Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Month end

Hey there - I thought I would end the month with pictures of Jalen and Lexi that I took this past weekend. Jalen was very busy with his ball hockey championships over a three day period. He was in second place with total points going in to the tournament so I knew he would earn a few more. I offered $1.00 per point (assist or goal) and at the end of the championship game I had to fork over (and was happy to do so!) a total of $16.00. Lexi and I bonded while Mommy and Jalen were extra busy doing a million things. Among the things on Tracey's list was new shoes for Jalen. His feet have grown two full sizes since his last pair of shoes a mere two months ago. It's expensive raising kids!!!!

Tomorrow I head to Halifax - more on that and how my June is shaping up later.



Thursday, May 26, 2011

BPG - Bell Pensioners' Group and memories

I attended the annual BPG meeting yesterday here in Toronto. The meeting was moved for the first time from the Mississauga location to a more central location on the Yonge North subway line ... a very easy commute for me and hopefully for others as well.

Membership in BPG continues to be an issue so this is a bit of a 'pitch' to any Bell pensioners who read my blog but have not yet given their $20.00 to join BPG. Please join - much work is needed to protect our pensions in the future and $20.00 is a very small price to pay for the good work the BPG Board is doing on our behalf. I am no longer on the board but I know how hard these pensioners work on our behalf.

There is a much-loved social hour before each of these meetings. We gather at 11 am while the actual meeting begins at 12 noon so we have a full hour to catch up. It was Russ Donaldson's 75th birthday so we got to congratulate Russ for example. Dave Hall and I always find a few minutes to chat - Dave was the Manager of our Rouge River hockey team and for years and years we could all be found at the annual Bell hockey tournament - and for years and years Dave's team won the big trophy!

One of my favourite memories of time with Dave (or Davey as we called him then) was when Danny Bell and I had dinner with Dave and his wife to celebrate - was it his 20th anniversary with Bell? That detail I don't remember but it was a significant milestone. We had drinks at their beautiful home and then went off to dinner. A good time was had by all. Of course, that memory makes me think of Danny who we lost far too soon to cancer. Danny was 50 years old when he fought a very brief but oh-so-tough battle with this damn killer disease. We all miss him still. I try to keep in touch with Carolyn, Danny's sister, and our conversations turn to Danny so easily. Remembering is a good thing.

Today is yet another rainy day. Jalen has ball hockey playoffs all weekend so I will be heading north tomorrow and will have many photos to share on Monday. Here's hoping the forecast for rain all weekend is not accurate.

Carol Ann
PS - Please don't forget to join BPG if you have not done so.

Monday, May 23, 2011

May 22nd pictures

Jalen loves his little sister and Lexi loves pulling Mommy's hair!

Lexi is practicing two separate skills here - sitting up and also rolling over - as you can see she is slowly mastering both skills.

I took this beautiful picture of mother and daughter at the Hockey Hall of Fame while we were watching the boys......meaning James and Jalen of course.

We had a wonderful family day!



Return Visit to the Hockey Hall of Fame

When my son and his family picked me up yesterday we had a surprise for Jalen. We were headed for the Hockey Hall of Fame. Jalen and I have been there once but the rest of the family was making their first visit. (At four months of age Lexi was only mildly interested!) In these pictures Jalen was shooting on the Hockey Hall of Fame goalie and did a great job. He visited this particular area a few times, then the Wii games took over. While Jalen and Tracey played Wii, James worked on a real estate deal and Lexi and I sat in the Theatre and caught up on our hockey history. One minor melt down was cut short when Lexi fell asleep having only disturbed the others in the theatre for a few minutes. And, when you are as cute as Lexi, no one really minds as long as her out bursts are brief - and they were. We had lunch mid day and then back inside for a few more games and then to Nana's place to watch Vancouver win the game!! Lexi slept through much of the game.



Friday, May 20, 2011

My niece - Dawn Marie Balisky

Today I want to brag about Dawn Marie. DM is a daughter, wife, sister, auntie, friend, teacher and my beautiful niece. These pictures were obviously taken at her wedding - wasn't she the most beautiful bride? We were all proud of DM for so many reasons on her special day - I believe that was in 1991 correct DM? In the second picture she is with her sister Natalie (who is my God child) and my then-very-young-son James.

Currently DM is training for her first triathlon and I am so proud of her for taking this on. I recently asked for an update and, in part, this is what she said, "Training is going very well. My favourite training is swimming which surprises me to no end. I was up and out of the house on the way to the pool this am by 5:30. I love swimming - nothing about it hurts! ... Last night I biked and ran. It's called a brick work out, because there are activities stacked (more like you feel like a brick!)" OMG I can't imagine it! DM went on to say that she is grateful for her support team including her husband Dean, Wendi and Sharon her friend from My Communities in Bloom group.

Wendi is an artist and there might be a tattoo in their future when the triathlon is behind them!

DM is a fantastic teacher. I have been with her in downtown Grande Prairie when some of her students see her in public. They have such glowing things to say to her and clearly consider her part of their lives. They actually follow her around when they see her.

DM's big weekend is in mid June so do me a favour and send her lots of love and positive energy.


Carol Ann

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A heart-felt idea

Hey there -my friend Eileen brought me this gift from her last trip to Mexico. (She does lots and lots of travel!) The heart has the smallest hole in it that is meant to be an opening used to insert a secret message. I am going to have Jalen write a note to his sister to be given to her on her 16th birthday. Only Jalen will know what his message is for little Lexi. We will work on the project together and then put the heart in Lexi's time capsule.

I am always interested in hearing ideas you may have re projects we can enjoy with our grandkids so please do share.


Carol Ann

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A walk down memory lane with my Logistics friends

In the first picture, from the left, J C Legault, Eileen Savage, Judy Charette, Sam Botsikos and me. Diane Chabot (our leader) in the solo photo. We last all worked together in 1994 and following that date, one at a time, we found "life after Bell." Yesterday we got together, first at my condo, and then at a lovely little Yorkville restaurant to walk down memory lane via names, places, events and even a fire - but enough about the fire! We laughed, we shared, and we learned more about each other as we listened and enjoyed hearing about each other's successes in life. We all lead very different lives now than during our Bell careers and it is a gift to catch up and share.

I find now more than ever (and yes perhaps it is because of my cancer experiences) I love reconnecting with friends from my Bell days - and let's face it Bell was our life at one time so those we worked with often became very good friends. It doesn't take long to realize who you want to keep in your life and it is so important to me to reach out and let me friends know they are on my mind. Don't wait for a funeral to get together. Actually though, if a funeral is why you are planning to get together Diane can make that happen, so to speak! (Couldn't resist that Diane!)

Thanks for making yesterday such fun my friends - and thanks for giving me yet another memory to look back on.


Carol Ann

Monday, May 16, 2011

Family game nite

Not sure Jalen is teaching Lexi the actual workings of the games yet but it won't be long! How cute are they?


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Experience . . .

As we sit down to watch the hockey game this evening this picture is proof that Jalen is introducing his sister to the game of hockey at the four month old mark. (Don't worry, she really wasn't playing in goalie position....for long!)

We are making sure she knows there will be nothing in life she cannot do.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Lexi turns four months old!

Lexi is working on her "sitting up" skills and as you can see she does it with a smile. She is such a happy child - and here she watches a few minutes of TV with her big brother while waiting for her breakfast. She doesn't like to wait for long though and when the smile disappears it is time for milk!

I am so proud of the way James and Tracey are raising their children. Of all of my successes to date I still say my son is what I am most proud of!


Like father like son......

My son always signed any cards he made for me with his full name and I loved it. Jalen is doing the same thing. In the Mother's Day card he made for his Mummy he signed his full name too. Jalen is such a delightful little boy - and he is already exhibiting the soft skills that I speak about in my motivational work!

Friday, May 13, 2011

The beauty of Port Hope

While I was in Port Hope I was a guest at The Waddell on Walton Street. If ever you are looking for the perfect place to stay check out www.thewaddell.ca The building is more than 165 years old with traditional red brick walls, a view of the Ganaraska River and rooms to make you feel like a Queen or King trust me.

I reconnected with my friend David Noble - we were first friends, believe it or not, back in the late '80s working out at Gold's Gym on the corner of Charles and Yonge. David is on the board of the Northumberland YMCA and on the committee that brought me to town for their YMCA Strong Kids Campaign breakfast. I met so many wonderful new people, connected with some old friends, some from my Bell days (hi Kathy, Donna and Russ!) and in particular I met about 35 students. I love working with students and it looks like I will be able to stay in touch with a number of them. I have received e mails from students asking if we can remain in touch - this is a gift they are giving me.

David (on behalf of the committee and Board) gave me this beautiful leather bound journal. He would have no way of knowing that this journal adds to the collection I already have. The antique look fits so well with The Waddell too and of all the journals I have (and I have plenty) this collection is my favourite.

Heading North to see family..........enjoy your Friday the 13th and your weekend.


Carol Ann

Jalen and Lexi

Jalen holding his little sister very early in the morning. Our "sleeping beauty" picture of Lexi comes with the caption, "Lexi anxiously (not) waiting for her brother to finish his swimming lesson." Wouldn't you just love to be able to sleep in the middle of so much noise and activity?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Cobourg /Port Hope/Northumberland County

Tomorrow morning I will be the breakfast speaker at the YMCA Strong Kids Program fundraiser in Northumberland County. You can learn more and purchase a ticket if you like by calling 905 372 4318. The Cobourg YMCA is located at 339 Elgin St West. The Strong Kids Program ensures everyone can belong to the YMCA and that children get off the couch and away from the TV, computer and electronic games and into active programs that give them opportunities to be fit, healthy, learning and growing. YMCA Strong Kids provides financial assistance programs for over 1,600 children, families and individuals throughout Northumberland to participate in YMCA programs, Day Camp and Child Care.

Maybe I will see you there. (I know I will see my friend Kathy Service, and of course David Noble.)

Carol Ann

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A reluctant Canucks fan

In 1994 the Vancouver Canucks wiped out my Maple Leafs in game five. This is their first time in the conference final since then, and it's the third time in the history of the franchise that they have made it this far. So, with some reluctance (as is the case with any serious Leaf's fan I suggest) I am now on board as a Canucks fan and I hope they go all the way and bring the cup home to Canada. There, I said it!

Kesler is a hero, Luongo is back in the game and while last night's game was made up of tough sledding on choppy ice in a hot arena let's assume the best is yet to come. I find it hard to say, "Go Canucks Go" so will take the easier route ... "Go Canada Go!

Have a gentle Tuesday.


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day to all Mothers out there

I absolutely love this picture of my mom - Mary Rose Cole (d'Entremont) taken as she worked in her kitchen in June of 1965.

Mom was 50 years old and beautiful as always. I had been away from home for a full year already and was home on my first vacation.

Happy Mother's Day to you!


Carol Ann

Friday, May 6, 2011

I spoke too soon

Having slept through the entire night Wednesday things did not go so well Thursday night. In fact, we were up and down all night. Lexi, because kids can, slept most of the day today to catch up. Me, not so much so when Mummy and Daddy arrived to pick her up I had her packed and ready to go! (not really of course)

All kidding aside what a treat to have her all to myself for a couple of days. She changes each time I see her and to watch her grow is such a delight. When Jalen was this age I was living in Halifax so it was not as easy to spend this kind of time with him.

As you know my friend Barb came over to meet Lexi yesterday after work - we had a great visit. Barb is a Nana too and kids are clearly drawn to her. Jalen was as well the very first time he met her. I have posted pictures of Jalen and Lexi's "How tall am I now?" wall and while Barb was here we measured Lexi again. It is a two person job because Lexi bounces on her feet and keeps bending her legs so getting her true height is not easy. I held her while Barb stood and took the picture - it is Barb that Lexi is looking up at. She is now 25 inches tall- so she is better than a two-footer already!

This particular Friday night I can tell you exactly what I am going to do -ABSOLUTELY NOTHING - and I might be sleeping by 9 pm too.


Carol Ann

Thursday, May 5, 2011

And to all a good night.....

A picture speaks a thousand words - and a long day too! More details tomorrow.

All dressed up and ready to meet Nana's friends

From Lexi -

My Nana's friends are coming over so I had to get all dressed up. What I really like about dressing up like this is that I can wear my Toronto Maple Leaf shoes! How cool am I?

They belonged to my brother when he was little like me. I won't be able to wear them much longer because they are kind of tight on my feet.

Have a good day everyone.


Lexi Ann Sydney Scott

Good morning world!

This little lady slept from 9 30 last evening until 6 am this morning! We are having friends over today and again this evening to meet Lexi so hopefully we are both well rested!



Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Lexi has arrived for her two sleep overs

I will be laughing over this photo forever - even Lexi, at 3 1/2 months old, knows that at Nana's if you want to eat you have to feed yourself! We are going to have a delightful few days. I have one phone interview to do so that should be very interesting if she is awake at the time. Lexi has, you might say, found her voice!



Presenting the "V" Puppies

If you love puppies you will love this card from my friends Judy and Garry Charette. Their card presented the "V" puppies - Vinny, Vegas, Viscount, Ventor, Victoria, Vitality and Vermont. How cute are they?

Judy and I worked closely together during my last position at Bell in the Logistics department and we have become very good friends since first meeting on the job. In fact, next week Judy will be here for a visit and we will "do lunch" with three others from the Logistics team - Eileen, Sam and JC. More on that another time.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Moments become memories. Life's experiences are worth journaling

"The White sisters" - Phyllis, Dorothy, Jeannie and Karen gave me this beautiful wooden box while we were together in Montreal to watch the Royal Wedding. Yes, I continue to celebrate my birthday and they surprised me with yet another celebration! The quote on the cover of the box, "Moments become Memories. Life's experiences are worth journaling," is from one of my books and the girls shared the story of looking through my books to find the perfect quote. On the inside cover each of their names is written within a Comfort Heart - how origional is that? They put so much thought into this and that makes it even more special to me - girls thank you so much! Two beautiful pens were inside the box but I confess to having removed the pens because I want to use the box for jewellery. I have my mother's jewellery box and now I have a second - from the White girls! My friends from Wilmot have included me in all of their milestone birthday parties and I don't see that ending anytime soon. They have recently been involved in my milestones - both birthday and good health!

See you in Nova Scotia girls!


Carol Ann

Monday, May 2, 2011


No, these pictures are not from the Halifax harbour, but they do remind me of the many times I have watched the Tall Ships sailing in and out of Halifax. Today's blog is a shout out to my "down home" friends and other folks who are following my blog and e mailed to say they were pleased that I was heading home this summer. There is no question - a very strong bond exists between us Maritimers. See you in August.


Carol Ann