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A month for remembering...and making new memories 6/8/2018
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It’s already been two years since my dear brother-in-law, Mike, passed away very suddenly May 5th. His wife (my sister), two close friends, my husband and I attended an evening mass said in his honor, to commemorate this second anniversary of his absence. Afterwards, we celebrated Mike with great stories (by and about him!) and memories at one of his well-loved restaurants--one of us even ordered his favorite dish to show she remembered. We still can’t believe that he’s gone. And we miss him so very much.

But destiny will have its way. The following week, a childhood friend lost her mother to the complications of Alzheimer’s and asked me to sing at the funeral. I will remember Mrs. Snider as the fun, energetic mother of seven children—two boys and five girls—I loved playing at their house. I was honored to sing “Ave Maria” and a special adaptation of “Danny Boy” to help accompany her journey to the other side. It was a beautiful service with an Irish accent—a bagpiper led the recessional. She would have liked that.

At the end of the week, we made a few new memories. Ed and I buckled up for five-hour drive to Toronto to visit our “Star Trek Discovery” writer-son, and stay for a few days. The LA-based series is filmed there and his episode was up next. He was expected to be on location for several weeks.

We arrived at around 3 pm. After a short walk around his well-appointed apartment, conveniently situated downtown, we gathered at script supervisor’s (Marta) home for a lovely dinner. Marta, her husband, Trevor, and their darling three-year-old daughter, Parker, greeted the three of us at the door of their charming townhouse. The other guest, Jonathan Frakes, aka Commander Ryker from “Star Trek, The Next Generation”, arrived soon after. He directed Sean’s episode last year and was back to film his Episode 2 of Season 2!

Marta also writes, produces and directs her own projects, and Trevor is in TV production as well. They compose a beautiful family with their little Parker. It was so lovely that they included us: dinner was yummy and a fun evening was enjoyed by all! I was glad I thought to bring a basket of Malley’s Chocolates goodies from Cleveland for them!

Sean had done some forward thinking himself with Mother’s Day brunch reservations at Le Select Bistro, for the following morning. The French restaurant was in walking distance from his place; what a treat to breakfast outside on the patio, with delectable eggs Benedict, French toast, croissants and quiche! It was a gorgeous day--only our youngest, who stayed back home for work, was missing from this near-perfect picture!

After brunch, we changed into baseball game attire and walked the two blocks to Rogers Centre…only to watch the Toronto Blue Jays get beaten by The Boston Red Sox. Although they lost, we had a great time playing honorary Canadians for the day--our son not only bought us tickets, but Blue Jays caps too! The hot dogs and peanuts weren’t bad either…

After the game and a nap, we invited director Jonathan to meet us at a beautiful Asian restaurant next door to our hotel for dinner. The food was fantastic and so was the company!

The following morning, at around 11:30, Ed and I drove to the series’ shooting location in Balls Falls, Ontario, a little ghost town that is part of a nature preserve in Lincoln, Ontario. Amid the walking trails, there is a tiny church, a cemetery (production added some tombstones), a barn…and the falls.

We were able to watch some of the filming (always so interesting), meet the actors and reunite with Sonequa, an absolute doll and also the beautiful face of “Star Trek Discovery. We chatted with Jonathan, met more of the production crew and after a few last photos, said our goodbyes and were off to Cleveland. It all worked out very well, since this spot was on our way home. We stayed about two hours and made the return trip in 3 ½ hours. It was a GREAT weekend!!!

Two days after our return, we celebrated my youngest son’s gal’s 26th birthday. Her parents and aunt on hand, along with my husband and me. Not only was it a fun birthday celebration, but it also turned out to be the wedding engagement party of Zach and Julie! He surprised her while the rest of us were on a tour of the restaurant. They had their moment and upon our return we all celebrated with them. I love Julie and I’m excited to have her as my “daughter”! That will make two!

At the end of the week, Sean drove home to Cleveland. He took advantage of Canada’s Victoria Day weekend, which meant he was off till Tuesday! We felt so lucky to be able to have him with us again. We enjoyed dinner at his favorite restaurant, Tommy’s, on Coventry Road, and a wonderful Sunday brunch at Crop Bistro. But the best part was just having him home.

Our own Memorial Day weekend followed shortly! On Saturday night, Ed and I, along with five friends, dined at Saucy Brew Pub pizza, followed by ice cream at Mitchell’s, like a bunch of college kids. It was sooo fun!

The following evening, we hosted a cookout for seven. Another very enjoyable evening! One of our guests was a Vietnam veteran. He made the holiday very special, sharing how he commemorates his fellow vets and “fallen angels” every Memorial Day. My father was captain of a Navy landing ship in the Pacific during WWII. Anyone who sacrificed years of his or her life serving our country is a hero to me!

The Tuesday after Memorial Day, I met a grade school friend for lunch. In town visiting her elderly parents, Julie and I had a lot of catching up to do! We had to cut it short, however, since I had a date with Abe at 107.3 The Wave to promote our June 1 concert at Nighttown!

RehearsaIs for the show, lovely dinners out, my daily yoga, and my family filled the gaps not mentioned here! Which brings us up to date for the month of May!

And hey, have you noticed? Here comes summer!