Sunday, December 30, 2007

Wow... what a book!

If I haven’t been in here writing, it’s because I have become a couch potato with my new book! It seems Jenn and Scott were chatting with Santa because on Christmas morning I received a beautiful copy of Vincent Bugliosi’s new book Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy. It’s more than 1500 pages and is just packed with more than 20 years worth of research and interviews. Bugliosi’s whole purpose is to prove there was no conspiracy to kill the president. I haven’t made up my mind yet, but wow, this guy sure knows how to research. It took two days just to read through the introduction. And then the narrative begins with all the things that happened on Nov. 22, 1963… not just minute to minute, but in some cases, second by second. I am a bit sore today because I read for nearly five hours last night, hardly moving from the chair… but I did down a pot of coffee and half a bottle of Baileys! So when I finish the book, don’t even ask to borrow it! This one’s a keeper. It stays on the bookshelf.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

It's ALL good.

What a great Christmas. I think the best part was convincing Ty to have some chocolate cake, actually a Joe Louis, for breakfast. He didn't need much convincing. Nate got a kick out of eating Froot Loops, right out of the box after we poured the milk in it. Jenn and Scott got a kick out of drinking coffee with no milk or sugar... just Bailey's, Bailey's and more Bailey's. They sure drank a lot of coffee for some reason. Of course Santa arrived and the boys must have been very good this year because they were overwhelmed with gifts, -- but seemed to get the most fun out of playing with their Slinkys. When the boys didn't have food in their hands, it seemed they had their Slinky. It was also nice that Neil called from beautiful downtown Vancouver where he was finishing up work at the restaurant called Steamworks. Poor guy ... some friends had family members arriving from Mexico with six litres of premium agave tequila. I hope they can remember Christmas ;) We also did some visiting, which is always nice. I am still enjoying all the Christmas cards I got .... from Nova Scotia all the way to Vancouver Island. Lucky me, eh.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas morning

It’s Christmas morning… the calm before the storm. The boys (and their mom and dad) came storming through the front door yesterday, all smiles and giggles. The boys are still in bed now … tucked into their new sleeping bags, - they are “camping” in the rec room. I expect they will be awake shortly. I am enjoying a quiet Christmas coffee, sweetened with Bailey’s and whiskey. It’s almost 8:00 a.m. The boys were up till around ten last night. Jenn and Scott were out visiting. We had some popcorn, watched a movie and then went online to track Santa’s flight through NORAD. The boys got pretty excited about that. Then we went outside to look at the stars and see if we could see Rudolph. I think we did. It was an exciting night. Things will get more exciting in a short while I think.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve

What a day so far! I was up just before six, peeked out the window and sure enough the city snowplow took all the slush from yesterday's rain and piled it in front of my driveway :( I put on the coffee, called the guys at CBC for a Merry Christmas chat and went out and fired up the snowblower. The slush was quickly turning to ice, and that's all it took to snap a shear pin on the snowblower :( Luckily I had a few heavy bolts in the house and fixed the problem in about five minutes. Then the machine ran out of gas! So I went to the shed. Sure enough, my gas can was empty. Luckily my good neighbor Ed was out clearing his driveway... so he helped clear mine and gave me some gas :) So, to pay it forward, I cleared my neighbor Dave's driveway. Then I went to gas up the truck and the gas can! By then it was eight oclock and time for coffee.
Company is arriving today. So I have to tidy up, do the floors, do the bathrooms and have a drink! Wooohoo!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Looks a bit better now eh?

So here is the tree, looking a bit better. Although it "drinks" about a litre of water every day! And it sure smells nice. I've put lots of candy on the tree so I can spoil the boys when they arrive. Christmas sure is fun.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree..

It doesn’t look like much right now, because it’s still ‘thawing out’ in the corner in the front hallway, but this is my new Christmas tree. I already have a small artificial tree, but with Jenn and boys coming north for Christmas, I figured I should go out and get a real one. I was outside this morning and thought I should go to the shed, grab the bucksaw and pick out a nice spruce or pine on the edge of town… when the kids were small, that’s what we did each year.
But I was lazy and figured, ah what the heck I’ll just buy one. So there I was at Canadian Tire just after lunch and the United Way people have set up a tree lot. So I walked over and snooped around and said okay, let’s do it. So I grabbed this balsam fir, wrapped in a plastic net, and threw it on the canoe rack on the truck. Then I walked over the lady at the table. She said $50 please.
“Fifty bucks!” I screamed inside my head. “I am living amidst the great Northern Boreal Forest… the largest forest on planet Earth and these people want fifty dollars from me for their friggin tree!” I continued to shout inside my head. Trouble is, these people all know me and I can’t just walk over to the truck and throw their stupid $50 tree on the ground. So I smiled and pulled out my wallet, which is now $50 lighter. And the United Way is $50 richer. So I guess its all good. Besides it smells nice. I figure in January I will put in on Ebay… no doubt there is some tree hugger in Toronto will give me $60 for this unique specimen of a 3000 year old tree rescued from the Hudson Bay tundra… yeah, that’s the story… somebody will buy it.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Happy day Jenn!

So I called Jennifer to wish her a happy birthday. Scott answered and we chatted and he told me Jenn was still at work. I said "why on earth would she want to work on her birthday?"
Scott chuckled a bit and said "I don't think she wants anyone to know its her birthday."
I guess that happens to some women when they reach a certain age.
But being a nosey sort I had to pursue this, so I called Jenn at work. A co-worker answered the phone. I said "it's her Dad calling long distance from Timmins... It's urgent ... I have to wish her Happy Birthday!"
The co-worker said "I didn't know it was her birthday!"
I said "well now you do, go tell everyone."
A short while later my fave daughter got on the line and we had a laugh... but I am sure she'll get me back at some point.
Happy Day Jenn!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Wreath on the Mac

The wreath on the famous McIntyre headframe in Timmins is a sure sign that Christmas is near. I could have walked closer but I wasn't sure that the ice on Pearl Lake was frozen enough... and I didn't have snowshoes in the truck. They are still in the house. By the way, it's easy to see why mineshaft headframes are called the 'cathedrals of the north' because they just dominate our landscape. The old Mac is about 18 storeys tall. That wreath is more than 25 feet across.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Madonna's Mattress? : )

I guess the Parliament Hill media have nothing better to do than listen to a foreigner charged with fraud trying to get a free ride to stay in Canada. This Karlheinz Schreiber thing is such a pain in the you-know-what. This guy changes his story more than Madonna changes mattresses. The more that Schreiber makes up new charges, the more that MPs on the Commons Ethics committee want to hear. I can't believe our politicians are putting any credence in what this guy has to say. But then again, they are politicians. Schreiber is charged with fraud and corruption in his own country. In Canada he says the RCMP, the justice deparment, the former Liberals and the current conservatives are against him. He is pointing fingers at Mulroney and has already admitted he gave money to Mulroney after Mulroney left office. The money was to help Schreiber set up business for armoured vehicles. The deal didn't work out so Schreiber blames Mulroney. As for Harper agreeing to a public inquiry at the behest of the Liberals, I can't believe the Liberals are letting themselves get sucked in. Oh well, that's my rant for Saturday morning.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

My new computer

This post comes to you from my newest computer. My "old" computer was only two years old and was beginning show its age... since I am a video gamer, my memory was filling up fast. It doesn't help that I shoot and store about 200 Megabytes of photos each week. That wasn't the problem. It happened that I somehow "fried" a USB port. I couldn't figure it out, so I pulled the hard drive and installed an older one... ( I think I surprised myself that I was able to open the computer and dismantle it). So the old computer worked, but only with an ancient hard drive. I spent a few days using my laptop as the home computer. Then while I was out shopping last week, I checked computer prices and was amazed to find a new terminal about six times more powerful than my last one. The price, with all taxes, was less than $400! (Yes, it was on sale with an instant rebate) So here I am with a dual-core Pentium, 1000 megs of RAM and a 320 gig hard drive. This one terminal has more computing power than the entire NASA computer complex that sent Apollo 11 to the moon and back.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Happy Day Gary

Today is Gary's birthday.
He is my big brother. I was on the phone with him yesterday.
Gary does good phone calls...
How ya doing Gary?
Everything good?
Anything new?
So is winter there yet?
Yeah, a little bit...
Gary doesn't waste too many words.
That's a good thing.
Happy Birthday Gary.