Blogging Grandmother’s Link Party #16

Welcome to the Blogging Grandmothers Link Party #16

Starts Thursday, June 1, 2017 at 12:05 am central (US)

Ends Wednesday, June 7 at 11:55 pm

Blogging Grandmothers Link Party

REALLY SIMPLE RULES:

ï This party is for grandmother bloggers only

ï You may share new or old, family friendly posts, no limit

ï By joining the party, you are giving the hostesses permission
to share your photos and posts on social media and to use in
posts, features, and round ups with proper credit given to you

ï All party posts will be pinned on Pinterest,
and might be shared on other social media sites

ï By entering your email into the InLinkz form,
you are giving hostess Grammy Dee permission to
send you an email reminder about the next party

ï Kindly show some link love by visiting some other guests

ï Let’s all connect, our social media sites are below

ï Thank you for partying with us, sharing the
party, and inviting other grandmothers who blog

The Hostesses:
Grammy Dee, MiMi Clearissa, Grandma Candy,
Gramma Lori, Grandma Christie, Grandma Donna,
Nan Sue, Grandma Teresa, and Mimi Carol

Grammy Dee from Grammyís Grid

Grammy Dee from Grammy’s Grid
Bloglovin’Facebook Google+ Instagram
Pinterest Twitter

MiMi Clearissa from Clearissa Cowardís Command Center

MiMi Clearissa from Clearissa Coward’s Command Center
Bloglovin’ Facebook Flipboard Google+ Instagram
LinkedIn Pinterest Twitter

Grandma Candy from Candyís Farm House Pantry

Grandma Candy from Candy’s Farm House Pantry
Facebook Google+ Instagram Pinterest Twitter

Gramma Lori from Love My Big Happy Family

Gramma Lori from Love My Big Happy Family
Facebook Google+ Instagram Pinterest Twitter

Grandma Christie from So What? Now What?

Grandma Christie from So What? Now What?
Facebook Instagram Pinterest Twitter

Grandma Donna from Retirement Reflections

Grandma Donna from Retirement Reflections
Facebook Flipboard Google+ Instagram
LinkedInPinterest Twitter

Nan Sue from Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond

Nan Sue from Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond
Facebook Google+ Instagram Pinterest
StumbleUpon Twitter

Grandma Teresa from Aging Like a Fine Wine

Grandma Teresa from Aging Like a Fine Wine
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Mimi Carol from Home with Mimi

Mimi Carol from Home with Mimi
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StumbleUpon Twitter

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Our last Blogging Grandmothers Link Party had:
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Blogging Grandmothers Link Party Featured Bloggers

All That’s Jas: Mushroom Shortbread Cookies

Across the Boulevard: Coastal Candle Holder

All Our Way: Cannoli Cake

Dr Sock Writes Here: Seffascopes and Bomb Fires

Empty Nest: Ten Clutter-Free Gift Ideas

OK, LETíS PARTY
Blogging Grandmothers Link Party
Please, do not link up if you are not a grandmother
Thank you



Please, do not link up if you are not a grandmother.
We have a weekly Wednesday AIM Link Party that is for everyone.
Please link up there instead.†Thank you!

Meaningful Mondays: Happiness Revisited – Guest Post for Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond

Happiness Revisited

As I mentioned in my last post, I recently wrote a guest article for Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond.

I would love if you could drop by and visit this site and check out my post. While you’re there, be sure to browse some of Sue’s great articles. And, if you could leave a comment there, it would be greatly appreciated.

Here’s a teaser from that post:

Chinese Character for ' Happiness 'I don’t know about you, but the Chinese character for happiness (Fu) has always reminded me of someone (gold) pushing a grocery cart (blue). A box of something (green) is falling into the cart followed by a loaf of bread (light blue). It turns out I was not that far off–at least in terms of satisfied bellies!

The actual Chinese character represents happiness as a full stomach. When the mouth (green) is united (light blue) with a cultivated field (blue), we are blessed with the abundance of heaven (gold). Source.

Please link on over to Sue’s site to read more!
I hope to see you there!

Everyday Miracles

Everyday Miracles

What would you do if you believed you had less than five years to live? I now have a realistic answer to this question.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m lousy at the yoga pose, Downward Facing Dog. I mean REALLY LOUSY! My shoulders and upper body give out quickly. I lose my breath and my heart races. I happened to mention the ‘breathlessness’ part to my doctor. I had visited her to discuss some inexplicable random pains in my upper arms. “Hmmm,” she said. “Let’s order a chest x-ray just to be safe.” That was May 3. On May 10, my doctor called me back in and asked my husband to join us. That did not appear to be a good sign. The words “loss of mass in your upper lungs, thickening of your lung walls and a three-centimeter shadow at your lung center” stung in my brain. “Suspected Pulmonary Fibrosis” was written on the x-ray report. That definitely was not good news.

A CAT Scan was ordered as the next step. In British Columbia, it’s currently a minimum two-month wait for that type of exam. I was given an appointment date of July 6. In the meantime, my husband and I prayed and read. What we read was not encouraging. It was the opposite of encouraging.

Pulmonary fibrosis is the scarring of the lungs. It is a progressive disease which makes breathing difficult. Treatment options are limited as this disease currently cannot be reversed. The survival rate for most patients is less than five years. Source.

My husband and I met with our doctor again. She was kind and sympathetic but did not try to placate us about the potential road ahead.

Instantly and simultaneously, my husband and I knew how we wanted to live the rest of our lives, regardless of how much time either of us had. I wasn’t experiencing any symptoms (unless you include breathlessness from my least favorite yoga pose)! Richard and I wanted to get out there. We wanted to live our lives as fully as possible. We wanted to remain active and adventurous for as long as we could. Truthfully, we wanted to be even more adventurous! We wanted to relish in our family and friends and be there for them, without burdening anyone. We wanted to remain grateful for every single day that we had. And, we wanted to be in it together.

We decided not to share this information with anyone until we knew more. After we received the scan results, we would decide how to proceed from there.

With incredible good fortune (and a bit of cash), we were able to get a private scan done in Vancouver. Remarkably, we were able to do this in May instead of July. There were exactly two weeks between receiving the original x-ray report and my CAT Scan in Vancouver. There were then two more days before we could find out the scan results. (Total time span: May 3 – May 25).

So what did we do during that time? Mostly, we did what we usually do. We walked dogs for the SPCA, went to the gym, spoke with our sons and my niece on the phone/Skype, hung out with friends and attended local events. We continued our planning for our Camino Trail hike this coming summer. I went to book club and yoga (and yes, I kept up with my attempts at the dreaded Downward Facing Dog). I was also extremely fortunate to be able to spend the week of Mother’s Day with my parents (which was amazing). Oh, and I also wrote a guest post on ‘Happiness’ for a blogging friend of mine. Lying underneath all this was a heightened appreciation for all that Richard and I have, and for all those whom we’ve been blessed to hold so dearly in our lives.

And, I have never felt so loved. Richard was amazing. How could I selfishly want more?

I quit reading about the disease. I would make a plan with my doctor once we had conclusive information. I continued praying. In prayer, I fully believed that everything was okay, even though my recent chest x-ray suggested differently.

“I believe in miracles,” I told Richard. “A single lab report is not going to get me down. It does not have my consent!”

Then, late last evening when I was leaving a Newcomers’ meeting, my doctor called. The CAT Scan of my heart and lungs was ‘completely normal’ for my age, height, and weight. The three-centimeter shadow was a benign air-cyst that posed no danger. The loss of volume frequently happens with age. I was given a clean bill of health!

I hung up the phone and relayed my doctor’s message to Richard. We were filled with intense love, gratitude and the unwavering knowledge that miracles, both big and small, happen every single day. It is this knowledge and emotion that I wish to keep at the center of my life for however long my life may be.

Feature Image: Canva.com

Summer Series: Favorite Retirement/Lifestyle Bloggers

Summer Series: Favorite Retirement Bloggers

The Joys of Blogging

So far on this site, I have written a fair amount about blogging. If you are passionate about on-line writing (either as a reader, a writer or both), you know how blogging can take hold of you and fill a void that you never realized you had.

The real-time sharing of ideas, the dynamic interaction, the connection with others…all stimulate the soul. On top of this, is the building of community. I’ve previously mentioned how regular visitors to a blog take the writing to a new level. Commenters, many of whom have their own blogs, immeasurably enhance and extend the original ideas shared.

I’ve also written before that following retirement bloggers is what got me interested in on-line writing in the first place. (Following these bloggers also significantly aided my transition into retirement!)

Many of these regulars, you have seen in the comment sections of my posts. Which got me thinking, wouldn’t it be great to highlight these generous contributors further? Thus, the summer series ‘Favorite Retirement/Lifestyle Bloggers’ is born.

The Plan

The plan is simple.

1) Leave a comment below and jot down one or more of the commenters whom you would like to know more about. I will then contact them and use my persuasive talents to ask them to write a guest post.

2) If you are interested in writing a guest post yourself, please also leave me a comment or drop me a line privately.

There are no strict guidelines, and the guest post needn’t be long. The intention is simply for fellow bloggers to let us know a bit more about themselves and their writing. Hopefully, this will provide an additional resource to guide others who are searching to read more on retirement/lifestyle.

To practice what I preach, I have recently written guest posts for Sizzling Toward Sixty and Jill Weatherholt’s ‘Summer Spotlight.’ These posts are set to publish on May 29 and June 9 respectively. I will reblog both posts on this site once they are published. I also encourage you to drop by Sue’s and Jill’s websites. They are well worth the visit.

Finally, please do not be shy. Remember, I am still a teacher at heart. I know how to call on those who have not raised their hands!

Feature Image: Canva

Blogging Grandmothers Link Party #15

Welcome to the Blogging Grandmothers Link Party #15

Starts Monday, May 15, 2017 at 12:05 am central time (United States)

Ends Thursday, May 18 at 11:55 pm

Blogging Grandmothers Link Party

Blogging Grandmothers Link Party

Hosted By: Grammy Dee, MiMi Clearissa, Grandma Candy, Gramma Lori,
Grandma Christie, Grandma Donna, Nan Sue, Grandma Teresa, and Mimi Carol

REALLY SIMPLE RULES:

ï This party is for grandmother bloggers only

ï You may share any new or old, family friendly posts, no limit

ï By joining the party, you are giving the host and co-hosts permission to
share your photos and posts on social media and to use in posts, features,
and round ups with proper credit given to you. All posts will be pinned
on Pinterest, and possibly shared on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter

ïBy entering your email into the InLinkz form, you are giving host
(Grammy Dee) permission to email you when the next party goes live

ï Kindly show some link love by commenting on posts of at least 3 other guests

ï If you follow us on social media, we’ll follow you back, our links below

ï We would appreciate it if you would share our party

Grammy's Grid

Grammy Dee from Grammy’s Grid
Bloglovin’Facebook Google+ Instagram
Pinterest Twitter

Clearissa Coward's Command Center

MiMi Clearissa from Clearissa Coward’s Command Center
Bloglovin’ Facebook Flipboard Google+ Instagram
LinkedIn Pinterest Twitter

Candy's Farm House Pantry

Grandma Candy from Candy’s Farm House Pantry
Facebook Google+ Instagram Pinterest Twitter

Love My Big Happy Family

Gramma Lori from Love My Big Happy Family
Facebook Google+ Instagram Pinterest Twitter

So What? Now What? Banner

Grandma Christie from So What? Now What?
Facebook Instagram Pinterest Twitter

Retirement Reflections Banner

Grandma Donna from Retirement Reflections
Facebook Flipboard Google+ Instagram
LinkedInPinterest Twitter

Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond Banner

Nan Sue from Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond
Facebook Google+ Instagram Pinterest
StumbleUpon Twitter

Aging Like a Fine Wine Banner

Grandma Teresa from Aging Like a Fine Wine
FacebookInstagramPinterestTwitter

Home with Mimi Banner

Mimi Carol from Home with Mimi
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Our last Blogging Grandmothers Link Party had:
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Blogging Grandmothers Link Party Featured Bloggers

Grandmommin -†Car Seats Are Not Optional at Grandmotherís House

Fabi Fabu – Vintage Style Nightstands Revamp

Cresting the Hill -†What’s Your Superpower?

Fabi Fabu -†Little Jewelry Box #1 Makeover

Once Upon a Time & Happily Ever After -†DIM, Did It Myself: Fairy Lights

Fabi Fabu – Wooden Vintage Chair

OK, LETíS PARTY!
Blogging Grandmothers Link Party
Please don’t link up if you are not a grandmother
Thank you



Please don’t link up if you are not a grandmother.
We have a weekly Wednesday AIM Link Party that is for everyone.
Please link-up there instead.†Thank you!

Dear Vancouver Island….

I love you Vancouver Island. Truly I do. Although sometimes you behave like a ‘bad-boyfriend’…a really bad one!

When I met you, many summers ago, you were charming like no other. I was smitten. When we began to go steady in the summer of 2013, our relationship sparkled with promise. When I moved in during the summer of 2015, I shouted our love from the mountaintops. I could not have been happier. Then winter came. You were sullen and moody. Your cloudbursts were constant. It was difficult to be outdoors with you. I felt trapped inside. Everyone said that you had never been like this before. “Be patient,” they said. “This is a one-off. It will pass.” Summer came, and I believed them.

But you must admit, dear Vancouver Island, the past seven months have been rough. You have been cold and unpredictable. Yes, many of your relations far and wide had similar rough spells. It didn’t make things easier. That was them. I had believed with all my heart that you were different. You were the chosen one. Your unpredictability became worrisome. Truth be told, I considered breaking up with you.

Then last week, you started to flirt your warmth again. Ever so slowly your dark, gray moodiness began to lift. Not full time, but enough for me to see glimpses of your bright, intoxicating smile. At ‘Fire and Ice’ (that amazing ice-carving-hot-chili-eating festival that is a small sample of your island uniqueness) you flaunted your sunny and colourful side. Due to your unpredictable nature, I bought tickets to an indoor Shari Ulrich concert. At intermission, you beamed, beckoning everyone to take their break outdoors and bask in your radiance. We all did. Ironically, Shari, a fellow Islander, included a song that she wrote while walking her dog in the island rain…have a listen below.

This past week, my parents visited from out-of-town. Not completely hiding your tempestuous nature, and despite a few damp spells, you were a gallant host. You provided my mother with a wonderful Mothers’ Day. High Tea at Milner Gardens, MARS Garden Tour and a meandering drive to visit family in Sooke were highlights of the week. Even mom thought I had been too tough on you. “How could anyone not LOVE Vancouver Island?” she reprimanded.

You now promise an exceptionally warm summer. “Warmer than usual” are the predictions. Although I’m determined to stay strong, I know that I will fall helplessly under your spell one more time.

Happy Mother’s Day from Vancouver Island (and Happy Birthday Jo-Anne Tattersall)!!

Views from the same yard five months apart.
Vancouver Island: Qualicum Beach Annual Fire and Ice Festival
Qualicum Beach, Fire & Ice 2017.
Shari Ulrich - Who also lives on Vancouver Island
Shari performing “Rain, Rain, Rain”. Watch it here
Vancouver Island: Visiting family in Sooke.
Temporary sunshine while visiting family in Sooke.
Milner Gardens, Vancouver Island
Mother’s Day High Tea at Milner Gardens.
Vancouver Island watercolour by Pauline Pike
Along with highlighting a sample of private gardens, the MARS Garden Tour also showcased the works of local artists. Shown here is a reprinted water colour by Pauline Pike. Notice her portrayal of Vancouver Island! (Pauline gave permission for her work to be included here.)
MARS Garden Tour, Vancouver Island
Happy Mother’s Day from Mom, Me, Richard and Dave on the MARS Garden Tour (notice my rain jacket and rain boots…just in case)!.

You Know You’re A Grandparent When…

About Me: Happineess Revisited
Being a grandparent: Charlie's first photo.
10. You stop people on the street and ask “Have you seen photos of my grandchildren? What about this one?”
Becoming a Grandparent: Cooing with a much younger Charlie
9. You speak in that cutesy-wootsy high pitched voice that is annoying to…well, everyone!
Becoming a Grandparent: Raffi
8. You become nostalgic when hearing Raffi again. (Seriously, how old is that guy now?)
Becoming a Grandparent: Jordyn at Window
7. You get to revist many of the ‘firsts’ and remember how miraculous they are!
Becoming a Grandparent: Charlie and Toys
6. Rules? What Rules?
Becoming a Grandparent: Charlie with Drums
5. When shopping, you always find something that your grandchildren absolutely must have. (Case in point, Rolling Stones t-shirt, and drum kit….although Charlie’s parents may not exactly agree about him ‘needing’ the drums!)
Becoming a Grandparent: Grandpa and Jordyn looki' cool!
4. Suddenly you’re cool again (at least in the eyes of your YOUNG grandchildren!)
Becoming a Grandparent: Charlie on his way to daycare, bus card in hand!
3. Boasting. It’s a grandparent’s right. Enough said.
Being a Grandparent: Cuddle time with Jordyn.
2. You know that there is nothing better than cuddle time…..Except for maybe naptime!
Being a Grandparent: Selfie with baby Jordyn.
1. Selfies and ‘Instagram’ have taken on a whole new meaning!

If you are a grandparent, what are your tell-tale signs?

Almost Wordless Wednesday: A Week in the Life of a Retiree

The most common question that I have been asked since retiring is “What do you do all week?” The short answer is “no two weeks look alike”. Here’s a sample from this past week using an Almost Wordless Wednesday format. (I do realize that it’s Monday…and this post is not exactly wordless…thus the ‘almost’!) I’ve also included both weekends to give you a broader cross-section of possible activities and events. Enjoy!

Almost Wordless Wednesday: Saturday Coffee
After a week-long stay visiting family in Kelowna, we made an overnight stop in Vancouver. There are so many great places to linger with a coffee and a good book, like The Boulangerie La Parisienne in Yaletown.
Wordless Wednesday: Sunday Walking Group
The Mid-Island Walking Group meets Wednesdays and alternate Saturdays/Sundays. It’s a perfect way to get outdoors, get some exercise and engage in great conversations. Just ask Jake (who has taken the lead)!
Almost Wordless Wednesday: Meeting of artists/crafters
Meeting of Artists, Crafters, Photographers…and a Blogger! This newly formed group seeks to have surrounding companionship, inspiration, and unbiased opinions while working on art-related activities.
Tuesday: Yoga, Dog-Walking and Dinner
Morning yoga, afternoon dog-walking for the SPCA, and evening “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner'(a monthly feature of our Newcomer’s Group). Busy day!
Almost Wordless Wednesday: Hiking and Book Club
A shorter hike today with our Walking Group (5K) followed by Book Club. These are two of my favorite things to do (as long as they include coffee and snacks afterward). BTW – Please do not ask why it looks like I am praying in this photo…I honestly have no idea!
Almost Wordless Wednesday: Euchre and Board Meeting
Today I officially ‘graduated’ from our beginners’ euchre clinic and was ‘accepted’ to join the regular Monday euchre league! The excitement must have made me forget to take a photograph (both of this historic event and the Newcomer’s Executive Meeting later that evening). Being resourceful, I made due with similar photos that I had on file. In the bottom photo, simply ignore Richard, the excessive wine glasses and the seasonal cards/lighting and you pretty much have the image of today’s meeting down to a tee!
Almost Wordless Wednesday: Coffee after Yoga, Bookfair and Happy Hour
Another busy day in the life of a retiree. Coffee after yoga followed by volunteering at the SPCA Bookfair, followed by our neighbourhood Friday Happy Hour. Somebody’s gotta do it!!
Almost Wordless Wednesday: Flea Markets, Coffee Tasting and Dinner with Friends
Spring on Vancouver Island is abloom with bright colours, flea markets, and cool/quirky events. Today I took a quick browse at our neighbourhood rummage sale before heading back to work at the SPCA book sale. During my lunch break, I snuck off with friends to a local coffee/tea tasting. Richard and I then topped off the day by having dinner with a couple that we met in Palm Desert this past October and feel we have known forever. (I LOVE when that happens!)
Almost Wordless Wednesday: Pajama Day
A common saying among retirees in “when did I ever have time to work??” For me, this past week was a great example of this. Hence, I have unilaterally declared today to be ‘Pajama Day.’ I seriously need to catch up on my rest, reading and computer-related stuff like ‘Blogging Grandmothers’!
Almost Wordless Wednesday: Blogging Grandmothers Network
Yes, you read correctly. I have been asked to be one of the co-hosts for ‘Blogging Grandmothers’ twice-monthly blogging link-up. Our recent link-up just went live. Although you do need to be a grandmother to add a post, you do not need to be a grandparent, or even a parent, to read the links found there. The posts include great stories and tips for all. Some of these ‘grandmothers’ just may surprise you! Click on my last post to take a peek!
So how was your week?
Photo collages made with Canva .