Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Past

Christmas.....can't live with it, can't live without it!!

It is such an emotional time for a lot of people.
There are so many expectations coming from all directions
as most people just give in and go along with the mob.

Ron and I have been simplifying the whole 'Christmas Thing'
for the past few years, attempting to get back to those early years in
our relationship in Vancouver.

We moved there after we had sold everything we owned. We left our jobs.
 Our camper van became our home for the next six months.

The old fuzzy photo below shows Ron and I Christmas Day 1979 in our 'flat' in Vancouver.
We were 'poor', no full-time jobs. But,
we were happy!

We made that sofa/sectional which served as our chairs for 
that coffee table we also made......from discarded lumber that our landlord
upstairs threw out after renovating his flat.

This was also our first time away from our respective families for Christmas.
We started our own traditions that year.

Actually I like the idea of Christmas....that being, time spent with family and friends.

Too bad it has turned into a huge commercial money-grab.
Some people find it just too much and can hardly wait for it all to be over.


  1. Christmas is getting so commercial, I agree with simplicity. Some of my gifts have been hand made, and if not for the lawns!!! firewood!! and housework!!! they all would have been that way. But I am thankful we have green grass to look at, trees to fell, and windows and a roof for comfort, shade, and protection when needed. Christmas slide show coming soon. Greetings to all at you9r place. Jean.

  2. Oops, spelling error, spotted too late to correct. Where on earth is you9r??? Cheers, Jean.

  3. What a great photo of you and Ron in your "simpler times'. I often think back to those years when things were simpler. Good times. I think one thing that is so stressful now on the holidays is how long they seem to last... From only 200 more shopping days to christmas to now it is only 7. all about shopping and having the perfect everything that you have chosen for everyone. Not what christmas is about really at all. It does set expectations also to that of perfection.... people feel as if they are not at the best party ever for the season... every day of the season... they have somehow failed. I t hink it is a great idea to reallly make an effort to simplify and focus on family and togethernessl Great post Jim and some very good ideas to focus on simplicity. Don't you just love trying to look back and remember.

  4. what a great photo and an even better memory!

  5. I love the picture and I love your thoughts on the matter : ). Last year we weren't able to get gifts for many people and it was a bad feeling. I love being able to do something special for the people we love. I always tell Kaish and Gary that I like helping during the year too. If I know a friend is starting a new college class and needs books, I like helping them then instead of waiting for Christmas. We try to keep Christmas in our hearts all year long.

    I hope you have a special day with the people you love. : ) (And Sophie too)

    Merry Christmas. Love, Becky

  6. What a great photo, Jim! I love that moustache :)

    It is sad how commercialized Christmas has become, but as long as you don't get caught up in that, you can enjoy the true spirit of the holiday with loved ones.

  7. I totally agree with you Jim, it seems shops now prepare us for Christmas in October!! I am finding Christmas challenging this year, being away from all my family.

  8. Look at you two cute boys! And is Ron holding a cat?

  9. 1979!!! What a photo. Ron looks exactly the same (the jerk!!!). You look exactly the same as well... except for the hat and that giant caterpillar.

  10. Awesome photo. Love the 'stach. XD
    I love the family time about Christmas. Sometime, it's the only time of the year I will see some family members due to distance and schedules.
    Merry Christmas!

  11. I love that old picture, it brought back memories for me too, of a simpler, somewhat simpler time. At least no ipads, iphones and so on. Now kids can trace Santa's journey on a special app. Oh, well, I guess I'm sounding old here. Love how 70s you look, Jim!

  12. I agree way too commercial-I pretty much stay away from all stores from just after thanksgiving through christmas and the day after-don't need to be involved in all that mess-lol
    we love simple too-and that's what we do-
    great photo

  13. I am able to enjoy Christmas because I refuse to do anything I don't want to do. I don't give a gift unless I can give it with love. If I don't want to bake, then the oven stays off. Certain relatives really know how to get under my skin, so I stay away from them. I am upset this evening because a sister sent a gift card and put my former name on the envelope. I appreciate the gift card, but I'm bothered by the continued lack of respect regarding my decision to have my maiden name restored. It's okay. I will get over it. I needed to vent. Harper has bacteria and yeast infections in both ears, and we are $109.26 poorer. That's one of the prices we pay for living in a warm, humid climate, but I'm grateful I don't have to shovel snow. Okay. I'm starting to get over my irritation now. Slow deep breaths. I am not angry because it's Christmas. I'm angry because I allow that person to get to me. I am going to clean Mrs. Roomba's wheels because she has stopped and her computerized voice said she needs her wheels cleaned. TMI. Thank you again for the birthday cards. I mailed 82 cards to my MIL today.


  14. Honeyman and I don't get into the big commercial end of Christmas. We kinda beat to our own drummer :O). It works for us and we enjoy it. After 30 plus years, some where a long the way figured out that we just enjoyed it so much more this way :O).

  15. Simplify has been my motto for a couple of years. It sure makes things easier and less stressful, which is good for me!! You two look so great together, that whole '70s vibe! That's era is where all my best Christmas memories reside.

  16. Life is so much simpler than most people try to make it.

  17. I'm loving the 'tache! Seriously though, you are so right ...... Christmas has become so commercialised and the simpler things in life are overlooked. You definitely have the right idea.

  18. Oh how I love this. Keeping things simple - truth be told-- is how we all would love it to be. Those were some special times and that photo is a vintage treasure!!

    Merry Christmas to you both-- and sweet Sophie

  19. I agree Christmas does get crazy. Take me for instance. I spent three days decorating so that my grandchildren would enjoy their first Christmas here in the US.
    That being said, time with family is more important and more abundant than the gifts under the tree; that we keep simple.
    I admit it though Jim, Santa is coming to my house this year since the kids are in the house again and I'm kinda jazzed about it.
    Oh and Jim, that mustache is really something....very Geraldo Rivera!

  20. Hi, Jim!
    I'm just getting caught up after an extended hiatus from the Blogosphere.

    I LOVE this photo. Ron looks exactly the same! What the hell? That portrait in the attic must look awful. ;-)

    I hope you two had a beautiful and blessed Christmas. All the best to you both in 2014.


  21. How fun, Jim ~ Thank you for sharing this special time!

  22. You know where I stand about this...
    Having no family now, it allows me not to have to pretend to anything.
    And some of my friends come from large [traditional] families
    and quite busy with the Xmas circus;
    while others are far away, permanently or just for a few months.
    So, it's just me and the cats here.
    A quiet time!!
    But I do find it amusing seeing people going nuts over this.
    I do like this old picture.
    Simplicity. Happiness is a state of mind,
    not something you can charge to your credit card.
    Since the year is soon coming to a close,
    wishing you all the best for 2014
    and hoping to partake into your life journey
    as you share tidbits with us.
    Best regards!!


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