Lain's Log

Life goes on

July 24/12.

Still coming to grips with the loss of Auntie Ray. My nephew, writer Sean Michaels, sent me an email message the other day. It says, "I have such a strong memory of meeting her - this marvellous,
vivacious, extraordinary woman. She was a model for all our lives, I think, and this week the world has lost some colour". That is certainly true. Ray was all about colour!

Her son, Kevan and daughter-in-law, Marilyn, set up a tribute site in her memory. The last line tells her family, friends and fans to "please repaint that beige living room a vibrant, happy colour that makes your heart sing."

Go here to visit the Ray Staples tribute site.

My sister, Carrie and I were invited to come to Auntie Ray's condo to select and take home a few mementos of the gorgeous place she called home. So very many stunning treasures.

What I had in mind? The carved stacks of elephants which sat in several different spaces of the condo during her few years there. Usually, they stayed in the big front window,

so you could always immediately tell from the outside, which condo was hers. (see elephants on right of centre panel). They are gorgeous, welcoming and said to bring good luck.

I've always admired them,

where ever they were placed!

Now, they grace my own home, on either side of the leather couch (which was selected by Auntie Ray when she decorated our living room years ago). My cousin, Kevan, surprised me by delivering both elephant structures to the door and placing them in exactly the right spots! Thank you so much.

I will always think of my incredible Aunt when I look at these majestic elephants.

I also inherited three jade wine glasses, which originally came from my grandparents' antique shop, Century House north of Lindsay. They owned them, passed them to my Mum. When she died, they went to Ray, and now, I have them.

After all the drama surrounding the loss of Auntie Ray, I took my friend, Joanne (visiting from L.A.), shopping. We discovered an apparently new and improved Justin Bieber hanging out at the cosmetics counter at Shoppers Drug Mart again.

He's changed a lot since his last trip to buy cologne!

Then, we took off for St. Lawrence Market to get some goodies.
Joanne always likes to pay at least one visit there on every jaunt to T.O.

I hit up the seafood section and bought some fresh scallops.

We looked at the shortbread cookies, (but didn't buy any),

and checked out the truffles, (but resisted the temptation),

Joanne even eyed her favourite butter tarts, but used willpower to stop from making any purchases! (we'll see if she makes it all week without buying one!)

We can go back for more delectables next week, OK?


2012 trip to McCrae Lake & Lake Vernon from Carrie Loring on Vimeo.

my sister, Carrie and her boyfriend, Paul, had quite an adventure on their latest canoe trip. During the very first day, their gorgeous campsite was hit by a massive hungry bear! It was a very scary ordeal, but they managed to escape with their lives (but not their food! The bear enjoyed every morsel! - and drank their wine too! Hic!) Check out Carrie's fabulous video of their star-crossed holiday. Wait for it to load before watching so you can see it all! They will never again complain about mosquitoes or black flies!

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Auntie Ray

July 16/12.

The lovely, talented, charming, funny, frank, outrageous Auntie Ray has left the building.

At the age of 92, Ray Staples passed away this afternoon following a month-long stay at Toronto Western Hospital. I am heartbroken at the thought of a world without her in it, but happy she is out of pain and no longer suffering. She will forever be a part of my heart, mind and soul. More to write about her when I can.


Fasten your seatbelts, it's been a bumpy ride

July 16/12.

It's sometimes difficult to write when life is filled with heavy drama and emotion. A lot of this past week and a half has been taken up with visits to hospitals to see Aunt Ettie (my Mum-in-law's sister), and Auntie Ray (my late Mum's sister and our "surrogate Mother").

Sadly, Ettie Pelchovitz passed away on Sunday July 8th.

I went to Sunnybrook to visit her and her two daughters, Linda and Sharon that afternoon. Just four hours later, we learned she had died. I'm glad I got to say goodbye. She was a lovely lady and I have many fond memories to look back on over the 30 years I knew her. We'll all miss you Auntie Ettie. I'm sending good thoughts to my mother-in-law, Jean Bornstein, who loved Ettie so much.

Have also been visiting Auntie Ray as often as I can 

at Toronto Western Hospital. 

She is such a special part of our family. (left to right, Carrie Loring, Kevan Staples, Ray Staples and me).

A few days before Ettie's passing, we invited Mum and Dad B over for a barbeque dinner. It was fun to have them pay us a visit on a hot summer day. That's my son, Max, greeting them on the sidewalk.

Sam cooked up quite a feast for his parents, (and all of us), barbequing ribs, hotdogs, burgers, chicken, salmon and corn on the cob!

My Dad-in-law, Ben Bornstein enjoyed the ribs, but liked dessert better!

Max and Kate provided the entertainment (here with their significant others, Robyn and Damian). They played The Beatles' Should Have Known Better and their version of Stop This Train, which I love, but it always makes me cry.

Kate also performed her Bubie's favourite original Kate Sloan song, Normal People, (at her special request).

Another day, I visited the Eaton Centre for two great sales.

Hit up The Body Shop for their half price July deal,

to get bottles of my vanilla-scented cream for $6 a bottle instead of $12! Bought three, (which was all they had left!)

Then over to La Senza (where else?) for their semi annual clearance - $3 panties and $6.99 bras!

Didn't expect to run into Max and his girlfriend, Robyn! She happened to be looking for deals at exactly the same time I was. We both walked away with a couple of pretty, lacey/racy items.

Later in the week, my lifelong friend, Joanne, (right) flew in from L.A. for a visit. She wanted to head directly to The Friendly Greek, as always, for a fabulous fresh Greek salad lunch. That's Joanne's sister, Valerie on the left. We've all known each other since we were young teens.

We were also joined by another old friend, Karen (right), who lives blocks from The Friendly Greek. We're all huge fans of their salads! Joanne has taken off for a while to help a pal move from Moncton back home to Toronto, but I'll see her again soon, when she returns later this week.

My week wrapped up with a trip past the old Ontario Place property,

 - so pretty,

and over to the Molson Amphitheatre

to see Alice Cooper in concert. We got there early and had great seats in Row F.

An old high school friend of mine (who prefers to remain anonymous), has known Alice for many years and got an all-access pass. (fun to wear!) This was taken just after 7 p.m. so seats weren't filled up yet, but by 7:30, the place was jammed!

At age 64, Alice still puts on a fabulous, dynamic & exciting show.

He was opening for Iron Maiden,

performing a 50 minute set jammed with everything an Alice fan could ever want!

the infamous snake,

the guillotine and beheading,

giant Frankenstein,

and of course, SCHOOL'S OUT!!!! It's impossible not to sing along! 


After the show, it was a blast to have the chance to go backstage.

I loved the table cloths made to look like spiders webs!

And the red roses were real.

Alice grabbed a quick shower and changed into red plaid pants and black t-shirt to meet some fans,

including me! I've had the opportunity to interview him several times over the years, but hadn't seen him since the late '90s, so it was beyond great to catch up with him again. He is SO nice. He posed for pics

and signed autographs and couldn't have been any friendlier.  When he signed my son's CD, he asked me, "Is he a musician?" I told him, "Yes, a drummer." He quipped back, "Oh, so he's NOT a musician!"  Ha ha! Max laughed when I repeated the joke for him.

We watched Iron Maiden too, but it was Alice we really went to see!

Thanks to my very private friend for taking me along to the show and allowing me to shoot the pics & use them on the blog. It was a terrific evening and I won't forget it!

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