My 2017 Christmas Letter



The Wee One at Lester Beach

We kicked off 2017 in one of our favourite places-Lester Beach Manitoba. Our little beach house is exactly that-a house to use when it is beach weather. For New Year’s, we were all invited to join Sister #2 and her husband at their Lester Beach home which we teasingly call Reschmajal.



In February Sister #3 and I arranged a cyber-wedding shower for our niece and my Goddaughter in Australia. Sister #2 did all the shopping on line, had it delivered to the Mother of the Groom, who then wrapped it all up. We watched via Skype as the bride opened her gifts.


We also celebrated a couple of special birthdays in February. The first birthday of the youngest of the Wee Ones. Pictured here with her beloved Poppa. It was one of the last events that was held in the big old character house that we had purchased in Wolseley. J1, J2, D and I decided to sell it soon after and the process occupied a great deal of time in the late winter and early spring but it did sell in 27 days and we were very pleased with the venture.


Three of our brood turned 30 this year, commencing with the Frenchman. We used the occasion to have our yearly feed of ribs which D labours over for a couple of days.



In March before we headed south for our annual sojourn to Isla Mujeres, we attended another family shower. This one was for the fiancé of our nephew. They also have a place at Lester beach, almost across the road from us. She was introduced to our nephew by our son J1, so it was particularly special for all of us.


The wedding of Danielle and Dylan was special in so many ways: 85 of us assembled on Isla Mujeres from China, Australia, Europe and North America. There were numerous events planned and we got to know friends and family of the couple in a deeper and lovely way.


The time was also very special for Sisters #2 & #3 and Brother #3 as we got to share our precious place with others we love. Here are most of us in our family picture.


Our little sugar plum ferry awaiting the wedding procession.


I was particular blessed that the couple asked me to officiate. It was my first time; I loved every moment and I want the world to know that I am available to officiate at other destination weddings as well!


We stayed on the island for 10 days after the wedding and spent a lovely time of rejuvenation.

Upon our arrival home J1 J2 and the Wee Ones had moved in with us while the house referred to above was staged, sold, emptied and they went through the stressful process of finding a new home. It was lovely co-inhabiting for that while. Poppa has always been the girls’ favourite but Glamma made some in roads too and it was a time I will cherish.


In May, J2 turned 30 too. We had a dinner for her at the lake.



The Wee Ones gave me lots of motivation to recuperate as quickly as possible.

At the end of June I was scheduled to have my gall bladder removed but the morning of the surgery (in fact after they had started my iv) they sent me home due to a cold that I could not shake. They rescheduled me in early July and I remembered being relieved that I was going to have all of this behind me. Little did I know that the routine elective laparoscopic surgery would turn out to be such an ordeal in deed. After needing a blood transfusion (perhaps my liver had been nipped) and having a collapsed lung (perhaps my lung had been nipped) and spending almost 3 weeks in hospital, my recuperation took the rest of the summer. I started the journey by walking past one house in each direction on our block. I am happy to say that by the end of the summer, I could walk the 5 kms to East Grand Beach from Lester Beach.


By the end of August D joined me for a week at the lake. We slipped into our old routines of tennis (D), movies, books, crosswords, coffee, tea, happy hours and suppers on the deck. The lake gets pretty quiet at that time and we love having the beach to ourselves.

September brought J1’s 30th birthday. (I hope we did something nice for him because I can’t find a picture of it). It was also time to get back on track as far as my work was concerned and my wellness routine by returning to the gym 3-4 days per week.


In October we divided Thanksgiving weekend between a wedding at Hecla Island


and dinner at Reschmajal.


In October I got to attend the Food Bloggers Canada Conference in Ottawa- a city I hadn’t visited since I was 17.

November and December we have snuggled up to watch the Jets (in person and on TV), Netflix and get ready for Christmas and the time ahead. One week tomorrow we leave for a family wedding in Phoenix and the day after I return home we leave again, this time for Portugal with good friends.


The Wee Ones as you can likely see are happy and growing smarter and more beautiful with each day. Boo seen here, (our youngest-married to the Frenchman) has diverted from International Development Studies to her new job of General Manager of Little Brown Jug- a new craft Brewery in the Exchange area of Winnipeg. The Frenchman continues with his work on the front lines at Siloam Mission.


J1 pictured here with J2 also works at Little Brown Jug as a Brewer. He is so happy to have turned an interest and hobby into his life’s work. (I personally am amazed at how well they get on together). J1 and J2 have had their hands full with the house move but are happy as larks in their new Wolseley home. They are walking distance to the Wee One’s school, parks and good friends.


Daughter #1 is just about to present her final thesis for her Masters Degree in Disability Studies as well as working on a research project this past fall. She is uncertain which direction her career will go next. She is considering her options as she wraps her university studies up.

D is a busy guy between being the world’s #1 Poppa, heading up the procurement department of an enormous flower business and serving as the People’s Warden at church. He is happiest on the tennis court, travelling with me or when our family is all assembled either for Sunday dinners in the city or on the deck up at the lake.

I continue to plug along with the Media Chef (my media buying company) and have just the right number of clients to keep me busy and some cash flowing. I am grateful that my food and travel blogging continues to parlay into other opportunities. I am happiest near a body of water with my camera and a journal to record my thoughts.

If you are reading this, you are dear to me in some way. I do wish you peace, love and joy over Christmas and always.

Kath’s quote:  “Christmas is a bridge. We need bridges as the river of time flows past. Today’s Christmas should mean creating happy hours for tomorrow and reliving those of yesterday.”–Gladys Taber


Love never fails.



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12 Comments to

“My 2017 Christmas Letter”

  1. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 3:01 pm Jan Says:

    Kathryne, wishing you and your beautiful family a wonderful blessed Christmas! Peace, love and joy to you also. See you in a couple of months!

  2. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 3:23 pm MICHELLE PEREIRA Says:

    Kathryne… are one of the most loving souls I know. I love reading your blogs and feel like I am a part of your family, because you tell your stories so eloquently.

    I know we don’t see each other often but I cherish each moment we do.

    Wishing you, D and your entire family (especially the wee ones) a blessed and adventurous 2018. I look forward to seeing what the next year will bring! I am guessing, travel, yummy food and lots of family time.

    Your friend,
    Michelle xo

  3. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 3:24 pm Clare Cooke Says:

    Hi Kath,
    What a great idea. I loved reading your summary of your year. Congrats on all you have accomplished and nice to hear a great recovery from a terrible scare!!

    For me becoming a Gramma has changed my life. Sophia’s birth on Nov. 22, 2017 was the best day of my life. My son Dom & his girlfriend Britt MacMillan named the baby Sophia Mac Antonini. She is such a precious angel.

    Hope to see you soon.
    Love Clare (Gramma Cookie)

  4. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 3:25 pm Clare Cooke Says:

    No wonder I never see you – you are bizzzzy!!!

  5. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 4:22 pm sara Says:

    So much love to you, Kathryne, and your beautiful family. Merry Christmas!

  6. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 7:12 pm Kathryne Says:

    Yes Grandma Cookie, grand babies are life changing aren’t they? Just makes all other worries kind of fade away. Would love to lunch with you sometime in the New Year. You no longer get to treat. Love K.

  7. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 7:14 pm Kathryne Says:

    I feel the same way about you girl. Love your passion for your work and that you are a fiesty Mom. Love K

  8. Avatar December 19th, 2017 at 7:17 pm Kathryne Says:

    I love our unique cyber friendship with the occasional IRL time that glues it together. Excited that it will be time for Isla before we know it. Love K

  9. Avatar December 20th, 2017 at 8:53 am Pat Walker Says:

    Such a beautiful letter-full of love and life.
    Thank-you for sharing Kathryne…all the best in 2018!

  10. Avatar December 20th, 2017 at 9:12 am Kathryne Says:

    All the best to you as well Patricia!

  11. Avatar December 20th, 2017 at 10:21 am Marlene Says:

    And what a lovely year it was, your surgical misadventures notwithstanding. Seriously, I’m so grateful you got through that so well, and also for being able to spend some time with you in Ottawa.

    You can officiate at my destination wedding. All I need to do is find a groom and a destination. Forget that, let’s just get together again this year!

  12. Avatar December 20th, 2017 at 10:31 am Kathryne Says:

    I am glad we got to spend extra time too. Hope we do get to manage a get together in 2018. Time with you is always full of witticisms, caring and laughter. Love K

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