Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Saying good-by is such sweet sorrow

 It feels pretty weird to be sitting in a hotel room, and I don't have to be "on duty" until 9 AM. And it's five AM. Whatever will I do with myself for four hours! Well, I have to write the blog, and I'm going for a walk, and perhaps I'll find a geocache or two to give me something to do. I did NOT get all my KMs in yesterday. I missed it by 4 km, which is still pretty good considering I did NOT have a proper walk with the girls and the boy, nor did I get an afternoon walk. 

Most of those KMs were made by walking the room and ensuring everyone was on track with the assignments. Do those KMs count? You bet they do -- I barely sat down all day, and every step requires energy -- why should we count just the intentional walks? I think NOT! EVERY step counts. 

The morning was a bit chaotic as I still had a few e-mails to send, and I had a quilt label to make for someone. Then some last-minute packing and OH MY-- – remember to pack a few clothes. Then the car had to be packed, the dogs went for a short walk, and for the first time since Little Bear was with us, we all went together. 

The big girls were on their leashes, and the little guy followed. He's so darn cute. And all was great until we were on the way home when a BIG skunk appeared around the corner of a car in a driveway, and they all went crazy. 

When you see a dog walker with multiple dogs, and I mean multiple -- sometimes six? I have no idea how they do it. It's a challenge to walk my two and then keep an eye on the little guy so he doesn't get lost. Thankfully, he listens very well and likes to follow. I don't know if he even saw the skunk, but I scooped him up. The other two were going ballistic, in particular Murphy. The number of barking incidents we have on every walk is insane! We cannot get through one walk (40 minutes) without multiple barking incidents. Sometimes only one (that's a good day), and others - well, she's just enthusiastic, and did you know there are MANY squirrel conventions in the morning. She can't handle the squirrels. 

However, we managed to avoid the skunk, who was probably thinking -- I'm out of here! These dogs are too darn noisy!

I took a quick shower and said goodbye to Little Bear (miss you lots) and to M (miss you more) as they were flying back home to Vancouver in the afternoon. It was so nice to have them around for the time we did. Can't wait to see you next time, which is already planned. 

When I was walking on a street in my neighborhood that I don't usually walk on, I spotted this sign. How cute is that? It put a smile on my face. Wouldn't it be nice to have tiny inspiring messages around to brighten our day? 

Random sign
I love walking in my neighborhood, especially in the morning. There are the usual people, and they all say HI, or we wave if we are across the street or too far away. A simple gesture like that can make someone's day. So, we need to start greeting strangers by acknowledging them. Not everyone, and there is a place for it. But why not smile at the next person you see that you don't know. What does it hurt? Besides, most of us (especially me) look much younger and happier when we smile than when we do not!

Remember my old shopping bag that wore out? Yep -- actually wore out. What in the world are we going to do with all these reusable bags. I'd almost say they are more of an issue than the plastic ones. I now have a different shopping bag - it's bigger, and that works for me. I never did shorten the handles. But I use the same one over and over and will continue to do so until it wears out. In the meantime, I have oodles more sitting there waiting to be used. 

I was at Indigo the other day, and I had forgotten to take a bag with me. OK -- I wasn't planning on buying anything. I should know by now -- if you take money, take the shopping bag. The guy wanted to know if I wanted a bag. Yes -- I'll buy one, but when I saw how big it was, I said, "No" and carried my two items. People --- USE those reusable bags!!!!

This was my bag the other day. I had to go to the drugstore, and OH MY -- my favorite snack (popcorn) was on sale, so I bought four bags. See how that larger bag comes in handy? 

Four bags of popcorn and a car scrapper in the shopping bag

Then, I stopped at the hardware store and got a scrapper for the car. OH -- I also bought some spray glue. The next stop was the grocery store. And it all fit in the bag, and it wasn't heavy. 

Added in a few groceries

The day before, it was filled with thrift store finds - picture frames and some stuffies! We won't go there as I have plans for them. 

Here's one problem I find with reusable bags. Let's say I went shopping with my car. I go to the drugstore and fill the bag with popcorn. Then, when I go to the hardware store, will I bring that almost full bag from the car to the store? That just drives me crazy. So I could have multiple bags in the car and take an empty one. But I really like the idea of going from store to store with my bag and filling it. I guess the same thing could be said for leaving it in the car, but taking a full bag out of the car and carrying it in -- that just seems weird. 

I bet there are many people who "feel sorry" for me that I have to shop on foot and carry my stuff home. They must think I do not have a car because why would I walk and do all that shopping? Because I kill two birds with one stone -- I do not need to fill the streets and parking lots with another car, and I get exercise. I swear, when I see some parking lots, it's way faster to walk, and I can go anywhere on foot!

Perhaps I need to make a sign to wear that says, "My car is at home - my legs appreciate the exercise" or something like that. I live in a somewhat densely populated suburban area. Imagine if more people walked to do simple errands? 

While at the grocery store, I passed the shovel display. Hmm -- scoopers, shovels, and mini shovels. I was thinking of the mini shovel for winter. But that's a lot more shovels to lift, but at least they are lighter. I think I'm going to get a new shovel. And YES -- I will walk to the store and walk the shovel home. 

New shovels

It is funny how much we are in love with our cars. Even to the point that some people feel having a car is tied to our independence. Nope --- while I've had my own car for most of my adult life, I do NOT equate a car to independence. Especially when living in a large city. When I was a student in Montreal, I sold my car. I couldn't afford it, didn't use it much, and lived about a 15-minute walk from the Metro (subway). And there was a bus. You do NOT need a car in the city! Well, for the most part, and for what I do. I do NOT have small kids that need to be driven everywhere. 

OK -- so can you tell me what's going on here? By the way, we can have barking incidents in the house, as she loves to "talk" to other dogs and animals on TV and comes running when she hears her favorite commercials come on! But Murphy -- this is a hockey game - what's going on? I think she watches enough sports with DH that she's become a sports fan. 

DAD -- hockey -- there's a score!

The other day, DH was watching car racing or something, and he shut the TV off and walked away. I said, "What about the dogs? They were watching - so he turned it back on!

And I had to laugh at Little Bear. He was desperate to go somewhere yesterday. He saw the suitcases out, and he had zero issue with jumping right in. 

Grandma -- I'm coming with you!!!!

This was the sample suitcase, but he also jumped in my clothes suitcase. Gosh --- he's so cute! And so little!!! His travel bag was in the closet, and it stayed there until just before he left, as he would go nuts if he saw it sooner!

The night before M left, I was downstairs trying to finish an embroidery design. It required a wee bit of babysitting, so we opened up a small table as all the other surfaces were jammed with stuff. And we played our EXIT escape room game. 

Escape room game

We needed scissors and much thought. 

So, M is pretty good at the games. Although we still had to look at some of the clues. But NOT before we gave it a good shot. And what I find is that we are on the right track, but just don't take the final leap. That happened on all the clues. We read the first hint -- yep, we already did that. Then we read the second clue -- yep --- we've already done that. M was good at thinking about other things, but we couldn't put them together. When we read the final clue -- AHA -- we get it now. 

The bottom line is that we need to look at and question every mark or thing that is different. That's the part that we miss. Not always, but a couple of times. We work well as a team on these games, and we will try and finish the remaining clues from a distance. It's hard to explain, but we don't take the paper materials literally. Not only are they puzzles to solve, but often the paper pieces of the game are so connected -- these are not just mental puzzles, but there are physical props, and they must be used creatively. We need to improve the creative use of the props.

I laugh because the game says -- 1 - 2 hours, with ten clues. We're way past that time frame and still have four clues? But we are having fun, and we are learning, so when I open my Advent Calendar, I might have a chance of completing it!

I have some work to do for one of my groups, so I may work on that this morning when I have a bit of downtime. And I have some shopping to do in this area - more on that another day. Then I'm on as a helper this afternoon, or I might be sitting the afternoon out. Depends on how things play out. But there are many things to learn, and it's great to be in touch with the dealers. I'll be at many shops in the next month, so it's good to see them here. 

On that note, I'm out of here. I'm going to get dressed and go for a walk.

Have a super day!!!



  1. I hear you on the shopping bags. We do grocery pickup from Walmart a lot, so we have 4 green bins that fit perfect in the hatch section of the car. Works great, except yesterday the weather was really nasty so they packed the groceries in “free” reusable bags for us before bringing groceries to the car. I don’t need more bags we already have a million in the closet.

    1. LOL --- I'll take those extra grocery bags!! We used them for all kinds of things in the house! But seriously --- why do they go against their own policy? Sigh.

    2. Found out yesterday that the thrift store in new Hamburg loves to get them to use when people don’t come in with out a bag so will probably donate them there.

    3. That's good to know! It's a shame to throw them out or keep them stockpiled in the house!