June 25, 2019

Blowing my own Horn - This was given to me by a little Afghanistan boy named Ajmar. He was in Grade 3 but didn't know how to read. I was a volunteer at his school and more or less taught him to read. He thanked me "thank you for learning me to read Betty" and gave me this drawing. Isn't it wonderful? I keep it hanging near my computer. I wonder where you are now Ajmar? Are you on your way to becoming the actor you always said you wanted to be?  

June 23, 2019

  • A very quick drawing after watching a fellow artist draw very quickly 

June 22, 2019

I haven't yet signed up for Medium but think I might as I have read a few excellent articles from them ... $5.00 a month. This looks rather interesting... Are you a student of life? Good, because it’s time to graduate. From what, exactly? That’s up to you. Graduate from a toxic relationship. Graduate from an old wound. Graduate from a grudge, from guilt, from a haircut gone wrong. Say goodbye to the winds that carried you here, or say hello to what’s next. Say both! It’s really up to you — all of it. Publish your 300-800 word response on Medium and tag the story “Human Prompt” by Monday, June 24, 2019. We’ll feature a selection of responses in Human Parts.
The Bad News - it looks like the United States of America is in need of another war. I wonder why they don't simply bomb the rest of the world to oblivian. They have bases all over the world [as Rumfield acknowledged years ago]and could probably do it.] I lived in Greece for some months in 1991 and will never forget those massive threatening green and brown transport bombers flying low over my apartment. No markings on them. The good news is that I have managed to sleep for over 7 hours for over 7 nights in a row!!!

June 21, 2019

My "Home Instead" Caregiver is coming today. Ali is a wonder! Since I am healthy most of the time she comes to do my heavy housework which she is very good at. Before she starts her work we sit for and chat and a catch up. It is good for me because I am alone a lot. She has been in Scotland for the past month so I am anxious to know if she had a good time and how is her 92 [I think] year old mother. My house is in pretty good shape today so we will go and buy geraniums for my balcony boxes - then we will come home and plant the boxes together as we did last year. I hope next month we will be able to swim in the Nottawasaga River - it is too cold today. That is all I have to say today. See you tomorrow if we are both lucky. BB

June 19, 2019

An ipad drawing ...

June 16, 2019

                         I like this painting of the model - painted at Go Figure in Collingwood.

June 06, 2019

My friend Penny talking to a squirrel when we were both in rehab at West Park.May 8/2019

My friend Penny died on March 14/2019. We met 3 years ago when we were both in rehab - she for lung cancer and me for COPD. I would say it was an almost instant old friendship (we had both had difficult childhoods) and in this internet age it was easy to keep in touch although we lived in towns fairly far apart. She was 79 years old and had had cancer for 6 or 7 years. First “a couple of small spots, one on each lung” then the jaw, then the bowel, much chemo, radiation etc - earlier this year she broke her hip and finally her arm while reaching across her hospital bed in palliative care.
I spent 3 hours wonderful hours with her the day before she died. She said “I hope I won’t see you again Betty”. She said “I want you to leave now Betty” and she said “Betty, buzz the nurse, I want more morphine” and then "Betty my advice to you is “go for it!” [meaning whatever IT might be!]. 
As I left I asked her if she was sure she wanted to go and she said yes. I said “talk to your doc tomorrow”. I have studied the Assisted Death Laws. 
Later I emailed her daughter [she had wonderful family and was seldom alone in her hospital room] who confirmed her mom had been saying she wanted to die and said she would tell the doctor the next morning. She did and he said “Oh, we can’t have that!”  and Penny got her wish a few hours later. 
Her toenails had been painted the brightest red by one of her relatives! I nodded at them and she nodded back as if to say “I will be leaving in style!” Rest easy Penny. You were loved.

Our MAID law says if death is imminent, if the patient is able to request it, and if 2 doctors agree the 10 day waiting period can be waived and good deed can be done. 

May 23, 2019

Oh wow - my site is finished except for some final touches, additions and revisions. But it is working and open and can be seen at bettybishop.ca . So far it only shows well on my browsers [Safari and Firefox] and my Apple laptop. In the next few days  will be adjusting the settings to make it fit better in my phone and ipad. It has taken me a good month of mostly at least 5 hours a day at my computer but I love the way it looks.
Josie couldn't decide what to do about this mouse ..... I had to decide. I think my granddaughters cat killed in when she was spending her vacation with me. The mouse, not my granddaughter!

May 18, 2019

                                              Josie by the Bay - photo by Katie Espie

May 16, 2019


May 10, 2019

I am working on building a new website while neglecting my blog. Hope to be finished by the end of next week if not before. I just came across this adorable photo of Josie and my friends cat having a standoff during the last month or so of Josie's life.

April 25, 2019

It is 11AM on a Tuesday in April, 2019. I sit in a Toronto food court drinking coffee from a mug. Dark roast, double double. 
On Monday I took the 11.50 bus from Barrie to Toronto and that night I slept in a rented room at the Rex Hotel. In case you don’t know the Rex is a jazz and blues bar & restaurant on Queen Street [just East of University] in Toronto. When I lived in Toronto friends and I always met “at the Rex”. I live in Barrie now but last month I met a friend from London at the Rex for their Saturday afternoon music. That is when I learned  they have renovated 3 floors above the restaurant and they now have the Rex Hotel!
So I went on Monday and came home on Tuesday. It was great! A small room with everything I needed and nothing I didn’t need [hard to leave anything behind in this room!] with a bathroom/shower room across the hall. Spotless with an excellent bed and morning toast and coffee included - not to mention falling asleep to the distant sounds of jazz from downstairs! $139.00 thru a booking agent.  
After breakfast I walked to the AGO and then to the bus terminal and back home. 

I hope to repeat this often. 

April 21, 2019

                                Hey! I am getting younger by the Sunday!!

April 10, 2019

Oh I talk too loose
Again I talk too open and free
I pay a high price for my open talking
Like you do for your silent mystery
Come and talk to me
Please talk to me -

written by Joni Mitchell 

April 05, 2019







April 04, 2019


How strange it is to live past 85!
My father was killed in a mining accident when he was 57. My mother was 74 when she died of various cancers. My grandmother willed herself to death in her early seventies after she had a gall bladder operation. I think my grandfather was 74 when he died of pneumonia in Collingwood hospital.
I was the oldest of the 5 kids. My brother Bob was killed weeks before he was 18. He was boarded by a hockey player who was losing the game - broke his spinal cord. My sister Mary died in hospital after many many years in and out of mental hospitals with bi polar disease. My younger brother is buried in an unmarked grave somewhere in Vancouver - he spent much of his life in jail and was a drug addict for many years. I have one sister left - haven't seen her for years. I won't tell you about my nephews or my son in law - you don't want to know.

When I was about 16 I had a dream. I was looking after my brothers and sisters. They were all in a bathtub while I stood looking out the window where a fire was raging behind a huge pile of neatly stacked firewood. Behind the woodpile were men with bows and arrows pointed at us - I turned around to get the kids and they all went down the drain. One by one .....

Why do I write this for all to see? I don't really know. Maybe I write it in case people who have suffered as I have (in one way or another) will read it - to encourage them to keep putting one foot in front of the other and let them know they may also, one day, find themselves 85 years old, living well and feeling well. Do not despair! Do the best you can. I believe the reward comes when we are somewhere around 85!

March 31, 2019

My self portrait for Sunday Self Portraits [in facebook]. I sent it along with a note saying "not to worry, you won't recognize me if you see me on the street"! I should look so good!
This week I begin a 10 week course at the Art Gallery of Ontario. We will be learning about and trying to draw the Masters on Wednesday afternoons. Looking forward to it.

March 30, 2019

Hey! I turned 85 on the 28th of March, 2019. Hard to believe especially when I truly don't feel old! Most days are excellent days, enjoying the small pleasures life - the pleasures I didn't have time to enjoy when I was young, working hard and often wondering if I was doing it right.  Now it is the miracle of the internet and being able to go everywhere and know everything almost immediately [for better or worse], the mostly good sleeps, always good perked coffee, lovely days and beautiful sunsets or a screaming full moon, a chat or a meal with a friend [my father often said "a person who has 3 good friends when they die is a  lucky person" Indeed!], some money in my bank account, a walk in the park, visit to an art gallery or the theatre or whatever.
All these things seem to compensate for the knowledge that the end is in sight. For me the last chapter has been the best chapter. I wish the same for everyone.

March 15, 2019

                   My last garden - in Toronto 2007. Come on April - it has been a long winter!

March 10, 2019

BEWARE! I BOUGHT A $30.00 dollar Ipad holder from the Cellicum Store in the Georgian Plaza.It is right across from Tim Hortons. The case looked rather flimsy so I knew I might have to return it. I asked the salesman twice and he said I could certainly return it so I paid for it and he put the receipt in the bag rather than handing it to me. When I took the case back a different salesman pointed to the ""NO RETURNS" written on the receipt. Of course they would not return my money!!! I still have the case and am going to follow up on this. Be careful - they are shoddy, dishonest people.I suggested the young man who worked there should look for another job but he smuggly told me he liked working there. No pride.

March 05, 2019

I subscribe to the New York Times. Subscribing means I am able to Comment. In todays paper David Brooks writes about health care. I posted this comment - I am an 85 year old Canadian woman. Of course we pay higher taxes - common sense would tell anyone that! However, I don't believe we pay anywhere near what Americans (those who can afford it) pay for their insurance! Furthermore - our taxes are high when we are young and healthy and can afford them and if we are in a low income bracket they come back to us in monthly payments. Trust me it ALL comes back to us when we are old. No old person needs to eat cat food, die for lack of a warm, or cool, room to live in, in Canada! It is nonsense that we wait 8 weeks to see our doctors and nonsense that we wait months for necessary MRIs etc. Our health care is great and people sure don't go running to their doctors because they are free! I have an American friend whose mother died because she stopped taking her cancer meds so she could leave the money to her daughter! I would imagine most of those people who would have to transition would find work on the Government controlled healthcare system. Our system isn't perfect [of course] but I am very glad I live here. Years ago lived in New York City and loved and will always love it but in my opinion it is better for us to share the wealth. I feel and hope a lot of Americans are also beginning to feel this way. PS - we don't have wars!

March 02, 2019

One of the kids drew me - I guess she thought I was very big headed?! 

February 26, 2019

February 24, 2019

Another post for Sunday Morning Portraits - they are in facebook  - a great site with both wonderful paintings and interesting comments. This is in a 10" x 8" sketchbook with thick brown paper. I think my pupils should have been bigger but it is too late now.

February 19, 2019

My Pastel Painting of a Beagle - I seem to have lost this painting!! Can't find it anywhere. If you have seen it please let me know because I miss it!

February 18, 2019


February 17, 2019

I get younger and better looking by the week!  Posted in "Sunday morning Portraits" which is a great site. In my opinion sites like this are the best of the internet. Click on the image to enlarge it.