Forty Six Years in and Still Madly in Love

….yesterday my husband and I celebrated our 46th wedding anniversary

Whenever I tell people how long Kevin and I have been married they always gasp in wonderment. Don’t get me wrong it hasn’t always been wine and roses but we’ve always worked together as partners and when things were tough we didn’t give up on each other. Not only do we love each other but we truly like each other. That became very apparent during the lockdowns with COVID. It’s amazing how many couples found it difficult to be together 24/7.

The last twelve years have been difficult for Kevin with all his health issues but he keeps on ticking and keeps trying new diets and medications. Right now he looks fantastic and if you saw him yesterday you’d have no idea that he is suffering from several chronic ailments. The key word here is chronic, so he has good days and some bad days. Luckily I’ve stayed relatively healthy and my biggest issue is how much my weight fluctuates up and down (mostly up). Kevin always says he loves me at any weight but when I do try to lose weight he is also very supportive.

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Going for a Winter Evening Walk

….during a snowstorm

Well I guess I’m exaggerating a bit but it was snowing and it was cold. When my husband said he wanted to walk in the snow and take some photos of the street I quickly put on my coat so that I could join him. I needed some more steps to get to my 10 000 step goal anyway.

It’s nice seeing some of the Christmas lights still on. This year people have decided that we need more colour and light in our lives because of COVID so many homes are still brightly lit in the evenings. It’s quite pretty against the snow.

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Tuesday Photo Challenge – All You Need is Love

….thanks to Frank from Dutch Goes the Photo for hosting the Tuesday Photo Challenge https://dutchgoesthephoto.net/2021/01/26/tuesday-photo-challenge-all-you-need-is-love/

I love the theme this week. Love does make the world go round. What do you love? Here are some of the things that come to mind for me.

Being surrounded by water year round.

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My husband and how he makes me laugh and for all the wonderful meals he cooks for me.

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My family and the joy they bring from near and far.

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For some reason the photos I have of my sister who lives in Calgary would not allow me to post them. I miss her terribly.

I also love to walk in nature, take photographs and make art.

Water, Water Everywhere – Ball’s Falls

thanks to Jez for hosting Water, Water Everywhere #61, https://jezbraithwaite.blog/2021/01/25/koi-pond-water-water-everywhere-61/

On the weekend my husband and I took a drive to Ball’s Falls in the Jordon Valley. It was a perfect day, brisk and sunny. I met Kevin 48 years ago and I’m pretty sure he’s been telling about Ball’s Falls for the same length of time. Well he finally took me there and I wasn’t disappointed. I love most waterfalls and in the winter I particularly like them because of the ice that forms from the spray.

Ball’s Falls is situated on the Ball’s Falls Conservation Area and is named after the family that lived there in the 1800s. In an earlier post I wrote about the heritage site that is connected to this area. The falls helped generate enough energy for the the grist mill to make flour until the water flow diminished to the point where it wasn’t feasible to stay in production. Today the mill operates on day a year, using electricity to mill flour for a festival.

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What Christmas Taught Us This Year

….Christmas was certainly different this year for most people who chose to stay safe

Some things didn’t change. We cut down a tree with the family, albeit socially distant and masked, and I decorated it. The difference this year is that I totally decorated it on my own and it was up a full two weeks before Christmas. Normally I wait until my daughter can come over and help me and it often doesn’t get done until a few days before Christmas.

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As much as we love being with family on Christmas we found new ways to celebrate the holiday. We exchanged gifts but this year the gifts were exchanged in front of the house. I still filled everyone’s stockings but this year everyone took them home. Gaelan brought special donuts from Hamilton and we exercised the dogs for a few minutes in the park down the street.

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Our son and his family live in London, England so this year we opened our gifts early. We always open presents on Christmas Eve but 3:00 in the afternoon was early even for us. When everyone got back home we had a Zoom Christmas so that everyone could watch their gifts being opened. It was a bit hectic but in the end watching Sevin celebrate her first Christmas was very special. Technology this year has kept us in touch and brought us closer to all our family members.

My husband and I decided to still make a special Christmas dinner for just the two of us. The only thing that was different is that we didn’t cook a turkey. Instead, we bought a nice big capon to roast and at the last minute I decide to make cranberry sauce. My husband is an amazing cook and I’m no novice when it comes to cooking but even after all these years of experience we can still mess up. The difference this year is that we could laugh about it. There were no guests to worry about or timelines that needed to be met. So when the capon was undercooked and we had to put it back in the oven, after slicing off the cooked parts, we just relaxed with more wine and started off with the wonderful salad that Kevin made.

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My cranberry sauce…..well lets just say that you should never walk away from a pot of boiling cranberry sauce. In the end I was able to salvage it with a little more sweetener. Kevin likes to tell people that we had twice baked capon and smoked cranberry relish.

We’ve learned that it’s the little things that bring us joy. Even though we knew we wouldn’t be together as a family for Christmas I still decorated the house. I pared back on the decorations but I’ve learned that you don’t need to put everything out. Simple things like lighting candles and playing Christmas music brought us joy and peace. In a way this Christmas prepared us for the day when we might have to spend more Christmases alone. There will come a day, perhaps, as the grandchildren get older they won’t want to come to Oma and Papa’s house on Christmas Eve or maybe some of our children will move further away. As for now, though, we hope we can have a few more Christmas Eve celebrations together as a family.

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It was certainly a less stressful Christmas this year. Hopefully 2021 will bring back some normality. We will probably all have to adjust to a new normal and hopefully 2020 taught us some valuable lessons about life and what is important. My husband and I learned that even though we love each other, more importantly, we actually like each and enjoyed our self imposed isolation in 2020.

Cheers and a happy New Year!

Carol

Blessed With Another Beautiful Day

I’ll have to stop saying this is the last of the nice weather

Just when you thought you couldn’t get anymore nice days you get a nice day like today. Sunny, mild and no wind. A perfect day for a long walk. We even met someone who was pulling his canoe along the road and we thought he was just putting it away for the winter but he had actually been out on the lake with it.

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Repurposing an Old Church

….some of the bigger ones in Toronto are being converted into condos

It’s not unusual for old churches that are no longer in use to be sold and converted into something else. Last week when we were in Niagara-on-the-Lake we came across a church that was repurposed into a brew pub. Craft beers have become very popular in the last ten years so it wasn’t surprising to see another one pop up in the heart of wine country.

The Silversmith Brewing Company was founded by two friends who purchased the old church in 2012. St. John’s Anglican church was built in 1894. It stayed that way until 1954 when it was deconsecrated. Trinity Lutheran church used the building from 1955 until about 1965. That would be the last time the building was used for religious service. From 1965 to 2012 it was a private residence and an antique shop (twice).

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The pub serves a variety of craft beers but they are specially known for their dark beers. You can order flights of beer so that you can try a variety of them before deciding on your favourite. The food menu is limited but the fried chicken sandwich was outstanding. The next time you’re on your way to Niagara-on-the-Lake stop in Virgil and enjoy a glass of beer with your lunch before heading out to do some serious wine tasting.

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Celebrating 45 Years of Love and Friendship

….our wedding day feels like it happened yesterday and not 45 years ago

This time last year we celebrated our 44th wedding anniversary in the hospital when Kevin was admitted for pneumonia. I was so pleased that his cough wasn’t COVID related or pneumonia and that he was well enough to go out for an early dinner today.

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Yesterday Kevin took me clothes shopping to buy a new dress for our anniversary dinner. He planned to take me to one our favourite restaurants along the Port Credit River but because of COVID he couldn’t make reservations and we had take our chances and hope we could get in. We decided on an early dinner but even at 4:00 there was a one hour wait. We decided to check out an Italian restaurant up the street.

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Our view from the patio, including the restaurant we couldn’t get into

Posta was open and readily accepted our request for a table for two on the patio. The service and the food were excellent and the view was fantastic. We now have a new favourite restaurant to frequent for special occasions.