Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Overwhelmed By the Blessings These Days

I don't know why it continues to happen, but my husband keeps coming up with restaurant coupons, so tonight we were out for dinner AGAIN!!  For me, that is 3 meals out in 2 days...okay, mostly proteins and salads, but wow...even a plain tossed salad tastes better in a restaurant.  I LOVE eating out, even for simple salad meals.  Aaaaahhhhh...........

Tonight we went for the first time to Da' Pizza and Curry House, located in a small strip mall on the south side of Victoria near the intersection with Arcola.  When we walked in I wasn't that excited as the place didn't look particularly prosperous, BUT the server was very sweet and the menu had a lot of options on it.  Unfortunately, what caught my eye were listings of dishes on every page that included the descriptive words, "cheese", "potato", "bread" and "deep fried".  For awhile I felt somewhat discouraged as my eyes didn't seem to alight on anything other than salads that I can safely eat.  Fortunately my husband knows how I manage to make myself crabby in such circumstancesa, before I even view the full menu, so he quickly located some other options for me that were healthier and with less cholesterol.

The prices are amazing there....SO inexpensive for what you get to eat!  My husband went completely crazy ordering all manner of things I knew we would never be able to finish.  I dreaded the final bill, but my goodness....that bill came to a total of $50.17, taxes included!  For our $50 we had enough food to bring home at least one hearty lunch for tomorrow!  Our costs included: 1 ten inch tandoori paneer pizza on a thin crust and topped up as well with tomato and sauteed onions (thin layer of cheese so even I could have a slice) with an herbed yogurt dipping sauce that also made a wonderful salad dressing, a large bowl of sambar topped with a mound of freshly chopped cilantro, 2 full sized whole wheat roti, a large chick pea salad with feta cheese and cucumber and tomato and red onion, as well as an appetizer plate that featured a small tossed salad, a bowl of chick peas in gravy, 4 deep fried paneer rounds, 6 veggie pakora, 1 veggie samosa, and a large mashed potato patty with sliced green onions with a bit of tamarind dip, (and of course there was a Kokanee for my husband).  Right now my refrigerator is stuffed with the leftovers! We will be eating chick pea salad long after the other leftovers are gone...there was that much of it for less than $5!  Next time I am able to have some extra carbs and we want an inexpensive but very tasty meal, we are returning to this little restaurant!

And now, off to lift weights and exercise for AT LEAST an hour to wear off this amazing feast! 

Thank you Lord for all the blessings of the past week...amazing!  Feeling very undeserving, but ever so grateful that no one has to be particularly deserving to receive your amazing blessings. That's what your love for your creation is all us the good things none of us deserve.  All we have to do is agree to receive them. Thank you.......

A Great Night At The Globe

Last evening was the final Globe Theatre play some friends and I have tickets for this season.  The 5 of us are hoping to become a group of 6 in the autumn when we begin attending the next season of plays.  Soon we will have a dinner meeting to choose which ones we all want to see in the coming months.

Part of the treat of the play evenings is going out for dinner.  Last night we went to the newest Spices of Punjab location on Scarth Street.  I wasn't sure how it would go for me. Their original location over on Victoria Street is a day long buffet and I have not fared well after eating there the last 3 times I tried their food.  Whether the food had been sitting overly long under the heat lamps, or my system is just super sensitive to one of the herbs/spices in their dishes, I don't know, but I was kind of worried about my last night's meal.

Well, glory be!  This new location only has buffet occasionally.  The rest of the time, such as last evening, the dishes are ordered off the menu, so they are fresh and hot and delicious.  My bowl of chicken zal frazi was absolutely delicious!  I had some fresh naan to scoop up the onion and pepper sauce.  By drinking only water I still kept the price of my meal to exactly $20, including taxes and a healthy tip.  I will definitely try this second location again.  I had no bad tummy reactions afterward, just nice warm glowing feelings of well being.  This location also features pasta dishes and pizza, which made one member of our group extremely happy. She is not one for ethnic foods and was delighted by her non-spicy, but extremely delicious freshly made tomato sauce over penne.

After dinner we walked over to the theatre and enjoyed a wonderful performance of old jazz and blues.  The performance is titled "Key Change" and features 80 minutes of popular old songs by 7 black female performers, tracing the history of the genres as changed by their various styles: Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, Billie Holiday, Nina Simone, Dinah Washington, Lena Horne and Etta James.

The lead vocalist from Toronto, Nicky Lawrence, came up with the idea and has performed it all over Canada along with her very able back up singers, Eric Da Costa and Aisha Jarvis.  Along with the songs, a brief history of each singer's contributions to the blues and jazz of their era was explained.  The young Ms. Lawrence has a terrific voice and carried the weight of those blue blues songs well. I will be interested to hear her sing in another ten years when her voice matures even more and there is a depth brought about by not only that extra maturity, but by more of life's unavoidable pain. My only complaint, as usual, was that the wonderfully skilled live jazz band that accompanied the performance overpowered the singer's voices just a bit.

What a great evening was had by us all.  

Icing on the cake: a friend from church was there to visit with in the foyer afterward, along with 2 members of the choir I am in. At last I am starting to run into people at public events that I actually know!  Guess I am finally an official resident of this city, haha.

A New Work Of Art!

Along with this afternoon's sunshine on a chilly day, another blessing arrived after lunch from FedEx!!  

My son has been promising to send us a painting, been promising for months actually, but he is definitely an absent minded creative soul who doesn't remember details very well.  This week he finally got his act together, wrapped up the painting within an inch of its life in bubble wrap, cardboard and tape and sent it along to us.

It is so beautiful.  There are little geometrically perfect squares and rectangles of various, mostly darker colours all over the canvas.  I can't wait to hang it up, but I have to wait until my husband is free this evening to assist.  At the moment I have only gotten as far as taking all the other paintings and photographs off the living room and dining room walls and plotting a better way to arrange them in order to incorporate the new work into the mix.  

What fun~I am delighted and so is his dad.

Thank you son!  We are really enjoying being able to track your artistic growth through the years through the series of art works we have received from you.  It is so amazing to us to see the difference between your earlier works and the present....just think how impressed we would be if we actually understood this kind of art! hahahahaha 

Today "happiness" is spelled: A-R-T!!

Prayers for Family

I am going to blog several short posts today about a few different things, but this one is the most important one.

Our family member who is undergoing cancer treatment had a long meeting with the oncologist this week and found out that although the scheduled 4 chemo treatments followed by a week of radiation should be sufficient, this form of cancer is aggressive enough that the oncologist wants to try 6 treatments instead, followed by the radiation.

It is kind of a good news/bad news situation in that while the side effects of the chemo thus far have been manageable, and 2 more treatments would only mean an extra couple of more months until the treatments end, very few people being given this particular cocktail of drugs are physically able to handle doing more than the initial 4 treatments.  Sigh....although our family member has done incredibly well through the first 2 treatments, psychologically it is very discouraging to hear such a thing.  

So many questions: although the appetite has remained strong through treatment #2, what is going to happen by the time 6 treatments have taken place?  What happens if the side effects become too much to cope with after treatment 4?  How does the patient cope with the psychological limbo of never knowing when or if worse side effects will happen after treatment #4?   

This type of cancer cannot be detected through blood work.  It can not be seen on a CT scan until larger tumours appear, or, as in the case of our family member, a biopsy is done "just in case".  So, what is that going to do to our family member over the coming years? How often are  there going to have to be CT scans?  How often will hours and days be spent worrying about that phone call from the doctor's office about the test results?  

You don't realize if you haven't had exposure to cancer either personally or through others who have experienced the disease how the concern of a recurrence never goes away.  Our family member was only diagnosed so early this time around because of the diligence of seizing on the teensiest of symptoms that could have meant absolutely nothing, normally never would mean anything, but our family member had "this feeling" and didn't quit seeking the reason for the symptoms until the answer was found.  

My husband and I are at the age where we also cannot afford to ignore any changes in our bodies that we don't understand or don't recognize as normal or usual.  However, in this day and age, with the onset of so many diseases in more youthful folk than ever before, no one of any age can afford to ignore unexpected bodily changes.  

I am learning a good lesson from family and friends who are having treatments for a wide range of life threatening diseases at the moment.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Okay Auntie...ONE Goose Story, Just For You.

Yesterday I went out into our big snowfall and shovelled a narrow pathway across the lawn from the bottom of the back deck to the car.  It is so narrow it is barely the width of  my small shovel, but by stepping carefully my husband and I are able to access the vehicle without stepping in the snow.

About ten minutes after I came back inside I heard geese honking from that direction.  I looked out the window and there was our blessed pair from last season, stepping carefully along that narrow pathway, one behind the other, ripping out the munchable, newly green grass I had exposed and leaving a trail of goose poop along the entire length of the shovelled strip. hahahaha  I inadvertently shovelled out a goosey cafeteria!  hahaha

O well.......

Me Too!!

"He didn't really like travel, of course. He liked the idea of travel, and the memory of travel, but not travel itself,"
--Julian Barnes, "Flaubert's Parrot"

Monday, April 24, 2017

Google....Y're Killin' Me Here Guys!!

Yes dear Google techs, I AM dying.....from laughter over your weeks' long buildup about the new and improved, faster sign in to my accounts with you.


The new sign in screen appeared on my computer this morning and guess what: the only things new about it are the graphics and the fonts!  It is still a 2 step, 2 screen event.  Not one single thing has changed about the actual sign in process; NOT ONE SINGLE THING!


Y're crackin' me up here guys....seriously!  Have any of you ever considered stand up comedy as a way to make a living??  If not, you should because ya'll are HILARIOUS!!!