Monday, September 17, 2018

6 months ago....1/2 year....


6 long months without dear Kelsie.
Things are starting to fade...some of the memories are growing dim, but every once in a while it seems like she is just around the corner. Recently I thought I heard her whine, and Leona heard her collar jingle. So she is still "with us". 

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

The first day of school.


I found this image online. 
This is exactly like the notebooks which we received FREE from the Vancouver School board on the first day of school; one for each subject. We also got pencils, eraser, crayons, paste, scissors, etc, all provided for FREE. We didn't get a ball point pen until Grade 3 when we were 8 years old.
My Mom provided the box to keep our supplies in. It was always a used chocolate box, covered in mac-tac paper; sticky on one side, a pattern on the other side. I remember she bought it at Harvey's on Kingsway. We kept the box in our desks, and it was never stolen.


One of the very rare going to school photos I have.
We had a strict dress code in those days. Girls wore dresses and weren't allowed to wear pants. I didn't have a knapsack. I carried my books to school in a plastic bread bag, washed out and dried before using of course. I'm wearing a scarf on my head because I was prone to colds and later ear infections.


Here is Leona in the same year; 1967. She was in Kindergarten, so she was 5. I was 7 and in Grade 2 that year. I absolutely loved school! 

By Loretta Houben

Friday, August 17, 2018

5 months ago....


I still cry when I remember Kelsie.
The tears just ooze into my eyes.
But 17 years is a very long time to have a doggy companion, especially one who was so fond of me.
It was only 5 months ago she left us forever. 
Here she is laying on the bedspread. I had taken the sheets off to remake the bed, and I looked around and there she was!


These photos are from 2006. I have many pictures of Kelsie and I'm sooooo glad I do! We had such fun times together. She loved to lay on the back step and keep an eye on things. It was a little hard to get out the door though! She never liked to move once she had laid down.


Kelsie adored my Dad. She always laid down at his feet when he visited. I miss those days of his visits. 
Life is extremely short.
You think it will last forever, as it sure feels that way when you are young. But be prepared. Enjoy each precious day when it comes. Take nothing for granted.
I have enjoyed all the days God has blessed me with, but looking back they seem like a mist; like a dream.
However I'm grateful for each one of them. 
I'm grateful for the happiness which bubbled inside all the hours I've lived with my loved ones, both human and animal.

By Loretta Houben

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

4 months ago....


4 months ago, Kelsie died.
Robert and I were at 3rd beach today, so I didn't remember in the morning. I still miss her very much. The other night I had a nice dream about her; she was in the whole dream, and I held her and could feel her warm fur and her paws. Last month when Robert was at a Scout camp, it felt like she was in the living room with me, right beside me. It was the oddest sensation, yet very comforting. Most of all I miss our walks, and now in these very hot days of summer, I miss her on the deck with me, sharing ice cream.
Oh Kelsie, I cannot forget you.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

One month ago...


One month ago today Kelsie died.
It's been a hard month.
I've missed that dog so much.
I never knew you could get so attached to a dog.
Before Kelsie I'd never owned one.
Kelsie will always live on in my heart. For 17 years she was such a part of me, it feels like we are entwined forever.
The photo above was taken 2 years ago.
She always loved her birthday cake!



This was at the rhododendron gardens at Deer Lake two years ago. Kelsie loved her walks there.
This past weekend we went away to Victoria and it was the first time I'd got the suitcase out to pack, since Kelsie wasn't here. She always suffered such angst when I'd get the suitcase out of the closet in the kitchen, that I'd have to do it on the sly. She never liked us leaving. 
We had a lovely time in Victoria, even though it was icy cold, but it was so very strange to return to an empty house with no little dog happy to see us, and no little dog to have a walk with in the evening. How very lonely it is now. 


I'm so glad I took so many photos of Kelsie and our adventures together. This was taken two years ago in April on our way to the DQ when it was much warmer than this year! Kelsie loved her ice cream treats!

By Loretta Houben


Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Our 36th wedding anniversary.


April 3, 1982
My happy wedding day!


The young couple, very much in love.


Looking back 36 years, it seems like a dream.
I'm thankful Robert chose me to marry, and that he has been a sweet and gentle husband all these years.


I'm thankful to God for allowing our paths to cross.
Marriage is a beautiful process which reflects God's holy love to the church, the bride of Christ. It is for consummation between one man and one woman, for as long as they both shall live. It is a deep mystery and one not to be taken lightly.


My dear family, who loved and supported Robert and I.


I'll love you forever, my sweet bridegroom and husband.

By Loretta Houben

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Two weeks without Kelsie.


Two whole weeks without my little dog.
It seems so much longer. 
There are times when I feel okay, times when I feel flattened, and times when I simply cry.
It will take a while for me to get over this.
The photo above shows Kelsie just before the vet put her to sleep. I'd never seen anyone die before. It was very peaceful. Although extremely sad, I was glad to be there until the end for my friend. She loved and trusted us so much. We did the very best we could for her all her long and happy life.


On Good Friday we attended church and had communion, then we went to Costco and got a membership, and shopped a little there. We ate lunch at the On On, one of our favourite restaurants where we had honey garlic spare ribs after 6 months abstinence! Robert really enjoyed that.
We went to Market Crossing where I bought a top for Easter; I can never find a dress anymore. 
We walked in Foreshore Park nearby, remembering Kelsie the whole time as it was a favourite place of hers.
Then we stopped at Mandeville Garden Centre and bought the lovely pot of flowers shown above using money from my parents to remember Kelsie by.
I set up her urn and the lovely cards we got, plus a book I'd made at Shutterfly years ago.
It was a nice little memorial for her, which I showed to Leona when she came by that evening to watch "Call the Midwife". It was a full day. 

By Loretta Houben