'

carolynperry


For myself I always knew if this sad event this year
 ever occurred Carolyn deserved a Legacy - a place
 anyone can visit and think about the great memories
 she gave us all.
 Carolyn worried in 2020 that her demise was sadly
 coming sooner than she wished. Funny thing is and
 typical of her she wanted to know what I planned to
 do with my life ending and how the family should
 carry out my wishes. I couldn’t get her to tell me
 what she wanted. Obviously a needed dialogue that
 never found a conclusion.

Memories are something that no one
 realizes at the time are part of your
 segments of life by decades.


Who would have thought that searching your head
 space about what life was like in the 1960s then arriving at today, with Carolyn we never experienced
 any voids of time. It passed by way too quickly.


Too many families take in my opinion the wrong
 direction regarding how to remember this very sol
emn moment that should have substance for as long 
as possible. Thus this Bayview Mausoleum and the
 Rock Garden Memorial Bench.

“As empty Nesters we moved to a spectacular
 Condo beside Lake Ontario in 2005. At first
 Carolyn didn’t like the void of no gardens but
 she was worn out from all her hard work in
 the gardens over 27 years. But as with every
thing else, she adopted to her new surroundings with vigour - travelling became 4 major
trips a year and of course a great new addition
- a weekend home in Collingwood. We were
 always in motion to somewhere.”


Meeting someone at age 5 is never in anyone’s Crys
tal Ball to see growth and friendship forever.


One always feels it is the great memories that makes
 one look forward to expanding those cherished
 moments which will uncover even more of them -
thanks Carolyn for hanging in for so long - we could
 have hit 90 years but as you always said only if you
 had your health and mobility. Vegging through the
 final years was never your wish.



A Tribute to Mom.

There is no question that Carolyn
 fought the fight of her life over
 the last eight years. She has left
 us surprised, and reeling, but
 appreciative as we reflect on her
 undisputable impact. She has
 left us far too early, but without
 pain or suffering. Today, we want
 to talk about who she was, how
 wonderful she was, and how much
 Mom meant to us.


Carolyn was married to our dad Tom for 51 years,
 sadly, she passed away just five days before their
 52nd wedding anniversary. Tom and Carolyn knew
 each other for almost 70 years, having met at Sum
merlea Public School in 1950. Coincidentally, they
 were both born in Ottawa and somehow…ended up 
together in kindergarten class a few hours away.
 We have received so many touching notes from her
 friends, many of which included school mates from
 the early 50’s and 60’s. They described her as sporty,
 beautiful and full of life. It’s no surprise that she
 caught Tom’s eye. Our friends who remember our
 Mom describe her as strong and independent but
 also generous and with a big smile. She was all of
 those things.


Tom and Carolyn married in 1968 in Montreal and 
moved to Toronto where Erin, and then Stephanie were born. The house we were raised in was 
in Streetsville. Over 26 years, Mom planned her
 garden and took so much pride in the quiet retreat
 she had eventually created. We had flowers, bushes,
 vegetables growing and rows of raspberries which
 one of us would be tasked with picking (if we hadn’t
 already eaten them…). If you wandered around our
 home, you would always find a project that Mom had started but left unfinished – for now. Open the
 freezer and find a tray of frozen berries bound for
 a jam jar, a shoe box of photos meant for a scrap
book or a collection of items she planned to donate
 or share. She sewed us Barbie clothes and she knit
 extra sweaters for our dolls. You come across these
 little mementos every now and again and wonder
 when she had the time. I’m touched by her drive to 
do the little things that meant so much.

Though –not everything was a grand slam…
Remember the apple doll project? She would carve
 faces out of Macintosh apples, pop googly eyes 
in them and stitch them little outfits. They were
 creepy. I think we were all pretty happy when that
 project faded.

Mom’s curiosity got her involved in so many things
 that helped people too. The star on our Christmas
 tree was a gift from a family she’d worked with,
 teaching English to them when they moved to
 Canada. The years she spent volunteering as we
 grew up shows us the power of networking and
 contributing to your community and the things
 you involve yourself in. When we look back and
 remember the neighbourhood corn roasts, the Bread & Honey volunteering and recently, the
 walking groups and book clubs she joined she loved
 meeting and connecting with people and sharing 
stories. The Ladies were ‘The Girls’.


Mom was a sentimental and curious person, the 
kind who took lots of photos, marked every holi
day and travelled extensively with Dad. When Erin
and Oren would visit and offer to make dinner, she
 would stand in the kitchen asking about the ingredients and techniques instead of just putting her feet
 up. And even in the face of her unknown illness,
 Mom and Dad travelled to Spain, Costa Rica, Hilton
Head, Greece, Rome and Israel – and that was just
in 2019! She was adventurous and liked to push
 herself to maximize the moment, no matter what
 she was doing.

Stephanie and Christian’s kids, Autumn and Jack,
 were the source of a lot of excitement for Caro
lyn. The kids would have sleepovers in Burlington,
 often over holidays like Canada Day. They would
 wear their ‘Canada gear’ Nana had organized and
 eat themed cupcakes while watching huge fire
works shows. Erin and Oren would join the visits
 in Collingwood to see the kids, sure, but also to
 coordinate the dinner and keep her on a schedule
 because she got caught up in crafts and playing with
 the kids.

Mom loved just chatting with her grandchildren
 and getting to know them. She was curious about
 their school and friends. She was so excited to hear
 they’d started to take piano lessons. She thought it 
was fun that they tried oysters and hot sauce and
 went for weekend lunches for big bowls of ramen.

She treasured the art projects they left behind and
 bedtimes – which were usually much later than they
 should have been – because her bedtime stories
 would have props and other stories about the story
 she was telling.

A year ago, after the Christmas visit to Collingwood
 we stopped into the ski hill in Barrie for a bit of 
snow tubing before the kids went back to Toronto.
 Erin and I flew down the hill with Jack and Autumn
 while Mom watched. She was probably freezing, but
 she didn’t care. The day wasn’t complete without a
run with all 5 of us. At 73 she didn’t hesitate to jump 
in and head to the top of the hill. We have a selfie
 that captures her spirit to a tee. Smiling widely and
 enjoying the moment. We weren’t surprised at all
 that she wanted a turn too. This was just a couple
 of months after her indoor skydiving day at iFly.
 Carolyn loved adventure.

Mom insisted that things were done right. Every 
detail was paid attention to, regardless of the task.
 She’d stay up late, “puttering” as she poked around
 the house finishing up little projects and sending
 one-last-email at 11:30 at night.

We joked that she had terrible time management
 skills. Actually, she was just really busy. She was
 busy planning family parties, sharing photos with
 friends and just keeping in touch. She was busy
 doing all of the little things that mean so much.


Rock Garden Memorials - Located
at M09 & M10 at Main Building at outside entrance rear of building.

You can Contact Tom at:


Tom@DearCarolyn.ca


Our Family ‘Dear Carolyn’ Legacy Project