My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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the Christmas concert

It’s the winter solstice, dark and cold with snow predicted overnight tonight. I wish my house had a fireplace. But there’s a furnace, solid walls, and a roof – good enough.

Yesterday’s adventure: Anna was really sick, poor woman; on Tuesday Thomas took a day off work to help deal with kids, but yesterday I went over to help, hoping not to catch whatever she had, washing my hands every five minutes … It was Eli’s Christmas concert after supper, and she actually got dressed and out the door with us, and then a few blocks in, had to turn back and go home to bed. So it was just Eli and me at the Xmas concert at his wonderful little school, with children from every part of the globe.

Concerts have changed since I was a parent, with the advent of cell phones. Now parents are madly taping everything, snapping and filming, standing so no one behind them can see, crowding the aisles and, according to the patient but exhausted principal, creating a fire hazard. It was madness – until it was time for the kindergarteners to arrive, and then I was up there with the rest of them, madly filming away – so we could relive it all and show the concert to Mama when we got home. Nearly got squashed in the crush.

Though it means giving up French immersion for Eli, Anna opted to keep him in this school, and I see why. It’s warm and open, and on the back of the program for the concert was a song by the Tragically Hip: “Ahead by a century.” “No dress rehearsal/This is our life.” The Grade Ones sang a wonderful song about diversity: “Some of us celebrate Christmas/Kwanzaa/Hanukkah/Ramadan” and it went on “Some of us celebrate Diwali/the harvest…” Loved that, some of us celebrate the harvest. That would be the atheists, like me.

Eli was cool and barely moved his mouth but he did sing. I was proud of him.

Another reason I think my daughter is a saint – she took Dakota, Thomas’s nephew, to a Raptors’ game for his tenth birthday. He’s a huge basketball fan so it was his dream come true. And because Dakota is such a loud fan, they ended up featured on the Jumbotron, and he got free pizza and a t-shirt!

What a birthday!

An Xmas present for me – an email from another happy student.

I wanted to let you know that my piece on “Night” is going to be in the G&M. I won’t really believe it until I see it in print but that is the plan at the moment.
Thank you again for your class which was such an unexpected gift to me and your suggestion to send that piece to the Globe which in a million years I wouldn’t have done or even thought of….
Just wanted to let you know and thank you again for such a great and life altering class! 

My equivalent of the Jumbotron.

Anyone in T.O. looking for something to do New Year’s Day – I could not recommend this more highly, at Hot Docs at the Bloor. A stunning, moving portrayal of life over decades. Don’t miss it.

The Up Series 
Experience one of the greatest achievements in documentary film at this once-in-a-lifetime event. Top it off with our special concessions deal: bottomless coffee and popcorn all day.




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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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