Monday, November 08, 2010


Good Morning All

I began this blog more than six years ago. In an email newsletter, I was told how easy it was to set up a blog here. I had heard the term, blog, and was interested but barely knew what it meant. Anyway, I signed up and have been here for a long time.

Six plus years of posting tells me that most people don't stay the course for this long, so I have accomplished something.

To wit: in the recent but old Halloween template that I used for a few weeks, I counted 37 links to other blogs in the sidebar. I analyzed only to misplace the sheet where I tallied the results, but I think only six were still blogging, at least to the extent that I knew and/or with whom was in still contact. And by the time I had made that list quite some time ago, many bloggers had already come and gone — and many, many since then, of course.

So 6+ years with 1600+ entries isn't too shabby when you consider the high turnover.

However, I say all that to say this ....

it's time for me to go.

My Bloggering days are done.

But I'm not done with blogging.

I have simply decided to blog ....

... HERE.

I hope you choose to click the link and follow me. More will be explained when you get there.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Not From Holland

So you see it there to the bottom left? Yes siree, sitting on my shelf among other keepsakes is a desktop calendar all the way from Holland The Netherlands. It came from Mara who, as the top-rated bus driver in Holland The Netherlands, really gets around. In the calendar are twelve photos that Mara has taken on her journeys.

She sent it because I left a comment at the appropriate time. This is the third parcel that I have received from fellow bloggers over the years, the others being a piece of pottery from Dave and a cookbook from Donna. Early on in this blogs life, I also exchanged postcards with some in a little experiment that was only moderately successful. In addition, there has been some exchanging of Christmas cards, but I think it's a little too early to think about that little thing yet this year.

Thank you, Mara for gifting this poor Canadian all of the way from Holland The Netherlands: it's very well done and much appreciated.

And if anybody else feels like sending ... oh ... nevermind ...

As for the title and the strikeouts, that's one of the many things that I have learned from Mara. Apparently, Holland is only a part of The Netherlands. I always wondered about that, and I'm being serious — for once.

Friday, November 05, 2010

The Shower Incident

I was showering the other day. Yes, I do that at least once quarterly, but bear with me.

I grabbed the Old Spice, the one on the left in the photo. I promise you, however, that only the Old Spice was in the shower with me ... although I certainly do need to catchup on many things.

Except the bottle was oriented the other way from the photo — with the top-up.

While that might have seemed normal in the previous century, I think the picture suggest that the bottle paradigm is shifting and that top-down is becoming the de facto normative position.

It only makes sense really because when the bottle is more empty than full, the desired substance, which is what you buy the bottle for in the first place is much more accessible.

Beyond that, it's especially handy dandy for ketchup which has from time immemorial (whatever that means, but it sounds good to me) been a deuce of a thing to entice out of its container. You know what? It only costs a few cents more to purchase the top-down ketchup container than the old fashioned standard issue. And since one bottle of ketchup lasts for at least a half century, I for one am willing to ante up the extra coinage.

So ... if the Old Spice bottle will stand top-down as in the photo, why was I forced to orient it standing top- up in the shower? Regardless (please note: not irregardless as many are wont to say), why was it a problem?

Well,I didn't have it standing top- down because the top is so narrow that a misguided breath or water droplet would bring it tumbling down. That's why!

And ... that was a problem because I had almost run out of soap and prodigious shaking was required. It's not that I mind that much, really, but I really wonder why those Spicy Oldsters who make the product wouldn't just design the cap properly in the first place. This halfway business is nowhere, dude/duchess.

I mean, it was good for one blog post, but the keener visioned amongst will have discerned that I have gone over to the nymphs of the Irish Spring for my next month of laves.

I'm sure there will be a spring in my step although I'm likely to become a less spicy blogger.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

More Simply "Grand" Photos

I get a little leery of doing too many picture posts of the grands in a short interval, but I've been a bit preoccupied to write much lately. Nikki Dee managed to wangle a sleepover last night by imploring Cuppa. After Cuppa had said something to the effect that we don't have room for two little munchkins to sleepover, Nikki Dee asked if she had room for one little munchkin. Apparently, that did it.

Of course we took a few pictures. At one point, she got to running around and around through the kitchen and hall, and I was able to get these two action shots which I think are good enough to share if you will indulge me yet again.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Halloween Photos

I have a few Halloween pics to post before moving on ... to what? ... Christmas? Good grief.

Anyhoo, I went over to take a few pics and give out treats while mom, dad and kids gamboled around the neighborhood — they had to gambol because it was so darn cold.

Let's begin with a few of Zach. The night kind of overwhelmed the boy, but I managed to get a few pics. In the first shot he sits with his costume not done up yet, leafing through a book from Amma and Buppa — in lieu of candy. He's costumed in the other two and chomping on chocolate. Lingering tears are visible in the closeup.

Now, for Nikkie Dee. She continues to make progress in acknowledging the camera although her eyes were on the tv in the first photo.

The two together, followed by a family photo outside as they headed off madly in all directions.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Fiddling Away the Afternoon

For some reason or other, the other day I got all caught up with watching and listening to fiddling on YouTube. I thought I'd share some of my "likes" with you. If you aren't in the mood for that much, check out the last one with Andre Rieu and an Irish fiddler, from The Dubliners (I believe it said in one place). Love this stuff. Wish I could do it.

The first pair are a brother and sister from Victoria, Canada. The second group is from Boston, but they play a lot of Cape Breton music. It's amazing how this music gets around and transcends borders. The third is Emily Brandenburg, but I can't find any further information. Gotta love her onstage persona and presence tough. The fourth, you already know about.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Flowers in the Snow

Last night, around 8:30, we picked up the phone to fine a somewhat disturbed Nikki Dee on the line. It was bedtime, and she wanted someone other than the babysitter to comfort here. As luck would have it, Cuppa was just then getting ready to head over there to pick up something or other to do with Halloween. However, when I explained that to Nikki, she began to wail that she wanted Buppa to come over too.

So, out we went, me just in a my slippers (Crocs actually), into the snow. In my slippers and ... surprise, surprise ... into the snow. Wet snow. Me in slippers (Crocs actually). My feet didn't get too wet while I was scraping the car, but still ... it was snowing, and I was in my slippers (Crocs actually).

As soon as we arrived to placate the impy doodle, I took her to the front door and shower her the snow. Nikki Dee: "Is it Christmas?" Well, isn't that cute?

Between Buppa and Amma, she was sound asleep within about a half hour. And home we went. Through the snow. Me in my slippers (Crocs actually).

And this is what it looked like this morning from the upstairs window.

It looks like Christmas flowers in the snow, but these geraniums be long gone come Christmas. Hopefully, this particular accumulation of snow will also soon be gone, for it's too early for it to stay, y'know: two weeks to a month too early based on the five winters that we've experienced here. Hope so. Winter is long enough as it is.

And they're not actually Crocs, not actually despite all of my actuallys. They're a knockoff called Frogs, actually. Actually Frogs is what I actually and factually mean.

Of Halloweens Past ...

... and Present

Cuppa and I will be duplicating some photos a today, but she'll weave more of a story, so you may wish to check in at Brown Betty Brew as we pay homage to Halloweens Past. The old pictures were already scanned from a little photo album that we created for Thesha's thirtieth birthday. Althegal is now thirty-two, but I haven't yet managed to make the same effort for her. Perhaps I will someday get my mayhem of old slides in some sort of order (with sort being a rather operative word),, so that I can more readily contemplate doing this for her.

Let us begin with Ancient History by showing four slides in chronological order beginning in Thesha's early childhood up to when she was about ten years old. Althegal made an appearance in the ten-year photo where they are both dressed in Cuppa's rendition of First Nations costumes when such things weren't politically incorrect. It's worth noting that Cuppa designed and fabricated all four of these costumes: creative and talented lady that she is. If I've got it right, the Wonder Woman getup is from 1984, when the tv program was current. It was quite a hit at Thesha's school if I recall correctly.

Nikki Dee's first Halloween was in 2007 when she wasn't even crawling. Daddy brought the cute, little pumpkin to our place while Thesha stayed home to pass out treats to the tricksters.

She was Piglet in 2008 when Mommy brought her over for a little visit.

Sticking with The Pooh theme, Nikki Dee became Tigger last year while Zachary was Winnie. They were taken pre-Halloween last year as became a trifle problematic to shunt two kids about.

Cuppa managed to take a few pre-shots of this years outfits this past week. The kids weren't being terribly cooperative; perhaps I'll manage some better ones when I go over for a little visit while Cuppa mans (womans? persons?) the treat fort here. In our first year in this place, I made an effort to get into the Halloween spirit (the header up there came from that year). I dressed up and played scary sounds with my iPod hooked up to speakers. But, frankly, I don't really dig Halloween and have left the nonsense to Cuppa ever since. The whistles in the following photos don't have anything to do with the costumes; it's just what they were taken with on that day. I think in keeping with her outfit at least the Jungle Book elephant song was being played and marched to, and the kids added their own musical overtones.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Neti Knows Noses

Well, you can never assume; otherwise you make the first three letters of assume true about yourself. Yesterday, I assumed that everyone would be familiar with Neti Pots or Netipots, but that may not actually be the case. We don't all go to Oprah College after all.

It was Dr Oz on Oprah who first introduced me to Neti, and I could scarcely believe what I was seeing. In response to some sort of question about allergies or sinuses I (I think it was), he invited the lady to the stage. There he had her tilt her head over a basin and, using Dear Neti, pour water in one nostril so that it flowed out of the other nostril.

Who knew that such a concept for the cleaning of sinus cavities existed? Well, Dr Oz and a lot of other people knew, apparently, for it is not a new invention by any means.

Following are two excerpts from Wikipedia. Please visit Wiki for the whole article for links and references that I have eliminated from the these sections.

Nasal irrigation or nasal lavage or nose douche is the personal hygiene practice in which the nasal cavity is washed to flush out excess mucus and debris from the nose and sinuses. It has been practiced in India for centuries as one of the disciplines of yoga. Some clinical tests have shown that this practice is safe and beneficial with no significant side effects.[1][2] Nasal irrigation in a wider sense can also refer to the use of saline nasal spray or nebulizers to moisten the mucus membranes....

The simplest method, in that it does not require any equipment, is to snort water from cupped hands. The application of commercially available saline nasal spray is another simple alternative, but it is relatively inefficient for washing away debris although it may suffice for simple rehydration of mucous and tissues.[6]

A simple yet effective technique is to pour salt water solution into one nostril and let it run out through the other while the mouth is kept open to breathe, using gravity as an aid. This is an old Ayurvedic technique known as jala neti, and the container used to administer the saline is called a neti pot. (Neti is Sanskrit for "nasal cleansing". A second neti technique known as sutra neti uses a piece of string instead of water.)

Finally, here's one YouTube demonstration of a plethora of choices. I am surprised that there are so many examples as I, personally, wouldn't care to demonstrate Neti and me getting so close and personal. I'm appreciate, however, that others are not so disinclined to get their noses into it onstage. Or it into their noses, rather.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A New but Dear Friend

It's true; there's a new love in my love, and I have come to cherish the moments that we spend together every day. Like all loves, she does get up my nose from time to time, but our relationship remains committed.

Yes folks, I admit to having fallen for Neti, and the fact that she is a little potty simply makes her all that more precious to me.

Last winter I experienced multiple bouts of ear and sinus problems and found that my body doesn't get along well with all of the decongestants that I was forced to swallow. Neither did I much like being force fed antibiotics on a regular basis. So, this autumn I invited Neti into my life, and, so far, I am happy to say that she makes a difference.

After few intimate moments with Neti, I find that I can breathe easier. It's a good feeling to take those clear, unsnottified breaths let me tell ya.

I know that getting so excited about these short trysts makes an AC's life seem rather empty, but I am deeply appreciative that it's really my sinus cavities that are empty — even though as is true about intimate moments in general, the relief is only temporary.

It's fair to say that my moments with Neti have become an eagerly anticipated highlight of my dreary days.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Her Turn

... and His Again Too

Although I took the camera over to get some new pics of him the other day, I did get some of her while he was sleeping and after he was up too: sorry, can't resist.

She was actually engaging with the camera a bit. Here ↓↓ she tries to make a sad face: which turned out to be funny.

And lookee here ↓↓ two pictures looking right at the camera and me not having to rush too very much before the millisecond became history.

Even outside, she condescended to glance my way. Maybe it's because she loves looking at herself in pictures, and she's beginning to connect cause and effect better. ↓↓

Two more of the blond, curly guy. ↓↓

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Faces of Our Boy

I hauled my camera over to the kids' place yesterday with the specific purpose of getting some up-to-date close-ups of Zach. At his age, we have fewer photo ops with him than his sister. She comes for sleepovers and outings while he stays home. But it was time to make an effort.

So here he are the many faces of Zachary. Actually, they're all pretty well versions of the same happy face. The first two were after his nap around the lunch/computer table, and the other three were taken outdoors a little later. It was a warm day for October, but he had his little coat on anyway as Buppa wasn't quite sure how best to dress him .

By the way, had Amma been present, her likely would have had his hair and wardrobe attended to, but Buppas don't think of things like that. And even they do, they're pretty helpless to do anything about it.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


The kids seem to prefer watching videos on Buppa's old laptop more than the tv. Mind you, the upstairs tv isn't too much bigger than the laptop. They can get closer to the computer and seem to enjoy the experience. My laptop is old but it's a big screen (for a laptop), and it has decent speakers.

As Zach enjoyed his lengthy, midday slumber the girl enjoyed some video time. ↓↓

Really enjoyed it. ↓↓

Once they were both up and few, both kids watched clips of themselves for awhile. I had wandered into the other room to check email etc on Thesha's computer and was a little concerned to see them both sprawled on the table in an effort to get at or close to my laptop. Officially, "We were not amused," but unofficially, in our heart of hearts, we were. ↓↓

This is a representative clip of what they were viewing at the time. Nikki Dee was requesting singing videos. It took old Buppa awhile to figure out that she wanted to see a series of Thanksgiving videos like the one below. She was being a little manic at the time: really enjoying the attention, and she loves to watch herself, which I guess is typical of us all. ↓↓

Monday, October 25, 2010

A Cool but Colourful Saunter

Friday, on our round trip, there were countless photo ops. But when you're travelling, they pass by quickly, usually with very little opportunity to pull over. So it was that we have no pictures; and certainly none of foxes or wolves who were very quick to cross the road into the forest at the other side. No, you're stuck with either believing or disbelieving that one.

Come Saturday, we were able to take some photos after Cuppa made a picnic lunch to take to the park. As we headed out, it looked promising despite to cool temperatures because the sun was out. So, having arrived at the park, we exited the car and made for a picnic table. Naturally, just as we arrived at the table, the clouds managed to roll across the sun. We sat at the table for a few minutes, but the cool temperatures, plus the wind, plus the ominous amount of clouds in the sky soon sent us back to the car.

We had our lunch in the relative warmth of Harriet the Chariot, but were disappointed not to be able to take at least one photo of ourselves enjoying a picnic lunch in the great outdoors because Althegal so looks forward to these sorts of pictures. In fact, she has often mentioned this to us and pleaded for more: he said, speaking just a tad sarcastically.

We did walk a bit after our lunch; fortunately, there remained just enough colour to satisfy our spirits and to persuade us to snap a few photos, several of which I present below. In the first picture, Cuppa, in the distance, drinks Tim's coffee from her travel mug. However, even carrying a mug around was enough to make the hand cold as I was forced to keep switching my own mug from hand to hand in an attempt to minimize the discomfort. It helped a little, but also informed me that eating in the vehicle had been the right choice.

Before, I mosey off, permit me the reminder that it's only two months until Santa comes down the chimney.