.

About 9 years ago I bought a huge, fluffy pink blanket for the girl’s bed. It turned out that while she didn’t care much for it, that it quickly became my comfort. I’d take it to curl up on the couch, to lie in bed, and it even went on a couple of road trips.

The last few years it’s been a much loved tv watching couch blankie. The other day I noticed that it really wasn’t looking great and I had this strong sense that it was time to let pink blankie go.

But I didn’t get it out of the house right away and it ended up on the floor. Turns out that while I thought jasmine liked to cuddle with me, that she really liked pink blankie. And she’s got her own set of issues to deal with so maybe she needs a blankie too.

I think I’ll make her a little pink blankie pillow

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Strauss

I ended up in a coffee shop today to do my studying. It wasn’t the plan, but sometimes you have to roll with what life gives you and that’s how the day played out. I really wanted some quiet time to try and understand this course and I was kind of hesitant about being somewhere in public that could be loud.

But as it turned out, I was exactly where I needed to be. There were a few other people hanging out, visiting, there was a child playing with some toys, and Strauss was playing in the background. I had forgotten how much my soul loves Strauss. I became obsessed with his music in my early 20s and discovered at that time that my music hating grandma loved him too. She was in her earlier stages of dementia and having a lot of dis-ease about her memory (naturally), and we used to sit here in Grandma’s kitchen for hours and listen to the waltzes. This kitchen has seen a lot, she looked after everyone here in this room, and in later years we all helped look after her in the same spot.

Now that I’m back home again and finishing up my work, I have Strauss playing quietly in the background, and I feel content.

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