We feel blessed to have come through 2020 ending up on our feet and in good health. And one of its silver linings was that we got to spend more time laughing and loving in each other’s company. While a year like this one doesn’t generally result in a lot of exciting photos and stories, we thought we’d share some of its highlights for us with you, now that it’s almost over.

We wish you and all those you love, an especially Merry Christmas, this unusual and difficult year, and a much happier, healthier New Year to come!

Much Love,

Melissa and Ian



– January 6 –
Ian begins his regular winter
teaching gig, an Advanced
Scene Study course at the
University of Alberta.


– January 8 –
Melissa leaves FAVA after 13
years as Director of Communications
and Membership Services to start work
as a Library Assistant at the
Castledowns Branch of the
Edmonton Public Library.

– January 12: –
We receive a work of art by our
nephew, Eli, from Ottawa!



– February 1 –
Memorable dinner at Corso 32
(Slideshow for foodies!)

– February 4 –
Ian starts rehearsal for
The Blue Hour. The show
opens on February 27 and
runs to March 8.

Throughout 2020, Melissa
continues completing her first year
volunteering for the Canadian
Mental Health Association.



– March 16 –
University classes move
online as a precaution against
the coronavirus.

Our nephew, Wigandt,
attending his first year at
the UofAlberta is stranded
when student residences also close.
We gain a houseguest.


Under social isolation,
the library sends Melissa home,
where certain activities start
to become a thing.

Also, baking…

..and walks.


Spring brings visitors!
Some welcome…some
not as welcome.

Fortunately the person
attempting to raid our
garage didn’t get in.


In April, Melissa is
officially laid off work
until COVID is under control.

The Shakespeare in the Park
Festival, in which Ian was to
appear in the summer,
is also cancelled.


– April 17 –
Wigandt turns 19!


– April 27 –
Auntie and Uncle embark
on their first D&D campaign.
Wigandt is the Dungeon Master.
A commemorative tourtiere
is baked and we feast!


COVID activities continue.
Our garden blooms.

Ian joins Melissa on the
CERB, and determines to
finally complete a play
he started in 2010.

Though theatres are shut down,
Ian and Melissa manage to pick
up COVID-safe gigs doing voice work
and play readings on Zoom.

We are also fortunate to
be gifted a car.

Melissa writes a play with
our niece, Sophia, who looks
like this on FaceTime.



Informal production
photos taken during the shoot
of a short film about living
in COVID times. Ian and Melissa
each act in one in June.

Home in June for once
to watch our peonies bloom.
Alas the arborist who cut down
our trees in May was rough
with our garden. Only one
blossom survived!


– June 29 –
Ian, nominated for a Sterling Award
for his work in The Blue Hour,
happily loses to the star of
The Color Purple.

Summer adds bike rides,
gawking at other people’s gardens for
inspiration, and socially-distant picnics
with friends to the list of activities.



Melissa takes a one
year, part-time contract doing
Communications and Media Relations
for Workshop West Theatre.

Throughout the spring and
summer, yard work is a pastime.
Shrubs are cleared, scrap wood
from the basement is recycled
into garden boxes.


Finishing the new basement
is also an important project.

As is enjoying our back deck.


– July 11 –
Ian and Melissa celebrate their
14th Anniversary by going for a hike at
Cooking Lake-Blackfoot Provincial
Recreation Area.

– July 17 –
Melissa treats Ian to a
COVID-safe picnic dinner at the
Devonian Gardens. We dine
in the Aga Khan Garden.

– July 24 –
The short film Melissa acted in
back in June, 6 Feet Apart, is
released on You Tube.


– July 25 –
The short film Ian acted in
in June, Pandemic Dating, is
released on You Tube.

– July 26 –
For You, Margaret, the final
short film of the “Being Alone” series
created and produced by friends
is released on You Tube!


As summer draws to
an end, life continues along
familiar veins. We do finally
paint our front door the
colour we want it to be.


– September 1-14 –
We risk a road trip to Victoria to
visit Melissa’s Mom and Don. On the
way back we spend a night at Glacier
View Lodge in Jasper National Park.

– September 3 –
Melissa begins teaching her fall term
Professional Development class online
for the UofA Department of Drama.


– September 18 –
Melissa stages a photo shoot to
help promote a COVID-safe theatre
show. That’s us in the 18th Century
costumes and COVID masks.

Here There be Night featured eight
short plays enjoyed on an audio-guided
tour featuring narration by Melissa.

It’s 2020, so there’s not much else
interesting to report in September. New
sidewalks on our street are finished. The
pothole-ridden road is finally paved.
Melissa waves a fond farewell
to the first car she owned.



– October 11 –
The Edmonton Public Library calls
Melissa back to work! Her branch has
a lake behind it, perfect for breaks.

– October 15 –
Ian finishes a fourth draft
of his play, and submits it to
a dramaturg for feedback!


– October 31 –
A quiet Halloween, restricted
to a single COVID-safe visit from
Luna Girl and her moth minion.
(Penelope and Clinton Carew).



– November 20 –
Ian’s Birthday.




Winter comes in like
a lamb. Regardless it still
begins to look a lot like


Though our usual plans to spend
Christmas in Ottawa and Swift
Current are off this year, we take
joy in spending a first Christmas
in our home of three years (even
if our tree is a little lumpy).

Melissa will turn
39 for the second year in a
row on December 30.


And that was our 2020
in something of a nutshell. We
wish you a Merry Christmas and
a happier New Year for all!

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