Thursday, December 31, 2009

Birthday...and Happy New Year (amost)!

Today is a special day. It's my grandson S's birthday; he is now 8 years old! Happy Birthday, S!

As I do on every family birthday, I baked, iced and decorated a birthday cake; this time for S. Now, I have a problem, though. Since I am having to use 2 canes when I go anywhere (especially needed for stairs!), I don't have any way of carrying the cake out to my car. Oh well, somehow it will work out!

Gordon's friend, B just called; he will be dropping by. B used to live in Windsor, but now resides near London/St. Thomas. Even though B & Gordon worked at the Windsor GM Transmission plant, they didn't know each other until they met while working in London at the plant where GM built train locomotives, during a layoff time in Windsor. B has always said that he'd do anything for Gordon, because Gordon came to B's aid when there was a problem in London. They were friends, ever since.

Maybe I'll ask B to carry the cake to my van! See how God provides!

This evening, I am supposed to spend the evening with my friend J. It may be just we two, or possibly another person, two or three. We'll find out, tonight.

In my mail the other day, was a card from an out-of-town friend, containing a poem of unknown origin. It contains beautiful sentiments that I would like to share with you:


What shall I pray for thee, dear friend,
As you enter another year?
A life all free from sorrow,
With never a pain or fear?

A path all strewn with roses
With never a prickly thorn
With all of joy to gladden
And naught to make thee mourn?

Nay, then thou wilt lose the blessing
That comes with sorrow's hour.
Thou then wouldst lose the comfort
Of Christ's own mighty power.

Oft in the deepest trial
The richest blessings come.
And pain but leads us upward
Toward our heavenly home.

So I will leave thy future
In His all-loving hand.
With Him will leave the mysteries
We cannot understand.

Content that He will lead thee
The way that's always right.
The roughest path but brings thee
To His own glory light.

I know that He will give thee
His own deep joy and rest.
I know that He will send thee
All that is wise and best.

So I will only pray for thee
Just His own perfect will.
His own great love and blessing
Thine inmost soul to fill.

Yet "more and more" of glory
Until the goal is won.
And in His Royal Presence
Eternity's begun.

May all the abundant blessings
of the Lord Jesus Christ,
God's precious and loving Son,
be upon you both now and always.

Isn't that beautiful? It was my friend's New Year's prayer/wish for me. Now, it is my New Year's prayer/wish for you.

As we close out 2009 and even though we should not be afraid to go out on New Year's Eve, it makes sense to me (especially after being hit by a drunk/drugged driver in the past) to be extra cautious. Enjoy your evening, whether it be at home or away. Please don't drive if you've been drinking. I pray everyone will return home, alive and well.

And, may God bless you, now and always.

Until next time...

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


First thing this morning, I again used both my regular cane and the 4-footed cane and hobbled out to my van. Normally, I would have just stayed home and rested my painful knee, but today was a special day; I needed to meet with my friend M and her husband, D. Yesterday was M's birthday; she saw the oncologist and found out that she will be having surgery, here in Windsor, this coming Wednesday for breast cancer. Please pray for her, as I am doing.

Afterwards, I phoned my daughter, P to see if she would go for coffee with me, but she had slept late and said she was in no condition to go anywhere. Actually, I was surprised that P even got out of bed, today. Usually, on Dec. 30th, P keeps the day set aside to grieve the loss of her daughter, Katherine. Had she lived, Katherine would have been eleven years old, today. One day, I'll tell you what happened, but not today. Just know that it breaks my heart that my child is hurting, grieving the loss of her child. While I know her grief is real and justified, as a parent, I wish I could take away the pain my child is experiencing. It's unrealistic to wish this, I know, but I love her so very much, that if I could take away her pain, I would.

Grief is real. It is not something people imagine. Nor is it sinful. Jesus grieved. In fact, the shortest verse in the Bible is John 11:35 which reads, "Jesus wept." Jesus wept over the death of Lazarus and grief Lazarus' sisters were experiencing.

Unlike the grief we experience, Jesus was able to do something about the grief over the loss of Lazarus; He brought Lazarus back to life. Believe me, if I could do as Jesus did and bring Katherine back to life, I would; but, I can't, for I am only human. I hate seeing my child with a broken heart. I pray for her and hope you will, too.

When Jesus gave the sermon on the mount, one of the Beatitudes he spoke of was, "Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted" (Matthew 5:4). I know that any relief I experience from my grief, is because God is comforting me. I just wish I would be permanently comforted, as soon as possible, like now!

Even though it was over forty years ago, Gordon grieved every year, over the loss of his infant daughter, Karen. Grief is an emotion that never seems to leave those who truly love the lost loved one. I think that's what bothers me so very much about the grief I am experiencing over the loss of Gordon. I cannot imagine living the rest of my life feeling this way. Please help me, Lord.

One thing that really makes me angry is watching the expensive and money-wasting commercials that our Ontario Government is promoting on TV. What is the purpose of wasting taxpayer's hard earned/paid tax money in these commercials? Who exactly is the government trying to convince that our healthcare system works, when in fact, there are many people who know from personal experience that the system is flawed and is in need of repair. These precious funds would have been better spent on our medical system, in my opinion, rather than on TV commercials.

My friend M, who is having cancer surgery next week, won't be able to have reconstruction done at the same time as the removal of her breast. Why? Because we don't live in/near London, where this procedure could be done.

Gordon could have used the TV commercial funds to obtain Gammaknife/Cyberknife surgery for his inoperable brain tumour that devestated the last part of his life. Unfortunately for him, our healthcare system WOULDN'T provide treatment for him. Yes, treatment was available, but not accessible to Gordon. As a result, his life became a living hell and I went to hell and back, with him. Now, I'm paying the emotional price. Does our healthcare system or government care? No.

Is Gordon the exception? No, not in my opinion. Today, the news contained a story about a previous RCMP officer, Kevin Gregson, who has been charged with fatally stabbing Ottawa Police Constable Eric Czapnik. While I don't personally have the details of Kevin Gregson's medical situation, everything I've heard on the news and read on internet, tells me that Mr. Gregson, like Gordon, had growths in his brain that he had not received medical treatment for.

Please don't misunderstand what I am about to say. I do not condone any action(s) Mr. Gregson did, including stabbing Officer Czapnik. However, what I do understand is how growths in a brain change the person who has them.

For example, Gordon did/said many things that were totally out of character for him. Without the treatment he needed, Gordon changed from the responsible, loving person I knew, into a Jekyll/Hyde personality, who did/said things that, when he was in a more normal state, was sorry for and ashamed of. The trouble was, that he could never guarantee who he really was, at any given time, especially towards the end of his life.

Where was Gordon's treatment? What happened to treatment for Mr. Gregson? Where was our healthcare system for these people and others like them, who are either continuing to suffer or who have died from the lack of treatment? Even the coroner was shocked that at the very least, Gordon didn't even have medication for pain. Believe it or not, this is true. It's no wonder Gordon suffered so very much, here on earth. I can only wonder if Gordon would have been healed and alive today, if he had received the medical treatment he so badly needed. The same in Mr. Gregson's case; we can only wonder if Ottawa Police Officer Erik Czapnik would still be alive, if Mr. Gregson had received medical treatment previously, when it first became known that he was being mentally affected, as the media has reported.

For Mr. Gregson's sake, I pray that God will save him, if he is not saved already and pray God has provided him with some family member(s) who love him unconditionally, the way I loved Gordon. Please keep Officer Czapnik's family in prayer.

It would have been so easy to have walked out of Gordon's life, especially during the heartbreaking era where he was suffering from mood swings, anger problems and getting himself into trouble at every turn.

The reason I didn't leave him, is because Jesus never gave up on me...or Gordon, so I wasn't going to give up on Gordon, either. You see, God's word tells us that love never fails. Love is not really love, if it is conditional upon anything.

I believe that there is an overwhelming lack of unconditional love, here on earth. It seems that most people think love is a feeling; the Bible tells us that love is a choice. We choose to love someone, whether it be a spouse, relative, friend or acquaintance. How often do you hear people say things like, "I love _____, but". But, what? How can there be any 'buts'. You either choose to love the person, or you don't.

Yes, love never fails.

Until next time...

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Florida or Not? That's the Question!

Late yesterday, it snowed. Living on the seventeenth floor, it is sometimes difficult to tell how much snow we are really receiving during snow flurries. At first, I thought there was quite a bit of snow, but this morning, the reality was there was only a slight dusting on the ground, with grass showing through, mostly. Thank you, Lord!

Still, I knew I should go to the home we (I suppose it is now, I) have near the University of Windsor, to clean off the walk and stairs and check on the property. Sometimes, I stay there, sometimes at home, but always the home is checked on, every day!

For the last few days, I've experienced some knee problems, again. Actually, it has been quite a while since I had this much pain. Several years ago, I fell with my leg underneath me, while walking on my then broker's snow-covered, icy parking lot. Not only did I hurt my leg, but my arm, too; in fact, I fell so awkwardly and hard, that I even gave myself whiplash, again! It took a year to see a specialist, who told me I needed to have a knee replacement done.

Not only did my family physician advise me against having replacement surgery done, but two friends, who are nurses, advised me against having the surgery. After having several major surgeries in the past, there was no way I was rushing into anymore surgery! Besides, my Mom had both her knees done. With her first surgery, everything went well, but with her second knee, her leg was set wrong and she was never able to properly walk again; in fact, the same surgeon visited my Mom when she was in hospital, before he replaced her shoulder. Even in front of me, he patted my Mom's leg and apologized for setting her leg wrong. And they wanted me to have surgery! Not!

My chiropractor was very supportive. When I explained to him and showed him that my kneecap appeared to be facing the wrong way and it felt like something was out of place, he asked me why I felt that way.

I told him that about 1979, when I lived in Brampton, I sprained my ankle. For more than six months, I visited my then family physician, who assured me that even though I could not stand, walk properly, experienced pain and limitations and it looked like I had two ankle bones, my ankle was apparently okay and not broken.

Well, that same year, H a friend of mine, who now lives in Milton, took me to her chiropractor, in Brampton: Dr. Singleton, because I was experiencing migraines. He helped me, greatly and eventually, I just needed maintenance visits. However, he did ask me if I had any other ailments he could help me with. I told Dr. Singleton about my ankle. He examined my ankle and procaimed that he thought I had a bone out of place; he did an adjustment on my ankle, I moaned loudly with pain and then...voila! Relief! No more problem! No more pain! No more limitations! No more suffering! And best of more treatment for it!

After relating this to my current chiropractor, in Windsor: Dr. Gemel, who has helped me more than I could ever tell you, he suggested that since I had already decided to not have the surgery, I might be able to strengthen muscles around my knee, by riding a stationary bicycle. He said that if there is anything out of place (it's not simple to see, like an ankle), riding a bike may also help put back into place, anything wrongly placed. So, I did.

At first, I could hardly do two...yes, I said...two revolutions with the pedal. Eventually, I could ride for a minute or so. Then, one day, I went to the grocery store and as I was entering, my knee 'popped'. I couldn't put weight on it, leaned on my grocery cart and slowly made my way back to my vehicle. The pain was intense, but as it subsided over the next week or so, I noticed that my kneecap was not as severly facing the wrong way. Over time, I continued to exercise and my kneecap now almost looks normal, but it still does not feel normal.

Well, over the last few days, I've been feeling pain, again; like it may 'pop', again. Today, while exiting the shower, I felt pain in my knee and could hardly put weight on my leg; it seemed to subside, so I continued to get ready to go do what I had planned for the day.

Every step is like walking on eggshells when I experience this sensation. In my heart of hearts, I know I'm going to have a problem, but had not expected that merely sitting would hurt me.

After C and I finished coffee at Tim Horton's, I went to get up to put on my coat and then it happened. No, my knee did not yet 'pop', but the pain was so intense, I couldn't even put pressure on my leg to stand on it. C helped me towards the door; he took my keys and went to get my cane that I usually leave in my van. He also brought one of the two (4-footed) canes that he had recently given me, that his now deceased wife used, previously; thank God I had left them in my van, forgetting to give them to the office of my apartment building, for use by anyone in the building who needed them, because without it today, I would not have been able to shuffle even to my vehicle.

Eventually, I got to my chiropractor's office; he saw me right away. The adjustment helped my back, hip and leg pain, but my knee still feels intense. Hopefully, if/when it does 'pop' again, it will once again mean a measure of healing for me and not mean that I will be facing surgery, once more. I don't want surgery. Especially now that I am alone, with no one to help me.

That's one thing I can say about Gordon. No matter what surgery I needed, he was always there for me. He took good care of me, even through the worst times. God bless him. I miss him. Not just because he was always there for me, either. lol

One thing I did realize, is that I don't think I will be able to drive to Florida, as I had planned. I had wanted to drive, not just so I would have my own vehicle with me, but also to try 'camping' out and travelling alone.

You see, I've been thinking about either taking my own van with me to Europe, on an extended holiday of a few months, or by taking a Roadtrek van, if I felt I couldn't use my current vehicle. Travelling and camping in Europe is very different than here; that's a story for another time. This trip was supposed to give me a chance to see friends and help me decide what to do. It looks like it will have to wait, for I know I cannot take a chance with my knee not being 'right' at the moment. It is my right knee; what would I do if I couldn't drive?!

I'll have to let my friends in Florida know that it looks like I won't be coming to visit. I should probably e-mail, before heading for bed, so I shall wish you sweet dreams!

Until next time...

Monday, December 28, 2009

Good Grief!?...

Last evening, a friend on FB L, gave me kind words of consolation, hoping I fared well through Christmas. I let her know I fared about as well as could be expected, considering I spent Christmas alone. Since I commented on FB about this, I decided it might help me in my grief to just comment about this on 'Life with Lynnie'.

Today, another friend on FB...E, who lost her husband many years ago, commented that it had been very difficult for her at Christmas time and hoped I had not really been alone; I replied that I had been alone, except for Jesus, who is with me, always.

Late this afternoon, I received an e-mail from my friend M, who is a mutual friend, with my brother, G. In fact, they live in the same apartment building. I am grateful to M for all the help, love and support she has shown my brother. Truly, I know God brought M into G's life for exactly that purpose, for she has been able to help him in a way that no one else he knows could possibly do. You see, M does not have the use of her legs and hasn't for a number of years. In August of this year, my baby brother G, who is diabetic, on dialysis, losing his vision and who was already an amputee, lost his 2nd leg. This has been a horrific ordeal for him, as you can imagine.

M is the only person who is knowledgeable enough about enduring life with such a disability, that G knows personally. In the past, I have thanked her for being supportive and lending knowledgeable support to him personally, as well as during the process of making his home more suitable for G to return to.

Apparently, M feels I am feeling too sorry for myself, especially during this Christmas season. She is entitled to her feelings and I thank her for e-mailing me. I am sure there are other people who probably feel this way.

While I have tried to not dwell on my pain, it cannot help but come out in my writing. For this, I have apologized, many times. As I mentioned in a previous blog, I am hoping that once the holidays are over, I will be able to feel not quite so brokenhearted and begin to focus more on rebuilding my life and not quite so much on my heartbreak and loss.

In a previous blog, I mentioned that I was partially disabled, due to a motor vehicle collision and subsequent back injury. At that time, Worker's Compensation Board (WCB, now WSIB) made sure I received counselling; secular as it was, I found out that death is not the only time a person grieves. In fact, any time a person experiences loss, whether it be through death or through loss of the use of part of one's body, a person experiences grief. How one deals with that grief, is different with each person.

One of the reasons I have written so much about my grief feelings, is because I have viewed my writing as a way to release some of my pain. Most people who grieve, will tell you that holiday times, like Christmas and special times, like birthdays and anniversaries, are very difficult times. Some people cry, scream, become depressed or try to block out their pain, by travelling. Some stay away from unsupportive people, because they know that their pain is misunderstood as the grief it is.

However, after today's e-mail from M, I realize that not everyone knows or believes that grief is real. It became obvious to me that some people don't believe that anyone should grieve, for any reason, but rather the person should pick themselves up and carry on, without any care or concern about their grievous feelings. However, in my opinion, this is not realistic. I 'googled' 'grief' and came up with information supplied by the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA).

This following information was reprinted with thanks to the Canadian Mental Health Association; this page can be found on their website:


The death of someone close to us is one of life's most stressful events. We fear loss of companionship and the changes it will bring to our lives. It takes time to heal and each of us responds differently. We may need help to cope with the changes in our lives. But in the end, coping effectively with bereavement is vital to our mental health.

If someone close to you has just died, we hope this pamphlet will help you understand that you are not alone in your feelings and that help is available. If you have a grieving friend or relative, this pamphlet will help both of you understand and cope with this difficult time.

Understanding grief

Mourning and the complex stages of the grieving process are necessary. Even though the present is felt to be intolerably painful, it is healthy and normal for a bereaved person to experience intense emotions and swift mood changes. These are natural reactions to loss.

It takes time to heal. The period of grieving depends upon the situation and varies greatly from person to person. Grieving is not a weakness; it is a necessity. Refusing to grieve is not courageous and may cause you a great deal of harm later on.

Grieving helps us to come to terms with the need for our relationship with the deceased and to re-focus our energies toward the future.

The stages of grieving

There are many different stages of grieving. The three stages outlined below are ones which most people will experience. However, people do not usually flow from the first stage through to the last in a logical order. Some people will jump back and forth between stages. The length of time it takes to go through the different stages will vary.

Stage I - Numbness or Shock - Immediately after news of death, you will likely experience a period when you feel very little except a sense of unreality. Some people have described this period as being enclosed in a cocoon, or as "sleepwalking", through the funeral and necessary details which follow death. This stage may last for several weeks or several months.

Stage II - Disorganization - Eventually, nature's protective shock begins to wear off, and feelings begin to come alive again. You may have some physical symptoms such as tightness in the throat, shortness of breath, the need to sigh frequently and extreme fatigue. Emotional symptoms can be even more distressing. Anger at the loved one for dying and the accompanying guilt may be overwhelming. You need to review the life of the deceased person and the events leading up to the actual death. You may agonize over things you believe you did wrong or things you think you should have done for the deceased. Most frightening of all can be the feeling of losing emotional control. It is a painful period of emotional upheaval but a normal and necessary part of grieving. Most people will recover but it can take weeks, months or, to some degree, several years.

Stage III - Re-organization - Eventually, there will be periods when you do not dwell on your loss, and you can focus on daily tasks. A great hurt is never completely forgotten; rather, it takes its place among life's other, more immediate demands. Deeper friendships may be formed through the process of sharing. You may have a new awareness of the preciousness of life and of the value of people and experiences.

How to help a friend who is grieving

It is difficult to become part of another person's grieving process unless you are invited to become involved. You should also understand that you too may feel guilty or helpless when faced with the inevitability of death, or feel there is little you can do to comfort the bereaved person. This is a natural feeling. There are, however, definite ways that you can help during the different stages of grieving.

Helping with Stage I - Be a supporter; you are there to be leaned upon. Help with practical things such as providing meals, helping with funeral details and assisting with the many confusing tasks that follow death.

Helping with Stage II - Be a listener; accept your friend's need to vent emotions and to tell repeated stories about the life and death of his/her loved one. People need to talk about their loss.

Helping with Stage III - Be a friend; help people to regain touch with the world around them. Encourage involvement in social activities, special interest groups, hobbies, etc.

Few people can cope alone with the pain of bereavement. They need to talk about their loss and share their pain. This is a normal part of the grieving process. However, if reactions are extreme, encourage professional help and provide the support necessary to assist the bereaved to take this step toward help.

How to cope with your own grief

* Be with caring people. Spend time with family, friends, neighbours, co-workers, and people, such as members of a self-help group, who have been through the experience of loss and grief.
* Take enough time. Everyone reacts differently to a loss. It is hard to estimate a "normal" grieving period; it will probably take longer than you expect.
* Express your feelings. Let yourself feel sadness, anger and other feelings. Find a way to express these feelings through talking, weeping, etc .
* Accept a changed life. Recognize that you may be less attentive to your work and personal relationships for some time. Your routines may need to change - this is a natural outcome of loss and grief.
* Reach out for help. Don't always rely on others to make the first move; they may be concerned about allowing you your privacy. Let people know when you need companionship and support.
* Take care of your physical health. Be aware of any physical signs of stress or illness you may develop. Speak with your doctor if you feel your grief is affecting your health.
* Support others in their grief. Offer support to other family members and friends who are grieving, including the children. Be honest with the children about what has happened and about how you feel. Encourage them to talk about their feelings.
* Come to terms with your loss. Move towards acceptance of the death of your loved one. Work through feelings of bitterness and blame which may get in the way of moving forward in your life.
* Make a new beginning. As the sense of grief becomes less intense, return to interests and activities you may have dropped and think about doing something new. Consider forming new relationships at your own pace.
* Postpone major life changes. Consider waiting a year or so before making big decisions, such as moving, remarrying or having another child. Your judgement may not be the best while you are mourning, and the changes may add to the stress you are already experiencing.

Again, I will say a very heartfelt 'thank you', to all who have been so very supportive of me, through my grievous time of loss, especially through my birthday and Christmas. While I look forward to a 'new' life in the new year, I realize that the first year without the love of my life, who was part of me, will be a hard time of experiencing many 'firsts'. Thank you for your love and support.

Until next time...

Sunday, December 27, 2009


The Lord's day. Isn't it wonderful, that we can meet in a group, openly, without fear, as some of our fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord do, in various parts of the world?! Thank you, Lord. Yes, I worshipped God at my church, today.

Later, I took a thank you card/gift to my co-worker/friend C and his daughter J, because I was thankful for their kindness; you may remember that they cared for my cousin's dog overnight, when he passed through Windsor on his way to Arizona.

It's getting to be a habit, but I went to the cemetary again, today. For some reason, I just cannot seem to stay away; I almost wish I could. It doesn't seem to help me feel any better. Usually, I feel rather 'down' when I'm there and afterwards; then again, I suppose I feel that way, even before going. Oh well. The Lord's will is always done; I cannot change anything.

About 2 pm, I was hungry and didn't really want to drive across town, again, so I stopped at Boston Pizza. It was my first visit to this restaurant, except for the day of Christmas Eve, when I went there, but they had closed early in the day.

On the board advertising their specials, I noticed they were serving ribs, today. Yum; that sounded appealing, so I ordered them. The server told me that they weren't available until after 3 pm. The thought of ordering something else, just didn't appeal to me, so I told her that I would come back, later.

Instead, I drove to my daughter, P's and took her to Tim Horton's for a cup of coffee. She told me how she didn't end up going to her sister's (my eldest daughter) home, out of town, because of her car trouble. I suspected as much, but when she confirmed this, I felt rather sad that she knew I spent Christmas alone and didn't call me to even invite me over to her home. Oh well. That's life.

After dropping P off at home, I drove around the corner to attend another worship service; this time, with the group my daughter, P and her family previously worshipped with.

Pastor B was not there; a friend/brother-in-the-Lord, G opened the family centre, where they rent space each Sunday. Several people were there. Usually, there are more children than adults, but today there were several adults and only one child! The sermon was going to be given by a visiting replacement: T.P. G asked me to lead the music for the service, which I did willingly.

Yes, it was the T.P. I knew from my church, back about 1994! Wow! I knew he worshipped at another church and not my church any longer, but I was shocked to hear he was working on his Masters in Religious Studies and Counselling. Afterwards, I let T. know that he gave a great message.

About 5:30 pm, after the service, I was starving (not really, but my stomach felt like it), so I returned to Boston Pizza on Walker Rd. Surprise! Surprise! The server told me that they ran out of ribs. Really! Murphy's law was written for me. Remember, 3 1/2 hours earlier they told me they couldn't serve me, yet. Now, there wasn't any available. Hmmm. Only one thing to do. The server was kind enough to call their other location, in Tecumseh and found that location was able to serve me, so I left and went there. As I was leaving, the manager handed me a card, entitling me to a complimentary personal pizza and beverage on my next visit. I thought that was very nice of them!

Believe it or not, I did enjoy my meal; well, at least part of it. The rest I brought home.

My server was a very nice young woman, who had been surprised that I was having dinner, alone. I explained that this was the first time for me to do so, since my husband died about 10 weeks ago, or so.

As I was preparing to leave, an attractive young woman was preparing the booth next to mine, for new patrons and commented on me being there, alone. At first, I didn't say anything about Gordon's death. But then, she asked if I had a great Christmas. I wasn't sure what to say, so I told her the truth. Usually, when people asked how my Christmas was or how I was, I would reply that I was doing the best I could or that I was hanging in, or that my Christmas was okay. Well, I suppose it was okay, but it really wasn't good.

I said that it was my first Christmas without my husband, since he died. She commented that at least I had family to celebrate with, to which I replied that I hadn't celebrated with family, but had been alone. Actually, I felt badly for her, because she didn't really know what to say to me. It was okay, really. I felt worse for her, than I did for me! To say I felt awkward was an understatement, but in the split second I had to think about how I would reply, I decided to be totally honest, instead of skirting the issue or telling a 'white' lie.

At home, I worked on fb, updating games and found a Christian friend had also made a comment about my Christmas, so I replied to her the same way. I don't know why I thought previously about just not mentioning it. Does it matter, really? No. Not to me, nor anyone else, so why not just tell the truth.

Yes, friends had invited me; I could have gone somewhere, anywhere on Christmas day to celebrate and feast with friends. The reason I decided to not do so, was because knowing that I wasn't going to be with Gordon was bad enough, but to know I wasn't going to be with any family, made me feel even worse and I didn't want to be in a position where I could put a damper on my friends' celebrations. So, I stayed home, alone.

If you are a friend of mine on fb, you'll note that I replied to my friend's enquiry, that I really wasn't alone; Jesus was with me. That, dear reader, is the absolute truth. Jesus is with me, always. I am grateful. Is He with you?

Since it's past my bedtime, I should thank you for reading and say, 'goodnight'. Thank you and have a great sleep! Goodnight.

Until next time...

Saturday, December 26, 2009


Today, I was too tired to do much of anything. I think stress does that to us, sometimes. For the first time in a while, I couldn't sleep last night. About 3:30 am, I decided that I would not look at the clock, again!

Normally, I do not shop on Boxing Day, because I hate crowds, but I had planned to go out shopping, first thing this morning. Did I make it? No. The alarm went off just after 7 am; I was too tired to get up, so I laid in bed, hoping to go back to sleep. It was a fruitless dream of mine, for I never did get to doze off, again!

At first, I felt pretty good, thinking I survived Christmas without Gordon. After all, I was up, breathing, still here. Actually, I was pretty proud of myself, considering that lately I had been feeling like I was going to die.

Throughout most of the day, I was grateful for the peace I was feeling. Believe me, it was a welcome relief! So, instead of doing stuff and errands I had planned, I just lazed at home in my nightgown and never got dressed. I believe some people call it, relaxing.

My phone rang several times and I also made several calls. I began feeling stressed again, after I spoke with my friend, M. We discussed the fact that she just found out that she indeed has breast cancer and will be seeing the Oncologist on Tuesday, her birthday.

I prayed with M and told her I will continue to pray for her; hopefully, you will, too. M has been my friend for many years. We met when we were both working as realtors; today, she does not, but works for the Red Cross.

Because of our friendship, our husbands became friendly, too. The four of us used to get together regularly for salad and pizza (usually, there was an excuse to have cake or some other dessert, too!). Even though Gordon is gone, they told me they still want to get together and even gave me an IOU for a night of pizza, etc. with my friend J. Bless their hearts! This coming Wednesday, we'll get together for breakfast; hopefully, M will know more about what will be involved in her treatment.

By the time we finished our conversation, I was once again feeling badly. Yes, I prayed for M. Yes, I am trusting that it is God's will to answer my prayer with a positive heal my friend, M.

This year has been a rather heartbreaking year. Not only did I lose my beloved Gordon, but I also lost my cousin's husband and if that wasn't enough, a long-time friend of mine, too. Three important people in one year! I keep clinging to God's promise that He will never give me more than I can handle! Then, it seems more comes, before I can even deal with what was on my plate, already. Some people would say I am being stretched; tested further.

This evening, I spoke with my co-worker, with whom I have been working as a team, lately. Like me, he lost his spouse this year. We discussed how difficult it has been.

Anyone who knows me, would find it difficult to believe that I could be unhappy on Jesus' birthday, but it was true. I wasn't my usual jolly self; in fact, I felt like a living, breathing oxymoron (you a jumbo shrimp)! Happy when I thought of Jesus; unhappy, when I thought of my loss...especially, Gordon.

Now that I've once again shed some tears, I feel somewhat improved. Hopefully, every day will become easier, from here on. Hopefully, this broken heart of mine will be healed, soon.

I need to escape! I need a break from this brokenness! Even the thought of travelling (and believe me, I love to travel) isn't helping. Somehow, I need relief. You need to hear something more positive and interesting from me in this blog, other than just my sorrow. Help!

If you have any ideas, I'd be happy to hear about them. Please respond A.S.A.P!!

Until next time...

Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Birthday, Jesus!

Dear Jesus,

Happy Birthday to You...
Happy Birthday to You...
Happy Birthday, dear Jesus...
Happy Birthday, to You...

Lord, I am thankful that You chose to come to earth in human form. You arrived as a baby, but yet, You were also God.

Especially at this time of year, when we celebrate Your birthday, we tend to think of You as being such a wonderful, beautiful, cuddly infant, because that's exactly how You arrived.

While we are not celebrating Easter at this time, I realize that when you arrived as an infant, Your intended purpose was to grow up to be the God/man who would provide redemption for mankind and fulfil God the Father's intended purpose.

You knew this before you came to earth. You knew that You didn't have to do this. You came, because You wanted to become the sacrifice to end all sacrifices, for You knew that without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin.

Thank You. No matter how I try, I can never be thankful enough for You. I know my righteousness is as filthy rags; that I am made righteous through You. I know that I am a sinner, in need of a Saviour...You.

Thank You for my salvation. I believe You, when you said that You are the Way, the Truth and the Life, that no man comes to the Father, but by You; You said, if we know You, we know the Father and if we don't know You, we don't know the Father.

Thank You for loving me. Thank You for providing for me, always. Thank You for lifting me up and encouraging me, during this time of grieving sorrow.

Thank You, for helping me today, when I went to the cemetary. Thank You for providing good friends and family, who called me and whom I called, as well.

Thank You, that I was able to show my Christian love and help someone in need, today. Thank You, that my friend K showed me love, with a beautiful meal; may she be blessed.

If I could give You a birthday present, I don't even know what I could give, for everything good comes from You.

I know I am blessed. Please help me to be Your faithful servant, always.


p.s. Please hug and kiss my beloved Gordon for me and tell him that I loved him unconditionally with all my heart, still love him and will always love him. xoxoxo

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Eve!

Lord, thank You for helping through another milestone. Today began as a day that I was dreading, for it's Christmas Eve. My first without my husband, Gordon.

Believe it or not, today I made some real estate calls that were important, but most of the early part of the day was just a sob-story for me. I admit it; I was a basket case. I hate feeling this way, especially because I've had Christian brothers/sisters compliment me on being so strong, or being 'like a rock'. I always let people know that I am not strong, but weak; that it is Jesus that helps me through each day.

Yes, I am happy that it is Christmas Eve, for without my Saviour, where would I be? Heading for hell, for sure. I'm grateful that Jesus came to earth, to fulfil God the Father's redemption plan, to save me and all who will believe.

This afternoon, while feeling very low in spirit, I decided to go out for a meal. This was not to be, for both restaurants I went to were already closed; it was shocking, for it wasn't even 3:00 pm, yet! No, I didn't end up eating out; I just came home and decided to update my facebook games, etc.

On my way to church, I purchased milk and decided to pick some up for my daughter, P and her family. With three growing boys, I know she can always use extra milk! Since she lives fairly close to where my church is located, it gave me a chance to see her for a few minutes. No, she and her family didn't come to church with me; it seems there was too much to do, especially since tomorrow they will be heading out of town, to celebrate Christmas with other relatives.

Our Christmas Eve service was a blessing. The music was beautiful and included both children and adults. Of course, our Pastor's message was great! Still, I had dreaded all day attending this evening, not just because Gordon wasn't with me, but also because I knew that at some point during the service, we would be singing Christmas carols. Sure enough, Gordon's favourite was on the order of service: Silent Night.

In Christmas' past, whenever we sang Silent Night, Gordon would always cry. He just could not sing that carol, without tears flowing. You can believe that I silently prayed for extra grace, to be able to get through this worship time, that's usually such a favourite of mine, without becoming a blubbering fool. Thank you, dear God, for helping me. I even managed to sing most of Silent Night, with only shedding a silent tear in the middle. Thank you, for the grace I needed, Lord. What would I do without you?

Some of you may know that both Gordon and I taught English as a second language (ESL) at our church. Because it is located close to the University, most of our students have been international students, mainly from China or Korea. One of our past students, X sat beside me during the service; her roommate, E could not attend, but sent her regards. Both young women gave me some lovely gifts, sent from China. Hopefully, they enjoyed their gifts, also.

After dropping X at her apartment, I made my way home, only to realize that I had forgotten to drop off Christmas gifts for my great-granddaughter, O and her family, so I doubled back and made my delivery.

It seemed that I never had a second to spare this evening, for upon returning home, I found a message on my answering machine, from Gordon's and my friend, B. You may recall that he was the only male who attended my friend, J's dinner party, recently. So, I took the time to return his call, wishing him a very Merry Christmas and letting him know that I would be praying for travelling mercies for him as he travels to Ottawa, tomorrow.

Just as I was about to begin writing tonight's entry, a knock came at my door. My across the hall neighbour/friend, K came in to visit. Here we are, both of us in our robes, laughing and crying together. Actually, I think she was crying more because today is her 60th birthday, than for any other reason (lol)! K was widowed many years ago. She has taken me 'under her wing' and checks in on me, periodically. Just before she left, K showed me a little laughing stuffed pig that she had purchased for one of her granddaughters. It made us both laugh to hear this pig laughing and watch it roll all over the floor in its fit of laughter. Thank you, K. Your laughing pig, certainly topped off today in a way I never expected!

Let's face it. I'm blessed and I know it. Still, it is a lonely time, for I am not able to be with my Gordon.

I would not wish Gordon back, to be with me in this world and suffer as he did. Tonight, he's in heaven with his Saviour, our Lord Jesus. He's with his parents, grandparents and other relatives that went before him. He's with cousin Ronnie (from Aghadowey, N. Ireland).He's celebrating his first Christmas with his infant daughter, K who died a couple of days after birth. How could I or anyone not be happy for him.

Karen Carpenter sang a song that is so fitting for this night: Merry Christmas, Darling. You can find it at:

The lyrics are a fitting way to say goodnight:

The logs on the fire
Fill me with desire
To see you and to say
That I wish you Merry Christmas
Happy New Year too
I've just one wish
On this Christmas Eve
I wish I were with you
I wish I were with you
Merry Christmas, darling

Until next time...

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Celebration of Life!

Phone calls filled my morning, but I found time to check facebook and found an entry by D, a fellow I visited not so long ago, along with his wife A, and newest family addition, A. Apparently, he is in hospital and is hoping to be released in time for Christmas. His Mom is a friend of mine, so I called her. She told me that D suffers with and had an attack of Pancreatitis. I let both Mom and son know that I would be praying for him; I have and will continue to do so.

After praying, I messaged D through facebook. I wanted to let him know that I was praying for him, but also I felt compelled to encourage him to try to find out what is causing his Pancreatitis. For those who don't know, it is a condition that results from inflammation.

Unfortunately, I have a condition that causes inflammation in my body; not just in joints, but also in tissue and can affect eyes, heart, lungs, kidneys, in fact any organ. My condition is called Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS); years ago, it was called Marie Strumples Arthritis, is a rare form of Rheumatoid Arthritis and is an auto-immune disease with effects that can be similar to MS. Years ago, it was thought that only men got AS; like my Dad. Today, it is known that women also have AS. Thankfully, I am the only child in my family that has AS, that we know of.

You see, I had been in a major collision Sept. 30/80, when I was driving a school bus; a tractor trailer hit me. One day, I will tell you about this, but not today. I was left with injuries that I still suffer with and later, had a subsequent back injury, because I wasn't really okay to do any kind of work, like the Workers' Compensation Board doctors told me I was. Years ago, in order to decrease the inflammation in my back, I was given Cortisone Blocks, which resulted in me almost losing my eye. A diagnostic specialist in London, Ontario suggested I may have AS and told me to never have any treatment/test done that is invasive into the spine. Upon returning to Windsor, Ontario, I saw a Rheumatologist, who did tests, examined me and confirmed that I have AS. Apparently, I carry the HLAB27 gene; had I not had injuries that affected my spine and triggered this disease, I could have lived all my life with no ill effects, because the gene could have stayed in a dormant state.

My point is, that not only is AS a rare form of Rheumatoid Arthritis, but I believe that it is probably not as rare as the medical field believes it is. I believe that I cannot be one of only a few women to have AS, because I believe that many women may have AS, but not been diagnosed; same with men. Why? Because most physicians never consider this condition, thinking it is rare. It's true; so few physicians know about AS, that I when I was first diagnosed, my then family physician told me to find a new one, because he didn't believe I could have AS, as he believed only men could have this condition. Imagine that!

Hopefully, D will speak with his physicians and try to find out if he is one of the undiagnosed people who have AS and suffer from inflammation in his body, that may be contributing to his Pancreatic condition. If he is, it may be better to treat the underlying AS condition, in an effort to prevent more Pancratic attacks from inflammation.

This afternoon, I managed to find time to do errands and finish up my real estate deliveries/work.

To be honest, I was dreading going to Franco's (Italian) Restaurant, for dinner, tonight. I had been invited by granddaughter, A and her family, to celebrate her youngest son, L's 1st birthday. Normally, it would be a happy event, but without Gordon, I found myself feeling rather sad.

Close to about 20 of us feasted on pizza and had a wonderful time of fellowship. Gordon would have been very proud of our youngest great-grandson, had he been with us. I am thankful that A and her family treat me as her family, even though Gordon is no longer with us, because it would be easy for her to just forget about me, since I am not a blood-relative, but rather I am her grandma by being married to Gordon, her grandpa. Next to me was a vacant seat; I kept myself calm, by picturing Gordon sitting next to me, enjoying this wonderful celebration of life. Thank you, A. Not just for inviting me, but for your love and support. I'm blessed and I know it.

Well, tonight is the last night before the day of Christmas Eve. Lord, thank you for bringing me through thus far. The next few days will be the worst for me, so if you believe in prayer, please pray for me. Thank you.

Have a blessed night.

Until next time...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Correlation...

This morning, I had a surprise phone call from a friend/co-worker of mine, H. We meet sometimes for coffee in a small group and today was one of those days; H suggested we meet.

So, H and her husband, A as well as C and I met at Tim Hortons on Ouellette Ave., near Tepperman's, next door to Staples. Being at Staples meant I could purchase my much needed printer ink and paper! Yea! One task complete!

C splurged for coffee, because I had treated, yesterday. H had a gift for each of us, of homemade Christmas cake, bread and cookies. Mmmm...was it good! Thank you, H! Hopefully, my friends/co-workers enjoyed the gift(s) I gave them, too.

Afterwards, I dropped by Elias, to pick up some fruit and veggies, before heading over to my daughter, P's home, where I visited for a few minutes.

Still too early for my Chiropractic appointment, I did more shopping! Actually, I was glad to get it done, because once I've had my treatment, I'm supposed to relax and take it easy for the next 24 hours or so.

All day, I had been dreading this evening, for I knew that one of Gordon's favourite Christmas movies was going to be shown on CBC, tonight: A Christmas Story. It actually is a movie that I like as well.

You know the one, I'm sure. It's about a little boy who wants a BB Gun for Christmas.

I know why Gordon always liked the movie. It was because he could relate to little Ralphie. You see, when Gordon was a little boy, he wore glasses, just as Ralphie did. He was regularly taunted and teased and eventually got into at least one fist-fight with a bully, just as Ralphie did. Gordon grew up in a very Christian home and worshipped at a Brethren chapel. On special days at school, when other children just wore regular or slightly improved clothing, Gordon's parents insisted he wear suits and sometimes ties, too. He once told me he was mortified on those special times, when he stuck out like a sore thumb. Yes, Gordon and Ralphie lived very similar lives, especially since they both wanted a BB Gun.

They both got one, too! In fact, years ago, Gordon and I used his BB Gun for target practice in his Mom's basement. He was an excellent shot, in fact, almost perfect; possibly due to the Police training he had, years ago. I still have his BB Gun.

While I was dreading the airing of the movie, I also could not stop myself from watching it. After all, it was one of our favourites.

Yes, it made me cry. I miss Gordon more than I can say. Lord, please help me. How am I going to make it through this Christmas? I'm trying to focus on Jesus and keep my eyes on Him, but the reality of life alone, is leaving me feeling like it is too much to bear. I'm trusting my Lord will help me.

This year has been a year of loss. In the spring, R, husband of my cousin H, in N. Ireland, died. We were close; R is and will always be greatly missed. Then, three weeks before Gordon died, I lost a friend of mine, B. She had been living in Newfoundland; I was grateful she visited this year, but her death still breaks my heart.

In addition, I have a childhood friend that I was so-o happy to have reconnected with, earlier this year, who used to 'chat' with me on facebook, regularly. However, since Gordon died, I rarely hear from my friend, anymore.

Yes, this year has been about loss.

God promised me (and you, if you are trusting in Jesus) that He would never give me more than I can handle; I believe Him and am trusting that He will help me through this horrible ordeal. I know that somehow I will survive.

If this entry sounds depressing to you, I apologize. It can't be fun reading, tonight. Again, I apologize. Hopefully, tomorrow will be better.

Goodnight, to all who have taken the time to read this entry. Sweet dreams.

Until next time...

Monday, December 21, 2009

Feeling Melancholy...

The mall! Devonshire mall! How I hate going there! Oh, it is a great place to shop, if you don't mind crowds, especially at Christmas time! I just hate how large and busy it is.

However, I had to go for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I went to meet my co-worker, C; we're working together on some real estate work and had to meet with a client who works there. Oh well, at least we did what we needed to do and got to enjoy a cup of coffee and/or tea, at the same time!

Later, I went to the Source, to make more enquiries regarding a Palm vs Blackberry. I actually thought I'd make my final decision and buy one, today. They couldn't show me a Palm. The store was filled with Blackberry phones, so I wasn't surprised when the sales clerk did his best to convince me to go with Blackberry. Help! I'm totally confused!

Can anyone give some info, to help me sort this out? If so, please comment below, or e-mail me, if you have my e-address. I will appreciate any help you can give!

Believe me, I was happy to leave the mall! From there, I headed to the cemetary, as I wanted to notify the office that the grave marker installed the other day, isn't level. No, I wasn't trying to complain, but rather just notify them; I didn't want to ignore it and then in the spring, have them tell me I should have reported it right away. Since the office wasn't open yesterday, when I was at the cemetary, I reported it, today.

While there, I got to have a short visit with my 'new' friend, J who spent last Friday evening with me, at Lakeshore St. Andrew's Church. Actually, I was glad to see her, because this was my last opportunity to wish her a very Merry Christmas, as she was planning to leave on the late afternoon train to travel to Oakville, to spend time with her family. Have a great visit, J!

Arriving home, I realized I needed to defrost my freezer; not my refrigerator freezer, for it is frost-free, but rather, the small, additional freezer that I have. It's a yuchy job, but someone has to do it, every so often and since I am alone, it had to be me!'s done! It's a good feeling when a task is complete, don't you think?

Did I mention that I will probably be heading to Florida in January? No definite plans have been made, but it looks like I will go. I'll keep you posted.

Tonight, I've been feeling a bit melancholy. Not regarding Gordon, but about my life when I was young. Did you ever feel like you made a huge mistake? I suppose it really doesn't matter, because no one can turn back time; but it was on my mind, so I thought I'd mention it.

It seems that there is not much on television that is interesting, tonight. Maybe I'll even get to bed early!

Until next time...

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Fun, Fellowship & Feasting!

This Lord's day, we lit the peace candle and of course, peace was the focus our Pastor spoke of in today's message. It's hard to believe that Christmas will be here in only a few days!

Originally, I was supposed to work after church, but my work was cancelled. Friends from church invited me to lunch at their home; they had a couple errands to do first, so I did the same.

You see, before Gordon became ill and died, we travelled. Quite a bit, actually. Sometimes cruises, sometimes land trips both in Europe and North America. At first, I thought my travel days were over, because who wants to travel alone? We had talked about doing more road trips, both in North America and Europe. We had discussed the idea of obtaining a motorhome or preferably, a Roadtrek van.

Well, once I decided that I should continue thinking about travelling, I began looking. However, a friend suggested that since I am alone and since a Roadtrek would not be short enough to park in the parking garage and since I wouldn't be using it for travel on a regular basis and don't really know if I would like camping by myself, maybe I should just try camping in my minivan, first. If I found I enjoyed doing this alone, then I could consider a vehicle more suitable. It made sense to me, so I prayed about it.

God led me to planning what to do. So, while on my way to the cemetary, I stopped and bought bedrails for a single bed and a mattress to use with it; previously, I purchased a memory-foam mattress, so between the two, I should be very comfy.

Arriving at the cemetary, I found the grave marker was installed, marking Gordon's grave and my future grave. Since it had snowed, a light dusting covered most of the marker, but I brushed it away. I wished I had brought my camera. One day, I'll post it for you to see.

On to visit friends A & K and A's mom P, at their home in LaSalle. We had a delicious lunch and enjoyed a lovely afternoon of fellowship. As I was leaving, K helped me secure the bedrails together and helped me place the base for my future camping bed in my van. Thank you for everything! I am blessed!

Leaving their home, I had an errand to do, then dropped by my daughter P's home, just for a minute. She had been afraid I wouldn't use the purse I had received for Christmas from her family, so I wanted P to see that I was already using it!

It was then time to go to son, K's home, where I was expected for supper. Wow! Two invitations for meals in one day! Not only did I feast on another delicious meal, but it was a second feast for the day! Seriously, we had a wonderful visit and enjoyed a scrumptious meal.

Later, K's daughter, A and her family arrived, so we had sort of a mini family reunion going on! It was a festive and wonderful time. Thank you, so very much, for our time of fellowship, feasting and of course, for my Christmas gift, so thoughtfully chosen. Yes, I am truly blessed!

Arriving at home, I decided to relax and update my games, etc. on facebook and make this entry. Tomorrow's a work day, so I should go nighty-night, very soon. Hope you sleep well. Hopefully, I will, too!

Until next time...

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Birthday & Christmas Celebrations! felt good to sleep in, today. Well, at least until just after 9:00am!

Even though it is Saturday, I still had real estate work to do and managed to get it done and calls made, fairly quickly.

Last minute preparations took some time, because I was setting the table not just for P's birthday, but also to celebrate Christmas, because she will not be home this year, for Christmas.

Even though yesterday had been such a rush, baking, etc., I was glad I made her birthday cake, because it freed up my time, today.

About 4:15pm P and sons D, Z & S arrived, bearing gifts for me for Christmas. Gifts or not, it is a joy to have them here, with me. It did my heart good to have them seated tonight with me at the table, enjoying a roast beef dinner; I even made Yorkshire pudding, because P likes it. It seemed that everyone enjoyed the meal, so I'm happy.

When it came time for Birthday cake, I was afraid my smoke alarm would be set off by all the candles on P's cake! lol Somehow, we managed to deal with all the smoke and fire! :-)) P opened her birthday gifts and I took photos, as usual.

Later, we sat in the livingroom and exchanged Christmas gifts. Of course, I took more photos.

I'm blessed. Thank You, Lord, for all my blessings, for I know that all good things come from You.

After my family left, I began the process of cleaning up. Yuch. It's a nasty job, but someone's gotta do it! Well, actually, the table is back to normal, the garbage is out, the recyclables are gone and I've done about half the dishes, so I feel like I'm ahead of the game.

Just as I began writing this evening, I had a long-distance call from Montreal, from my Aunt H. It had been a while since I heard from her; she called to thank me for her Christmas gift and to let me know she had been in the hospital. Apparently, she is anemic, because she has been bleeding and didn't realize it. Last may, Gordon had been hospitalized for about a week, for the same thing. Hopefully, she'll be okay and will recover, quickly. I'll be praying for her. Hopefully, you will, too!

If I am to finish my clean up and have my kitchen back in order before I go to bed, I should go and finish the job. Thanks for reading; hopefully, you enjoy having a glimpse of my life. Have a good sleep!

Until next time...

Friday, December 18, 2009

Angels and more Angel...

Wow! What a day, again! Just go,go,go. All day!

Real estate work took up quite a bit of my morning, but I managed to find time to bake a Birthday cake, ice it and decorate it, for tomorrow is my daughter P's birthday! In addition, I was able to make two desserts to take for tonight's pot-luck dinner. That's what I love about working mainly from home; I can do personal stuff in between my work tasks!

Tomorrow, P and her family are coming for dinner, so we'll be celebrating her birthday and probably Christmas, too, since she and her family may go out of town to celebrate Christmas, this year.

This afternoon, I was blessed to be able to go with my daughter P, to her son S's school; actually both my grandsons S & Z attend the same school, since they are only one year apart in age. S received an award for having high marks in his grade 3 class. Congratulations S! I'm proud of you! Z, I'm proud of you, too! And, my little angels, I love you both very much!

On my way home, I stopped at my lawyer's office, for yesterday he called to let me know the paperwork was back from the government, regarding Gordon's death. So, I picked up the paperwork and immediately went to my bank, as they were waiting for this paperwork. Why, I cannot tell you, for we also had investments elsewhere and this paperwork was not required. However, they now have what they said they need and hopefully, I can try to get on re-organizing my life.

J arrived just before 5:00pm; I was glad she didn't get lost, as she really does not know her way around Windsor at all, yet. We chatted for a while, until it was time to leave for Lakeshore St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church, in St. Clair Beach.

On our way there, I made a stop at my friend, J's home, to return to her the VCR tape she had lent me (last evening) of the final two episodes of THE BIGGEST LOSER. Thank you, J! I really enjoyed watching what you recorded; in fact, I was up until after 3:00 am, this morning watching it!

Besides, stopping by meant that new J could meet my other friend, J. I thought it was important to introduce them, as my friend J is the organizer for a Christian singles group that meets the first friday of every month at various Tim Horton's, depending on the person's age. Hopefully, new friend, J will be joining the group for some fun and fellowship.

We arrived at the church, gave our food for the pot-luck dinner, placed our gifts under the tree, took a number to play the gift-exchange game and began mingling with people. J met a lot of nice people, this evening. Hopefully, she had as good a time as I did!

Usually, this group of friends has music organized and rehearsed, but not so, tonight. I was shocked when C asked me to sing on stage with them. I've not sang with them, nor practiced with them for over three years! At one point, C asked me if I would like to sing something, solo. I agreed. Actually, I like to sing acapella and did so, tonight.

Since the song I sang didn't have to be a Christmas song, I sang my re-written lyrical version of Sarah Mclachlan's song, 'Angel'. One day, I'll give you the words to my version, but not tonight.

J and I left fairly early, because we were both exhausted and J has to work, tomorrow. I'll have my hands full preparing dinner, etc. for my daughter P and her family.

Since I can hardly keep my eyes open and still have some work to do before I can head to bed, I'll bid you farewell, for this evening!

Until next time...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Food, Friends and CRTC!

While working hard at my real estate work this morning, I had a pleasant call from my 'newest' friend. J is a lady who recently moved to Windsor; she previously lived in Mississauga and Oakville areas, so we have a lot in common. J is also the lady who helped me obtain the cemetary plots for me and Gordon, after Gordon died.

It certainly was a surprise when J invited me to lunch, today! We met about noon at Franco's and enjoyed fellowship time and a tasty lunch. Thank you, J!

Tomorrow evening, we'll spend time together, again. J will be coming to my apartment and I will drive us to Lakeshore St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in St. Clair Beach, for another time of fellowship and dinner, with a group of my friends. I'm hoping she'll meet some people she can relate with; everyone needs friends, especially when you're new to a city.

On my way home from lunch, I did some shopping. After all, it is Christmas time and my daughter P's birthday is on Saturday! Then near suppertime, I met a friend/coworker at Tim Horton's. Santa came to her and Santa arrived for me. Thank you, M for the lovely homemade baked treats! I hope you enjoy your gift that I cannot tell about here, in case you read my blog. lol

Upon leaving Timmies', I carried on to my church, in time for prayer and Bible study. This is something I've enjoyed doing on Thursday's for about the last 15 years.

Before returning home, I stopped at my friend J's home. She's my friend who hosted a fabulous dinner and evening, last Friday night. J wanted me to drop in to pick up a VCR tape of the final show for the Biggest Loser; she recorded it for me, because since the USA went digital and even though I have a digital receiver and can receive more stations than ever, I (along with many others) cannot receive channel 4 (WDIV) and for some reason, she's a rare person who can. Thank you, J!

Today, I found out from WDIV that the reason some of us cannot receive their signal is because the Canadian government insisted that they reduce the power of their signal coming into Canada. If this is true, THANK YOU VERY MUCH, CRTC! It wouldn't be so bad, except that I cannot see any of the TV shows I'm missing from channel 4, on any Canadian station. Guess I'll have to complain to CRTC, now!

Anyway, since I'm eager to watch THE BIGGEST LOSER, I'm going to say, TTFN (ta-ta for now)!

Until next time...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Long Distance(s)!

Well, I awoke before the alarm this morning, but since my cousin, N was sleeping in the livingroom, I stayed in bed later than normal, this morning. It was a welcome relief!

Before my friend, P arrived to join us for breakfast, N had his shower and packed up. At the same time, I was researching the weather on and was able to assure N that the forecast showed clear weather, for his whole trip to Lake Havasu City, AZ. It actually made me wish I was going with him!

Just as I was finishing writing/printing directions for N, P arrived, bearing gifts of cooked sausages and homemade bread; it was a pleasant surprise. Thank you, P! The sausages were a tasty treat that enhanced the pancakes I made. The bread made beautiful sandwiches for N to take with him for picnic in-car or out-of-car meals, along with muffins I made, Christmas cake and a thermous of coffee to enjoy along the way. It sure will be a long drive for him!

My friend P joined us, because she (like me) had not seen N in 29 years. Yes, she had met him previously, when we both lived as next-door neighbours in Brampton. After I moved to Windsor, she obtained a transfer with Bell Canada (commonly known today as Bell India) and relocated with her children to Windsor.

We enjoyed sharing our meal and time of fellowship, but the time seemed to go by so quickly. P had to leave before 1:00pm, because she had a prior engagement she had to attend. Then, N finished packing up; we loaded and repacked his car and drove to my friend/co-worker C's home in S. Windsor to pick up Mika, N's chocolate brown lab. Thank you to you, C and your daughter J and family, for taking good care of Mika for us!

By the time we arrived where N entered the bridge to USA, it was just before 2:00pm. Hopefully, he managed to get through customs quickly and onto the correct highway without any trouble.

After doing some stuff at home, I again went out; this time, to my Injured Workers' Coalition (IWC) meeting/Christmas party. While the others enjoyed food and fellowship, I only dropped in to say 'hello' and distribute Christmas cards and candy canes. One day, I'll tell you why I am a member of IWC, but not today. Sorry, you'll just have to wait.

This evening, I was busy cleaning, doing laundry and talking with friends and family who phoned long-distance. It was nice talking with N from Milton and with my cousin N's sister, E in Lake Havasu City, AZ who called. Thank you to both of you; I love hearing from friends and family!

Well, I'm pooped and it's getting close to bedtime, so I hope you won't mind if I say, "nighty-night".

Until next time...

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

29 Years!!

Today was an unusual day, because I didn't have to get up and rush out first thing this morning. It was actually nice to be able to take my time and not have to be in high gear!

Because I knew I was expecting my cousin N, from Saint Colomban, Quebec (about a 45 minute drive northwest of Montreal) I hadn't planned any real estate work that needed to be done outside my home. As you know, I work mainly from home and am equipped to do any/all my work from home, other than showing property. So, this morning, I made sure to do all my in-house work, early and quickly, so I could leave myself available for when my cousin arrived.

After N arrived, he took his dog, Mika (a chocolate lab) for a walk. He had stopped several times on his lengthy drive to Windsor, for Mika's sake as well as his own, but thought he'd walk her once more, before taking her to my friend/co-worker C's home, where Mika was to stay overnight. Thank you, C and daughter J, for your kindness in temporarily adopting Mika, until N heads out tomorrow for an even longer drive to Lake Havasu City, Arizona to see his sister (my cousin!).

After depositing Mika with J, we returned home for a late lunch and enjoyed conversation throughout the afternoon and into the evening. N took a short nap and relaxed while I made us a late dinner. Actually, we just finished eating and cleaning up! I suppose this means no one will go to bed on an empty stomach! lol

Anyway, it has been wonderful having him visit. Hopefully, it won't take another 29 years before he visits, again!

Ladies, you may be interested to know that my cousin N is 69, single, available, says he's 5'9" tall, 175 lbs. and is hoping to find a companion to love and spend the rest of his life with. Although we, his family call him N, his friends usually call him D, as he uses his middle name, at home. If you're interested in finding out more about him, please let me know, by clicking on the 'comments' link, below.

Since N is very tired from driving over 950kms, I think I'll make this entry a little shorter than normal and say, TTFN (ta-ta for now)! Sleep well.

Until next time...

Monday, December 14, 2009

A Very Full Day!

Yesterday, I wrote about seeing Pastor D, because his Dad, B died. This morning, was B's funeral at my church. It may sound unusual that a pastor would do the funeral service for his own parent, but Pastor D is an unusual person. Anyone who knows him, knows this is true. He's a wonderful Christian!

Some funerals can be very sad, but not this one. First of all, B was a born-again believer, so we know he is in heaven, healed and with Jesus. Who could be sad about that? As Pastor D said yesterday, his Dad is with Gordon! Yes, he and his family will miss B, just as I miss Gordon. Praise God that B's family (and all of us who are saved) will all see B, again in heaven! Praise God that He provided a way for us to escape the white-heat wrath of God and an eternity in hell!

Eulogies were done by various friends, fellow pastors and even a friend of B's who is an announcer on a famous Christian TV show; he plays the trumpet beautifully, so we heard some great music, too. B's twin brothers were very humerous, with one of them commenting how he was his twin's 'womb-mate'. lol

All in all, it was an honouring funeral. A real blessing to all who attended. I was grateful that I had an opportunity to see/speak with Pastor D, again. He knows I'll be praying for him and his family; I know he'll be praying for me. Thank you, D.

Before the following reception was over, I had to leave for work. Oh well; a gal's gotta do what a gal's gotta do.

This evening, I was again at church, because it was the last meeting of my Creative Writing group, for this year. We had a fun time of food and fellowship; yes, we did what we normally do at our class, also!

Afterwards, I met a friend from our group at Tim Horton's; she seemed upset about something and indeed, she was feeling stressed about a family problem. I was glad to be able to offer her a listening ear and a shoulder; we prayed, together. That's what friends are for.

Tomorrow N, my cousin from Quebec, will arrive. It will be good to see him, because it's been 29 years since we've seen each other! Am I totally ready? No, so I had better go and try to make last minute preparations, before bedtime.

Today was a busy and very full day for me, but basically, a good day. I hope your day was good, too. Sleep well!

Until next time...

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Wise Man with Gold...

Usually on my Lord's day, I am a happy camper; but, not today. Our pastor lit the third Advent candle and spoke about Joy.

Joy has been on my mind a lot, lately; I spoke about it myself, a few days ago. As I mentioned then, Joy is not happiness. Happiness is something we humans feel, sometimes. Joy comes from the Lord.

When Gordon first died, I could not and would not allow myself to cry; I prayed that God would give me extra grace. He did. However, now is different. For some reason, I am crying more than ever. Hopefully, no one noticed, because I sit near the back of the sanctuary, that I had tears running down my cheeks throughout most of our worship service. It seems to be happening more and more often. I don't like it, but I also feel like I am not always in control, anymore.

I have Joy in the Lord and look forward to celebrating the birth of my Saviour, at this time of year, so I don't quite understand what is happening to me. I reflected on this all afternoon as I went about my travels.

This afternoon I had to work; I hate working on the Lord's day, but there are times when I must. Afterwards, I found myself near the cemetary, so I visited Gordon's grave. Then it was time for me to go to the same funeral home where Gordon had been; in fact, I visited in the same room Gordon had occupied.

You see, my previous pastor, Dr. D.M., left Windsor, to go live in Michigan, where he now pastors a church. His father, B who was a great believer, died. B and Gordon liked each other and were very friendly. Pastor D was excited when he saw me, today and commented that his Dad and Gordon were now in heaven together, healed and happy.

We exchanged condolences; he asked me to sit with him and asked me about Gordon. After a short discussion, I spoke of his Dad; again, he went back to Gordon and commented that he heard I was having a hard time dealing with this trial.

Believe me when I say I was shocked when Pastor D told me that he had never met anyone like me, before and said he had never met anyone who had suffered so many trials in life, saying that some people can't handle one or two, but he knew and recalled many trials I had experienced in my life. He spoke of Job and how God favoured Job, yet he suffered many trials (read it for yourself in the Bible).

Pastor D reminded me how much God loves me. Yes, I know God loves me. He sent his only Son, to die on a wooden cross for my sin. This was when I began to realize that it's not just because I'm grieving the loss of my husband, Gordon that I've been feeling so horrible. For although I am grieving, there is so much more inside me, left over from a lifetime of pain, sorrow and heartache. I commented to Pastor D that I had been wondering if my tears were God's way of releasing some of the pain and suffering I had previously endured, for it seemed lately, that I cannot seem to stop feeling like my whole life has just been about pain, suffering and sorrow.

God promised me (and you, if you are a believer) that He would never give me more than I can handle; I keep reminding Him that I cannot handle anymore trials, but He keeps giving me more and more and more. Because I believe His word, I know that I can do all things, through Christ, who strengthens me. Realistically, I know that with God's help, I can endure this trial of living my life without my husband; but I cannot help but feel that I just really cannot cope with anymore pain or suffering in my life. Although I miss him, I am not sorry that Gordon is with Jesus in heaven, healed and happy. I wouldn't want him back here with me, just to suffer the way he did.

Later, I was able to visit and enjoy a cup of tea with my friend, L. She is always such a fun person to be with; I'm blessed. Thank you, L.

My blessings continued when I went to see my grandson, S play the part of one of the three wise men in a Christmas play, at a Baptist church across the street from his school. He played his part of the wise man with gold so well and spoke his line so well, that I am sure he will one day enjoy acting as a career. Bravo! Well done, S. I'm proud of you!

Hopefully, this will be an encouragement for my daughter, P to bring her family to worship there and not just have the youngest two boys attend 'Kids Club' on Wednesdays. Lord, if it is your will, I know it will happen, for I am praying this in Jesus' name and thanking You, in advance. Amen.

Afterwards, we (as a family) went to the basement level, where desserts were being served. My daughter, P told me a childhood friend who years ago used to live across the street, was there too. We enjoyed fellowship with H; apparently, it's almost two years since her Mom died. It's hard to believe how time flies; wow!

Now, I'm home. I've just baked banana muffins to take to church, tomorrow; both for the funeral and for my creative writing class.

Before I can hit the hay, I need to prepare for tomorrow's real estate work, so I must bid you farewell, for now. Have a great sleep; I'll try to do the same.

Until next time...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Full House!

Yesterday, I said I'd have to tell you about J's dinner party and evening with solo friends who have experienced loss. It was a joyous occasion.

Unfortunately, not everyone showed up. Our group consisted of five women and one...yes, I said ONE man! In addition to me, J had invited S, K and R, plus three men. C, who couldn't make it, Gordon's friend B, who couldn't make it as he now lives near St. Thomas and J.B. who we call B, who suffered greatly amidst a group of women who couldn't believe he would have the courage to be the only fellow! He must have been hungry, I thought!

Seriously, we had a wonderful time. After a delicious Christmas turkey dinner and dessert, lovingly made by J, we opened gifts, enjoyed wonderful fellowship, especially since we are all born-again Christians. We played Family Feud; my team lost (boo hoo), but it was fun. J played the piano, we sang Christmas carols and finished with a fun time of making up our own humerous version of The Twelve Days of Christmas. Here's what we came up with:

12) 12 car washes;
11) 11 farts that don't stink;
10) 10 gallons of gas;
9) 9 gay men;
8) 8 lottery tickets;
7) 7 honeymoons;
6) 6 teddy bears;
5) 5 degrees of cold for Frosty (the snowman);
4) 4 frosted up windows;
3) 3 old birds;
2) 2 headed doll;
1) and a prenupt agreement!

We had a great time of fellowship, filled with laughter and was generally a time I will never forget! Thank you, J for hosting this party. She told me later, that she decided to host this gathering, because she wanted me to have a good time to remember this especially difficult Christmas. I cannot tell you how thankful I am for all my good friends. Thank you, J.

This morning, I picked up my grandson, D and his friend, S. While they did most of the work, they helped me at our home (that has not yet sold), with some yard work that needed to be done. Bless their hearts, for wanting to help! Thank you D and S; I couldn't have done it without you!

After dropping them off at home, I had to pick up potatoes and salad fixings, as I was preparing my own Christmas turkey dinner, for son K and his family and had forgotten I was in need of these things.

Turkey stuffed and in the oven, potatoes ready to go, peas, corn and sweet potatoes prepared, I set the table just in time for them to arrive. At first it was only going to be K, C & N, but S found he could make it after all. How blessed I am!

They left about 10:30 pm. It seems we all had a wonderful time, together, filled with conversation, a tasty meal and of course, presents! We looked at old photos, reminisced about good times with Gordon, told some childhood stories (both current and past) and generally just enjoyed each other's company. I am so grateful they came, tonight. I could not ask for better family. Thank you, Lord.

Tomorrow is my Lord's day. It's about bedtime and I still have dishes to do and a mess to clean up (yes, they offered to help, but I refused, because I really preferred to just enjoy our time, together), so I must get a move on. Goodnight!

Until next time...

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Love and Z's Big Day at the Hospital!

By about 9:30 am, I was visiting Gordon's Aunt G; I took her a Christmas card and a potted plant for Christmas. Together, we enjoyed a cup of tea and a time of fellowship.

Before we knew it, I had to rush, because I was late getting to my next stop. If you read Wednesday's blog entry, you'll note that my friend, A and I celebrated our birthdays. Well, today, I visited her son D and his wife, A and saw how cute and big their newest addition to their family, A has become!

Christmas is such a wonderful time, don't you think? It gives us a chance to see/visit with those who mean much to us.

While there, I asked D about Blackberrys; after some discussion about what I want to use it for, I found out from D and A that a Palm is probably what I would be happier with. Although D no longer works for The Source, I trust his judgement, because he is very knowledgeable. After finding out that the Palm uses Windows, I think I have made up my mind. Thank you, for your input; I appreciate your help more than you know.

From there, I rushed over to Windsor Regional Hospital - Metropolitain Hospital campus, where my just-turned 9 year old grandson, Z was having oral surgery. My daughter P and I had a good chin wag while waiting for Z to come to recovery. He is a very loving little boy and so brave, too. I am proud of him!

At the moment, P has probably just arrived home with Z. I couldn't go over to their home, because my friend, J is expecting me in a few minutes for a dinner she decided she would host for her single friends, who would be lonely at this time of year. Bless her heart! I'm expecting to have a good time, this evening.

J doesn't know it yet, but I'll probably eat her out of house and home, because I had only applesauce for breakfast and had no time for lunch; not good for a diabetic, but it couldn't be helped. I'm starving (not really, but it's my stomach making me feel this way)!

Tomorrow, I'll have to tell you about my evening, because I don't expect to be home in time to write another entry, today. If I don't leave, she'll be wondering what happened to me, so I must be on my way. I hope you will have a wonderful evening!

Until next time...

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Two Months...

Wow! I can't believe it! Today, I finished wrapping Christmas gifts! My daughter, P's birthday is on the 19th; I wrapped her Birthday gifts, too!

While it is a blessing having this big job done, I still must continue delivering cards/gifts. Tomorrow, I will be able to make some visits/deliveries, but since I will have family visit on Saturday, will be busy with family on Sunday, busy Monday at church and family from the province of Quebec, coming to visit on Tuesday, I won't have time to do more. At least until Wednesday, or Thursday, next week.

Hey! Rome wasn't built in a day! I'm just taking things, one step at a time. lol

In addition to my usual work stuff, I vacuumed, today. Am I ever thankful for my 'Shark Plus' canister vacuum! Not only is it lightweight, but it is powerful. Not that it needs to be, when I am vacuuming mainly ceramic tile flooring. Still, between the vacuum and the flooring, it doesn't cause me as much back pain, as in the past, when I needed a heavier vacuum and had to vacuum mainly carpeting. It nearly killed me then, so it was good that Gordon used to help me with the vacuuming. Now, Gordon's not here to help, so I am glad I can do it, even if I need to take my time and take rest breaks, to lay down and rest my painful body.

Later, I drove P's car back to mechanic S's, to have the repair made, but didn't return her car immediately. Instead, I continued making my visits/deliveries.

Enroute, I found myself in the area of the cemetary, where my husband, Gordon is buried. I went to his grave. Why I do this, I don't know. However, today was special. It was two months ago today, that my beloved Gordon died. I was glad to see that the wreath I placed a few days ago, hadn't blown away. Yesterday and even today's high winds blew some other people's wreaths around; I would have replaced the one near Gordon's grave, but I didn't know where it belonged, so I left it where it was. Hopefully, it will be found and replaced where it belongs, soon.

This evening, I returned P's car, picked up my van and together, P & I attended a BUHDAG meeting. Less than a dozen people were in attendance. We were updated with information regarding the Bridge Co. and City of Windsor. Mediation through OMB should begin about March 2010; hopefully, the situation will be resolved and the boarded up homes that present such a threat to families in the area, will be torn down. It will take some time and a lot of work behind the scenes, but I'm praying it will be resolved as soon as possible. The Mayor and Councillors need to remember that they are in a position of responsibility, where residents are concerned. If they think they can sit on the fence forever, they need to think again, because next year is an election year. Hmmm...

On my way home, I dropped off the dog cage I borrowed from my daughter at my friend, C's home. C will be hosting my cousin N's dog, while N is visiting with me, because dogs are not allowed in my apartment building. Thank you, P for loaning me the cage; thank you, C for offering to host N's dog, Mika.

Arriving home after 10 pm, I got ready for bed, got myself comfy and now am writing this entry. Tomorrow will be another busy day, so I will wish you, 'goodnight'.

Until next time...

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Blown Away!

Plans to spend time with my youngest daughter, P changed somewhat this morning. While I was on my way to meet her, she called me to let me know she was having car trouble and asked me to pick her up.

After breakfast time at our favourite place, we took her car to my mechanic, S. He's a great guy, honest and good at what he does. P has had trouble with her car ever since she bought it used, from her Father's sister, Aunt K. Even after major repairs done immediately after buying the car, the problems have not been resolved.

I loaned P my van; she left me at S's garage, where my friend, A picked me up. It may sound crazy, but today, we celebrated my birthday...and hers! We usually select a time between the two dates, so we can celebrate once instead of twice.

Lunch was a delicious time of food and fellowship at East Side Mario's. As per usual, because we were celebrating our birthdays, we received a coupon for a free lunch for the next time we visit the restaurant. However, something unusual happened. A few servers came to our table, sang Happy Birthday to us and brought us each dessert with a lit sparkler. Nice. Yummy, too!

Later, mechanic S told me that P's 3rd cylinder is not working, a sensor in her transmission needs replacing and some of the plug wires need replacing, so he ordered the parts and tomorrow, I will return with P's car to have the work done. After repairs are complete, she'll get her car back; in the meantime, she will have the use of my van to help her with her medical and other appointments she has scheduled. It's good that my busy pre-Christmas schedule is slowing down!

This afternoon, it became so windy that I was almost blown away, when I exited P's car at one stop I made. It's been a long time since I've seen wind like this! Apparently, we may have gusts up to 60 mph (that's about 100 km/hr for you young people!). We are also supposed to have a bad storm, tonight and throughout tomorrow. Hopefully, not! Sometimes we hear the weather report and the storm misses us!

Arriving home, I was so exhausted after only having 1 1/2 hours sleep last night, that I actually had a 1/2 hour nap! Hopefully, it won't interfere with my sleep tonight. :-))

I've been procrastinating working on my gift wrapping, because I've just felt worn out, but friend B called and our conversation was just what the doctor ordered, to perk me up! Thank you, B. You're a good friend. I'm looking forward to seeing you for dinner Friday night, at J's home.

So, before I hit the hay, I must get moving. Or, should I say, wrapping!

Until next time...

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Down, But Not Out...

It was a dull, cold day, today. Actually, even though I live in the most southerly part of Ontario that some people call the 'Florida' of Canada, we do get snow. Last year was an unusual year, for we almost set a new record for the amount of snow we received. However, the average year doesn't really produce much snow, here in Windsor. Some winters we have green grass for most of the season, with only snow flurries and/or a few snowstorms. Sometimes, we get snow, but it disappears overnight, or within a day or two. Not much fun for children, I would say; for adults, it's wonderful! Come retire here!!

Speaking of Florida, I have a couple of friends who have suggested that if I would like to visit, I am welcome. In addition, a friend from church is spending some time in the Tampa area; she is on sabbatical, to write a book. So, I am considering making a trip to Florida.

Considering I say, because although I would like to see each one of my friends and even though I love to travel, I am not sure I am up to going anywhere. This is how I know I am not as emotionally well as I usually am. Normally, I would be ecstatic at the thought of travelling to see my friends, but this year, I feel like part of me is just not 'right'. And, the closer it comes to Christmas, the worse I am feeling.

Some might say that I need to 'pick up my socks' and get on with life; I even had a relative tell me so. Others might tell me that I'm just not trusting in Jesus, enough. Not so. I am trusting in Jesus, for everything in my life. If this weren't the case, I would in worse shape than I am, currently. I know that I can't take my next breath, unless God ordains it. So, you see, trust is not the problem.

It's not just because I lost my husband a few weeks ago; it's also because of the stress, pain and suffering I experienced with him, while he suffered through the last part of his life.

Less than a handful of people know exactly what I experienced, when my husband was ill. He had an inoperable brain tumour, located in the very centre of his head, sitting on the brain stem, that affected him physically, mentally and emotionally. There was no medicine for him, no treatment in Canada and the frustration of not being able to get permission to go outside Canada for the treatment that could have helped him, clearly contributed to his depression and feelings of dispair. He openly would pray that the Lord would just take him home. I was praying for healing, for him. I suppose you could say that God answered my prayer, but not the way I had hoped for, because Gordon is in heaven, healed.

Even the coroner was shocked that Gordon didn't even have medication for pain. It was a miserable, painful and depressing situation to be in, for him, especially not being able to break through the 'glass wall' of our broken health care system, that doesn't allow for necessary medical treatment for every person who needs it.

Now, I feel like I'm the person suffering. I feel like my heart is broken and I don't know how to mend it, so I'm just trusting that God will help me and am thanking my friends and church family, who are helping me through this terrible time in my life.

Okay. You're right. You didn't click onto this site to read about my depression; thanks for reminding me, Lord. Paul said to forget the past and press on towards the mark of the high calling, in Christ Jesus. That's what I'm trying to do.

Today was a productive day for me. Meeting with clients and making my Christmas deliveries kept me busy, but I was able to find time to see my mechanic to have the brakes on my van, checked. Of course, I found time for facebook, too!

All in all, it really was a pretty good day. It seemed like Christmas came early, for me. I received a couple of lovely Christmas gifts from two friends, L and W! Thank you! I'll be sure to use your gifts on Saturday, when some of my family visits for dinner.

Tonight, I've been wrapping gifts for family. Between birthdays and Christmas, it's almost unbelievable how many gifts there are to buy and wrap! Oh well, before we know it, it will be all over for this year, so let's just enjoy this precious time, together.

Since it's about bedtime, I'll say 'goodnight'.

Until next time...

Monday, December 7, 2009

On Goes the Battle!

Today, I was busy and on the go, all day.

First thing this morning, a couple of our building board members came into my apartment, to make sure my smoke detector is working; they were actually here a couple of months ago (before Gordon died), checking to make sure that our plumbing was working properly, with no leaks. I suppose it's a good thing that they check all units, because this apartment building is probably in the best condition of all buildings in Windsor.

Deliveries and real estate stuff' kept me going and will continue to do so, for a while, yet. While I was driving, I thought about how unhappy I've been feeling, yet I still have joy (in the Lord).

At lunchtime, I met friends, M & C at Pat & Hanks (fish 'n chips) in Tecumseh. If you read the blog from my birthday, you might remember that they celebrated my birthday with me, at Red Lobster. However, this time the surprise was for them. When they arrived, they found that Santa had made a delivery for each of them! Ho ho ho...

Later, I picked up the turkey I plan to cook, this Saturday. I'm looking forward to having our son (my stepson I call, "son".), K, his wife, C and youngest son, N as guests for dinner, for the first time since Gordon died.

After preparing (doing my research and organizing paperwork) for tomorrow's appointment, I relaxed and spent some time on facebook.

My childhood friend, F had posted an entry, saying, "To Those Grieving this Christmas: I found this poem in Joni Eareckson Tada's book 'Roses in December' p. 57". The poem is a rather sad one, but reflected similarly to what I had been thinking, while making my afternoon deliveries. It's amazing how God works.

My daughter, P and I were supposed to go to Windsor's City Hall, for about 5:30 pm, but due to my work preparations and being exhausted, I didn't go. P did. She may be on tonight's news, as the cameras were rolling while she was speaking out about living in an area where the bridge company owns MANY vacant, boarded up homes, that need to be torn down. The city won't allow this, because they feel that the bridge company is trying to make strides for building a second span for the existing bridge to USA, that our government doesn't want, due to DRIC plans to build a new bridge elsewhere. Meanwhile, until the impass is settled, the bridge company won't purchase any more properties, either. If they were to continue purchasing properties, at least more of the residents would have an opportunity to move to another neighbourhood.

Unfortunately, the residents in this area are suffering and living in rather unsafe conditions, in my opinion. Once, many years ago, I was chased by a person who had illegally occupied a vacant home. This man had a warrant from out west, for his arrest; yes, Windsor police caught him and arrested him. I was grateful that a good samaritan came to my rescue and I was not hurt. On a second occasion, while showing homes, my clients and I found a sleeping vagrant in a vacant home.

In my opinion, vacant properties boarded up not only provide a haven for vagrants, they could attract unscrupulous people, drug dealers, rapists, etc. as the boarding up, provides a warmer, 'less visible to the eye' location, where they could hide out. How would you like to have your children play outdoors or walk towards school, having to pass by 8 vacant, boarded up homes (in a row) that are falling apart? Who could be hiding there?

The city hasn't issued workorders to force the owners to improve the properties and encourage them to rent out the homes to recover improvement expenses, yet they won't give permission for demolition, either. It's the residents that are unsafe and suffering. Unfortunately, the group wasn't able to speak to council...AGAIN!! At least they are now attracting media attention.

While I don't like my family living in this 'war zone', I realize that the only true protection comes from God. I pray that He will continue to keep a hedge of protection around my family and indeed, all families living within the area affected by the skirmish.

When I finish writing this entry, I will be printing more gospel message labels to attach to mini candy canes. This will keep me busy for a while. At least until bedtime! It should come earlier, tonight, as last night I was up well past 4 am; couldn't sleep. This has been happening to me almost nightly, until I reach the point where I am so exhausted that I cannot stay awake. Hopefully, tonight's the night. I need sleep!

Thanks for reading. Keep well.

Until next time...