Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge – Letter U

…..this week’s fun foto challenge needs the letters o and u in the word

Focus

Fish Eye Focus Indoors…..

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….through the back window

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….and outdoors

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Can you guess what I got for Christmas?

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

…..despite the lack of snow people are getting into the Christmas spirit

While walking in the dark a few nights ago I decided to take some photos with my new iPhone. Before you think I splashed out on the newest version, I didn’t. These photos were taken with an iPhone 6.

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Advent Calendar #2

….another calendar for my other two girls

When I saw the jewellery organizer with pockets I knew I wanted it for another advent calendar. The only problem with this piece is that the pockets are a little on the small side and and there are only 21 of them.  On the plus side there are more hangers on the back of it and it can be used after the advent season is over. If the girls don’t need a jewellery organizer they can put it in their bathroom and put small toiletries and make-up in the pockets.

I would highly recommend gathering items for this kind of organizer well in advance. I’m debating whether to wrap each individual item or just place them in the pockets as is.  My fear is that the wrapping paper might make some of the items too large for the small pockets. Part of the fun of these types of advent calendars is unwrapping a new item each day. Maybe I’ll wrap some and leave the rest unwrapped.

Here is what it looks like before it is filled and after it’s filled. I’m already 3 days late giving this to my daughter and her wife so I’ll have to decide tonight  how to present it. I’m hoping to drop it off tomorrow. IMG_0204IMG_0205

 

Advent Calendar #1

every day, from December 1st to the 24th a new surprise to unwrap

Years ago my daughter and husband collaborated on a project where I was given a small gift every day from Dec. 1st to the 24th. Each gift was carefully wrapped and placed in a take away container and set before me at the breakfast table. I was so touched by this gesture that I’ve wanted to do a similar ‘advent calendar’ for someone special in my life. This year I finally got my act together and did just that. In fact I created two different ‘calendars’ for my two daughters and their families. Today I’ll share the first one with you.

At first I was just going to create a calendar for my granddaughter but then I decided to include presents for my daughter and son-in-law as well. In fact I even threw in a gift for their dog, Lucy. The hard part of this project was choosing what to put the presents into. I decided to use an over the door shoe organizer that had 24 pockets. After searching the internet and several stores I finally found the perfect vessel. After Christmas, I thought that the organizer could be used to store some of Winnie’s toys.

Apart from buying things that would be fun to open and be somewhat practical and not break the bank, the next most difficult part was wrapping each gift.

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I won’t kid you and say that this project is simple and quick to put together. If I were to do it again I would start buying small gifts months in advance and wrap them as soon as I bought them. It was, however, fun to do and now that December 1st is here I’ve been blessed with photos of my granddaughter’s reaction to the first gift that she unwrapped this morning.

 

The Best of 2016

…..despite the terrible events that took place in 2016 on a personal level it was a wonderful year

Most people would agree that 2016 had to be a terrible year for natural disasters, untimely deaths of beloved celebrities, horrendous terrorist attacks around the world, the Syrian refugee crisis, Brexit and a nasty election campaign in the U.S.

Even on a personal note, 2016 hasn’t been all sunshine and roses but there were many memorable and special moments.

In January our son ended up staying with us for an extra week before heading back to London, England. The circumstances of his extended stay aren’t exactly positive but we did have him with us and for me that was special. By the way, at the end of December of last year, he slipped on the ice and broke his upper arm and he required surgery. The surgery was successful and he was released from the hospital on January 1st. IMG_7188

In February my friend M celebrated her 64th birthday and my niece, S, her 26th.

The biggest event in February was our daughter’s wedding to her first love and partner of 10 years. They met on Feb. 10th so they decided on their 10th anniversary they would make it official and tie the knot. What a special day!

In March while we experienced snow, our future daughter-in-law was sitting in an outdoor caffe in Assisi planning her wedding.

In May we celebrated Mother’s Day with the family in the backyard (a little chilly) and at school we had our Forest of Reading celebration, Jump Rope for Heart and our annual Fun Fair. Winnie also had her first swimming lesson and her Daddy started Go Cart racing. Also A and J and their brother-in-law, G, ran the Sporting Life 10k.

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In June two of my colleagues retired from teaching, my very good friend, A, celebrated her 75th birthday and our son and his love were married in London at City Hall.

Our school choir also sang at a Blue Jays game and we put on our annual outdoor extravaganza at school.

July was the highlight month of the year for our family. We took a trip of a lifetime. My sister and her family from Calgary and my two daughters and their families and my husband and I travelled to Italy to celebrate the union of our son, B, and his beautiful Iranian bride, Az. We travelled for the first 11 days visiting places like Venice, Florence, Bologna and Lucca and then we all met in Assisi where the actual wedding took place. After three days in Assisi we made one more stop in Rome before flying back home.

In August  I was able to open up the cottage and spent about 5 weeks there off and on. My husband and I celebrated our 41st wedding anniversary and I had another birthday.

September brought a new school year and my last first day of school. My husband had  been coaching a small group of boys from our extended family to get them ready for this year’s cross country team and they were all entered into the Railpath Community Run. In fact there were 11 of us from the family that ran that day. I was happy to do 5k without stopping in 45 minutes. At least I wasn’t the slowest person on the course. The boys did really well and some of them walked away with some prizes.

October was another busy month with a lot of milestone birthdays. My husband turned 65, my dad 90, my son-in-law 40 and Winnie celebrated her 1st birthday. I also organized and ran my last book fair school. We raised the largest sum of money ever. I now I have the fun job of buying books and supplies for the library and classrooms.

In November my oldest daughter, A, celebrated her 37th birthday. Where has the time gone? My younger daughter, Winnie and I attended the Royal Winter Fair and I, along with five other teachers took 59 students on a three day overnight winter camp in the Kawarthas.

In December my Dad moved from his apartment to the retirement home across the road. We held our annual craft night at school, held a Christmas concert and had our staff party at a local restaurant. Christmas was a three day affair; one day in Hamilton, another in Toronto and the third in Oshawa. On the 30th of the month we celebrated the birthdays of our twins who are now 35. As my principal and friend M would say ‘Carol you’re old!’

So as you can see there were lots of bright moments in 2016 for me and the Cormier family. Wishing you all a bright, happy, healthy and prosperous 2017.

Cheers!

A Busy Week

….a lot of driving, twice to Oshawa and twice to Hamilton

Since Christmas Eve we have been constantly on the go. This year we celebrated Christmas Eve in Hamilton and on Christmas Day we celebrated some more here at home. No turkey this year, another first.

On the 27th I drove to Oshawa to bring my Dad his Christmas presents from my family. In the move a few weeks earlier he lost the remote control for his radio/CD player and he had to unplug the machine every time he wanted to turn it off or change the CD. Our daughters, A & J picked up a new remote control from a store downtown close to where they work. Dad was so happy to finally be able to play his music properly.

Two days later we drove out to Oshawa again but this time the whole family went to celebrate with Dad. There were 11 of us and because his new apartment is so small we all met in the library of the retirement home. After opening presents we headed out to the restaurant to enjoy a meal together. Today my sister sent me a few more photos that I can share with you.

Yesterday we were back in Hamilton to celebrate the birthdays of our twins. Our son, unfortunately, is not celebrating here in Canada but is with his new family in Iran. From his photos and messages it sounds like he’s having a great time. Our daughter opened her house for yet another celebration in less than a week. Our good friends A and W, who were unable to join us this year on Christmas Eve, made the trek to Hamilton as well. It was a lovely time with family and friends. Very low key and relaxed and of course the baby stole the spotlight again.