A favorite quote:

Make play a high priority in your life for if you die tomorrow no one can play for you, but someone can and will do your work for you!!!" Ken Beebe (Dr. Play)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Big Package from Tennessee...

...showed up on our front door Today. Andrew recieved his box from Rick! This is TOO much fun. I think I need a pen pal that sends me stuff... hehe. Actually, I did recieve a nice running shirt, that Ricks MOM, Lisa had donated money in our name to recieve. Thanks, it's pretty cool to get stuff!

Andrew woke up shortly after it arrived. We went through everything while he was napping, but put it all back so he could discover it all himself. He pulled out a shirt and says' A shirt!', he pulls out another shirt and says 'Another shirt!, Fun!'. I figure Tony picked out the cat in a bag toy, as it freaked Andrew out, and he wouldn't even go in the room where it was plomping around. Mission accomplished Tony! I liked it though... if that counts... hehe. We also got 2 really large boxes of gooey marshmallowee choclate treats. Thanks, I just lost 2 minutes off my next run. (ed. note: worth it)
Andrew went stright over and put his new magnet on the Fridge...

Lisa used the box that we sent down there last month to send Andrews package back. Traci has already started to re-pack it for the return trip to Tennessee with the Xmas stuff in it.
Thanks a bunch for everything Rick. Watch for your next pile of stuff that will be coming your way soon!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Saskatchewan Roughriders…

… Rule. Click for details!


Next stop – Grey Cup Championship! Nuff said!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Queen Charlotte Islands… the conclusion…

heh, We only just got to the campground in the last posting, but I will get us all the way back to Prince George on this one.


We got set up in the Tent Trailer at Agate Beach and just hung around the beach that was just outside our door. It was pretty amazing to look out and see the ocean anytime we wanted.QC scan 6 001-1

We had never lived near the ocean so it was pretty special to us. Things like the tides or the variety of seashore life really impressed me. At this particular spot at high tide, the 3’ waves crashed down right below our camp, and at low tide, it was a good 10 minute walk to the water. really cool. Traci and Mom spent a lot of time searching for Agates. I on the other hand seemed to be searching for rocks. I could never tell the difference and was constantly throwing my finds away once they were confirmed ‘sorry, just a rock’

QC ship 2

The weather was pretty rainy most of the week, but we expected it and it didn’t dampen our spirits. I guess the storms that can lash this coast are pretty wild.

A couple of annoyances were the tiny little sand flies that would come right through our screens, and there were a few wet spots on our bed that we dealt with as best we could. Hey we were pretty much roughing it here right?

Quick, someone notice the waves getting closer and closer…QC truck 2The days were spent beachcombing, although we could never get out earlier than the professionals as they got REALLY early starts, as they would sell the items they found to make a living here on the island. We stopped off at a place that had a sign on the road.

This is a true rainforest on this Island…QC Jungle 2 Wow was this place creepy. We drove in and it was just a backwoods home with massive piles of beach crap laying everywhere. We wandered around undisturbed for a while until a little teenaged girl came out and followed us around for a bit without saying anything to us. I had spotted a large bone and I asked her what it was. She said it was a Vertebrae from a whale. I asked her if this just washes up on shore. She replied, ‘no the whole whale washed up. Makes sense. But what about that Kitchen sink over there, does the whole kitchen wash up on shore? I had been in search of some Japanese glass floats, but they ended up being a bit underwhelming and I came out empty-handed.

QC Dad 1Dad and I decided to go crab fishing. We went into town and picked up a crab trap. When we got back I walked WAY out onto the sand as it was low tide, baited the trap and then just set it on the seafloor.

The beauty of this picture probably is a bit ironic for the people who rode out the storm that beached’er…QC ship 1Later, once the tide came in I took the 8’ Zodiac dad had and made my way out to our marker to pick up the trap and Voila! we had one! dang, should have left it out longer. Oh well, we set the crab free and decided to try a different approach. We drove over to the big rock outcropping called Tow Hill.

We tried to pull this boat out with the truck. Didn’t work.QC ship 3There is a stream that enters the sea there and so we launched out into calm stream water, but before we could blink, we were in some really rough seas. It took us a while to get out far enough as we were bouncing over 4 and 5’ rollers and whitecaps and out little 2.5hp motor was doing all she could against the sea (sounds like a great epic don’t it?). We got out and I chucked the trap over and we headed back as we were a little beat up by then. Disappointments of all disappointments; when we went back out to retrieve the trap and realized the trap had landed upside down and was just a buffet lunch for the crabs as they could walk right back out again. We didn’t try again.

My favourite photo from the trip.QC creek

As I said before, we spent a lot of time on the beaches. QC long beach 1

We were truly the only ones there most of the time and we just beachcomed and walked and sat looking out at the sea. We drove almost the entire length of the beach along rose spit, where there is 50+km of undisturbed beach. There were these invisible washouts along the beach that we hit with the truck and actually caught airtime once! All our stuff in the back was completely turned over and backwards when we got back to camp. It was an adventure getting off the beach that day as well and we got caught in high tide with no beach to drive on for a while. Dads truck did really well driving along in the surf!


We did go into the town of Masset a couple times to get groceries. This is where all the fresh seafood was, and we really ate seafood well here. We had a crab boil one night, and used the water right out of the ocean for the crabs… it was wonderful. The town of Masset is a Native settlement and had all sorts of native crafts and arts, but most impressively it had a fair number of totem poles. Talk about fantastic stuff!

QC truck in woods 1

The week went by altogether too fast and before we knew it, it was time to head back to civilization. Our trip back was long as we never had an overnighter to buffer the distance, we drove straight off the ferry in Prince Rupert and hit the highway, taking turns driving to get home in good time. The truck was about a foot too short inside, but 9 years later, I look very fondly on this trip, and would love to get back up there one day again.

QC jungle 3

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I thought I killed her…

… I was sleeping downstairs on the sofa because my cold has me coughing violently most of the night and it keeps Andrew and Traci up and then we are ALL grumpy in the morning. So when I go down to sleep on the sofa, I let the donks sleep with me. I look at it as bit of a treat for them and they keep me warm too!

Rizzo’s thing is she needs to be as close as she can get to me, while Kenickie is content to lay on my legs.

Last night I woke up in a panic. Now here’s where it gets weird. I have no Idea if this actually happened or if I dreamed it or if it was parts of both.

I woke up in a panic because I was laying ON TOP of Rizzo and she had suffocated. I sat upright and grabbed her up. She was stiff as a board, and I just shook her. She came to and just sort of looked at me like, ‘what the heck are you doing to me?’ I checked her over, did a few tests to make sure she wasn’t brain damaged, and being confident that she was ok, I got up and got myself a drink of water and tried to calm my heart rate down. During this ordeal, the thought that kept going through my mind was, ‘how would've I told Traci that I killed Rizzo?, she’s going to kill me!’


Did that really happen? I haven’t a clue… She may have been sleeping very soundly and didn’t wake up right away when I scooped her up, or maybe I dreamed the part up to the point where I was shaking her. What a weird night. It’s the first night I took Neo-Citron instead of Nyquil, if that means anything.

It’s not the first time we had an apparent scare with the donks. When Kenickie was younger he took on a morsel of food that was MUCH to big for him and he stopped breathing and fell over. He was choking. I grabbed him up and performed Pug style Heimlich and out popped the food, and the ordeal was all over. He never thanked me, just went on about his day like nothing happened.

Anyway, we still have 2 pugs and I am happy I didn’t have to break the bad news to Traci. Phew. CIMG3832

Friday, November 13, 2009

A Helicopter…

…has got to be the COOLEST way to get to work I have ever seen. Even a really cheap Helicopter is cooler than the most expensive car for commuting.

the guy who flies this helicopter to work owns an excavation company that share the offices of a vendor of ours. I was leaving their office today and just decided to take a picture of the whirlybird sitting on the landing pad, when the owner came out, started it up and took off.

It was pretty surprising to me what it sounded like when he fired it up. Have you ever heard a large tractor starting? It was just like that, including the sound of the starter.   

Imagine your car on a cold morning - RrrrrRRRrrrrrRRRrrrrrrrrrrr,  sputter sputter, cough, brrrrrr, sputter, cough… brrrrmmmmm…. *engine stalls*… rrrrRRRRRRrrrrrrRRRRrrrrrRRRRrrrrrRRRrrr, cough sputter, cough, brrrrrrRRRRRRRRRRRRrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr, Sputter…. brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr chug chug….. This thing shakes like crazy too! It looked like it was going to shake right off the pad before he could get the thing warmed up enough to leave.


It’s just a normal gas engine in the thing.  I thought for sure it would be a turbine or something… Anyway, he lets it run for about a minute and off he goes. Only thing is, his left rear door is open.


huh. I thought maybe it was on purpose, but I think it opened when it was shaking violently trying to warm up. So he lift off with the door flapping in the wind and he disappears behind the building.

Look at those blades bending… I’m not sure I would get in that thing…CIMG0179CIMG0182

I take off around the corner in the truck and I am looking all over the sky to see where he went. I couldn’t see him anywhere, and I thought that was kind of weird as he wasn’t going that fast. Oh well.

heh. I had to laugh. I spotted him taking off again from a stubble field about a half mile away where he landed to get out and shut his rear door. LOL. have you ever done that? pulled over on the shoulder of the road to shut the rear door of your car that wasn’t closed the whole way? Kind of takes the mystique out of helicopter ownership doesn’t it… haha!

Pic of the day, Andrew got new boots, can you see them in this picture? IMG_7651

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Queen Charlotte Islands – June 2000

Our camping didn’t start with this blog. We have camped forever, as a family growing up and especially Traci and I since we were married in 97. I was thinking it would be fun to go back and tell the stories of some of those camping trips. the only problem was I didn’t have any digital pics of many of these trips… or did I? I have a scanner and a massive pile of regular pics. Remember those? having to go to the photomat and paying crazy money for photos you HOPE turned out… and then sticking them in a box.

Well I like to think I was, and still am a pretty good photographer. The only thing is I didn’t take 100 shots of what I was shooting like I can do now, so when I took a GREAT photo, it was pretty special. Going through our photos, there are a few great photos and a bunch of ok photos. With some of the stories there aren’t too many great photos, so I will be including the photos that help tell the story no matter how good or bad the pics are.

The first pics I started to scan were of our trip to the North tip of the Queen Charlotte Islands off the Coast of Northern British Columbia in June 2000. We were already living in Calgary at the time when my Mom and Dad invited us to go on this epic trip. We decided to go and made the 8 hour trip up to Prince George to help prepare for the trip. Dad had an extended cab Ford 1/2 ton truck and we rented a small tent trailer for our week stay on the island.

QC truck 3

We got everything packed up and headed out. It is a very long trip from Prince George to the North Tip of the Queen Charlotte Islands. If you drive steady all the way to Prince Rupert (on the Pacific) it would take you 8 hours, then there is the boat and then another 2 hours on the road on the QC islands. The road is ok for the most part, but as you get closer to the coast it really narrows up and becomes super scenic, and super challenging. Prince George is on the Interior Plateau so the first part of the drive is pretty flat with a lot of farmland and lakes. Once you pass into the Bulkley Valley the landscape becomes more vertical and it is a pleasant ride with no shortage of things to look at. Places like Smithers and Moricetown break things up nicely and I have to say, if you get the chance to stop and see the Natives fishing at Moricetown, do it. They stand on the top of the little canyon walls and throw spears down into the water or wait until the large fish jump and they simply put their net under the fish and he flies right in, pulling a very large salmon out on almost each attempt. Very cool.  (note, not my pics, took from web)

Neting spear

The trip was nice, but the truck was quite cramped. We were tired of the drive by the time we reached Prince Rupert. We checked into a motel and then went in search for some fresh fish for dinner. We ended up at Smiles Seafood restaurant, which is a quaint little place with wonderfully greasy Halibut and other local delicacies. Yum. This little restaurant hangs out over the water and has a very unique atmosphere. We were pretty tired, and as we had to catch the ferry early the next morning, we headed back to the motel for a good nights sleep.

We woke and were soon in line for out trip across the Hecate Straight from PR to Skidegate on the South tip of the North Island on the ship Queen of Prince Rupert . I always liked big ships. This one is not that big, but big enough for a flatlander like me. the only one bigger I have ever been on was the Queen of the North that I went on when I was about 10 years old, but it sunk in 2006 after running aground on its normal run from Prince Rupert to Vancouver. QC T&N 1

We spent the day enjoying the ride and watching the incredible scenery from the deck of the ship. The trip was 8 uneventful hours. We arrived in Skidegate, did a little sightseeing and headed up island. We had a 2 hour drive left to get to Naikoon Provincial park where we were going camp right on shore for a week. So after 18 hours of driving and 8 hours of floating, we were finally here… Hey, do we need a licence to trap crabs if its only 100 feet from our camper???

I will leave off here and continue our Queen Charlotte story in a couple days, so stay tuned!

Pic of the day… a preview photo of the LONG beach on Rose spit, where we spent our days beachcombing and searching for agates. Its pretty much a clear shot across the ocean to Japan from this spot.QC long beach 1

Monday, November 9, 2009

Deleted post

I removed the H1N1 post from this journal. It has been bugging me since I posted it. I feel the way I feel about it, but this isn’t the forum for that kind of rant. This is a place of fun and goofiness and family stuff that we can look back on and laugh and cry and share memories.

Pic of the day. A reminder for me, of what this journal is about. The only time it is ok to turn a smile upside down is to make a happy meal superhero helmet out of it…!IMG_2077

Nice ride!

Of all the modes of transportation out there, this is one of them. Notice the little puppies that sat and waited patiently for the owner of this hot ride! The headlight is a 14.4volt tool kit flashlight and they have a 110 power inverter running a little heater at their feet. Best part? it is sitting in the handicap parking stall at Tim Hortons… LOL.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Seriously… did they just say that?

I don’t ever look at forwarded emails, but this week they came from 2 people who never send them out, so they had to be good… the first one was about the teeth and then I got this one from my buddy Drew yesterday…

Big Dept Store
We had to have the garage door repaired. The repairman told us that one of our problems was that we did not have a 'large' enough motor on the opener. I thought for a minute and said that we had the largest one they made at that time, a ½ horsepower. He shook his head and said, 'Lady, you need a 1/4 horsepower.'  I responded that 1/2 was larger than 1/4. He said, 'NO, it's not. Four is larger than two.' We haven't used this repair dept since.

Fast Food
My daughter and I went through the Fast Food take-out window and I gave the clerk a $5 bill. Our total was $4.25, so I also handed her a quarter. She said, 'you gave me too much money.' I said, 'Yes I know, but this way you can just give me a dollar back.'  She sighed and went to get the manager who asked me to repeat my request. I did so, and he handed me back the quarter, and said, ‘We're sorry but they could not do that kind of thing.’  The clerk then proceeded to give me back $1 and 75 cents in change.  Do not confuse the clerks at fast food restaurants.

City worker
I work for the city of  xxxxxx , XX. We recently had a taxpayer call the city's Traffic Dept. to request the removal of the DEER CROSSING sign on the Highway . 
The reason? 
"Too many deer are being hit by cars out here!  I don't think this is a good place for them to be crossing anymore."

Big City Mall
My daughter went to the mall food court and ordered a taco. She asked the person behind the counter for 'minimal' lettuce.' He said he was sorry, but they only had iceberg lettuce.

Big City Airport
I was at the airport, checking in at the gate when an airport employee asked, 'Has anyone put anything in your baggage without your knowledge?'  To which I replied, 'If it was without my knowledge, how would I know?'

He smiled knowingly and nodded, 'That's why we ask.'

Small Town Anywhere
The stoplight on the corner buzzes when it's safe to cross the street. I was crossing with an intellectually challenged co-worker of mine. She asked if I knew what the buzzer was for. I explained that it signals blind people when the light is red. Appalled, she responded, "What on earth are blind people doing driving?!"

Small Town Office
This happened at a good-bye luncheon for an old and dear coworker who was leaving the company due to 'downsizing.' Our manager commented cheerfully, "This is fun! We should do this more often." Not another word was spoken.  We all just looked at each other with that deer-in-the-headlights stare.

Big City Office
I work with an individual who plugged her power strip back into itself and for the sake of her life, couldn't understand why her system would not turn on.

Big City Auto Dealership
When my husband and I arrived at an automobile dealership to pick up our car, we were told the keys had been locked in it. We went to the service department and found a mechanic working feverishly to unlock the driver’s side door. As I watched from the passenger side, I instinctively tried the door handle and discovered that it was unlocked.
'Hey,' I announced to the technician, 'its open!'

His reply, 'I know. I already got that side.'

They walk among us! 
    Now,don't you feel better about yourself?  Have a wonderful day!!!!!

On a personal note: I was in a cheap haircuts store a couple years ago and the lady cutting my hair asked me when my last haircut was. I told her ‘2 months ago’, she replied, ‘oh goodness, you should get your hair cut at least every 8 weeks”… uh… ok.

Monday, November 2, 2009


We have been married almost 13years now and we often have a conversation about the things we say or do now that we never would have when dating.

Like… “Oh honey, you are not going to want to come over here, I had egg salad for lunch”…

So I laughed when I got this forwarded email from Traci this morning…

The sharing of marriage....
The old man placed an order for one hamburger, French fries and a drink. He unwrapped the plain hamburger and carefully cut it in half, placing one half in front of his wife. He then carefully counted out the French fries, dividing them into two piles and neatly placed one pile in front of his wife.  He took a sip of the drink, his wife took a sip and then set the cup down between them ....

As he began to eat his few bites of hamburger, the people around them were looking over and whispering. Obviously they were thinking, 'That poor old couple - all they can afford is one meal for the two of them.' As the man began to eat his fries a young man came to the table and politely offered to buy another meal for the old couple. The old man said, they were just fine - they were used to sharing everything. People closer to the table noticed the little old lady hadn't eaten a bite. She sat there watching her husband eat and occasionally taking turns sipping the drink. Again, the young man came over and begged them to let him buy another meal for them. This time the old woman said 'No, thank you, we are used to sharing everything..'

Finally, as the old man finished and was wiping his face neatly with the napkin, the young man again came over to the little old lady who had yet to eat a single bite of food and asked 'What is it you are waiting for?'

She answered…

(Continue below - This is great)