All I want…

All I want for Christmas is a …family doctor.   Really?  That’s it?  Good Luck.

Over the past 8 years (or so it seems), it has become increasingly difficult to find a family doctor. Don’t get me wrong, they are out there, but most are not taking new patients.

My beloved family doctor retired from her practice over two years ago to work for a government type agency. In addition to family medicine, she also did maternity and you know the hours that come with that. She found she needed more stable hours which better suited her own family.

I don’t blame her. Well, maybe I do blame her a little bit. Kenny Rogers said it best, “you picked a fine time to leave me, Lucille.” Her name wasn’t Lucille, in case you were wondering.  Had this happened 8 years ago, I would have had a great chance to get another family doctor with the simple referral of a friend. I still have friends, but no longer does a referral work. Doctors are not taking new patients.

There is so much I love about out health care system. The monthly premium from BC Med of $69.25. This is fairly affordable. If you fall under a certain income bracket, the monthly premium is reduced and sometime waived (see all the fine print here).  There is no copay. If your child is sick or hurt, you can go to the hospital, clinic or your doctor without worrying about cost.

Yes, there can be long waits to see specialists and I do wish that would change. But the services, ultrasounds, operations and treatments are mostly covered (medicine excluded).  Since Vancouver and parts of the Lower Mainland have become so unaffordable, I think it is hard to attract new doctors (among other reasons).

Yet, while I appreciate the abundance of medical clinics that I can pop into, I don’t like the waits and the lack of continuity.

These words and thoughts are just my simplified version of of our health care system. I like that it is there for everyone.  Is it perfect ?  No, but for a lot of people, it works.

So, Santa if you are listening, please make it more attractive for more doctors to stay and set up shop in Vancouver. I know I’m not the only one who has this in their list.


Top 10 Christmas

The Monday Listicles would like to know ten of our Christmas memories.   I am thinking this will be a pretty easy post, or will it?

  • In 2006, my son was 6 weeks old and he celebrated his first Christmas with us and a few days later I turned 40.  Having all those great events just a few weeks apart was a fantastic, yet sleep deprived way to end the year.MyPicture
  • My husband and I went to Maui together on Christmas Eve in 2005.  It was weird arriving at the airport and being the only couple not to have someone picking them up.  But we somehow managed to enjoy the sunshine and have a fun trip. 🙂
  • Way, way back in the late 70s, my sister and I dressed up like elves and did a little Christmas skit for our parents and grandparents on Christmas Eve.  Although I’m sure it was cute at the time, I don’t really want to see the photos of it anymore.
  • At about the same time as the Christmas skit, we lived in a small farming community for 3 years.  On every Christmas Eve, we would go the resort hotel in the neighbouring town for dinner.  My sister and I thought it was so cool to have a fancy dinner and listen to the big band.
  • Last year we took our family to stay with my sister and her family south of the border for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  It was our first Christmas away as a family and the kids liked loved it!
  • My late Grandfather used to give us the best gifts as kids. Sometimes it was crumpled up one dollar bills in an egg carton and other times it was a Barbie doll.  That man loved the holidays and I am so sorry my kids didn’t get to meet him.
  • Pat Benatar would release an album (yes, I’m dating myself) every year just before Christmas and I would always get that new album as a present.
  • In 2001, just a week before Christmas we moved into our house. It was pretty exciting to decorate and enjoy the house after weeks and weeks of painting, ripping up carpet and cleaning.
  • Our first dog was so tolerant.  She allowed us to constantly put reindeer antlers on her and we have too many photos to prove it.  We miss her.


  • Going to the Festival of Lights at Van Dusen Gardens is one our family traditions and we are going in just a few days.


So many great memories and so many more to come!

Let it snow!


On the 9th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me….SNOW!  Just a slight dusting of the white stuff, but enough to send the Lower Mainland into a tailspin.  It’s the top story on the news, of course.

Everything you have ever heard about drivers on the West Coast is true.  We like to think we are seasoned at this snow stuff, but we ain’t.  Let us fool ourselves a little longer, while the true Easterners snicker at us, plug in their cars (say, what?) and shovel the real stuff.

I hope the Lower Mainland enjoys today.  ‘Tis the season…

Grandma & the Reindeer

On the 4th day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a funny Christmas song and video.  It is hard to believe that this song has been around for 30 years!   My family grew up with it and loved it from the moment we heard it.  I know my sister will laugh and smile when she sees it today. I hope you enjoy it, too!

He’s Back…!!!


It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  It’s the time when our little Elf on the Shelf returns and boy, could I use his help.  Our little elf came into our lives two years ago, and the kids named him Rex (not sure how that came about).  Since then, they talk about Rex during the year and anxiously await his arrival on December 1st.


So, in just 3 short sleeps, Rex will be once again here to make life at our house a little easier for the next month.  Or will he make things easier?  I know a lot of families don’t want to resort to using this type of help.  They feel it’s a little sneaky and isn’t in the true spirit of Christmas.  That said, everyone is entitled to their opinion and each family has to do what  is right for them.

But I know that it’s fun for my family.  The kids are excited to wake up each morning and search for which spot Rex has landed in overnight.  I have used Pinterest in the past for ideas on what to do with Rex. There are so many fun and cheeky ideas, like these:


(pinterest images)

If it makes it easier for me to get them to think about their manners, sharing, not yelling, getting along, et cetera then I am going to take the help.  It takes a village to raise a child and I am going to use the village of the North Pole to help me in December.

Besides, I think this little elf idea is fun. Who wouldn’t want to wake up and find an elf in the sugar bowl, or the bathroom, or swinging from a light? 😊