31 Jul 2016

The Puzzle Queen!

Wendy loves doing puzzles - almost exclusively the Springbok brand. She had an idea the other day that she wanted to do a time lapse video of herself doing a complete puzzle all in one sitting. Below is the video from today's puzzle session.

16 Jul 2016

Is it a Wonderful World?

Some of you may have heard that I have been taking piano lessons since the spring. I finally got up the courage (and the spare time) to record one of the pieces I have been practicing.

Below is a YouTube video of me playing "What a Wonderful World".  Let me know what you think.

This is the direct link to the video if your browser doesn't play it directly. https://youtu.be/2-_tljmoDyE

Considering my recent change in employment status (anyone looking for an "unemployed 52 year old medical scientist"?). Now I am wondering whether I really should have selected something celebrating how wonderful the world is?  Either way, I played it at a rather melancholy tempo... that was a choice based more on skill, than on affect.

15 Jun 2016

June so far

June has been a busy month, especially for Parker. In addition to his umpire job, he got a part time job as a dishwasher at the Hamilton Golf and Country Club in Ancaster (he was a caddie there last summer). He works some very long shifts, sometimes finishing just before 1 am... which means one of us has to stay up to drive him home. 

If that wasn't busy enough, Parker also is a player on a Dundas Minor baseball team. They play in several locations around Hamilton, so sometimes there is a little driving involved. Maddy seems to like to go to the games and really enjoys all the new smells at the ball park.

Adam hasn't been idle either.  He has some news to share...

Click the link above if the video doesn't work


Yes, he bought all the gear to go with the motorcycle he purchased. Here he is showing off the gear.

He picked up the bike (a used Suzuki) this week and will be taking a motorcycle course this coming weekend. He has his M1 licence (motorcycle learner...) and the course he will take includes the road test that satisfies the government requirements. 

Wendy and I have kept busy as well.  We went with her mom to a family wedding (Wendy's cousin) in Zurich (Ontario). Here we are just after the outdoor service.

It was blistering hot, so we found shade wherever we could.

Wendy and I have been doing Tai Chi since last year, and we have finally learned all 108 moves. Here is Wendy doing some of the moves... I took pictures because I had to sit out at the end due to some joint issues.

Click the link above if the video doesn't work

Getting back into summer mode

After the variable weather that characterized our spring season, it finally looked like it was going to really become spring-like.  Our flowers continued to bloom and the crabapple tree on our lawn seemed to put on a good show this year.

Unfortunately, after many days of >30C weather, we got this...
May 15th should be nice, right?
We had cancelled our hike with friends along the Bruce Trail last week because the weather was uncomfortably hot... this week we cancelled because it was uncomfortably cold and snowing.

Things soon turned the corner and jumped into summer after that last gasp of winter. On the May long weekend, Wendy's mom took us to Stratford for our annual trip to a musical. This year was "A Chorus Line". I think Parker mostly appreciated the traditional Tim Horton's stop on the way there and the Dairy Queen stop on the way back!

Parker began his umpiring job for the Dundas Little League by jumping straight in and working his first time ever as plate umpire.  He did well, but was nervous about making mistakes. He looked huge in comparison to all the players, although that might partly be due to his equipment.

He also umpired a T-ball game and it was a lot less stressful for him.

Our garden really took off with the warm weather and we were able to harvest a good amount of rhubarb. The kids won't touch the stuff, so Wendy and I will have the eat the rhubarb crisp that I made.

Maddy certainly is enjoying the nice weather. Here she is in a hammock at Mel and Murray's place. She was mostly dry after a few dunks in the pool, and just wanted to rest after all that exercise.

10 Apr 2016

March and April - summer, winter, summer, winter, etc.

Since March, we have kept as busy as usual and were able to get outside more.

Eric and Murray decided they needed to just get out and do something active, so they took a trip down to Niagara Falls for a day long photo safari on March 12th. They hit the Butterfly Conservatory, the Niagara Floral Showhouse, and went on Journey Behind the Falls tour. Here are a couple of Eric's pictures.

For a theme day at work, Wendy decided to have pink hair colour sprayed at the back of her head. That stuff got absolutely everywhere...never again!!

A few weeks ago Parker completely shocked us by asking if we could get him some....

...wait for it...


After getting over the shock, we went out to the stores and got him his very first pair of jeans. Both Parker and Adam despised jeans (in favour of sports pants of various types). Not sure what came over him, but they look pretty good on him. Yes, he is getting taller - around 5' 8" now!

His very first pair of jeans

The weather in March and April has been, well, kind of changeable. We have had some summer-like weather and some decidedly winter weather recently. Our taking off the snow tires probably is part to blame for the cold weather bit...

Our crocuses decided to bloom in mid March - they actually wilted because of the heat soon after.

Of course, after the heat came the snow! Here are the same flowers a while later...wilted and frozen!

Not long after, we got yet another winter/April storm and this one 'almost' closed the schools. Below are a few pictures of it getting started.

Maddy was not impressed at having to plow through snow in the back yard. She was just getting used to playing on the grass.
Maddy, ready for spring...
Adam needed to shovel in the morning, as close to 6" fell overnight.

This week Eric turned 52 and Wendy took him out for dinner at a small restaurant in Dundas called Il Fiasco. Nice little restaurant right in the middle of downtown Dundas.

Maddy needed a haircut really badly, so this weekend she went for her spa day in Ancaster. Below are a few pictures to show how much she changed after a simple grooming. She was almost completely grey before she went.

Muddy feet from the back yard, just before leaving for her haircut
Once she returned from the groomer, she was an almost completely different dog. From grey to brown in just a few hours!

Not impressed to be feeling so "naked"!
Despite feeling chilly, Maddy is happy that the grass is no longer covered in snow. Unfortunately (and not unexpectedly), we are expected to get yet another winter storm (snow then rain) tonight, so it will be messy for her to go outside. She will at least be easier to dry off than before her haircut!