Happy Birthday Frances

….December 13, 2018

I can’t believe that our dog, Frances is already 12 years old. We got her as a puppy from our daughter when she got a new job that made it impossible for her to properly train a new puppy. Frances immediately became my husband’s dog. It was love at first sight.

Over the years Frances has brought us a lot of joy. She’s a strange mix and whenever people ask about her breed they’re surprised by the answer. To the best of our knowledge she’s a cross between an Australian Sheppard and a Dachshund.

Here are a few photos of her over the last 12 years.
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The One of a Kind Show 2018

…on the last day I ventured on my own to the show

I like to attend the One of a Kind Show every year but last year I missed it and I was desperate to go this year. I didn’t really want to go on my own but my family and friends were all busy or not interested or went on a day that I couldn’t do.

On Sunday I decided to go on my own and I quite enjoyed the experience. I was able to go at my own pace and take my time at booths that I found particularly interesting. I was able to speak to a number of the vendors and I actually got some Christmas shopping done. Here are a few photos of some of the amazing crafts made by very talented artists.

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Learning to Play Bridge

….a challenging game to be sure

Since I’ve retired my neighbours have wanted me to learn how to play bridge. To be honest with you I never even considered the possibility of playing this game. I always thought it was too serious a game and it didn’t look like a lot of fun to me. I’m quickly learning that the fun is in the challenge.

I signed up for a bridge class (Absolute Beginners) in September and for 2 1/2 hours every Monday I’ve been struggling to keep up with this game. So much to remember. I am definitely a hands on learner but I am coming away with a new rule or two every time I attend a class.

Luckily for me my neighbours have offered to let me join them for some bridge parties where I mostly watch to learn but they’ve also very kindly let me play some hands. The more I play I better I understand the game. I’m beginning to think that I could get into this game and I’ve signed up for the next level which starts in January.

Are there any other bridge players out there that can give me some tips for learning the bidding rules. Maybe you can suggest a good cheat sheet that you’ve found helpful.2b4cb07b556f8b0b11eff24c76281b7e

Thanks to Charles Schulz for these wonderful images.

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Tuesday Photo Challenge – Memories

….thanks to Frank over at Dutch Goes the Photo for hosting Tuesday Photo Challenge

I know I’m a bit late for this week’s challenge but better late than never. I particularly liked this week’s theme because it’s so open ended. So I went back a year ago to see what memories I could stir up.

A year ago I spent quite a bit of time with my Dad (the oldest member of our family) and my granddaughter (the youngest member of our family). My Dad and the family attended a wonderful wedding together, the two of us went to the Royal Winter Fair and I accompanied Winnie to the park, lunch at a restaurant and the Hamilton Santa Claus Parade.P1050241
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New Flower (November 4, 2019) – Happy Birthday Rose

…..it’s my daughter’s 39th birthday today and I remember as I was leaving to go to the hospital to bring her into this world there was one lone rose left on my rosebush

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The name of this rose is ‘Blessing’. How appropriate.

London – Day Three – Part 2

…..after Highgate Cemetery

Down the hill from Highgate Cemetery we were directed to look for a pub that came highly recommended. Unfortunately when we got there the pub was being completely renovated and wasn’t open for business. We didn’t have to walk far before we found another place with a lovely patio. It was a little chilly to be sitting outside so we opted to go inside The Vine. Only one other table was occupied but the bartender greeted us and directed us to a table for four and handed us menus.

Normally an empty pub doesn’t bode well for good service or food but in this case it was completely the opposite. Our waiter was delightful and the food was delicious.

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After a pint of larger or cider and a few sharing plates we headed off towards Camden Market.

With hundreds of stalls selling clothing, crafts, and food, Camden Market is one of Europe’s largest markets. It is divided into different markets. We started in the Camden Lock Market which is on the street level and next to the locks. There were lots of food vendors here and a variety of stalls selling anything from books, music and flowers to vintage clothes.IMG-8642
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At first glance I thought the market was actually quite small but then we walked through a hole in the brick wall and we experienced a whole new world. There are literally hundreds of vendors in the Stables Market.

The Stables Market is located in historic former stables and the Grade II horse hospital which served the horses pulling Pickford’s distribution vans and barges along the canal. Many of the stalls and shops are set in large arches in railway viaducts.IMG-8651
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It is very easy to get lost in this place. If you like this kind of market give yourself a couple of hours to really see this place and check out all the vendors.