Wishing you all a very Happy New Year!

Jim and I enjoyed ourselves so much in Texas, we've decided to drive back down and spend a month, or two.....or three!  We're very excited, and leave this coming Friday.  I'll have my computer along, so I can keep in touch with everyone as we WALTZ ACROSS TEXAS.




Wishing all my family and friends much love and happiness.

This last Saturday 29 members of our family joined us in our common room for a pot luck family dinner.   Unfortunately the weatherman didn't remember our planned party, and dumped nearly a foot of snow the night before.  Everyone arrived safely although some had to spend two extra hours getting here.  The food was excellent and the company was delightful as usual.

Two days later my head is just about back to normal....as normal as it gets.  Tomorrow Jim and I are volunteering at a Free Christmas Dinner for anyone in Brockville who wants to spend the day with others.  I'm serving and Jim is washing dishes.  What a lovely way to spend a Christmas Day.



Jim and I have just returned from a wonderful week in Hutto, Texas.  We escourted Jim's Mom down to stay with Jim's brother Ken and wife Amber until the end of January.  We had a fantastic time touring the area, which included San Antonio where we visited the Alamo and enjoyed the exotic Riverwalk.  The weather was in the upper 70's the whole time,so it was quite a shock to fly home yesterday to the snow and freezing rain!  There were a few tense moments as the 170 passenger airplane skidded on the ice and slush and I suddenly wanted to be back in Texas!  This trip let us realize we can still enjoy our travels as long as I get some brain breaks to allow myself to recover.

Ever since our workshop in Toronto which was dealing with the stigma surrounding dementia, I've been trying to figure out how I can best educate others that there is life after diagnosis.  I've decided to revamp my website with links that are helpful to those on this journey.  I'm also going to start a campaign to get the information I've collected out to more people.  I figure I can use free online sites such as kijiji as a start.  If you have any suggestions for me, please feel free to email me at mary@jim-mary.com.

Jim and I were asked to be part of a research project put on my MAREP http://www.marep.uwaterloo.ca/

and a research team from the University of Waterloo.  Our project for the day was to try to find ways of lessening the stigma surrounding dementia. There were six of us with a diagnosis of dementia and our care partners, as well as the researchers and artists and actors.  MAREP will be using the placards we produced in various ways to share how we wish to demonstrate the positive outlook of people affected by dementia.  The actors from Rukus Ensemble will use information from yesterday to produce a new play about living with a diagnosis of dementia.  They have had great reviews about their previous play  "After the Crash", a play about brain injury.  You can check that out at http://www.ruckusensemble.com/

It was a fun couple of days...and we thank MAREP for inviting us to join them.