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Sunday, December 27, 2009

HAPPY NEW YEAR

New beginnings, fresh starts. For some, resolutions to change something. The end of one year's joys and blessings, or sorrows and struggles. And the beginning of another year's hope for goodness and inner peace.

I'm not one for making New Years resolutions, they only serve to stress me out by putting too much pressure on me. If I feel the need to change something in my life I pretty much do so when I feel it is time. However, there are many who favour choosing New Years Day and the marking of that passage of time as the perfect choice to making adjustments in their lives.

To any of you who have made such resolutions, I wish you all the very best in your endeavours and choices!

For myself each and every year I pray for world peace, among many other personal things of course. Some of those are a cease to financial struggles for those close to me, for a much better economic outlook, and for good health for all whom I love and hold dear.

In the midst of our Canadian winter I could wish for green grass and flowers in my garden, but when I look outside and see the beauty of the sun making diamonds in the snow I am appreciative of all 4 seasons. Nothing I would wish to change there. Instead, I just look forward to new beginnings and hope that anything I would like to see changed will take place. And end to prejudice and hatred would be on the top of that list. Perhaps this New Year will be it!

For all of you, I wish you a healthy, and peaceful upcoming year. I wish you prosperity; of the spirit and also an easier financial time. Most of all, I wish you love, much much love.

Happy New Year!

PEACE!
Love Jude

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

MERRY CHRISTMAS, ALL!



My favourite holiday season of the year is upon us, and once again (for the 6th. time!) I would like to wish all of my readers and blogging buddies the very best for the Season, and for the coming New Year.

For me, Christmas holds many memories of years past, getting up in the morning and running to the living room to see the presents under the tree and hoping that Santa didn't forget our house. I still remember many of the gifts that I was so happy with too, waaaaay back then. Dolls; a tiny dishes set that my older sis Linda and I played with for hours; a nurse's kit complete with cap and cape; a toy piano (and a white toy organ that Linda got that I preferred to play with!)....... and the list goes on.

As years passed, the fun part of Christmas was helping to decorate the tree and the living room. We used to hang green and red paper streamers from the ceiling and then hang tinsel on them. When we were about 17 or so, Mom and Dad let Linda and I have very weak drinks, and I remember they were mainly 7-Up with a lot of cherry juice and maraschino cherries in it. I think the alcohol was a little gin. The family gathering around the table for our turkey dinner ~ us 4 girls and Mom and Dad, and my Mom could cook!

Not only that, but she could bake up a delicious storm too. Every year up until about 10 years ago or so, she would bake the same goodies that we all liked: sugar cookies, shortbread cookies, butter tarts, mincemeat tarts and Nanaimo Bars. I still remember the red and white cookie tin from the 1950's that held so many of these treats, wrapped in wax paper. It was the tin from the matching set of canisters, the now very old sugar canister that I still use in my own kitchen today. Ah the delights! And the memories! I wish that I could have one more Christmas with us all together, back home on the base in Cold Lake. I'd treasure every single moment.....

In later years and still today, Christmas holds the utmost importance of having family gatherings. Being with my loved ones (including get togethers over the holidays with good friends) is really ALL that it is about and that I enjoy. All of the "kids" in the family are now grown, the youngest being almost 13 and the oldest 33. Over the years I have gone from giving my neice and nephews toys and games, to books and lottery tickets.

Christmas has some sadness in it too, for most of us. Each Christmas Day I remember those who I dearly loved and are now watching over us; my Dad, my Mom, a late husband and a best friend. I celebrate with them, as I celebrate the time I had with them. So much love!

I know that you all have your own memories, good or bad. It was one year ago that our sister Brenda had her mastectomy, and all the scary stuff that came with it. Today she is doing well, thank God. Many today can't abide the commercialism of the Season and neither can I, but for me it's something I can easily ignore while I keep my warm and happy memories close to my heart, and enjoy the pretty lights and gatherings of loved ones. It's all I need at this time of year.

May each of you be blessed with a peaceful Christmas, and a Happy New Year. I count you all as blessings in my life!



Love Jude

Friday, December 18, 2009

GOODBYE, HALOSCAN

After 5 great years of blogging, and 5 years of using the WORLD'S BEST comment system, Haloscan, we're being told they have been bought out by a system called Echo, which you have to PAY for annually. SUCKAGE!!

I received an email alert about this today and I've been reading up on it. Haloscan users are being given 2 choices, pay up the $10 per year to "upgrade" to Echo, or say bye-bye to your existing comments forever and use something else.

For me, this means using the Blogger Comment system which I have always hated. It's so cumbersome, it looks like crap, has more freakin' steps to it than a stairway to Heaven and when using it to comment on other blogs I ALWAYS end up using many choice sweary-words at it!! LOL

However, I'm not prepared to have to pay for this service so it looks like it will have to be Blogger Commenting that I will be using in future (I've been given the Christmas holidays to make my decision before they kill Haloscan for me) unless I can find another GOOD free service.

At first I worried that some of my commenters might comment less or not at all anymore because of the very cumbersome Blogger Comments system, but then when I thought more about it there are many bloggers out there using it and they have commenters using it. So, hopefully all of you will still continue to comment here should I be forced into using it. Please!?!

I tried searching for some other good "free" systems but in a pinch couldn't come up with anything that I liked. I've got Blogger comments going, and in the attempt I found out that my blog template was an "old" one and didn't support their comments popping up on a separate window, and they were all listed here on my main page. THAT looked like crap, so I had to go find a new template! I'm just using the same one I have for the "Stardom Awaits! photo contest blog, and made my changes to it. While I was at it, I changed my blog header picture thinking it was time for something new.

Needless to say, while I was getting laundry done this afternoon this is what I've been working on the whole time. It's done now, thankfully.

I will no longer be able to reply to comments in bold type. And like my blogging buddy Bobbie, I am now missing ALL of the previous comments I had on my blog. I miss Haloscan already!

PEACE!!
Love Jude

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

"GLASS" WINNERS!



The winning shots, ladies and gentlemen! Congratulations to the winners, and to all the entrants for some great photos ~ and a big thank you to all who voted.

Next up at the end of this month will be "Yuletide" or Christmas theme, so stay tuned folks!

PEACE!
Jude

Friday, December 04, 2009

WINTER WONDERLAND

We've been pretty spoiled here, and thinking that we are sneakily getting away with above seasonal temperatures and virtually no snow. I mean it's December, people! Well, that all changed this morning. It's snowing like the dickens and the temperatures are about to drop into the deep freeze in a day or two.

Ah yes, winter in Alberta! You never know for sure what you're going to get.






Whilst it's being winter outdoors, indoors I've been getting ready for the upcoming Christmas season. Yesterday I got my tree decorated, and started in on some soap/bath salts/spritzer/lip balm making. I've still to do some baking, but that will happen soon as well.







With the exception of 2 people, everyone (including myself) in my department at work has been sick. AND so has everyone in my household! It's not the "so sick I need to stay home" kind of thing, rather it's an extremely annoying coming and going kind of thing where you feel crappy one day, feel better for a few days, then feel crappy again ~~~ and it goes on and on and on like this for weeks. It's been like this now for about a month and a half. Bleh! However, thankfully none of us have it so bad that we're bed ridden. I'm wondering if it's the H1N1 flu bug, it's just SO DIFFERENT. If it is, we're most of us very lucky that it's not too bad and just pissing us off by hanging around so damn long.

A lot of people of course already have their H1N1 and Seasonal flu shots both, as they've been available here to all Canadians for awhile. I'm still waiting for our annual flu shot clinic at work that I organize each year through the Victorian Order of Nurses, and I just recieved word from them at work the other day that it's coming right away.

I hope that you are all well where you are!


And if you haven't already, you can still vote over at Stardom Awaits! for this month's Photo Contest. Voting is open for another 10 days or so!


Have a great weekend everyone, stay warm and safe, and don't forget to take good care of each other.

PEACE!
Love Jude