Posted in Coronavirus, COVID-19, Travel

Surviving the Pandemic – Travel

pink rosesWe continue to go for our regular walks and now we have added restaurants and travel. This week we drove to Hope and Kelowna but we did not stay overnight.

As we started out, my husband checked a tire that was low the day before. We decided to go to Mr. Lube and see if they could fix it. It turned out to be cracked, near the rim, and could not be repaired. Mr. Lube did not have the tires we needed in stock, but recommended we go to Costco. Costco was not opening for another half hour, and I checked the ratings online which were not very good, so we went to Canadian Tire. They were open, but it was going to cost us $40 more per tire. My husband recently had the front tires replaced at Kal Tire so we drove there. They didn’t have the tires we needed, either, but found them in Abbotsford. It was on our way and we were able to get an appointment.

Kal Tire in Abbotsford offered excellent service. However, even tire repair centers have to abide by COVID-19 regulations, I noted. In the waiting area there were three chairs set about eight feet apart. Some of the display area was closed off and there were signs regarding the number of people allowed inside at one time. In order to drive our car in and out of the garage, the steering wheel was covered in plastic as well as the entire driver’s seat. I also observed there was no complimentary coffee.

no complementary servicesWe stopped at a gas station and my husband asked if the washrooms were open since there was a sign, “temporarily unavailable.” The attendant handed him a key, without comment.

We stopped at Rolly’s in Hope for breakfast. They are known for their excellent pies, clam chowder and Eggs Benedict.  I asked when they opened and was told on Thursday of last week. I wanted to take a picture, because they placed plants on every other table that was not in use. This still made it feel homey, unlike signs or tape. I enjoy Rolly’s because of the good service, as well as the food. Waitresses are mostly elderly women, I’ve observed, which brought me to a realization. Many women who have had to stay home with their young children are having a difficult time returning to work. Not only is there still risk, but it may be that women actually like not having to work and take care of a home and family at the same time. At Rolly’s, though, it looked like they were fully staffed.

The beach in Kelowna wasn’t very full. We grabbed some take-out and had a “picnic” of DQ double cheeseburgers.

kelowna beachAs usual I was looking for subjects to paint. I didn’t want to be too obvious as I took a photo of this bicycle, so I photographed and followed a seagull in that general direction.

bicycle on beachDriving, we kept seeing signs, “Avoid Unessential Travel.” By this time we had concluded that this was essential travel for us. The following day our BC health authorities began to encourage “smart, safe, respectful, local travel” so we were just a day ahead of the plan. National travel is still discouraged. I guess we will forego our annual trip to see family in Manitoba.

We concluded our Mr. Sheldon Music series after twelve weeks of recording. My husband is teaching at a few more centers, now, but many still have not opened up and others are closed for the summer. It will be a lean couple of months, as his usual summer job, booking space for overnight conferences, is not going ahead this year either. But we will manage.

My sister’s CT results came back clear after her colon cancer surgery at the beginning of May. We are very grateful. Now it is my turn to get myself checked out, so that is in the works. I had a phone appointment with my specialist today.

It’s sad that the already tragic situation with COVID-19 is being exacerbated with violent demonstrations and attempted takeovers of sections of cities. One hardly knows how to respond because there is not innocence on either side. This is indeed the time for tolerance, forgiveness and love. We need to work together towards peace, with each side bending a little.

In the meantime, support your local coffee shops. This is Crema in West Vancouver, only a skeleton of it’s usual self, but bravely open.


the seawall
West Vancouver Seawall
Posted in Children, Children's Music YouTube, Coronavirus, Music

Surviving the Pandemic – First Day Back in Classes

3 puppets

My husband teaches music and has many daycare and preschool classes. Today was his first day back, teaching in class. Only one center has opened at this time. He returned just as I finished my previous post, so I thought I’d share how his class went.

“I haven’t seen you for a very long time,” Mr. Sheldon told the class.

“No, but we saw you on the video. And you were talking on there.”

The class watched his videos during the past weeks when he was unable to go in.

“Mr. Sheldon, why are you wearing those garbage bags on your feet?”

He was wearing the blue slippers worn by surgical teams.

“Well, those turn my outside shoes into inside shoes.”

“Cause of the coronavirus?”

Yes, that’s it. Kids understand a lot.

The supervisor exclaimed that they were going to tell him about the slippers before he came but they were just so excited that Mr. Sheldon was coming back that they forgot.

Mr. Sheldon explained that he couldn’t give stamps today.

“We’re not supposed to have stamps because they touch one child’s hand and then another child’s.” He pointed to his hand and demonstrated. “I will keep the stamps for when we can do that again. But I’m not going to tell you which one it will be. It’s going to be a secret.” They never know what the next stamp will be.

“OK. But don’t lose it.”

“No, I’m not going to lose it. I will know exactly where it is for when we can do that again.”

He couldn’t “high five” the children at the end of the class, so he had them hold up one hand with the other and shake it as they said “Good-bye Mr. Sheldon.”

They were so excited to have him back today. Music day is the highlight of the children’s week. Many parents tell Mr. Sheldon that music day is the one day they never have a problem getting their children to go to school.

Posted in COVID-19, Leadership, trust

Surviving the Pandemic – As the pandemic drags on, governments shouldn’t take our trust for granted

Instead of writing about my week, I am posting a link to an article that expresses some thoughts I’ve had this recently. We, the people, can be trusted with information. Here are two quotes:

Canadians have demonstrated that they’re prepared to sacrifice a lot if the evidence shows it will protect their neighbours and grandparents. But the onus is on political leaders to communicate the evidence and their underlying policy objectives in a clear and dispassionate way….

Tell us what the objective is and what we need to do to get our lives back. Be honest about the trade-offs. It isn’t about choosing between saving lives and saving jobs. That’s rightly regarded as a false choice. Instead it’s about understanding our objectives and the plans to get there.

Nothing will erode our confidence and our willingness to cooperate as quickly as learning that we have been deceived or manipulated, or treated as if we don’t have the capacity to understand.

Posted in Gravatar Profile, Website Link

If You Have a Website Then Please Put a Link on Your Gravatar Profile so We Can Find You

How many times have I clicked on the icon of someone who has commented on, or liked an article, because I want to go to their website? I am instantly taken to their GRAVATAR profile which, most often, disappointingly, does not provide me with what I am looking for, which is  a link to their website(s).

Aren’t we all blogging because we want others to read what we write? Isn’t the whole purpose of having a website so that readers will find you and read your writing?

Then, in that case, we have to leave the address to our website on the most reasonable place where people will indefinitely be directed when they click on our GRAVATAR IMAGE: our GRAVATAR PROFILE.

If I don’t find a website link on a GRAVATAR PROFILE, then I go through the complex process of doing a Google search with the scant information on their profile to see if they indeed have a website.

Your GRAVATAR PROFILE is like free advertising. It’s your “storefront.” It provides access to your websites. It gives information about you. Or it is BLANK and says “This is a dead end. You are never going to find out anything more about this person.”

Let’s start at the very beginning.


This is from the GRAVATAR WEBSITE:

Your Gravatar profile includes your Gravatar image and name, as well as other profile details you may choose to include. To edit your Gravatar profile, log in at, click My Account, and then Edit My Profile — or just click here.

Go the the HELP menu and click

How to Add Websites to Your Gravatar Profile

Follow instructions. Simple.

I admit it took me a long time to find out I needed to do this and I only realized it after clicking on other GRAVATARS and comparing them to my own. I noted that some had links to their websites and other pertinent information. THIS DID NOT HAPPEN AUTOMATICALLY. I had to physically add the information I wanted others to view. It’s very possible that there are others out there, like me, who have no idea that they need to do this. I hope this is helpful.