Family

May. 5th, 2007 07:37 pm
tvordlj: (Bunnies)
Family means a lot. Family is who you are and where you came from. Our family, Dad's side, used to get together for big family picnics and "reunions" fairly regularly but we don't much anymore and that's a shame. More often than not, you don't get to see them unless it's a sad occasion like a funeral because everyone is pretty much married off and had their own babies. There were 9 Johnston siblings, there are 5 left and one of them lives in BC and the other one is ill in a nursing home. Today was the party for my aunt and uncle's 50th wedding anniversary. The photo of the siblings showed three people. Other than my uncle Keith who is Dad's twin, all the other siblings are older, some in their 80's and as the family ages, the numbers start to dwindle.

Enough of that. The party was lovely! Loads and loads of people there, quite a few I didn't know as they were friends of the family. I know a number of my aunt's family as well and it's always a shock to see how much the children of my cousins and second cousins have grown since i saw them last, some of them 10 years ago! I took about 40 pictures and I can't say i'm overly impressed with the battery life taking all flash pics. It was flashing dead when i left. All the pictures were using the flash, there was a bit of using the zoom and the review, and the battery was down a little to start with . It wasn't quite that bad when i was taking photos outdoors, of course, without the flash. Just as well i've ordered a spare battery though. And maybe i wasn't letting it charge up long enough though the indicator was off which means it's finished charging. I suspect the optical image stabilizer probably uses more battery power too and i've been leaving that on all the time. I shall have to rethink that.

Yes. The party. A table full of party food plus more that was passed around. I mingled and ended up standing the whole two and a half hours that we were there. Lots of hugs, lots of memories. My cousin Barry read a speech in which he noted quite a few things that have changed since 1957. There's photos here but they won't be of much interest to non-family.

*burp*

Oct. 31st, 2006 01:12 pm
tvordlj: (Default)
Great spread! Always more food than we can eat when we have an office buffet. Only about 9 or 10 dressed in some sort of costume but that's ok. I got out of the meeting about 11:30 and came into the main office. Someone in costume was sitting by the reception desk. I thought they looked a bit familiar but i just thought it was someone from one of the other departments. I turned around again and that person was standing behind me. It was [livejournal.com profile] sammantha!!! She came up to show me her cossie and see mine and have a photo taken. I'll upload the photos when i get home. The winner of the costume contest was our very own cereal killer. Yes that's correct. She had a carton of milk and a box of cereal stuck to her back and cereal box labels all over her shirt, and "Cheerios RIP" on her hat! Excellent! Love the really original ones! I think i looked suitably undead and kept offering people a drink of blood tomato juice from my cup. The fangs didn't stay in too long as they were a bit of a nuisance. I borrowed some cream to get the makeup off and the fang "marks" off my neck so i'm undead no more. Pics to follow later this evening
tvordlj: (Summer Umbrella)
Very nice party this afternoon. Lots of people came out to celebrate. Many of the people were all part of the group that Mom and Dad and the McManuses all hung around with all through the years. They had lots of old home movies converted to dvd and had that playing on the big screen tv in the family room. Wow! It was interesting and somewhat cringeworthy seeing yourself as a child hamming for the camera lol! look at all the old cars! Oh and the toys (lots of Christmas footage), i had one of those too! Plaid trousers!!!! And everyone had cigarettes where almost none of them smoke anymore. There was some footage of 3 or 4 couples just after they were all married, including Mom and Dad and my Uncle Keith and Aunt Bonnie on a weekend away at a cottage. They were all horsing around and the men had the women on their shoulders. Dad was hanging off the eaves of the cottage doing pull-ups and he was sooooo long and white and *skinny*! Later on in that same sequence there were closeup shots of all the attendees and that was a bit of a *gulp* moment but i loved seeing them all so young and full of beans. That "Lost Weekend" has gone down in legend for the astounding amount the men all drank and a few other shenanigans (Keith fighting a tree for one). Dad was celebrating passing his final exams to get his electrical papers.

Anyway, there were lots of people and lots of finger foods, drinks, sweets. Their parish priest said a few words and a casual vow-retaking. Their oldest grandson started to read a speech he wrote but he was too emotional to finish so his mother finished it for him. Patrick said a few words too and even he got emotional which is rare for him. There were more than a few tears on cheeks as there usually is during sentimental events like this. The sun came out and it was really nice and warm but not too hot inside which was comfortable enough. Most of their original wedding party was there. Later on Patrick got a bit emotional talking to me about Dad which was another *gulp* moment but Laurie came over and the subject got successfully changed.

Pics here including some nice ones of Mom and her friends and of me, Mom and Laurie
tvordlj: (Magenta specs)
I'm going to a 50th wedding anniversary party for my mom and dad's best friends, the McManuses. This couple and their daughters have been part of my life always. They're like another set of parents that we always knew we could go to if we needed to and their daughters more like sisters to us. It got me thinking, though, about titles. To be specific... When we were kids you always referred to grown ups by Mr, Mrs, Miss unless they had more specific titles like Doctor. When we grew up, we usually switched over to first name basis. A few of my mother's friends always insisted we use their first names. I can't ever remember my mother's friend Marie being anything but that, never Mrs. Power. Aunts and Uncles were the same. But even now, some of them are still Aunt/Uncle and some i use just their first names or alternate. Some of the "grown ups", however, will always be Mr. or Mrs. like my friend's mother, Mrs. Howard. I could never imagine calling her Dorothy. I think that's because she as also a teacher though i don't think she taught any of our group. She's a lovely woman but she's still Mrs. Howard to this day. All of us in the group use the title for her, too.

So, Yes, i am going to this party. What to buy for a gift? I ended up with a nice frame and bought some pretty paper and a bow and the card has 1950's type graphics on it and the colours more or less match the paper too. I open the gift paper to wrap the present and discover... one inch grid lines on the back of it! Why hasn't anyone thought of doing that before??? I haven't actually bought gift wrap in some time so perhaps Hallmark has been doing that for awhile. Gift bags are so easy but for the size of a frame, a gift bag is too big and anyway, unwrapping a present is so much fun! I thoroughly approve of grid lines on wrapping paper although this time, sadly, i didn't have to use it as the sheet was just the right size to wrap the frame in its box. I've still got the other piece though for another time.

Then there's the "what to wear" crisis. A three piece outfit i have is much too warm even though the top is sleeveless. I didn't like it without the jacket and the jacket needs some sort of shoulder padding i think. I have narrow slopey shoulders. If i wear the top and skirt alone, i would want to leave the top untucked and i didn't like how it looked. It wouldn't do to tuck it in. Trust me. I found a nice black top to go with the wine coloured skirt in the end. It will be cool and looks nice. Then there's shoes. I refuse to wear pantyhose in summer. The house is all hardwood or laminate flooring on the main level so i can wear sandals and leave them on. Sorted.

And the hair. Urgh. I desperately needs cutting so it was a bit of a challenge to wrestle it into something close to approaching acceptable. I've not had it trimmed since before i went away. Early May. At least the makeup looks ok.
tvordlj: (Halifax)
Dad was a bit tired yesterday. Had some coughing just before i got there but judging from the size of the bite out of the sandwich i'd say that was the culprit. But it's hard to say. It could also be his throat starting to tighten up again. Dunno. Take it day by day i guess.

Am taking Mom and Laurie to see my Aunt and cousin outside of the city a little ways. First i have to stop into the rental place because the windsheild wipers appear to be buggered. They didn't clean the screen very well last night though they were just fine the last time i drove it 2 days before that (Update: I called them and i have to take it to a place close to where my Mom lives so i'll do that before i go pick them up.)

My toaster didn't toast the top half of the bread today. Or yesterday come to think of it. I don't know if it was the bread or if it's the toaster. It's pretty old though. The toaster, not the bread. I could probably do with a new one so i think maybe i'll have a look tomorrow when i'm out shopping with Denise. *adds "toaster" to the list*

After i left the hospital, about mid afternoon, i thought i would go into the mall just out of curiosity. Didn't get farther than the parking lot which was a madhouse. It wasn't even that there were no parking spaces, or that the cars were seen stalking shoppers who left the stores so that they could get newly vacated parking spots, it was the people themselves that would run across in front of you willy nilly (Ha! didn't think i'd ever find a use for that expression! *snicker*). I wonder how many narrowly missed cases of fenderitis there were.

Party last night was very nice. Clearly it doesn't matter whether the house is small or palatially large (like last night's "venue"), parties pretty much stay in the kitchen. Now this kitchen and dining area is nearly the size of an apartment (and there's a formal dining room and living room in addition to a family room behind the kitchen which we did use for a bit but the bulk of the guests stayed in the kitchen). These were friends i've known no less than 25 years and a few of them for most or all of my life. [livejournal.com profile] sammantha you were missed as were another couple who have a disabled child and can't usually get a sitter. Usually just one comes or the other but i think they also had a very poorly old kitty they didn't want to leave. Aside from these, pretty much all the usual suspects where there. One discussion had us caught up short, and one guy said you know we used to talk about having enough money to put gas in the car and now we're talking about having enough money to retire! Shit! Now that makes you realize how much time has gone by! Most of us have been in the same jobs a long time and could take a retirement package within the next 8-10 years. Nobody that was there had grandchildren yet though. I don't think most of the group have kids old enough to potentially be parents other than my sister. Most of them didn't have their kids until well into their 30's.

All this palaver about making everyone feel included at Christmas? In the Grand Parade Square in downtown Halifax there is not only a Christmas tree but a huge menorah for Hanukkah which started the other day.
tvordlj: (Doctor Who)
Yay! Doctor Who Christmas Invasion was on CBC last night (and the wonderful Creature Comforts after that!). I was dubious about the new Doctor, having really liked Christopher Ecclestone a lot. I know that each Doctor is different but really i have had no experience with it. I've only seen the occaisional episode over the years when i've come across it on cable stations. I became very attached to Ecclestone's Doctor so it's going to be a rough ride. This isn't to say that i don't think David Tennant is a good actor. He definitely is and i completely believed him as the Doctor. I do think the references to some of the pop culture kind of clanked a bit for me. Would Doctor know about the Lion King enough to actually quote from it? Doesn't see like it to me. A reference to Arthur Dent from Hitchhiker's was funny though and maybe more appropriate since Arthur was a space traveler too. Perhaps that's not uncommon though, making references to current pop culture? What were the other series like in that way?

It seemed to me that they were trying to write him similar in personality to the previous Doctor yet they took away a lot of the aloofness and added in more "hugginess". Ecclestone's Doctor never called Mickey by his real name, or rarely and was never as blatantly delighted to see him. We didn't get a time frame did we? Yet it sounded like the "Golden Age of Britain" had been on for 10 years and Harriet had been PM for at least one term. I figure about 5 years had passed or more since their last visit to Earth yet nobody looked older in the least and fashions and clothing were exactly the same as 2005. Ah well. Shouldn't think about picky things like that should i? In spite of all this whinging, i really did enjoy the Christmas Invasion. I don't dislike the new Doctor, i just liked the other one better. So far anyway. I really am looking forward to Season 2 in the spring.

So today i'm going to visit Dad and possibly go to the shopping mall but that depends on how busy it is. My friend Denise and i are going to shop our way around the Bayers Lake area (big box superstores) on Thursday so it's more out of curiosity and maybe a quest to get some half price Christmas cards for next year and a pretty decoration or two if i see something i like. Tonight is a party being held by my oldest friend in the world. Her parents and mine have been best friends for over 50 years. She's invited all the old high school crowd. We do get to see each other from time to time and have kept in touch all along but don't always get everyone altogether in the same place.
tvordlj: (Gonzo)
Just got back from a get together at a church hall to celebrate my cousin Barry and his wife Lavern's 25th wedding anniversary. It was lovely. My aunt and her sisters did the food so the table was groaning with sandwiches, sweets, fruit, meatballs, meat and cheese and more sweets. Coffee, tea and hot apple cider (non alcoholic). They had invited about 100 but i don't think there were that many there. Quite a few though. This cousin is from Dad's side of the family so some of those relatives were there as well. I was a bit concerned that people would get upset talking to me about Dad but aside from a couple of teary faces, most everyone was ok, and i kept it light and positive. Dad really is doing ok, good spirits, no pain, pretty much in a holding pattern for now. Cousin (well they're all cousins if i don't say otherwise, how's that?) Heather introduced and said a few words and Barry's best man was there and said some stuff too. Barry talked for a bit and mentioned two people specially because they meant a lot in their lives and couldn't be there because of illness, Dad of course. That was really nice.

Only one of their sons was there as the younger one was called in to work and had to work a longer shift than he anticipated. They had photos up from the wedding and of the boys through their growing up years. There really wasn't that many people taking pictures either, just Heather's husband Mark with his digital camera. I only noticed one or two others that took a couple of photos. If i didn't come with my camera, people would think there was something wrong with me! Another nice thing they did was take a picture of everyone that arrived and were going to print them and put them in the guest book on the page where you signed your name.

I took most of a roll of film and dropped it off at the drugstore tonight and i'll get it tomorrow. Got them to do a cd as well so i will upload the photos to an album and send the link around to all the rellies.

I also have to throw out the black shoes i wore tonight. One was almost loose but the other one was very tight. Peter looked down and said, they *are* a pair aren't they? I said well yes but apparently my feet are not. That one shoe hurt too much so i just took them off and walked around shoeless :) Brought a takeaway container home of stuff to take to Mom's tomorrow too.

Right.

Spent the night there last night but am home at mine tonight as it was closer to the party venue. Will be renting a car on weekends from next weekend and i think i'll spend nights here in my own bed as my back is more used to it. Plus when Laurie moves in it would be the couch anyway.

That's it for Weekend Update from my desk :)

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