Wait, it’s my kids

A few days before Christmas, I was coming home late after being out attending to some delicate family matters, and I stopped at my favorite local Chinese restaurant for some food to bring home for supper. After placing my order with the manager, I decided to sit at the bar and wait for my order. There were two young professional women, perhaps into their early thirties, sitting in conversation near the south end of the small bar, so I walked to the north end, sat down on the corner where I’d have a view of the door leading to the kitchen, and ordered my...

Mary, My Sister

My sister Mary passed away about 48 hours ago, succumbing to the ravages of bodily dissolution after 18 months of battling illness. She had steadfastly insisted that her tribulations remain private and discreet during her sickness, but since there will be obituaries published within the next couple days, I hardly see the point now in maintaining a public silence. Still, the details are nobody’s business, as strange as that sentiment may sound in the age of Facebook and Twitter. It seems that everything is supposed to be everyone else’s business these day...

Living Spaces

Having a small family in an eight-room colonial tends to leave quite a bit of flexibility in terms of space – and this has certainly become quite a small family again since Kelly, and then Leigh, moved out. I’ve wanted for years to be able to offer a guest room, and it took quite a while to work through all the machinations necessary to reach that point. But six months worth of shifting, consolidating, lifting, and remodeling have finally borne fruit in a finished bedroom available to friends, family, and other passers-through. Nastia and Yulia will occ...

From Russia, With Zest

Well, here we go. A few months ago, Joyce proposed that we should pick up on an old idea, and host a couple children from the Chernobyl Children’s Project this summer. Nasta and Yulia arrived this evening (pictured here along with Zoya, a very nice local woman with Russian roots who was serving as a volunteer translator for the evening). We managed to get them home, acclimate them somewhat to the house (including Mungus, our frisky young cockapoo), feed them a little something, settle them down, and get them into bed, but it sure is going to be an adven...

Summertime Already?

Time to shift gears into summer, all of a sudden. Within the past week, the girls have danced their year-ending recital, and finished school for the year. Rebecca has also played her last Little League game of the year. This week, it’s off to camp every morning for the kids, while I try to catch up with my shadow – which continues to elude me. I must admit, summer caught me off-guard this year. I don’t know where the time goes. I need to figure out what I’m going to do between now and September, as well as what I’m going to...

Gerry Gillis: Rest in Peace

My uncle Gerry Gillis passed away Saturday, at the age of 80, in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. Gerry was quite a guy. When Joyce and I took Kelly & Leigh to visit Nova Scotia during the summer of 1997, we stayed with Gerry at the family home on Hawthorne Street, where he and his wife Bubby had raised their nine children – the same home where my grandfather had settled with his clan, after leaving Sydney for Antigonish. Gerry and Bubby were the most gracious hosts. While walking downtown from the house after our first night there, Joyce told me tha...