Friday, November 25, 2016

This Week

So crock pot Friday continues. I’ll be plugging in my slow cooker later this morning and the most amazing man in the world and I will be enjoying a nice meal tonight. I am smitten with this new machine and we seem to be getting along fine. This is our third date. Or is it our fourth? You lose track of time when you’re having fun. In any case, we’re still getting to know one another but I believe this will be a long term relationship.

The other habit I’ve gotten into each Friday is sharing random thoughts. I could actually dedicate an entire blog to this. As an introvert, my brain is constantly working. I’m always thinking, wondering, questioning, exploring. My husband jokes that there are soaring heat levels radiating from my head from all that processing of information. My brain is overflowing with all kinds of trivia and random thoughts, and yet I keep shoving more into it.


Last night the most amazing man in the world and I took a walk over to the mall to have a coffee. We stood in line waiting our turn at Tim Hortons (Canada’s largest restaurant chain), which was quite busy. There was an older couple in front of us that seemed rather impatient. The man turned to us at one point and made a snide remark about how slow the service was. My husband and I just smiled politely and left it at that. Then we turned and looked at each other with eyes that said “is he serious?” Maybe it was slow. I don’t know. We honestly hadn’t noticed because we had been chatting away about this, that and the other. I think we were in line for two or three minutes until it was our turn. That would hardly qualify as long. Why are people always in such a...GOGOGO...hurry?

I was thinking the other day about how sorry I am that I didn’t ask my father more questions when he was still alive. That’s a big regret. I can’t do anything about that but I can learn from it and take advantage of the fact that my mother is still with us. So I ask her questions. Most of them are about her and her early life in Greece, but I also ask her questions about my father. She lived in a neighbouring town and she knew a little about his family and his early life. Not too long ago she shared something surprising with me. Apparently, my dad used to shine shoes when he was a child to make a little extra money. He came from a very poor family that struggled immensely. His mother was widowed with six young children right before the second world war broke out. It was a very difficult time but somehow or other they all got through it. I love learning all I can because both my parents were in Europe when the war was going on, along with almost every adult I knew as a child, and there are some incredible stories to be told.


Today is ‘Black Friday’, mainly for my American friends, although it’s found its way here, too. But did you know it’s also ‘Buy Nothing Day’? Apparently it’s a protest against the plague of consumerism and the need to “have things”. This holiday was founded in Vancouver (Canada) in 1992 and, from what I gather, more than 65 nations currently participate in it. This is the first I hear of it but it works for me. In fact, I have many ‘buy nothing’ days. I’m a minimalist and I prefer more things going out of the house than coming in.

And that’s a wrap. I’ll end this week with a song by Mike & the Mechanics called “The living years”. I’m sure most of you recognize it.



Happy Friday, everyone. Have a great weekend!

42 comments:

  1. what a lovely, getting to know you better post. I have been accepting minimalism to some degree the past couple of years, and my life is better for it. Less is more. :)

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    1. I totally agree: less being more! I hope you're enjoying the weekend.

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  2. I love the buy nothing day concept. We walk at the mall before it opens, and usually visit with friends who have the same routine. We were shocked at how many people were there this morning, as it opened at 7. We did a shortened walk and left for a nice quiet coffee'/tea shop. My crock pot was my good friend when I worked, so lovely to come home to the smells of a delicious meal. Now I use it on the weekend (take advantage of cheap rate electricity) and have a meal to eat then and a meal to save for later in the week. Enjoy the weekend.

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    1. The mall near our house was really busy this weekend, too. I guess people were either buying things for themselves or doing some early Christmas shopping.

      I'm surprised I took this long to get a slow cooker. It's such a wonderful things to have and quite handy!

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  3. I regret not asking my Dad questions. I thought of questions after he died. My kids are doing the same thing. they're not asking. I think most of this are like this . My son reads my blog but I have to remind my daughter to read it. I would hope they read and take in what I've been posting lately.

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    1. It's too bad we don't think about these things while there's still time. It's such a terrific thing hearing about the history of our families and learning about experiences we'd never otherwise know about.

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  4. My parents both are alive and I learn something new from them every time we get to talking. I'm sure when they are gone, there will be regret and more questions. But its normal for us all to feel that way. You could have asked all the questions you could think of and there will always be more. We are always feeling our daughters head with stories of our lives. She gets bored. haha. I'm like Red above, no one in my family reads my blog unless I send them a link to a post I want them to read. Not even my husband! I thought once how crazy it would be to write one big post and have it scheduled to post many years from now just to freak them all out. But, theyd miss it since they never read my blog!! hahaha.
    Lisa

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    1. HAHA! That was funny, Lisa. It would be the same with me. Once in awhile my younger daughter and my husband take a peek at my blog, but not regularly. At least they know it exists, so maybe they'd take a look should something happen to me!

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  5. Another well-written post, Martha. You girls write these up so well, that I must read every last drop.

    Very cool that you get to ask your mom questions like that.

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    1. It's fun. She has some wonderful stories to share.

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  6. I love The Living Years, and I'm happy to know that my refusal to buy anything today is part of a movement. I'm an introvert, too, so my brain is always smoking. I've seen people get upset over waiting five minutes in the check-out line at the grocery store. I don't get it. When I lived in the Baltimore-Washington, D.C., area, sometimes the line took twenty to thirty minutes. I wish I had asked my parents a lot of more questions. There's so much I don't know. How did my dad and his sister pay for college during the Great Depression? Was the family farm that successful? My dad played basketball. Did he have a scholarship? One problem with your post: I don't understand how you can be with the most amazing man in the world? Willy Dunne Wooters is in Florida with me.

    Much love and laughs,
    Janie

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    1. HAHAHAHA! Thanks for the laugh, Janie. Perhaps they are twins ;)

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  7. I am wishing you and your crockpot a long and happy relationship! Will you share your successful recipes? I didn't know your background was Greek! Greece is on my short list of places I would love to travel to. I love the song. -Jenn

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    1. Yup, my ancestry is Greek. Both my parents came to Canada in the late 50s/early 60s. I've been to Greece twice; once when I was 7 and again about 25 years ago. My brother, on the other hand, has been many times. And in many different areas. His most recent trip was to the island of Crete. He loved that! I think if you ever go, you will love it.

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  8. I am thinking you have relatives you've never met, a lot maybe on your dad's side!

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    1. We've always been much closer to my mother's side even at a distance. And I know a lot more about them. She also has more family here. My father's side was more distant in every way, so they're a bit of a mystery.

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  9. I had a comment. Blogger ate it.

    I didn't know it was Buy Nothing day. I bought groceries and gas.

    Was your life anything like My Big Fat Greek Wedding growing up?

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    1. Somewhat but mostly not really. Not sure how to explain but let's just say that my family is much quieter and we are a much smaller group. And no one was obsessed with Windex. I've had some people ask me what that's all about and I tell them I have no idea. Greeks didn't care about Windex aside from cleaning their windows with it once in awhile. Also, the meat obsession is not right. Greeks followed a Mediterranean diet that emphasized fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, olive oil, herbs and spices instead of salt for seasoning, fish (occasionally), very lean meats (very occasionally; once a week was enough) and very little dairy. So a vegetarian wouldn't be such a shock!

      The movie touches upon some of the traits but it's highly exaggerated!

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  10. My parents are both alive thankfully. The slow cooker is a great invention.

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  11. The song meant a great deal to me when it first came out,it pushed me to strengthen an already strong relationship with my Dad. Every phone call ended with I love you, or you're special...always something.I have very few regrets,unlike my brothers and sisters,who years later are still having problems. So thank you for the song and the flood of beautiful memories.

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  12. Nice post, and three cheers for Buy Nothing Day, may there be many more!

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  13. I try to be a minimalist too. I don't like physical objects as much as I used to. I buy food, clothes, and rarely much else that's not either rented (like movies) or can be sold as soon as I finish them (like video games)

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    1. That's great, Adam. You'd be surprised how quickly stuff accumulates if you don't keep it in check!

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  14. Lovely post to read Martha, thank you.

    Glad you are still loving your crockpot - I thought you would.

    Hope your weekend is going well

    All the best Jan

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  15. thank you for lovely sharing .
    love the quote .
    in our country there are rural area where i went long time ago to meet someone from my in laws.and found the bus driver horrible in hurry as he was not caring about people get down safely before moving forward and i remember this because i yield at him for this until he accepted that he was doing wrong.
    i was annoyed to see that no one was arguing on his irresponsible behavior .
    your love makes your husband the most amazing man in the world and i am sure that with such depth of love relationship last forever .
    your song brought tears in my eyes dear

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    1. I'm glad you spoke out. That is dangerous driving that puts people at risk! My husband is such a good man with a huge heart. I'm very blessed to have crossed paths with him, and very grateful!

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  16. I always wish I were better at asking my parents questions about their lives. Or my grandmother. (I already missed the chance with my other grandparents, who are all dead by now.)
    But I've always had trouble with asking questions, and while I'm getting better at it with new people, I think it's much harder when my brain has already established a pattern of not asking questions with a person...

    As for rude/impatient people waiting in line, they tend to make me so angry I that I can't stop myself from saying something to them, about how the employees are already doing their best, and they should stop complaining. (Everything I can't say to my own customers, I say to other people's customers...)

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    1. Although it's harder with other people, I've never minded asking my mother questions. She shares so many important memories that will disappear with her once she's gone and I don't want to lose them! I can then pass them to my own children.

      This couple was polite once they got to the counter for their order, so their complaining was harmless. Had they badgered the staff, it would have been a different story. Someone would have spoken up on the behalf of the employees!

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  17. I stay at home on Black Friday and the other spending holidays.

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    1. Good for you, John. I do the same. I like the peace and quiet.

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  18. I find myself wondering why people have to be in such a hurry all the time when I'm driving! I drive the speed limit usually, pass no one, and am passed by just about everyone... Sometimes I think the sheriff should deputize me, so I could hand out tickets to every lawbreaker who passes me. :D

    It would be fascinating to hear your family's stories. They must have had very interesting lives. I love learning more about my own family history.

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    1. You'd make a fortune for them as it seems everyone is in such a big hurry all the time!

      My parents, and all the other adults I knew as a child, have experienced some incredible things because they were in Europe during the second world war. Some of the stories are heartbreaking, some are downright frightening. And then they all have the stories of the struggles they faced settling into a new country. Most of them should have written memoirs!

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  19. Crock pots are so wonderful :) I've been involved with mine for close to 30 years and it is a friendship that continues to deepen with age :)

    So true about the questions we wish we asked our parents before it was too late. I have found so many of them I would have loved to ask my mom but she, and anyone who could answer the questions, are already gone. I think its because we don't "appreciate" them until its too late. That they actually had a life before they had us. Or we hear some stories but then there are others we want to know as we think through things. My dad died when I was really young at 18 months old. He was in Poland during WW2. I would have loved to ask him questions about his experiences (though I am told that he rarely talked about them, but perhaps as he and us kids aged, if he had a chance, he might have??)

    Patience is virtue I had to learn in my "older" years (40s). I've learned its okay to wait and to "smell the roses". The things we are waiting for usually and always occur. It just requires, you guessed it, patience.

    betty

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    1. We do take advantage, Betty, and then it's too late. I try to gather information while my mother is still alive and not lose out like I did with my father. I guess every generation goes through this.

      Some of us do become more patient over time, others not so much!

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  20. Wow, I can't imagine being widowed with six children. That's amazing and admirable of your mom.

    I love "The Living Years," AND it makes me tearful. Thanks for the heartfelt post, Martha.

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    1. I think you meant my grandmother, Robyn! She was the one that was widowed with six kids, not my mom. My mother was fortunate enough to raise a family alongside my father.

      'The Living Years' is an emotional song. It brings back a lot of memories for me, some happy, some sad, and it also reminds me of regrets I've had.

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  21. My brain works like yours. I am constantly thinking random thoughts and thinking about how I might like to share those ideas. Often I have the problem of too many ideas to write about and can't pare my ideas into anything comprehensible.

    People do seem to get impatient in lines and such. I rarely find waiting to be an issue unless it is due to someone being incredibly rude such as hassling a customer service person.

    I don't participate in Black Friday. In fact, this commercial grab for business irritates me a bit. I think we are losing focus on both Thanksgiving and Christmas in our quest to BUY more SH**. I too would rather pare down than acquire more.

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    1. HAHAHA! That pretty much sums it up, Cheryl! Our quest to BUY more SH** :) I'm trying to get rid of stuff from my house. Bringing in more certainly defeats that purpose!

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