Sunday, May 31, 2009

Connor's New Toy

Connor has wanted a reel mower for a long time.  He has been pricing them out at all the stores for months.  Canadian Tire was kind enough to have a sale this week so I picked one up Friday.  We didn't have a chance to put it together until Saturday night.  Connor and his cousin Dalton assembled it quickly then went out to mow at 9:30.  Yes, it was dark but they had a great time.  This morning the lawn looked better than I expected considering they couldn't see what they were doing.  Our ditches are quite steep, though the in the picture below, it doesn't look like it.  The steepness is one of the big reasons he wanted the new mower - it is hard to handle the gas mower on the slope.


My parents came for the weekend.  My dad wanted to get in on  the action too.

My parents came up Friday (I had Friday off - yippee!).  Friday night we went to Connor's school for "Are you Smarter than a Birchview Blazer"  (You can figure out which game show it is based on)  Prominent community members (the mayor, scout leader, fireman etc) are asked random questions from grade 1 to 8 and pitted against children from that grade).  The audience gets clickers and can participate.  It was great fun.  Saturday Connor and Kevin went on a day canoe trip.  Today was church, lunch at Harvey's (we got free coupons Friday night) and they have gone home.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Girls

In case anyone is wondering, Caitlin and Tori made it to Jasper.  The internet isn't hooked up yet so you will have to wait a few days for an update.  Or maybe longer as they are contemplating trips to B.C. and/or Drumheller before Tori returns Sunday.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Since she was 17 we seem to be always saying goodbye to Caitlin.  She has spent 2 summers at camp working, 2 years at college, 2 seasons in Jasper and 1 winter living at her grandmother's.  This time she is determined to stay in Jasper or at least that area when her current contract at Jasper Park Lodge is done in October.  I hope it works out.  I have been thinking about what it will be like without her here.

She is great at caring for the dogs.  They will really, really miss her taking them to the beach and the forest for runs.  Now I have to walk them - usually just around the neighbourhood.

She is a very good big sister to Tori.  Caitlin drives her a lot of places and loans her car to her a lot (even after she ran into a curb and destroyed a rim).  They go to the gym together and do lots of other stuff together.

Less complaints about cooking and food.

Less complaints about turning lights on when we are trying to navigate the house in the dark (this from a child who couldn't sleep without a night light - now she can't stand the hall light on for 10 seconds!)

Caitlin has worked with me on and off for the last 3 years.  Even though gardening is not something she is interested in, she has always worked hard and done the job well.  She needed less instruction than some of the adults I have trained and gets along well with the rest of the team.  I have been lucky to work beside both Caitlin and Alec.  Working with your child allows you a whole different perspective.

It will be a lot quieter.  For now I know I will relish the peace but there will always be an empty place in our home only she can fill.

Follow the rest of her adventures at Country Girl

Sunday, May 24, 2009

I'm Cheap

But not easy for those of you whose minds head naturally in that direction.  Yesterday Connor and I went to the grand opening of our new Supercuts.  We waited in line for about an hour and a half to get a free haircut.  I also won a t-shirt and frisbee from our radio station on site for the opening.  Today we braved the crowds at our new Harvey's for a free burger.  Sure we paid for the "extras" but $10.47 for a meal for 3 was still a good deal.  Both times there were people we knew in line to chat with so the time passed pretty quickly.   Unfortunately I missed the free iced coffees at Tim Horton's earlier in the week but I think I did pretty good for one week!  

Monday, May 18, 2009

Tiny Marsh

Connor, Kevin and I went canoeing at Tiny Marsh today.  Normally we are the only ones there but it was very busy today despite the cool temperature.  There are trails and observation towers, an education centre and of course the marsh.  The water was very high so we got to paddle in places we normally can't access.  We saw swans, a turtle, a muskrat who went right under our canoe, several beavers and fish, a few great blue herons, terns and red-wing blackbirds  and Connor found the 2 Northern Water Snakes shown below.  They weren't bothered at all by us sitting there taking pictures for 10 minutes.

After the paddle, we went for a brief walk on one of the trails.  All the mama Canada Geese were hiding there with their babies.  There must have been 50 goslings in 50 feet!


Sorry we didn't get any pictures of the other wildlife.  The camera is buried in a dry bag andKevin couldn't get it out fast enough when the swans took off nearby.

For supper we had quiche with asparagus and chives from our garden.  Yummy.  

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Meet the Author

Cantering Caitlin and 4 other Wasaga Beach authors gave a talk at our local library today.  The focus was how they got their books published (and how you could get yourself published).  Caitlin did a great job!  She was the only one to do a power point (all the other authors were over 50, many well over).  She didn't appear nervous and answered all questions.  Several young girls from an elementary school came with their teacher just to meet her!  She sold a few copies of her book but I am sure gained a lot in experience.   

There were 2 fiction books, one on fishing, one about everyone being psychic and a non-fiction on women in the fishing/sailing industry in Newfoundland.  The only one not self-published is the one about Newfoundland women.  

Well done Caitlin.  We are proud of you.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Busy Weekend

We finally got a new washer!  We have been without one for four months so it is definitely a big thing.  Isn't she a beauty? She is so much quieter and water and energy efficient.  You can delay your laundry up to 9 hours.  She makes cute little chime noises and plays a song at the end of the cycle.  It does take longer than our old washer - up to 75 minutes depending on your cycle choice but so far we love it.  We hope to get the matching dryer but will have to order it as we want a gas dryer again.

Kevin was busy this week replacing the rotting wood on the raised vegetable beds.  We picked up a load of soil and filled the boxes.  You can see the rhubarb up in the front bed.  The next bed is asparagus but we covered up the stalks with fresh soil so you can't see them any more.  The other beds are waiting for planting.  There are 6 beds though only 4 show in the picture.  The larger structure is the compost bins.