Kathryn's Stories

Happy Birthday Kathryn!

Shared by Sharon Phillips on March 1, 2019

Dear Kathryn,

Thinking of you on this day, your BIRTHDAY, and imagining all of us gathered to have a really good dinner to warm us up from all this snowy, cold weather, and then settling down for good conversation over some cappuccino and yummy cake!!☕️

always thinking of you♥️always missing you

Shared by Sharon Phillips on January 17, 2019

We absolutely ♥️ Miss Brandy! She went to the salon and had her grooming and looks fabulously posh! She was very proud of her new look

Shared by Sharon Phillips on January 17, 2019

Fond memories of you Kathryn are always with me, always and especially you and Brandy sharing kisses and that beautiful cat blanket you sewed for my cats♥️...there is always your special place missing at every family gathering and always in our daily lives.

Springtime Birthday Wishes

Shared by Sharon Phillips on March 3, 2016

Once again I am reminded of the playfulness of Spring! Your birthday March 1, 2016 has come so quickly upon us...so Happy Birthday dear Kathryn!  I always think of you in springtime because of your smiles when your little dear feathered friends visited you knowing you had some goodies for them to enjoy....Best Wishes always...

how delicate is Spring
the voice of a new season
the innocence of all that is nature
finding it`s way anew again
in a world of wonder
bud of vine and song of bird
of light so pure it shines so bright
like the dawn of a new day
the Springtime at play

A Story of Brandy

Shared by Muriel Lucas on January 22, 2016



I wanted to take the time to write this for Kathryn and all of you as well and as I turn back the pages of time, I recall a wonderful memory:  It was sometime ago that Kathryn had called me to say that she wanted to surprise Boris with a little Pomeranian puppy for his birthday!  I joined Kathryn`s enthusiasm and said that was indeed a great idea for sure as their beloved Toby had passed away not too long before.  Kathryn reiterated that she had already contacted a breeder and reserved a puppy, either a male or female.  She asked if we wouldn`t mind driving her to see the puppies  as it was quite a distance away and we said no problem!  We too were excited to see a bundle of puppies so we drove down that wonderful day with Kathryn as she was looking forward to making her choice out of the many that were available – this was about a month before Boris` birthday.


I never saw Kathryn so excited and bubbly as she was that day – and we all know how bubbly, warm and friendly she was!  All along the drive she chatted passionately and excitedly about the puppy and surprising Boris.  She also made sure to give strict instructions that Boris was not to know anything about it, and that he absolutely could not find out because then it would ruin the surprise.  What an exciting secret to keep, for sure, and we agreed of course to keep it locked with key thrown away!  When we finally arrived at the breeder’s home, Kathryn was the first one out of the car with the biggest smile on her face, so eager to make a choice – the best choice  – out of all the fluffy bundles she would see.  As we entered the home we were greeted by the groomer who led us to a room at the back of the house where the puppies were housed in an enclosure.  What a sight!! Kathryn`s eyes lit up when she saw all those fluffy, playful bundles!! When the lady finished explaining all the important factors of each one, she allowed us to have quality time with interacting with them.  Kathryn couldn`t wait and within seconds picked up a cute black and white puppy.  Meanwhile the rest of the puppies were wrestling with each other and even managed to pin down a cute little brown one in a corner! 


Well. as fate would have it, out from the corner comes this cute little brown fluff bundle, headed straight towards us, as if to escape from the rest of her`` bully pack``.  It made its way towards me, but suddenly made a u-turn towards Kathryn!!! I could see it was on a mission to get Kathryn`s attention, as she was still caressing the black and white one. I pointed out to Kathryn for her to see who is trying quite desperately to get her attention.  No sooner had I said that, Kathryn’s gaze locked with the darling brown puppy`s pleading eyes and she immediately put the black and white puppy down and picked up this cute little brown fluffy darling!  Well, all I can say is, that was it...they immediately bonded!  The puppy licked Kathryn’s face - (which would become Brandy`s special kisses for her mama everyday from that moment on!) - as she cradled it in her arms, and I said to Kathryn, “I think this is the one for you and Boris” and Kathryn said passionately while giggling at the same time: ``Yes, yes, I think this is the one for me!!!``  The breeder entered the room and said to her “well I can see which puppy you have chosen,`` and Kathryn elated as ever, said that yes, she has made the perfect choice! 

The breeder said the puppy would be ready in a couple of weeks and we all left feeling very pleased with the outcome of the visit.  On the drive back, Kathryn chatted endlessly about the little fluffy bundle who had chosen her, (YES, Brandy chose Kathryn) but she also remarked about how she wished she could bring all of them home!  She was also thinking about a name, so we talked through a list of names at which time I suggested “BRANDY” – as the puppy was a beautiful shade of brandy plus this was apparently Boris’ favourite after dinner aperitif – and after a few seconds, Kathryn approved and explained that it was so appropriate because she actually had a bottle of brandy to throw in with the surprise!!!


A few days before his birthday, Boris was pleasantly surprised to receive his surprise package.  However it was Kathryn who doted on Brandy as that bond from that first gaze came into play.  Soon Brandy became the centre of attraction at every gathering – Christmas, birthdays, etc., - and Kathryn loved it when Brandy greeted her many friends who would visit at the house, she was so proud of her special little girl.  I remember Boris saying one time that even though he was the one who took Brandy for her walks, it was Kathryn she really wanted!!!













Springtime in May

Shared by Sharon Phillips on May 11, 2015

Thinking of you Kathryn, this Springtime in May....what a lovely season, everything new, fresh and the birds.....I thought of you when looking at our beautiful magnolia tree, and captured some pictures of the birds who come to visit and thought of you....now however, they are not as good as yours as I am an amateur bird-watcher and I remember you captured such amazing pictures of the birds that came to visit you, so here goes....a little pic to say: Happy Spring!

Happy 70th Birthday Kathryn !

Shared by Simona Gagliostro on March 1, 2015

Today, Kathryn, we want to wish you a Happy Birthday and to remember you as you always were - smiling, laughing, loving, gentle....special !

We have you in our prayers forever !!!!

Simona and family 

Thinking of you on your 70th Birthday, Mom

Shared by Alex Leyn on March 1, 2015

Love you always,

    Alex, Audrey, Boris, and Brandy


Shared by Sharon Phillips on March 1, 2015

I found this lovely birthday greeting by Bob Marley and thought of you, dear Kathryn on your birthday, this day March 1, 2015.  It reminds me of the coming Spring and the warmer weather we are all looking forward to enjoying.  I am thinking of you and how happy you would be today, sharing your special day with all of us and BRANDY :)  

(copy and paste this link into your address search bar and enjoy this special birthday wish to Kathryn!)


Happy 70th Birthday Kathryn

Shared by Muriel Lucas on March 1, 2015

On behalf of my family, we send you Happpy 70th  Birthday Wishes today.

As we raise a toast to you and sip a glass of sweet wine, we remember fondly all the past happy celebrations we shared with you.

The Candle still burns bright in your memory.

Our United Love,

Patrick and Muriel Lucas 


A kindred spirit forever

Shared by Carla Quattrociocchi on January 26, 2015

Who would have thought more than 24 years ago that a wonderful friendship would flourish out of a business arrangement! That is exactly what happened when  I met Kathryn. In the middle of the electrolysis consultation, we looked at each other and we burst out laughing because we realized how much alike we were. I had just found a kindred spirit. Throughout the years Kathryn became my confidant, my advisor and my strongest supporter. She was there for me during the best of times - my pregnancies and the birth of my children, Fabrizio and Veronica - and the worst of times - some serious heath scares I had to face; the devastating Parkinson's disease diagnosis of both of my parents; my cousin's battle with brain cancer and her death at age 37; and the painful breast cancer fight of another close family member. She saw my tears of joy and lots of tears of grief. She was so good at consoling me and I truly loved her for it. Her words, her warm hugs and reassurance had the power to always make me feel better. When needed, she would dispense helpful advice without being judgmental. An appointment with Kathryn was like an appointment with a loving therapist. I will miss her terribly. 

During our exchanges, we would listen to each other, but most of all, we both liked to talk! We could go on forever! We talked about anything and everything. We spoke about life in general, politics, history, art, music, religion and any other possible topic. We shared stories about our childhood, mine in Italy, hers in Russia. Through our long conversations I got to know her family and she got to know mine. She told me about her parents; about meeting Boris and marrying him; about Alex's birth; how determined he was to quit piano lessons and how much he liked playing the guitar. I told her about life on my grandparents' farm; about moving to Canada after my brother's death; about meeting Rosario and marrying him. We also joked about having good taste in men because our husbands shared the same birthday. Whenever we socialized, hours would fly by in a matter of minutes, and I always felt that the time spent together was too short.

Another thing Kathryn and I enjoyed was to share recipes. While staying in Italy, she developed a strong liking for its culture and cuisine, therefore, I had to let her try some traditional tomato sauce and limoncello! In return, she delighted me with some homemade jams and raspberry vodka.

I carry in my heart many precious memories of Kathryn. For example, I remember her telling me in excited whispers (because Boris was upstairs) that she had finally found the perfect puppy to surprise her husband with, for his birthday. She beamed when she introduced me to Brandy, and she laughed with delight when I got on the floor to play with her. She was so pleased to see that Brandy liked me just as much as I liked her. When my daughter Veronica got Nikita, a Siberian husky, she encouraged me to bring her by her house in order to meet her. Of course, for their first meeting, Kathryn had to give Nikita a gift! (Nikita still loves her "shredded" squeaky tiger). After that, Kathryn never failed to send Nikita a little surprise, and for her first Christmas gave her a stocking filled with goodies. The stocking was hanging on our fireplace during the holiday season and it will be hanging on it every Christmas from now on.

Alex, I would like to extend my deepest condolences to you for the void your mother has left in your life. You were her shining star and that was obvious by the sparkle in her eyes whenever she talked about you. She was so proud of the man you had become and of all your accomplishments. She was extremely fond of Audrey, she always praised her and believed her to be the best companion for you. Alex and Audrey, thanks to Kathryn I know you very well indeed, even though I have never met you in person. You are a part of my life which I will cherish, in order to honour my dear friend. Boris, I have no adequate words to express the sorrow I feel in my heart for your loss. I believe you know how much Kathryn meant to me and I will never be able to forget her. During our last conversation, she told me about being in the hospital, about her brother's passing and she also expressed concerns about your health. She didn't want her situation to stress you. I just want you to know that my family and I live practically around the corner from you and we are just one phone call away. If you ever want company or need anything at all, just call, day or night.

Kathryn, my dear, dear friend, I will always remember your cheerful personality, your infectious laughter, your sincerity, your kindness, your honesty, your thoughtfulness, your intelligence and all the other wonderful qualities that made you a great human being and a classy lady.

My Story About Kathryn

Shared by Sharon Phillips on January 24, 2015

Our dear Kathryn passed away this January, 2015.  We will miss her this year and every year following. 

To me, Kathryn was a vibrant, loving and kind person.  She was such a breath of fresh air, her smile always smiling, and her laugh always laughing...resonating through the rooms whenever we had our family gatherings.   It did not matter where you were in the house, you could hear her laughter, her commenting on this or that – most times you could hear her explaining what the secret was in her lovely dish that she brought over....but she was ever so humble, saying that it was so easy to make, that she just put this and that together – and she always gave her ‘easy‘ recipe to anyone who asked for it and she was very proud to do so.

Kathryn loved life, and what I saw was a woman passionate about many things, her husband Boris, her son Alex, her beautiful daughter-in-law (and my sister) Audrey – but it was the birds in her backyard and her beloved Brandy who got her fullest attention!  Kathryn loved her birds, she would proudly walk onto her balcony (from the kitchen) to show us some of the birds she had been feeding that day.  She also loved anyone to watch her computer slideshow of all the pictures she had taken of her birds – how her face lit up and her smile shone whenever she talked about them, and what engaging conversations they were indeed!  Now, her beloved Brandy, well...what can I say to all us dog lovers out there...:)  Brandy was lovingly intended by Kathryn for Boris after their beloved Toby passed away.  However, I daresay, Brandy was Kathryn`s princess!!  I once explained to Kathryn how I bathe my own little dog, you know, water, shampoo, blowdry...and I got a very affirmative ‘oh no, that is not the way I wash Brandy!....after her wash, I just use towels, lots and lots of soft towels, no blowdryer....and then I brush her and maybe trim a little because she is so fluffy, but only in the back!‘  Well, I felt rather guilty that I put my poor Oscar through that dreaded noisy blowdryer!  But it only showed, it was last Christmas that Kathryn mentioned this, and how fluffy Brandy looked for the family occasion, like she came right out of a salon!...and oh, the kisses she gave her beloved Mama....the two of them sitting on the couch together, it brings a smile to me, a fond holiday memory indeed!

I visited Kathryn at hospital this January 2015 with my sister Jackie.  It was a visit I shall never forget, as this was the last time I spoke with her.  I shall remember it fondly, always.  My sister as usual was engaging Kathryn in conversation as Kathryn was happy to see us that day and that we were there to keep her company for a while.  Me, well, I was my usual quiet self, listening intently and enjoying Kathryn`s responses and explanations, especially as to which nurse she liked best!  This conversation I will remember fondly:  When answering my sister`s question about what Kathryn ate that day, she seemed very happy to explain to us that she had had a cereal breakfast, brand name Kasha (http://www.lesliebeck.com/foods/kasha) , and that it was sooo good and she herself felt so good after eating it.  I had finally verbalized that yes, I know about Kashi (https://www.kashi.com/), to which Kathryn continued explaining how good it was and that she did not need to eat anything else for a while that day and that we should try it ourselves as it is very good for your digestion....again, I verbalized that yes, I will try Kashi, and I was justly corrected.  Whenever I remember this conversation, I smile to myself.  Kathryn firmly but oh so nicely said to me: ‘i know you are saying Kashi, but I am talking about Kasha, I know there is Kashi, but this is Kasha, with an `a` and it is very good for you!` I just giggled, and said something to the effect of oh, ok I will try it!  Even though she was in that hospital bed, she was still passionate about what she talked about – it was nice to see and hear her spirit so strong within her.  I really do need to try Kasha, it looks to be very healthy!

Well, this is my little story about Kathryn.  Spring will soon be on its way, and whenever I see the little birdies, (Cardinals, Chickadees, Sparrows, Blue Jays, etc.,) I will remember how they made her smile, her face beaming!...and you too Brandy!!  I trust we all have our fondest stories and memories about her, and these are mine.  I hope when you read this you will smile and think about your own fond memory of KATHRYN.

Forever in our hearts

Shared by Simona Gagliostro on January 23, 2015

It was a heartbreaking start of 2015 for you Alex, Audrey and Boris but looking at these beautiful memories,  pictures of Kathryn in her happy moments of her life, tells us that Love never dies. Kathryn will always live in our hearts and we will always remember her lovely personality and her love to have her family around.

All we can do, is walk beside each other , offer our deeply condolences and light a candle in her memory.

Kathryn, you will always live forever in our hearts.


Simona, Rob, Christopher and Olga


Memories of a great lady.

Shared by Carolyn Gilbert on January 22, 2015

Thank-you Audrey, for taking the time to phone me with the news of Kathryn.  What a wonderful and amazing lady. I am so very sad as I considered her a friend and we had such great chats over the years.  I came to know you, her husband, although we never met. What a handsome guy!!  Alex and Audrey, you were so important to Kathryn, so I followed your lives and many family get togethers with Audrey's parents.  I got to know all her family in Russia as well. Her passing is a very big gap in your lives and I pray for you to take one day at a time.  Trust God and He will supply all your daily needs.  

Our lives are brighter for having known Kathryn. Alex - this is your Mom and it has not been easy for you and your Dad to let her go.  I wonder how Brandy is and I am sure that she is missing Kathryn so much.

Hugs and my prayers at this difficult time. 


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