Christmas 2014

I hope everyone had as wonderful of a Christmas as I did! We went to his sister and brothers for the night overnight on Christmas Eve. They share an apartment in the same apartment building as his parents and some of his aunts and uncles and cousins. His parents and some of his family came up, or we went to see them on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.

Since a large number of his fathers side of the family including his siblings all have the same disease Cory has, Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) they mostly live in the same building or (including us) very close by within the same neighbourhood Fairview. The building is fairly accessible and large enough for wheel chairs and other things. Plus they all grew up in the neighbourhood on or near the street they are on. So they are all very close knit. It’s kind of a foreign thing for me. Not the close knit part, my family is really close but we are all spread out all over the place and my immediate family in particular has moved a lot due to my father being military when I was younger.

So anyways we had a great Christmas. Cory and I got a lot of money for Christmas in the form of gift cards or cash ($450 in total) from his family along with some other smaller things. His family prefers to give gift cards then go shopping together on Boxing Day or in this case Boxing weekend as boxing day is actually a holiday that the stores are closed here. I have to say I like this idea a lot!

I picked up a new tablet. It was not a super expensive one, about $130 regular but I got if for $100. So far I am really happy with it. I have been using it for about 3 days and it has a way better picture and is much faster then my older Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (which is not working anyways). I had enough left over to order a case, a musemee notier v2 stylus, a 3 pack screen protectors for the tablet as well as a cooling pad for my computer off of Amazon.ca. Well I will once Cory gets paid since Amazon.ca is not accepting one of my gift cards for some reason, which I will have to use for something else later.

The only downsides to this Christmas so far are that I ended up taking Cory to the hospital at 2am on Boxing day morning because he was still having issues breathing. We were there 7 hours and did not get home till about 9:30 am. I slept most of the next day, which I was off anyways. And secondly I have not seen my own family yet. I saw them last at Thanksgiving (Canadian Thanksgiving not US, which is in October 13th here). They are coming up this weekend though to help us with the boxspring and mattress which they bought us for Christmas and which we are picking up on Saturday or Sunday. I’m excited to see them again and my brother.

Overall it was a great Christmas and I really had a great time with Cory’s family even if I missed my own. Over Christmas I also fed my friend Erin’s cats and she and her boyfriend gave us a surround sound system, they got one for Christmas and there’s is still good other then missing one speaker and the DVD player not working (they knew we had a PS3 to use for DVD’s). We actually have one ourselves that they did not know about because it has not been hooked up since I moved here as the DVD player did not work and one of the back speakers (Dolby 5.1 as well) broke.

I figured though that as they both were the same brand (Samsung) and had the same connectors for the speakers that we might be able to get one working set out of the two of them. Cory tried all afternoon while I was at work and couldn’t get any combination of them working. I am going to try myself tomorrow as I am typically a bit better with audio and video equipment (cause of my job) then he is. We are also going to hang out with them New Years, either at our place or theirs.

We kind of had a bit of an conundrum. We were invited to a friend of his that used to live in our building. Both of us actually have a hard time being around him because he is always drunk and high. Cory smokes or did. He quit smoking cigarettes 6 months ago but has smoked marijuana since he was 13. The doctor at the hospital scared him with talking about COPD (which he has a mild case of) and he wants to quit completely. So she gave him information for addiction councilors and programs in the area. Anyways his friend is always bugging him (us, everyone) to smoke or drink and just gets supper annoying. Neither of us van handle him much. So we feel bad but don’t want to hang out with him and his girlfriend. We talked about it and both would both prefer hanging out with my friend Erin and her boyfriend even though his friend asked us first.

Also he decided for the month of January he is going to try on his own to give it up. So the less he is around his friend the better since he will literately wine and cry if you say no to him. We both decided it was best that no one smoke around him at our house at all (even though they went on the balcony before). And at the end of the month we will re-assess and contact the addiction program if needed (or if he feels he needs to along the way).

I have to say I am so so so proud of him for committing to do this. I was starting to get concerned for his health. His blood pressure is high enough that if it stays like this he will have issues. He is on medication which has brought it down from immediate danger to damage over a period of time if it is not brought under control. So I am hoping that this will help with that. Though I read that pot lowers blood pressure not raises it. Any thoughts on that?

So that about sums up our Christmas, and the last week or so.

I have a little secret…

Yes I do, a little known secret that no one but my family knows…. I love Dolly Parton! I was browsing some blogs and people were talking about their favorite Christmas songs and favorite Christmas movies and I was thinking about mine and I have to say my favorite Christmas movie of all time has always been A Smoky Mountain Christmas starring Dolly Parton and Lee Majors.

We moved to Germany when I was almost 5 years old. I was homesick when I first got there and missed my family and friends. I may have been young but it was a huge change for me. We lived off of the base in a little town called Hügelsheim which is a small town near the base which was near the Rhine River in western Germany, near the border of France. I started going to school that year, Kindergarten and I went to a school off of the base and the kids only spoke German. My parents believed it was best to just immerse me in the language and culture.

I ended up changing schools within a few months to the school on CFB Baden-Soellingen (Canadian Forces Base or CFB) which was really near the town we lived in and where my father worked. Mom was not working at the time but soon started working in a cafe there. I was switched first to French immersion classes and then in grade 1 my teacher was horrible so they switched me into an English class. Something I regret to this day. But anyways…

I remember our first Christmas there we watched A Smoky Mountain Christmas because it reminded me of home and of my grandparents and Aunt who I was really close too. From then on renting that movie on Christmas Eve became a tradition that lasted over 10 years until we were living in Calgary and could no longer find the movie anywhere.

Earlier this month after searching and searching and searching my Mom found it on Amazon.ca and purchased it and it was delivered on Friday! Unfortunately it is in Digby and I am in Halifax but my Mom asked me if it was okay if her and my brother Denton watch it since he has not see it since he was about 3, which he probably doesn’t remember. I said I’m okay with it and I actually found it on YouTube in it’s entirety. But it is not the same as owning it!

It gives me something to look forward to next year though! And I might just purchase a copy myself so that I can start the tradition with my own kids, if we have any. Or even with just Cory and I, I think it would be pretty nice.

So I am going to leave you with the song A Smoky Mountain Christmas from the movie of the same name with Dolly Parton and Lee Majors.

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1. What is your favorite Christmas Movie?

2. What is your favorite Christmas song?

3. What traditions do you have in your family?

Tree & more Christmas lights

We bought a 4 ft artificial Christmas tree last year. Cory put it on a end table that is about a foot high so we now have a small Christmas tree. Which is nice. Since I moved out on my own I have only had a Christmas tree in my apartment once 3 years ago. Max decided it was a great hiding spot. He was only about 2 months old. Needless to say he is much bigger now and  4 ft tree does not stand to well against him.

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The video below was the second time he knocked it down in one day (last week sometime). Needless to say I was not impressed with him! His reaction was kinda funny though and I am glad I got it on video.

Cory and I went out for a drive last night around Halifax to see the Christmas Lights. This is something that my family has done every year since I can remember and a few weeks ago Cory and I along with my brother Denton and my parents went for a drive around Digby and I took some pictures.

I really wanted to go around here though, since we didn’t really get to do it last year or the year before. My friend Erin and I have gone a few years. This I think was the first time Cory and I went alone… Wow, I cant believe Christmas is next week. Time goes by so fast sometimes. Anyways here are the pictures from last night.

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