Saturday, August 31, 2013


Another Day on Bleeker Street
Blanche: So how was your afternoon at the Mall Jane Dear?
Jane: ~puff, drag, puff~ Jezuz H Christo it was busy- but I got it.
Blanche: Got what Jane Dear?
Jane: The milk. We needed milk didn’t we Blanche?
Blanche: I know Jane, but didn’t you buy something nice for yourself?
Jane: Oh Sure! ~puff, puff~
Blanche: Good, ‘cause I know you’ve been a little down lately.
Jane: I took your advice Sister Dear and bought some new shoes.
Blanche: That’s nice!
Jane: Well the shoes may be but I had to set that freeking salesclerk right!
Blanche: Oh?
Jane: He had the nerve to tell me I had “Fat Feet”!! The Fuckin’ nerve!
Blanche: Fat Feet Dear? He told you, you had Fat Feet?
Jane: Yah, he said when I did up the straps on the shoes my feet looked fat.
Blanche: Well Jane Dear why didn’t you just buy a size larger?
Jane: …and let him get away with telling me my feet looked fat?
Blanche: Well...
Jane: ~puff, puff, puff~ No Way! I hoofed him right in the sausage!
Blanche: Oh Jane!
Jane: Sure did! ~drag, puff~…and guess what Blanche?
Blanche: I shudder to ask.
Jane: I got an apology from the manager and a 50% discount on the shoes!
Blanche: But Jane Dear-aren’t the shoes still too small?
Jane: Yah. ~puff, puff~ But it’s the point of the whole thing ain’t it?
Blanche…I guess.
Jane: I gotta go put this milk in the fridge Blanche. ~puff, puff~

Thursday, August 29, 2013


55 supping on Tuesday.
94 for dinner Wednesday night.
88 is last number I heard, for Thursday and the weekend is filling up.
As Sadie Flynn’s “Orson” would say- “A person can’t complain about that- can they?”
Yes, Norm Foster’s ‘Sadie Flynn Comes to Big Oak” is turning into a hit for the Garage Door Players and the Gravenhurst Opera House. We’ve had some large houses and I hear- “now don’t take this for Gospel Dear”- as Rachael tells Orson, they are some of the largest single house numbers for the entire summer season at the OP.
Good for us.
This year marks 10 years for the Garage Door Players and with Sadie Flynn running in both Orillia (at the Stubley Auditorium) back in May/June and now in Gravenhurst at the Opera House, it sure has been memorable.
Who knows where “the bus” will drop Sadie next?
Some folks who saw the Orillia show are even coming to Gravenhurst to see it again!
How nice!
Not to compare but just to enjoy Norm Foster’s humour once again.
We are delighted!
If you read this before Saturday August 31, there are still tickets available for all shows.
Don’t expect front row seats or maybe even the first 10 or 11 rows in the centre section but that still leaves lots to choose from on the sides.
The cast is doing an amazing job.
Our set is different from the Orillia Sadie Show and we’ve changed lighting and added some very funny and very special effects. That’s what a show can do in a “real” theatre.
Come for dinner in the Trillium Court- downstairs, before the show- if you can get a dinner reservation. David Friesen from “Riverwalk” in Bracebridge is the chef and he is doing an amazing catering job. Diners have been asking for his business card.
How nice!
So, if you can, come join in the fun of this terrific Norm Foster Comedy- Sadie Flynn Comes to Big Oak.
See you in Big Oak at “Millie’s Cabin!”

Monday, August 26, 2013


Hello Readers!
Hey this is Blog #500,
Boy, that’s a lot of words and thoughts and here are more…
An exciting week with Sadie- to be sure!
The Garage Door Players- who I am happy to say are celebrating 10 years of entertaining audiences this year, play Norm Foster’s “Sadie Flynn Comes to Big Oak” at the Gravenhurst Opera House.
We’re taking Sadie on the road.
Not too far. Just 20 minutes or so.
We are the final show in a Summer Season at the Gravenhurst Opera House. The season included Dragonfly Theatre Company’s “Blithe Spirit” as well as Dave Campbell and Tim Webb’s productions of “Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks” and “The 39 Steps”.
Know what many people are asking us?
Why are you taking a local company and heading’ north?
The Orillia Opera House only hires Equity Actors- for summer theatre.
That doesn’t mean the actors in other summer shows are any better at their craft than the actors in Sadie Flynn- a non-equity production, it simply means they are members of a union- Actor’s Equity. That seems to be a stipulation to be a part of summer theatre at many venues- except at the Gravenhurst Opera House. Well, at least for this current season.
Funny, a week ago Tom and I headed to see a show at a theatre not-too-far from Orillia. A summer show and yes, it was Equity. Now, I am not “Equity” expert- neither is Tom, however, we both thought the show sucked. Yes, there were some good actors. Very good actors, it’s just that there were many not-so-good actors and together the show failed- in my humble opinion.
So, it doesn’t always follow that an “Equity” show gives you a great show. Same can be said about any show from any company. Yes, I consider my actors professional (non-equity). They are paid for what they do and yes, they can also perform poorly.
If I allow them too.
As a director one has to be sure of the cast that is assembled. This Sadie Flynn has not been immune from problems. The initial three actors playing the female parts in the Orillia “Sadie” back in May/June could not continue to Gravenhurst. So I re-cast the parts.
Then I had to look for a new “props” person. Then a few scant weeks ago I replaced the lead character.
I had my reasons.
This rehearsal period was short for the Gravenhurst Show.
Seven rehearsals and an “Italian” red-thru up to tech day (that’s when we move into the venue and set up props and lighting) followed by a dress rehearsal and then the run.
Fast eh?
I am confident in the case of this Gravenhurst Sadie Flynn Comes to Big Oak that my actors will NOT perform poorly. These actors are all top-notch and have been in theatre for many, many years.
So, this comedy from Norm Foster runs until Saturday August 31.
Come and laugh with us.
It’ll take your mind off your problems.
Tickets and information at
Come just for the show or have dinner in the Trillium Court downstairs (provided by David Friesen of Riverwalk in Bracebridge) and then casually stroll upstairs to your reserved seats.
How nice is that?
Hope to see you there

Friday, August 16, 2013


Dame Clare has taken pencil to paper once again and sends along this charming piece for all my readers to enjoy.

Well My Dears, that nice Mr. Reid is once again allowing me to bring you up-to-date with all the gossip and happenings around the Palais Royale.
Your Damness couldn’t be more pleased!

It’s been a busy summer here on the outskirts of town. Some travel, some gay parties, new friends, old friends and the excitement of things to come.
That Darling Roger- my Head Poolboy, along with his hubbie Xavier, keep things hopping. There’s always a party when a “fay” is around. That’s why I love them both to biddy-bits. For instance, next week, there’s a “Pink Pool Party”. My Dears the boys are working on turning the pool into a huge pink ocean. Lots of friends have been invited- along with their chequebooks and cash. They hope to raise some much needed money all in the cause of Breast Cancer. My Dear friend Hedda Lettuce has had that scare and believe me it trips you up and you fall flatly on your boney ass. In Hedda’s case the news is positive and she’s been Cancer free for several years.

What luck!

The Guys also plan a shindig around prostate cancer too. Heaven only knows what exciting things they have planned for that extravaganza! As I said, I worship the Speedos my boys wear and let me tell you in the summertime at the Palais- that’s pretty much the entire wardrobe.

Oh My Dears it makes me all tingly when I think of it.
I am so blessed- and Roger and Xavier are too! (Tee Hee)
I mean that.
I really do.

Hedda, along with her best friend and personal Secretariat- Sofonda Cox, along with yours truly plan to make our annual pilgrimage around the province. Yes, the old RV will be topped up, spiffed up and stocked up for our yearly tour. We hope to spend an afternoon with that sprightly, denim-shorts clad of a farmboy Randy too. We discovered Randy and his talents on a trip we took a few summers ago. We keep in touch and Rand- as I affectionately call him usually makes it down to the Palais once or twice a year as well- when he’s not fawning over a cow or a piglet!
Rand always whips up a big corn roast and Bar-B-Que and invites some locals along. We laugh and eat and laugh some more until our sides ache. Randy usually gets up and does a hoochee-koochee dance around the fire- to wild applause, wearing nothing more than an oak leaf and the birthday suit he was born into. Albeit, after a few beers and much encouragement from some of the other swarthy farm lads who eventually join in the frivolities.
My, to see the colour of the flames dance off his tawny, tanned buttocks brings tears to this gal’s eyes.

I mean that my Dears.
I really do! 

It takes a day and a half to get Sofonda settled down. She’s not so used to seeing “lug-nuts” such as Randy’s openly displayed by the light of the fire- or the Silv’ry Moon. Why she giggles the night away in the RV and Hedda and I get little rest. Never mind Dears, it is all part of the fun of a road trip- isn’t it now? 

As a matter of fact Daisy my downstairs maid- I don’t know what I’d do without the sweet young thing, has just come into the West Parlour to tell me Hedda and Sofonda are waiting for me out near the pool. This afternoon we’re planning the route for this year’s RV excursion.

What fun!
I mean that My Dears!
I really, really do. 

Enjoy your days and… 

Tah for now!

Sunday, August 11, 2013


It’s been a week now since Kiki- our beautiful 17 year old lab, passed.
It’s been a tough time.
Many tears.
Many memories.
Telling the story of her life and her passing many, many times over.
The hole in our hearts is still there. We know it will fill up one day soon but until then, we still grieve. We have a small memorial set up for her on one of our mantles. Pictures of Kiki with her Dads. Flowers, cards, mementos- even a sketch from a neighbour’s daughter- a bright yellow rendering of Kiki smiling broadly.
A bright yellow stone with a butterfly in the centre- which we have dubbed “The Kiki Stone”, lies embedded in the grass in a favourite spot where she laid to keep watch over her yard. The stone comes from good friends who loved her too. The week before she passed we took her for a final romp at “We’re in the Hayfield Now”- a lily farm owned by friends. We purchased a lily called “Lemon-Lime”. We since have renamed the yellow beauty- Miss Kiki.
Everyone seemed to know and love our girl. 17 years is a vast amount of time in puppy years to come in contact with many, many people.
I look at old photos.
I stare deep into her beautiful brown eyes.
Today, she holds a prominent spot on our computer screen- the wallpaper.
I stroke her head every night.
Silly, I know- but I can almost feel her warmth.
In our hearts we believe she is frolicking in the green grass of another place- not far from here, accompanied by the family that passed on before her.
She’s young again with no pain or discomfort.
She’s waiting for her Dads.
I told her we’d be along- soon.
That will be a wonderful day. We have to believe what we believe and I believe so terribly deeply that we’ll see our Kiki Girl again one day.
Missy our mini-schnauzer is in a funk. The past few days her eyes are filled with sadness-unusual for a schnauzer. Oh there are bright spots when her eyes sparkle and she barks with happiness. Those times over this past week are the times when we took a van ride or a had walk around the block. She clings and snoozes on the pillow where Kiki last laid. Dickens and Doyle- our orange tabbies, look for Kiki too. A glance at bedtime to the bottom of the bed says it all. Doyle would lay next to Kiki, his head on the nape of her yellow neck
…and they call them dumb animals.
Kiki left us with much. She taught us many things.
Things like-
Letting go…
She taught us to do the right thing.
To be sad and yet to remember.
We know the sadness will pass.
We have wonderful memories.
We’ll think of the hugs and the Kiki kisses.
Her loving Dad Tom, taking her out each evening just before bed. Patiently waiting on the verandah bench for her to have a sniff around the yard and finish her business. In recent weeks there were times he had to carry her up the steps. You could see the love on her face.
What a good Dad.
I’ll remember the songs I sang to her.
Each evening at bedtime, I sang:
You are my sunshine,
My only sunshine,
You make me happy-
When skies are grey…
Then, the ditty I always sang to her at any time of the day. I sang it to her a week ago for the last time…
I love you Miss Kiki-
Miss Kiki I love you.
I love you Miss Kiki-
I honestly do.
Now I have added this verse.
I miss you Miss Kiki,
Miss Kiki I miss you.
I miss you Miss Kiki-
I honestly do…

Sunday, August 4, 2013


Our Darling Kiki passed Saturday afternoon August 3rd at 2:30.
Her health had not been good this past week and at 6am Saturday she
had a terrible stroke that affected her walking and standing.
It was time for her to cross the bridge...
Dr. Choles, who has been caring for Kiki these past 9 years came right to the house.
It was very peaceful and loving.
Many tears and many, many memories.
She gave us 17 years!
We couldn’t have asked for anything more from Kiki- except more time but
that option had run out.
Kiki had a  beautiful life indeed.
All our pet family members whose lives we have shared over the years have been
very special to us.
Very, very special.
Each in their own unique way.
Kiki was special with a capital “S”.
It all began one August morning 17 years ago, We went to the Farmer’s Market to buy tomatoes
and came home with tomatoes- and Kiki.
We fell in love on the spot!
Now, Kiki just passed her 17th year with her birthday on July 25.
When the time comes to say goodbye for now, it doesn’t matter how much you hug and kiss
and whisper sweet nothings, the reality is here today...
Our beautiful Kiki- we named her after the colour of the sand in Waikiki, is gone, however,
her spirit is still here- warm and loving as it has always been and her puppy hair!
Kiki’s infamous hair is still tucked here and there- from one end of the house to the other and we’re
sure we’ll be finding it for months. Little Kiki-hair “dust bunnies” are under and around the legs of
the dining room table. They were there this morning, clearly visible as the August sunshine flowed through the
dining room window.
It’ll be a change for us- all of us.
Kiki will not be watching you walk by the house anymore or welcoming you at the back gate expecting
a treat the moment you step into the house.
We’re glad she got to see her new street and sidewalk come to completion. She even had a
chance to stroll and sniff along the new pavement a few days ago.
We’ll miss her beautiful face.
She’ll not be tagging along with us on walks.
Her familiar bark at the back door when she needed to get in will no longer be heard.
We’ll miss her impatient tone when we kept her waiting.
There’ll be no more van rides- which she loved.
We are so thankful we were able to take Kiki to “the Lily Farm”- in Orono last Sunday where
she and Missy could run free for a few hours. It had become a yearly event.
Last week, when she knew the van was being readied for a ride, she placed herself at the garage door
waiting for us to load her in- just in case we forgot her.
How could we?
What a sweetheart our Kiki was to us!
So, Dear Friends, it’s the end of an era at Pine Tree House.
Things will be different now that the “Blond One” our “Kikmeister” our
“Kikidoodle” has passed on.
Today, we imagine her playing in a field of green with her brothers and sisters- Luma, Samantha- both I and II, Lucky and Max.
As time passes we’ll heal and find our way but for now one thing is certain- we’ll never ever, ever find another Kiki.
Rest for now our Darling Kiki and we’ll see you again... soon.