Friday, December 31, 2010

Goodbye 2010

Year's end is neither an end nor a beginning but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us.

As we say goodbye to 2010 and welcome in 2011 I am reminded of the fact that time really does fly by.  It seems like only yesterday we were making plans to ring in 2010 and an entire year has flashed by me at lightning speed.  I am very thankful for a healthy year and I am thankful that this past year we got to see Meagan twice and that Craig is still in school ('cause we all know how he feels about school!), I am thankful for great family and friends, time spent laughing and enjoying every moment with loved ones.  All-in-all it has been a great year and as we move into another year I have much to look forward to.
I wish each and every one of you much love, success and happiness in 2011.

Til next time, Enjoy!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Holiday Traditions

I love all the Holiday traditions that we have made as a family. I always make my own Christmas cards and special treat bags as place settings for Christmas dinner and when my kids were born I started the tradition of buying them a Christmas tree ornament - the idea being that when they moved out and had a family of their own they would be able to fill a tree with special ornaments.  I always get an ornament that reflected what they had done over the past year and have such an enjoyable time deciding what to get them.... and, because I always want the perfect ornament, I start looking in October! My mother-in-law started the tradition of playing the “Christmas game” on Christmas Eve where we all steal small gifts from one another while a timer decides when the game is over (this really brings out the best in all of us!). This year we may have started a new tradition of cutting down our own Christmas tree – will see how I feel about that when next Christmas rolls around. We have the usual traditional turkey dinner with all of our favourite desserts, and I always have to take some family photos; this year I was really happy with the ones that I took in Fish Creek Park. Setting up the Christmas tree, decorating the house and my Christmas village are some of my very favorite traditions.  We have the traditional Christmas day games of Christmas trivia and the "oven mitt" game which consists of unwrapping many layers of tighly wrapped paper using heavy mittens revealing a small prize.  Some of our traditions have changed slightly over the years as we have lost loved ones and can’t bear to keep that tradition going without them - but new traditions fill the empty and sad space in our hearts and we go on. 


Now that Christmas Day has come and gone, quite quickly I might add, our family is now glued to the television set to watch the World Junior Hockey Championships which traditionally start on Boxing Day. We have been doing this every year for as long as I can remember and both Craig and Meagan have grown up knowing and loving this tradition. We, or should I say, they plan their entire day around what time the games will be on and nothing can change it. Game one began at 1pm today and everyone is glued to the TV, only coming up in between periods to refresh the beverages and snack trays. It doesn’t matter where we are in the world, we MUST watch the hockey. I think my most favourite times were when we spent Christmas in Saskatchewan with my in-laws and my father-in-law would be so enthralled in the game you would almost think he was the coach…. Dale and Craig have since taken over that position with Meagan joining right in… somehow I think if you opened up all the windows in my house, Team Canada could actually hear them shouting and cheering them on. In most recent years it has been really exciting to watch as Craig has known some of the players.
Of all the holiday traditions we have as a family; I think this one is my favourite as I get to watch my family interact with each other in such a positive and joyful way.
  Go Team Canada Go

Til next time, enjoy!

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Christmas Village

Another year has come and almost gone and again I have set up my prized possession, my Christmas Village. 
As a child I always loved doll houses and, while living in Scotland, had the most amazing one full of hand-made wooden furniture .  I loved setting up the rooms, the people and rearranging the furniture.  I played for hours.  Sadly the house was too large to make the trip across the ocean to Canada and was given to the local Children's Hospital.
About 10 years ago I saw a Christmas village display set up in a shop and a flood of memories came back to my days with my doll house.  Right then and there I knew I was going to start collecting pieces for my new village.  As I was looking for particular pieces I decided on Department 56 "Snow Village" and "Christmas in the City" themes.  The pieces are beautifully detailed and were the perfect fit for me.
Every single piece holds special meaning for me; from the home with the tree house and tire swing in the backyard just like the one Grandpa built for the kids, The Centre for the Arts for my Mother's (and my) love of the theatre and all the shows we have seen, the Quilt Shop for my love of quilting, the Tree Farm because, this year, we are going to cut down our first Christmas tree, The University; a gift from my "university" kids, Downtown Shops; for my love of shopping, Woolworth's; a gift from my brother as my Mother used to take us there once a month to have pop and french fries at the lunch counter.... it was a big deal for us to be able to sit on the swirly stools and enjoy our special time together, the Apartment Building; as I grew up in an apartment building with my Mom and brother, the Dance School; for my love of dance and my dance classes, the Golf Clubhouse and Hockey Rink; because both my "boys" love both sports and the Garage in memory of my Father-in-law who owned his own business "Klassen Motors".
Each year I add more pieces and I love spending an afternoon putting it all together.  Every piece is special, bringing back all the happy memories of days gone by and my inner child.  It takes me hours to decide which building goes where as I have never displayed it the same.  I have gone from one small table to 3 very large pieces of plywood and next year I suspect I will need 4 as I want to add a train station to my railroad.

Til next time.... Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Bring It On

"The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, in hopes that St Nicholas soon would be there".......

OK Santa..... bring it on.... we are ready for Christmas.... At least I think we are ready!  I had several Christmas craft projects that I wanted to get done and I am officially finished.
My house is partially decorated as I MUST wait for Meagan to get home to put up the tree.  The lights are hung on the house, the Christmas knick-knacks are displayed everywhere and my christmas village is underway!
Here are just a few of the creations from my craft room..... There are more but I can't post them as they are gifts.

'Til next time.... Enjoy!