Sunday, 14 January 2018

Skating Champs

Michelle and Kate and I went to watch the National Skating Championships in Vancouver yesterday. Malachi visited his cousins. It was great to see, and good to spend time there with Kate and Michelle; however in my opinion it was a bit long (6 hours). We watched senior men's free skate and some pairs free skate as well. Then we watched the medals get awarded too. Yep, Patrick Chan and Virtue/Moir got gold as usual...Kate took skating lessons last fall and stopped for the winter/spring, but now she wants to continue again...

Sunday, 31 December 2017

The Lonely Fire Hydrant

Once upon a time there was a lonely fire hydrant.

It lived in a vast park. It tried to make conversation with various pine cones, to no avail. It wished it had a friend.

One day its wish came true. A boy named Andrew was walking by after an ice storm. He thought the fire hydrant was picturesque in its surroundings. No one had ever paid it attention before and the fire hydrant was smitten. But the boy had to go because it was getting dark.

The fire hydrant was sad but also glad that it had met the boy.

The End


Here in the Fraser Valley we had an ice storm over the past few days. It had been cold with a bit of snow, then some warmer air moved in and the freezing rain took down a bunch of trees, power lines, etc. Today was sunny and things started to melt a bit. Here's a couple of photos from Mill Lake:

Monday, 18 December 2017

Walk in the Rain

On Sunday, for reasons I cannot explain,
I decided to take a long walk in the rain.

The new tower to the south of Mill Lake gets lost in the low clouds

A long walk can lessen static back pain
And help minds boxed in all week to attain
a re-appreciation of all that is main.

To slow down and notice the signs in the lane
-driving past in my truck no notice to deign-
Giving conscience condescension arraigned
Judged and juried, moving past all that is bane.

Hmm. Any more archaic 'ān' words I can use in this poem?

Saturday, 11 November 2017


Something floated down from above. Then another, and another. Fall had arrived. A good windstorm helped many more leaves cover the lush green grass. I borrowed a rake from the co-op's shed and made a big pile. The intention is to fill compostable bags with them and truck them to the depot...eventually!

In the background you see our place: look for the spider web!

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Mister Sparkly Countertop!

A project I've been working on for awhile in fits and starts is a fiber optic light countertop. I bought an offcut of solid surface from Floform (I'm not sure the brand or colour). I fabricated it into a vanity for our bathroom, to replace some old butcher block laminate. After drilling about 150 1mm holes, I painstakingly glued each fiber in place, then sanded the top smooth. It looks pretty cool! I'm marketing these through my business if you're interested in buying one! Mister Sparkly Countertop

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Solar Eclipse 2017

Ken and Bev from All-Star Telescope invited us to join them in Casper for the Solar Eclipse. They booked the hotel two years ago! It was a good excuse to see them and some other family and mutual friends as well. August 21 was a warm, clear day. We arrived at the site by 10am and watched others setting up cameras and telescopes.

Using camping supplies we had handy, Michelle followed NASA's pinhole camera instructions, and together with the kids we had made 3 boxes for safely viewing the sun. They worked well! Even the seasoned astronomers took a peek!

Our viewing site was on the lawn of a Medical Center, and a couple of nurses came out to see what was happening.

Kate drew a picture on her dry-erase board to show the first nip that the moon took out of the sun:

Here's a picture of the group while it's still bright out, and then again as it gets darker. As totality approached at about 11:42am, the temperature dropped, the mosquitoes came out, the streetlights went on, and there was a 360 degree sunset!

There were only a couple of moments of totality. Time passed very quickly. I tried to enjoy it but also took a few pictures of both the eclipse and also the group, and missed the "diamond ring effect" at the end while I was fiddling with my camera settings. As the sun slipped back into its usual bright eye-blinding self, cheers erupted from the group. It was indeed an awesome spectacle to witness together.

Here is a "pinhole picture" from a sheet of cardboard on which Bev drew the number 2017 with pinholes. It was difficult to photograph the suns on a second sheet of paper, but by bringing up the contrast you can see the moons easily! Happy Eclipse Chasing everybody!