Category Archives: Photos

The master bedroom is (almost) complete

We have been slowly working on the house. Things aren’t moving as quickly as we’d like, but we’re happy with the end results. We are essentially done. There are just a couple of touch-ups to do.

Below are a bunch of pictures from the master bedroom showing the progress:

The hardest part of all of this was getting the wallpaper off the wall. We are pretty sure it was original.

The water damage wasn’t fresh. I patched some of it up and then we put some decent primer on it and it looks fine.

We were amazed at how great the floor looked. It looks like the carpet was put down almost as soon as the floor was finished.

Lisa did a great job painting the walls and trim

Today we put up the curtains and a couple of decorations.

We rearranged our room. We originally didn’t want the bed in front of the window, but it worked better with the dressers this way

Our room isn’t huge, but it is the biggest master bedroom we’ve had yet

March 2011 Trip to Florida – Day 13 (Friday)

Since this was our last full day in Florida, we tried to make the most of it. Matthew and I got up this morning and went swimming before going out. We then headed out for a few hours.

We went mini-putting at Bonanza Golf, an old west mining themed miniature golf course. It was a gorgeous morning, and the course was beautiful. After getting a 24 on the first hole, Christine settled down and did much better after that 🙂  There was even a hole that we all got a hole-in-one on (as long as you could hit the ball, it would go in).

After golfing, we headed off to Kissimmee Go-Karts. We had gotten a coupon that gave us a free lap. It wasn’t much, but neither Lisa or can remember ever driving a go-kart, so we thought we’d give it a try. I went with Andrew and Lisa went with Matthew. It was a lot of fun. We’ll have to try go-karts again another time.

After that, we went to Shell World. They have a golf cart that is covered in sea shells, so of course I had to take a picture of the kids.

Inside the store, they had a fake shark’s head, so I told Matthew to pretend it was eating him. Of course, the others wanted in on it too. At first Christine sat on the mouth and it looked like the shark was biting her bum, but then she decided she wanted to be like the boys.

Eventually we made it home and we jumped in the pool. Andrew is totally comfortable in the water. He is quite a good swimmer. Matthew is very brave now as long as he is close to the edge so he can grab hold of something. He loves wearing a mask or goggles and going underwater.

Even Christine is getting more comfortable in the water. She won’t venture in very far on her own, but will put her face in the water and asks for the mask sometimes.

When in the pool, my job is to splash the kids and throw them when requested. It works fairly well.

Lisa’s job is to try to get the kids back for all of the grief they’ve caused her over the years. You can see she receives great pleasure from doing this 🙂

We went to The Olive Garden for dinner and had a great meal. We went to the outlet stores again to pick up a couple of things, and then we headed back to Downtown Disney for one last trip. It is beautiful at night with all of the people, and the buildings lit up.

Grandma and Grandpa gave them each a bit of money to get something, so Andrew did some prospecting/sifting. He bought 2 bags of what looked like dirt, and then you can sift them in the water and there are “gems” inside. He was very excited. Matthew and Christine both got to split open some volcanic rock to find a geode inside. Very cool.

We got home rather late, but Andrew still had time to have ice cream. Andrew then headed off to bed and the rest of us had the unpleasant task of cleaning up and packing 🙁

Saturday is our last day. We have to be out of the house by 11 am, so we will probably leave by 9 am, and we’re heading out for breakfast. We’ll then be on the road and hope to make it to Jeff & Evy’s place before 8 pm.

March 2011 Trip to Florida – Day 9 (Monday)

On Monday we headed off to Busch Gardens again. This time, we took the free shuttle out there. Grandma and Grandpa dropped us off so they could have the van. Grandma ended up going to a clinic and has bronchitis. She got a prescription and is hoping to feel some relief soon.

The shuttle was a big tour bus (bathroom included), so that was definitely the way to travel. Lisa said that the bus driver reminder her of the bus driver in the one scene in Enchanted (if you’ve seen it, you’re probably smiling right now). She also had “bulging eyes”, kind of like what you see in Ripley’s or Guinness. She was very nice and kind of funny. We watched part of Shrek the Third on the way, and before we knew it, we were there.

We had gone through most of the park last time, so we just did the same thing again. The kids played for a while in the Sesame Street Safari of Fun, we watched some of the crazy people ride the crazy roller coasters, and we saw lots of animals.

We did try to see a few things that we hadn’t seen last time. In the Jungala area (Andrew’s favourite area), there was a brief show with some performers dressed up as a walking stick, a crane, and frog.

In that same area we also saw some models of various skulls and paw prints. A very nice lady was telling us about some animals, and asked if we wanted to see a snake. The boys of course said yes, so she went and got one for them to hold.

For some reason, one of the boys favourite exhibits is in Egypt. They were fascinated by King Tut’s tomb.

Probably the only drawback of taking the shuttle there, was that you are at the park for the entire day. We were in the park by 11 am, and the bus didn’t leave until 7 pm to bring you home. We thought it might be hard to fill the time, but it went by fairly quickly. At the end of the day, we went to see a Cirque du Soleil type show called Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy. The performers were dressed up as various animals. There were 2 girls that could bend in ways we’d never seen. There were a couple of other people who did some aerial tumbling as well as a couple that swung on ribbons (you know… the kind that hand from the top of the stage). Overall it was very impressive.

On the way out I had someone take a picture for us.

As I mentioned before, Busch Gardens was way better than we had expected. It will definitely be something we recommend to others.

It looks like we’ll be headed off to Aquatica (the SeaWorld waterpark) today, and then we’ll head back to SeaWorld tomorrow with Grandma and Grandpa again joining us.

March 2011 Trip to Florida – Day 3 (Tuesday)

The weather was beautiful again on Tuesday. I’m not sure what it got up to, but it must have gotten up to 22-25° C. We swam in the morning and then headed off to Downtown Disney Marketplace.

We were there for around 3 hours. It is a beautiful place. The sun was shining, there were lots of people around, and the stores are great. We started off in the main Disney store so we could try to find some princess things for Christine.

We were originally looking for some gloves or a tiara. We saw both, but Christine chose an Aurora toy instead. We couldn’t believe how many girls were going through the Bibbity Bobbity  Boutique. What a money maker for Disney!

Another main destination was the LEGO store. Unfortunately, the existing store was under renovation, so they had a temporary location setup. They had lots of sets to buy, but that was about it. They only had one “life-size” character to get a picture of, and there was no place outside where the kids could build things. It was disappointing, but the boys still managed to make a list of a half dozen sets they wanted.

We went in a bunch of other stores, and then headed back home for lunch and some quiet time. The kids aren’t able to fall asleep at their normal time, and get up earlier than normal in the morning, and after a few days, they were getting particularly annoyed with one another. Andrew also wasn’t feeling that great. By mid-afternoon they had gotten up and we went swimming again.

We had an early dinner and then dropped off Grandma and Grandpa at the outlet mall that Lisa and I were at earlier in the week. The rest of us headed back to Downtown Disney.

We went by the T-Rex Cafe and the kids dug for dinosaur bones.

We also went into a couple of other stores that we had already gone in to earlier in the day. My camera battery had died, so I needed to take some more pictures.

We had a great day, and I’m sure we’ll end up back at Downtown Disney a few more times before we go.

On Wednesday we are going to Busch Gardens…

Our groundhog adventure

So, you’ve heard about our raccoon adventure. How about our groundhogs? Our neighbour has a big concrete patio at the back of his house. Last year we had a groundhog living under it and we named him Willie.  This spring there were 3 babies, and still only one adult. We assume that Willie was actually Wanda (and apparently was a floozy). Occasionally we would see all 4 of them out at the same time. Over the last week or more, we’ve only seen one of the smaller ones out.

Anyway, yesterday it came out, and I followed it to the front yard. It hid beside our air conditioner, so I had Matthew grab a net and after a bit of work I caught it. Dad and I took it across the canal and set it free. We’ll see if there are any left…

Matthew is beginning to think that I can catch anything. His friend told him they had a mouse  and Matthew said that his dad could catch it 🙂

Our raccoon adventure

Yesterday we had around 15 people over to help us with our yard. We shovelled dirt into our hole, we leveled the front yard, and we dug up weeds all over the place. The missionaries came over just after everyone had left and apologized for not making it over earlier, but they’d been at an appointment. We were talking with them outside when we saw a raccoon around our chimney. Let me fill you in on that a little more…

On Wednesday morning Lisa heard a noise coming from the fireplace. There were “chirps” and even some growling. It was apparent we had an animal with babies in our chimney, which we assumed were raccoons. Lisa called around to a few places, and it was going to be $300 or more to have someone come and remove them. When Dean first showed up, I asked him what he would suggest, and he said he’d had success with loud music.

So, back to the missionaries… I threw some rocks at the raccoon to scare it away so it wouldn’t go back down the chimney. Now the problem was how to get the babies out. We decided to “smoke ’em out” (as someone said). We got a fire going and not too long after, a baby raccoon fell down. Elder Hanks had some gloves on (and one of my t-shirts over his dress shirt) and grabbed it right away and took it outside. Another 10 minutes or so later another one fell down. We still heard some chirping, but the last one wasn’t coming out. Elder Hanks was using some different sticks/rods/hooks to try to get it out, but it just wouldn’t come. He eventually knocked it down and we got rid of it as well. I then covered the chimney and so we’re good now.

By the time Elder Hanks put the third raccoon outside, the other two were already gone, so we assume the mother took them. This morning, the last one was gone as well. As far as we know they were all alive when we left them in the ravine.

As Elder Hanks was leaving, he said with a big smile, “Is it wrong that this is the highlight of my mission?!” (he’s from the midwest and loves the outdoors and hunting).

Here is a picture of Elder Hanks with Andrew and the second raccoon.

The Wedding Invite

Hello again family,

The wedding invite is done it just needs to be printed now. Jason worked very hard on it and it looks amazing. You will all be receiving a “real” copy do not worry. This in not an “evite” I just wanted to share because I am so excited and so happy about it!


For the next two, you can click on the picture to see a larger version:


Buckhorn in Summer 2008

One of the highlights of the summer is going up to Buckhorn. Some of the family are lucky enough to be there for the full two weeks. We were able to be there for parts of 6 or 7 days (essentially 4 days the first weekend, 2 days the last weekend). Every year I comment how beautiful it is and how I wish I could stay longer. The weather wasn’t as nice as years past, but there was still lots to do.

The first trip up, the boys “swam”, we walked, and we relaxed. We went to the Whetung Ojibwa Art and Crafts Gallery. We also had an adventure at the Lakefield Fair. The second trip up, we went into Peterborough, went mini-putting, and excavated pieces of the Canadian shield for Lisa’s parents (thanks for your help Dad and Jason). Whether it was the first or second trip, Christine insisted on staying up late and waking up early. I guess cottage life was just too exciting for her.

I took loads of pictures. As is usually the case, you can see some of the thumbnails below, and see the rest of the thumbnails and larger versions in the Buckhorn in Summer 2008 gallery.

It seems like it is tradition now that we have a party each year. Two years ago we had a shower for Alisa. Last year we had a shower for Lisa. This year we decided to have a party on Andrew’s birthday. Lisa parents (Andrew’s Grandma and Grandpa) came up for the afternoon and we had a party in the “party room”. You can see pictures specifically from the party in the 20080727 Andrew’s Family Birthday Party in Buckhorn gallery.

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