Saturday, August 20

News Update

Another week has passed on the shore of Lake Superior in my hometown. It was hot this week, but it has turned cooler with showers for the weekend. I got out to practice golf a couple of times. It's been fairly quiet around the house. I got the new basketball backboard installed on the garage; Kristian really likes that since it can be adjusted down to a more suitable height for him than the old one. He's been shooting lots of baskets. He continues to work through his touch-typing lessons and is making good progress, but time is running out! I have begun work on the kitchenette downstairs; that will take a while! Now that I have located the drain connection, Wendy wants me to add a vanity in that bedroom—sigh! The markets ran well at the start of the week, but turned down after the FOMC minutes were released, and various Fed Reserve speakers made hawkish sounds! As a result, the week was not up to quota, but I remain on quota to this point in the month at least. Wendy has  been busy redoing the bedrooms to her new purposes. The upstairs room has been revamped for Kristian. One downstairs bedroom has been cleaned out, but now I've created a construction site in there. Come September, we're expecting Travis to set up his office in the other downstairs bedroom. The Jays continue to thrive, battling with Baltimore and Boston for the division lead. The Riders continue to disappoint, losing big to Hamilton today. 

The Bailey's got some answers over Liam's stomach pain. He has been diagnosed with Celiac's disease. So, they are into gluten-free food. After two years of braces, Liam is relieved to know that popcorn is gluten-free! The rest of the family are suffering with summer colds, so it's been pretty quiet this week other than the coughing. The house-sitting gig has come to an end, so they're all back in the apartment. It's nice to spend some time together before the boys head off to school.

Erin got older this week! A happy birthday was enjoyed. This weekend she and Sadie are enjoying a Bourne Marathon. Her oven remains out of commission, but a solution is anticipated, and, in the meantime, she can at least use the stove top. We look forward to her arrival down here next week. 

Travis and Joanna continue to work on setting up their new place. They've assembled two new dining room tables, but both have proved unsatisfactory, and thus had to be returned. They are at least getting to be expert at assembly of that design! Gemma and Andrew are getting their rooms established to their preferences—not necessarily in line with the preferences of the local adults! Minnie has established a safe corner in the new living room. The Bucket Decal business is quite active already this season. 

And that's about it for this week. 

Saturday, August 13

News Update

Canadian Lakehead Exhibition!
Another week has passed on the shore of Lake Superior in my hometown. It has been a rainy week, and I have struggled to find opportunity to get my lawn mowing done. I got one cut on Tuesday evening, and then got 3 done yesterday and another 4 today; so, I only have one left. With the rains, and my busyness, I have not managed to get out golfing this week—maybe tomorrow. I was back to the doctor on Wednesday. As it happened, I was suffering my first severe gout attack since I started my new meds. She confirmed that my uric acid levels are still too high, so she has doubled my allopurinol dose. She also checked out a sore on my face, and decided it should be removed and checked, so I've been referred to a plastic surgeon for that procedure. We went to the Exhibition with Kristian on Friday evening; that was fun, although the large crowds made for lineups at the rides. The markets were good all week, until weak retail sales data on the US side turned the markets into a tizzy on Friday. Still, I managed a great week. Kristian has completed his typing lessons, but still needs to pass his final test. He's doing well. He has also been improving his bike-riding, and enjoys shooting baskets in the driveway. Wendy has been busy with cleaning and rearranging our living quarters subsequent to Trav, Joanna and crew moving out. We are also preparing the next renovation plans; it'll be another busy time! We want to get the kitchenette done downstairs for the in-law suite. The Jays have continued to play well, and are in the picture for first place in the division. The Riders played the second-half of the home & home with the first place Calgary Stampeders. It was encouraging, but still too much of a challenge for the rebuilding Riders as they lost 19-10. I have also watched some of the coverage from the Olympics. 

The Bailey clan hung out in Calgary this week. Erica was in training at the Deloitte office. Eric, Haaken and Liam went to the zoo one day and threw balls at animals, but Haaken refused to play PokemonGo! Erica encountered a man carrying a Pokemon one day as she was walking back to the hotel. She would have captured it, but the man looked a bit scary! She didn't have any balls to throw at him anyway! They enjoyed two trips up the Calgary Tower, once to stand on the glass floor, the other to enjoy dinner in the rotating restaurant. Eric and boys did lots of walking, shopping and riding the C-train. This weekend they're taking the long way home through the mountains—a good week, a good trip! 

Erin has been having a pretty routine week. She and Kristian FaceTime regularly. She has continued to follow-up on her stove issues. Shawn checked the electronics on the control board, and it's dead, so she'll have to order a replacement. She ordered new shock-proof cases for her iPhone and for Kristian's iPad. They were delivered here, so Kristian got his installed already. 

This was the week when Travis, Joanna, Gemma, Andrew and the menagerie moved to their new digs. It's pretty empty here since they all left, but they still have plenty of things to move, so we see them each day for another load. I am not missing the birds, but Kristian is sure missing Minnie. We all are missing the family. 

And that's about it for this week. 

Saturday, August 6

News Update

We've enjoyed another beautiful week on the shore of Lake Superior, in my hometown. The weather has been great, and we've had a few showers to break the heat. We even got by without AC today for the first time in about a month. My friend, also Bill, has taken holidays, so I am running his lawn care business while he's gone. It'll be a couple of weeks this time, but he is also planning a month in Europe in September, so I'll be back in charge then. So, I've been busy grabbing opportunities when the grass is dry, but the temperature is not too hot. The markets were red all week until Friday when great US jobs' data turned everybody green! Our jobs' data was very bad here, but the health of our big friend next door is always more important to our well-being anyway! The Riders continued their losing way, but did put in a good effort for three quarters of the game against Calgary. Durant is back, so we live in hope—pretty typical for Rider fans! The Jays are playing well, and remain in a first place tie with Baltimore. Kristian continues his work on typing, and has completed five lessons this week. Today, he went golfing with us again; that was another good day! 

Erica was sick this week, a visit to the doctor confirmed it—she's sick! Liam got some blood work done, but they're still waiting to hear about the results. They tested for Celiac's among other things. Haaken worked on his own at the townhouse. He is packing for his move to Regina. Eric worked 3 days last week, and 4 days this week. It's time for a break before attempting a 5-day week! Erica is scheduled for coursework next week in Calgary, so the family is making an outing of it. They began the trek by heading to Regina and visiting with Erin. Must be an indirect route! 

Erin has managed a few medical checks this week. She's been given some trial medicine and a prescription for the same as a defence against migraine headaches. Medical advice concerning her skin breakouts is not so helpful. She'll just have to live with it and use steroidal creams when necessary. Then, she had a failure with her range. The burners continue to work, but the oven seems to be dead. She has now received advice on potential repairs, so we'll see where that goes. 

Travis & Joanna have closed the deal, and received their keys to the new house. They are busy moving stuff in, getting set up, and searching for all the necessaries for their own place. Today, they bought a small battery-powered lawn mower for their small lawn. It's basically a whipper-snipper on wheels; I'm looking forward to seeing how it works. Gemma is busy with work most days, while Andrew is usually busy with video games! 

And that's about it for this week. 

Saturday, July 30

News Update

It's been a beautiful week on the shore of Lake Superior in my hometown. The weather has been great, albeit a little too hot for me. We've enjoyed a good week of activities and are beginning to plan the next phase of developments and renovations on the house and yard. Wendy got some of our artwork hung; we're finally getting to enjoy those again. The markets have continued to run well. The TSX was up nearly 4% for the month, and I almost gained double my quota, so I was able to cover for some of the shortfalls I experienced earlier. The Riders suffered a comprehensive beating Friday night in Montreal; c'mon Riders! We hope Durant is back soon, but truly that is not their only problem. The Jays, on the other hand, have continued to play well, and, with today's win, have advanced to first place in their division. That was much fun to watch! I've managed to get out to the golf course a couple of times, and I especially enjoyed today's golf with Wendy and Kristian. We need to go more often! 

The Baileys are home from Estonia, a little tired, but glad to have had that experience. They enjoyed  seeing the young people sharing their faith, and experiencing a new culture. The found Estonia to be very beautiful, and in some ways very familiar. It also has very old places. The old town in Tallinn was fascinating with the bulk of the exterior city wall and turrets in good condition. Home again in Prince Albert, most of them are enjoying house-sitting for friends who have central air! Haaken is batching at home while the rest enjoy the more favourable accommodation! They enjoyed a wonderful visit with Bonnie (nee McMillan) this week as she was touring Saskatchewan. Liam continues to struggle with his stomach issues and has another doctor's appointment in the coming week.

Erin finds it pretty quiet around home these days since Kristian is down here. Kristian has been taking touch typing lessons this summer. He enjoys using his laptop from home even more now that it has a new battery. We had a picnic at the marina on Friday evening, but there were spider webs around, and possibly spiders, so he was pretty wary of that! Erin scored a new set of wheels this week, in her case it was just a pair as she bought a new bicycle! Grandma has renewed her efforts to get Kristian comfortable riding a bike here! 

Travis and Joanna have completed the paper work, so the process of moving into the new place has begun. They prepared a barbecue picnic for my birthday supper today, and we enjoyed that on the deck. They've taken one truck load of stuff over to the new place. I hope to have a trailer available for them to use next weekend which should accomplish most of the move. They've also been shopping for some additional equipment, furnishings and utensils for their new home. We shall miss them. 

And that's about enough for one week. 

Saturday, July 23

News Update

Another week has passed on the shore of Lake Superior in my hometown. The weather has been distressingly hot, and we have spent most of the week inside the house as the outdoor temperatures ran to the mid-thirties! We have had a couple of thunderstorms, but have not heard of any particular damage in our area related to those. Kristian has been suffering with runny eyes and stuffy nose; we now have him on Benadryl, but we're not seeing much improvement. He is working on typing lessons this summer, and enjoying playing with his cousins and Minnie. I have been working on the lawns and garden, and the weeds are taking a beating! We've been enjoying rhubarb crisp, and another picking is available. The combination of sun and rain have the lawns looking better than expected, but I'm having to mow them too often! The US markets are hitting record levels, and we're following just enough to make for another good week for me. April and June did not meet quota, so I'm working to catch up on that shortfall. The Blue Jays are playing pretty well (Sorry, not today!), and are currently in a playoff position and challenging for the divisional lead. The Riders took down the #1 team in the league last night behind backup QB Mitchell Gale—yay Riders! That gives them their first win of the season, and renews the hopes of Rider fans everywhere! 

The Baileys continue their sojourn in Estonia. They have relocated from Tartu back to Talinn, as they prepare to come home. They are having a good and busy time.

Erin has suffered from migraines again this week. We hope some remedy will be found to relieve this. Otherwise, summer in Saskatchewan continues to be hot and that has spawned a few violent storms with massive hailstones reported, and even a tornado or two touching down. Yikes! Then, on Friday, Husky announced that their pipeline had sprung a leak and dropped a significant amount of petro-products into the North Saskatchewan River. North Battleford has had to shut down its drinking water collection from the river. Today, we're informed that the booms have failed to contain the oil, and Prince Albert's drinking water is also threatened. 

Kristian, Matt Murray and the Cup!

Bucket List Item: checked off!
Trav and Joanna were very busy on Tuesday coordinating Matt Murray's day with the Stanley Cup. Some of the payoffs were great pictures with the cup! Gemma has had a couple of wedding celebrations to work, and Andrew has worked some of that as well. The big news has to be the completion of the purchase for their new place! They will be taking possession next month. The house looks ready to move in, so there should not be much in the way of renovations needed.

House for: Travis, Joanna, Gemma, Andrew

And that's about it for this week!

Saturday, July 16

Home Again!

Another week has passed and we have finally managed to get home! We left Regina on Wednesday,
Kristian & Grandma vs T-Rex!
spent Wednesday and Thursday nights in Winnipeg, and drove the final leg to Thunder Bay on Friday. However, the week was more eventful than the brief write-up makes it seem. The Baileys arrived in town on Tuesday in anticipation of their departure for Estonia on Wednesday morning, so we migrated over to Dad's place where Bern, Alicia and Logan put us up for the night. Thanks! Meanwhile Erin was hosting the Baileys. We joined them at the airport on Wednesday morning as they began their trip to Europe. The meeting was brief, but we were able to send them on their way with our best wishes. The parking fee at the Regina airport was a shocker—eight dollars! Yikes! Then we packed up Kristian and headed east for a lovely stay with Tom & Mariette in Winnipeg. Board and room were generous, but Tom was not so kind on the course, as he took it to me at Teulon Golf Course on Thursday! Kristian and Wendy enjoyed a nice tour with Mariette through the new dinosaur exhibit at Assiniboine Park Zoo. Thanks for the nice stay in Winnipeg. Today, we have been surveying our next projects around home. Wendy did some shopping and I did some weeding. The rhubarb needs picking and the potatoes are doing well, but that's the limit of my garden this year. The markets were very helpful this week, and I am already at quota for the month of July, so I can attempt to make up for the lack in May! MLB has been in all-star break, but the Jays have returned to action again, but are failing to return to action in winning mode! Let's go Jays! The Riders played BC tonight and continued to struggle, even more so after Darian Durant fell to injury in the first half. There were encouraging signs for sure. Still, it's disappointing to see them falling to 0-3 in this rebuilding season. Let's go Riders! 

As mentioned, the Baileys have flown to Estonia and have taken up residence in Tartu for the next few weeks. Eric & Erica will provide some of the supervision and leadership with the group. 

Erin is home alone after we took Kristian with us to Thunder Bay. Now, she'll have no one to mess up the house, so she'll have a wonderful time with summer house cleaning!! 

Trav & Joanna had big news this week as their bid for a house has been accepted. There remains work to do on the conditions, but we'll be watching that with them in the coming weeks. Otherwise, our house and yard are looking pretty good, so thanks for taking care of things while we were gone! They have been very busy with their usual work, and this week took on a special project—coordinating and photographing Matt Murray's day with the Stanley Cup! That is set to take place on Tuesday; we are all looking forward to that! 

And that's about enough for this week. 

Saturday, July 9

News Update

Another week has passed, and I have wandered away from the shore of Lake Wascana for a while, but I have returned to it this evening. The big event of the week was the annual Pryder Cup between friends in Bismarck and Dauphin. As has become the norm, the golfers hail from farther afield to contest the event, but the camaraderie is as warm as ever! This year's event was in Bismarck. I drove down to Weyburn on Wednesday, left the car at Kal-Tire for servicing, and rode south with Kerry. We met up with the crew at Washburn Thursday at noon, and played the first round of the competition there. The original Canada vs USA format has been abridged several times due to the availability of participants, and this year it took the form of veterans vs youth. The young guys took the first round, opening up a two-point lead after the stroke play event at Painted Woods. On Friday morning at Prairie West, the old guys roared back to take a one-point lead, only to see that lost in the afternoon scramble matches at Riverwood and Friday ended with the youth holding a slim one-point lead. It was left to the Saturday rounds at Hawk Tree to determine the outcome. Once again the Vets won in the morning to tie up the affair, but the kids took it to us in the afternoon to close out a 2-point win. It was great fun. I drove back home this evening, arriving just before midnight. It's good to be home away from home at Erin's. The week has not gone well for me in the markets either, although I did end in the green, but short of my quota. The Riders are green, but they also fell short, in overtime, to another green team—the Edmonton Eskimos. The Jays are blue, but they went on a tear prior to the All-Star break and have improved their position considerably. 

The big news this week from the Bailey household is that Haaken passed his Learner's exam toward his Driver's Licence. Yay Haaken! Now both boys are practicing for their driving exam. A friend is having a costume party with a Lord of the Rings theme this weekend, so Liam has been working on an Aragorn costume. He also showed off his culinary skills by making Lasagna for the family on Friday night. The boys are exchanging and rearranging their rooms, so the apartment is a bit of a disaster at present! Eric and Erica have been working, and preparing for the trip to Estonia that begins next week. 

Erin and Kristian continue to take care of us. While I was away, Kristian trained Grandma on using the smartphone app to do GeoCaching. They found two caches, and also spent time at the Regent Park pool. 

Travis and Joanna hosted her mom this week, and celebrated their anniversary most of the week as well. It seemed they were eating out at special spots on both sides of the border several times. We look forward to getting back there in another week. 

And that's about it for this week.