Archive for May, 2012

FAMILY VACATION WITH GRANDPARENTS : I have some ideas; I say travelling with grandkids is truly grand!*

Vol. 3, No. 6, Monday, May 28th2012

TITLE: “FAMILY VACATION WITH GRANDPARENTS : I have some ideas; I  say travelling with grandkids is truly grand!*”


Oops…  Oops, I forgot to tell you that I was going on vacation.  Things got so hectic that I could not make the time to write a note to you all. Please accept my apologies.  I’m back. Let’s go!


The phrase, “family vacation” brings to mind, thoughts of a car trip to the beach, time spent in cottage country at the lake, hot days at theme parks. This week, I will write  about vacationing with family. My book of the week is “Almost There: The Family Vacation Then and Now” [Paperback] by Curtis Gillespie (Author) (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on seniors and also that on parenting.) 

PREVIEW: I am still thinking about summer, more precisely, the children’s two month school break.  I want to share with all of you parents and grand parents out there some of my thoughts. I say: “This is an opportunity for quality time. Don’t squander it. Both you and the kids will miss out.” (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on seniors and also that on parenting.) 


As an adult, I never did get to go on vacation with my parents.  They were not really the vacationing type.  For the most part, they spent time at home. But, in summer, they were happy to go on a picnic. We were quite a big group – uncles and aunts and many cousins came along. It was a great outing. Now that they have both passed away, I realize that such trips would have provided precious moments.

When my daughter asked us along with her in-laws to go on a cruise vacation with them, I was absolutely ecstatic.  She organized it. It was quite an effort as we all have busy schedules.  It gave us an opportunity to spend time together. We got along great. It was wonderful.  Being with my grandchildren was priceless.  I will forever remember this vacation. What fond memories!  I was sad when the trip ended. but delighted that I had this opportunity. 

 THE AUTHOR: Curtis Gillespie

Curtis Gillespie is a journalist, also the editor and co-founder of Eighteen Bridges magazine. He has won awards: a) the Danuta Gleed Literary Award; b) three National Magazine Awards. He lives in Edmonton with his wife and two daughters.



Several are:


THE BOOK: “Almost There: The Family Vacation Then and Now” [Paperback] by Curtis Gillespie (Author)

While humorous, this book makes a point. The family vacation is something that a family shares. Curtis Gillespie contends that the choice of vacation types is an indicator of who we are as individual families and collectively as a society. Gillespie explores the meaning of family vacations, the memories created by them, and how these memories help us define family relationships.

We can all relate to the moments either funny or sad, relaxing or stressful, etc. But we vividly remember the exhilarating moments. Gillespie says that these are important. All of this bring great stories that we can roll out every so often. The book might prompt you to plan a family holiday or give you an excuse to do it. Either way, this read spells travel.


Going on holiday as  a couple is good. Going on holiday as a family is better. And going on holiday with grandparents is best!

Personal Comments

I say:

  • Time spent with family is good…very good. 
  • Family vacations are a good way to share fun times together.
  • It is especially grand when grandparents travel with grandkids and their parents. Vacation time together is a great way to stay connected and bond with your grandchildren. 
  • Every family should attempt a vacation with grandparents, parents and children.  
  • I am looking forward to another vacation in the future with my daughters and their families.  Hopefully, it will happen again and next time with both of my daughters. 

The Point

It’s a good idea to go on holiday as a family -including grandparents!


Everyone should:

  1. Consider going on a holiday with your family and inviting all of the grandparents. It’s worth the effort.  If money is tight, it can be a few day trips in town. It’s not about the money – a little can go a long way. All you need is imagination. Discovering your home town is surprising special. Seeing the sites and attractions in your home town might be surprisingly good and satisfying.  Visiting a green space in the city and if possible camping overnight could be quite memorable. It’s not about the cost – it’s about the time. 
  2. Plan ahead; and let every family member have a say.
  3. Make reservations.
  4. Think about the clothes that you need and pack well.
  5. Allow for the unexpected like rain days.
  6. Be mindful and respectful of others: their likes and desires.
  7. Pick activities not requiring the expenditure of extra money …unless all are in favour.
  8. Offer to babysit the children often  in order to give parents some time for themselves.
  9. Suggest that there be many free time slots so that travellers in your group can rest or go off on their own. Indeed, going in a group does not mean being together every minute; although we did spend a lot of time together.
  10. Take oodles of pictures.
  11. Go to the gym on vacation – you’ll probably eat too much while on holiday. I HAD to – you see …the food was so plentiful and delicious!
  12. Remember before you will hear: “Are we there yet?”, someone needs to suggest a family trip including grandparents.  

Indeed, I  say travelling with grandkids is truly grand. BON VOYAGE!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”
P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.
P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta
*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.


Over the years, Chrysler chief Lee Iacocca often heard colleagues express their pride at having worked so hard that they had failed to take a vacation.

Iacocca’s response? “You dummy. You mean to tell me that you can take responsibility for an $80 million project and you can’t plan two weeks out of the year to go off with your family and have some fun?” (Source: Anecdotage) –

S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #2: Dean Kamen: Family Vacation
By the age of 16, Dean Kamen (famed for his invention of the Segway Human Transporter) had made a small fortune selling his first invention – a control unit for light and sound shows – to such clients as New York’s Hayden Planetarium. “I used some of the money to send my parents on a two-week vacation,” he later recalled, “and I used the rest of it to buy myself some really great machine tools for the workshop I had set up in my parents’ basement.” (Source: Anecdotage) –

S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #3: Tom Cruise: Vacation: Impossible
Shortly after the filming of Mission: Impossible 2, Tom Cruise took a vacation with his kids while Nicole Kidman worked on Moulin Rouge: Tom loaded five-year-old Connor and seven-year-old Isabella aboard a 40-foot-plus fishing vessel, christened the Alibi, for a trip in Australian waters – only to discover that, when it comes to vacations, “we’re like the Griswolds.” And in true National Lampoon’s Vacation form, a motor conked out, someone T-boned a Jet Ski into the Alibi’s side, the boat itself struck a reef. When the fire from the on-deck barbecue roared a little too high in Connor’s direction, Tom shoved the grill overboard, thereby becoming the first actor in Aussie history to throw a barbie on the shrimp. (He later donned scuba gear and retrieved the grill.)

Isabella later summed up the trip for her mother: “It was tragic,” she declared, “then fun!” (Source: Anecdotage) –

S & R* QUOTE #1: Captain Jean-Luc Picard Quote

“Time is a companion that goes with us on a journey. It reminds us to cherish each moment, because it will never come again. What we leave behind is not as important as how we have lived.”

(Source: Wisdom Quotes) –


S & R* QUOTE #2: Eleanor Roosevelt

“I could not, at any age, be content to take my place by the fireside and simply look on. Life was meant to be lived. Curiosity must be kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his back on life.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

 S & R* QUOTE #3: Mark Twain

“Let us so live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

“For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “vacation”; “family”; “”


A vacation or holiday is a specific trip or journey, usually for the purpose of recreation or tourism. People often takes a vacation during specific holiday observances, or for specific festivals or celebrations. Vacations are often spent with friends or family. (Source: Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia)-


In human context, a family (from Latin: familia) is a group of people affiliated by consanguinity, affinity, or co-residence. In most societies it is the principal institution for the socialization of children. (Source: Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia)-


S & R* NEWS ALERT* #1: Plan a summer vacation to remember

“School’s out and families all over Canada are gearing up for a much anticipated vacation.

Memories of family vacations last a lifetime, says Dave Minor, Vice President, TD Insurance. So, you’d be wise to ensure those memories are good ones by preparing your home and family before you pack up and head out of town.

Follow the ABCs from TD Insurance to plan a safe and fun family vacation that runs smoothly from your front door to your destination:

Ask questions: Know what to expect before you arrive. Pick up a travel book, or put the Internet to use and learn about local traditions, food, weather conditions, and water quality before leaving to help you can plan accordingly.

Burglar-proof your home: Remember to prepare your home so that it appears like you’ve never left. Things you can do include setting up automatic timers on your lights, asking a trusted neighbour to park their car in your driveway, and cancelling your newspaper delivery. Last, but not least, don’t forget to ensure all doors and windows are locked before leaving.

Cover your family: A recent TD Insurance poll of more than 1,000 Canadian 18 years of age and older revealed 29% of us think travel insurance is only necessary when travelling internationally, but this is not the case. Dependent on your province’s health insurance you may need additional coverage from province to province. Also, it’s important to carefully review your travel medical insurance policy before leaving because not everything is covered. People sometimes choose to participate in riskier activities on vacation, such as parasailing, which may not be covered in your policy.”

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #2: Pack smart for the family summer vacation

“A trip with your family is a great way to make lasting memories, but travelling with babies and kids can be challenging. Getting through airport security quickly and easily will help get your family vacation off to a great start. Here are the top five tips from the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) to make your next family get-away as smooth as possible.

1. Bring snacks to keep baby happy. For parents travelling with kids under two, baby food, formula, medications, milk, water and juice are exempt from the 100 ml (3.4 oz) liquid restriction for carry-on baggage. The amounts must be reasonable for the length of your vacation and these items must be presented to the screening officer. There are no restrictions on solid food products.

2. Use the special security screening line for families, and arrive early to give yourself a little more time to clear security.

3. Reduce the likelihood of additional screening by dressing yourself and your kids in clothing and shoes that don’t have metal accents. Let your child walk through the metal detector if they can do it on their own.

4. Remove infants from their stroller or carrier and hold them while proceeding through the metal detector. The stroller or carrier will have to be x-rayed. Never leave your baby in a carrier on the x-ray belt.

5. Pack toys in your child’s carry-on baggage that will keep them entertained on your flight. Batteries for toys, cameras, gaming devices and other personal items are allowed in carry-on baggage, but some restrictions apply.

The CATSA website at has more information about packing smart. Bon voyage.”

*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved

Posted by on May 28th, 2012 27 Comments

BEYOND ONLINE, THERE IS ALSO A BLIND DATE: I consider the idea, success rate,tips, stories, etc.*(Cont’d)”

Vol. 3, No. 5, Monday, May 7th2012

TITLE: “BEYOND ONLINE, THERE IS ALSO A BLIND DATE:  I consider the  idea, success rate,tips, stories, etc.* (Cont’d) ” 


This week, I will continue on with my romance theme and the blind date subject.  But now, I will look at the ‘blind date’ -particularly the stories: …the good, the bad …and …..the ugly.  My book of the week is The Blind Date Survival Guide: A Practical and Funny [Paperback] – Jeff Nagel (Author), Jessica Robison (Illustrator) (Editor’s Note: This is a continuation of the post from last week – part of a series on dating, relationships and marriage.) 

PREVIEW: Next week, I will do my annual post on Mother’s’ Day with an update for this year.  (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on holidays and special  dates.) 


Do I have any blind dating stories?  I have some…several my own experiences…others from friends … and still others through research.

Very Good (VG): Here’s one far to the good. My mother was the matchmaker. She knew a man who lived in her building. He was older, looking to meet a lady in order to get married. She met this woman – her boyfriend was killed in a car accident. My mother invited them both over for coffee. They hit it off. They eventually married, had two children and were lived happily ever after. The added touch was that this gentleman bought my Mom an expensive dress to say, “Thank you”. Wasn’t that sweet? 

Good: The story in the movie titled, “Sleepless in Seattle” is a fix-up story, with a twist: little boy goes looking for a girl for his Dad, finds her, brings them together and everyone lives happily ever after.

Not Good Enough: I had a fix-up. He called me every night for a week. We then went on our first date. He was really a good guy screwed on straight. He was a perfect gentleman… a really nice guy. But alas, the chemistry was not there. I had no interest. Afterwards, he called one night asking to go out again. I gracefully declined.  He said that it will be an honor to stay friends and keep in touch with me. He never called back. My friends said that he was really broken up about this.

Bad #1: I remember one in particular. At first, he seemed polite and well-educated. But he showed himself to discriminate, being critical of other national origins. He was very rude,  I was completely taken aback … I did not expect it.  I recognized that he was an idiot… In a half hour, it was over and I walked away…good riddance!

Bad #2: Here’s another. A woman co-worker was trying to find a mate for her daughter. She went beyond matchmaking – she put an ad in a newspaper!  We would hear her screening the potential dates.  You see the phone number in the ad was not her daughter’s, but the mother`s at work.  Apparently, she found a date for her daughter.  As we heard later, the young man came to the door for her daughter and made a racial remark about her next door neighbor.  He then took the daughter to McDonald’s and told her that she would have to pay her own way that evening.  Needless to say, the date ended early.  P.S. We were very entertained with this woman’s dating stories of her daughter.

Bad #3:  He was rich and I was set up by a mutual acquaintance. He wanted to know what I did for a living” He said:  “You are a real beauty.”  He was full of himself. He was aggressive. He spoke of his family. Later, he drove to a lovers’ lane spot. He tried to kiss me. My body language said: “I don’t think so ” I also said: “I don’t know you …it’s the first date ” After this misstep, he then asked if he could see me again. I said: “No.”

Ugly: I was lucky…I personally did not experience anything real ugly. But I did some research. Here are a few that I found. There once was a  girl who chewed with her mouth open. Her date saw much too much. Or did you hear of the guy who flirted with the waitress with his date beside him.  And then there was the fellow who drank so much ….wait for it….that he had to call his mother in the middle of the meal to come pick him up from the restaurant. Indeed, there are some real horror stories out there.

THE AUTHOR: Jeff Nagel 

Jeff Nagel is a New York business man. He is exploring the world of blind dates, searching the perfect date. He has credibility from impressive statistics: 137 blind dates in 16 states in the U.S. and overseas.



 1989 – The Blind Date Survival Guide a Practical and Funny Guide to Meeting the Person of Your Dreams [Well, Practically Funny] (Paperback) 

 THE BOOK:  The Blind Date Survival Guide: A Practical and Funny [Paperback] – Jeff Nagel (Author), Jessica Robison (Illustrator)

Nagel has some words of advice. He sees the blind dating as a process. He has techniques – he takes you step-by-step sharing with you many  He answers the earth shaking questions: (a) “How to avoid the good night kiss.” (b) “Why meeting for dinner is the worst choice for a blind date?” (c) “Why you should never eat lobster on a blind date?” (d) “Why grandparents are the worst people to get names from?” (e) “Why health clubs are terrible places to meet people?” He also thinks that blind dates can be funny. It’s a book – it`s seems light, but I think that more information is always beneficial. 


Sometime in our lives, most of us have had a date not to write home about. Most people can personally relate to these stories even the weird ones-

Personal Comments

I say:

  • The risk of a bad date is always there…but you never know if it will be the start of something beautiful. And you might even have a great time.
  • If you’re on a blind date and it’s not going well, end the evening as early as you can.
  • I agree with my Mom. She used to say: “A person has to eat a ton of salt with a man before you know what he’s all about.”  The meaning is that it takes a life time to really know a person.

 The Point

 It’s correct to say that you cannot succeed unless you try. This applies to blind dating.


A single should:  

1.      Say to family, friends and acquaintances: “Find me a match!” (Add:  “I won’t be mad if it doesn’t work out.”  This is important as most people need a push, not wanting any flack, prefering not to get involved.    

2.      Get as much information as you can about your blind date. 

3.      Go in with no expectations 

4.      Dress appropriately – first impressions are important 

5.      Go with a positive attitude.   

6.      Be yourself 

7.      Be honest 

8.      Be careful; to this end,  

a.       Drive yourself  

b.      Meet at a public place 

c.       Drink as little alcohol as possible 

d.      Keep your wits about you  

e.       Go with your instincts – if your date doesn’t look or act right, make an excuse and get out of there without delay.   

9.      Start the conversation on what you know about the person and go from there.   

10.  Try to get to know the person.   

11.  Listen to the person  

12.  Take it really SLOW if it gets romantic.  

Tell me about the date of your lifetime that ended with marriage…or, tell me about the unsuccessful date that became one of your funny stories of lifetime experiences. Either way, I want to hear about it.   

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”
P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.
P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta
*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.


S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #1: Rebecca Romijn-Stamos: Hello!!
“Lucky lads who dated Rebecca Romijn-Stamos in high-school were often bemused by her father’s efforts to put them at ease. “When they used to pick me up,” she once “ (Source:  Anecdotage) –

S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #2: 20 / 20 Vision?
“At a state banquet one day, Mrs. Sargent Shriver, the wife of the US ambassador to France, found herself seated beside French president Charles de Gaulle.

Such was her affection for the man that, as the meal drew to a close, she remarked, “Mr. President, I only regret that you’re not twenty years younger and that I’m not twenty years younger.”

Some time later, Mrs. Shriver casually repeated the remark to Mme de Gaulle. “Ah, yes, Mrs. Shriver,” (Source:  Anecdotage) –

 S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #3: Frankly Brilliant
“After the death of his wife in the early 1770s, Benjamin Franklin considered marrying the attractive widow of the famous philosopher Helvetius.

One day, after a long period during which his other commitments had prevented him from seeing her, she chided him for not having visited sooner. “Madam,” Franklin wisely replied, “I am waiting until the nights are longer.” (Source:  Anecdotage) –

S & R* QUOTE #1: Dr. Seuss

“We are all a little weird and life’s a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

 S & R* QUOTE #2: Katharine Hepburn

“Sometimes I wonder if men and women really suit each other. Perhaps they should live next door and just visit now and then.”

 (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

 S & R* QUOTE #3: – Lily Tomlin

“If love is the answer, could you rephrase the question?”

(Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

“For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “dating”;


Dating, a form of courtship which may include any social activity undertaken by, typically, two persons with the aim of assessing each other’s suitability as a partner.”  (Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) –


S & R* NEWS ALERT* #1:
How to grow together after the wedding by Melissa Wallace

“Planning a wedding was tough enough with differing opinions, an endless to-do list, and playing peacemaker with various family members. Now that the big day is over and you and your sweetie can finally catch your breath, you may be wondering how to make the most of the months ahead to get your marriage off to a great start.

Date night. Romanticism can get thrown out the window when you’re suddenly dealing with double the load of laundry and dirty dishes. Go on a date with your spouse at least once a week to regroup and keep that fire going.

Share a hobby. You and your spouse may already have a sport or activity you both enjoy, but if you don’t, consider looking into your community centre listings and try something new. You may discover a new love for dance, ultimate Frisbee, or wine tasting.

Appreciate each other. Say thank you often and avoid brewing resentment. Just make sure you mean it. Your spouse knows when you’re being genuine and when you’re being fake. Note: apply the same to the words, I’m sorry.

Go out with friends. Don’t forget about all the people who kept you sane the weeks before your wedding and took on your stress to give you your perfect day. Your friends will be ecstatic to see a calmer version of their friend again.

Give of yourselves. Love is a wonderful thing and it should be shared with those who don’t often feel it. Consider donating your time to volunteer at a soup kitchen or share your talents at a seniors home. Or sponsor a child through an international development organization like Christian Children’s Fund of Canada. Through sponsorship, you and your spouse can write letters to a child living in poverty to show that you care.”

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #2: Want your partner to pop the question? Fix your finances first

“There’s no denying it: wedding season is in full bloom. But if you want your own happily ever after in the near future, you may want to check your personal finances first. According to a recent poll from TD Canada Trust, 77% of Canadians say they would not marry someone who was bad at managing their personal finances or if they held excessive debt.

TD Canada Trust offers advice to Canadians in relationships who are ready to take the next step:

Honesty is the best policy: Being open and honest is an important part of establishing a healthy financial foundation. If you’re saving for a down payment on a home but your partner is thinking about their next spending spree, you might be headed for some challenges. Although it can be difficult to open up about your finances, doing so can prevent big headaches down the road.

Create a plan, together: Once you’ve discussed what both parties bring to the table financially, make a plan of action, together. There can be benefits to pooling your assets, like helping each other service existing debts or lowering your household’s overall tax burden. Speak with a financial advisor who can help you create a tailored plan that works for both of you.

Retain some financial independence: While it can be worthwhile to combine finances, it is important to have individual financial goals outside of those you have as a couple. For instance, having a credit card and bills in your own name that you pay back in full and on time will help build your personal credit rating. Similarly, saving regularly through contributions from your paycheque into a Tax Free Savings Account (TFSA) or your RRSP will help you build a healthy nest egg for your future together.”

*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved



Posted by on May 7th, 2012 1 Comment