Tuesday, August 25, 2009

HTC Touch Pro 2 - Home Reno's - Summer Visits

The end of summer quickly approaches, you can feel it in the mornings on the ride in. It's so much cooler, the start of the fog in the fields, as well the deer are grazing a little later in the AM. Amazing how quickly this summer has gone! No complaints though as it really has been a very nice one.

The reno's are continuing in Earnest, and taking virtually all my spare time as expected. We finished the Hardie-Plank on the Master Bedroom just last night. Now onto soffit trays and vents, styro insulation in crawl space, electrical upgrade, and prep work for the supports for the deck in Front. In the back our friend came down from Nanaimo to frame-up for the 8 x 18 sunroom. It went very well and now waiting on the glass to arrive.

This summer, as most others, always brings us many of our friends and family to visit us here in Victoria. My good friend came to the coast to celebrate our 30 years of friendship, who else could have put up with me for long? We also had many of A's family from up north and from oversea's! Great to see and meet them all.

Lastly we had an Internal competition where the winner is given a brand new HTC Touch Pro 2 smartphone for a few weeks. Yes you guessed it, I was selected to be one of the participants! It is a fun little device, only had it since Friday. So more on that later this week.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Dedicated to our Boston Terrier Nick (St Nicholas CKC) who passed April 27, 2009

The Last Will and Testament

of An Extremely Distinguished Dog

Last Will and Testament

I, Silverdene Emblem O'Neill (familiarly known to my family,
friends and acquaintances as Blemie), because the
burden of my years is heavy upon me, and I realize the end of my
life is near, do hereby bury my last will and
testament in the mind of my Master. He will not know it is there
until I am dead. Then, remembering me in his
loneliness, he will suddenly know of this testament, and I ask
him then to inscribe it as a memorial to me.

I have little in the way of material things to leave. Dogs are
wiser than men. They do not set great store upon
things. They do not waste their time hoarding property. They do
not ruin their sleep worrying about objects they
have, and to obtain the objects they have not. There is nothing
of value I have to bequeath except my love and
my faith. These I leave to those who have loved me, to my Master
and Mistress, who I know will mourn me most,
to Freeman who has been so good to me, to Cyn and Roy and Willie
and Naomi and - but if I should list all those
who have loved me it would force my Master to write a book.
Perhaps it is in vain of me to boast when I am so
near death, which returns all beasts and vanities to dust, but I
have always been an extremely lovable dog.

I ask my Master and Mistress to remember me always, but not to
grieve for me too long. In my life I have tried to
be a comfort to them in time of sorrow, and a reason for added
joy in their happiness. It is painful for me to think
that even in death I should cause them pain. Let them remember
that while no dog has ever had a happier life (and
this I owe to their love and care for me), now that I have grown
blind and deaf and lame, and even my sense of
smell fails me so that a rabbit could be right under my nose and
I might not know, my pride has sunk to a sick,
bewildered humiliation. I feel life is taunting me with having
over lingered my welcome. It is time I said good-by,
before I become too sick a burden on myself and on those who love

It will be sorrow to leave them, but not a
sorrow to die. Dogs do not fear death as men do. We accept it as
part of life, not as something alien and terrible
which destroys life. What may come after death, who knows? I
would like to believe with those of my fellow
Dalmatians who are devout Mohammedans, that there is a Paradise
where one is always young and
full-bladdered; here all the day one dillies and dallies with an
amorous multitude of houris, beautifully spotted;
where jack-rabbits that run fast but not too fast (like the
houris) are as the sands of the desert; where each blissful
hour is mealtime; where in long evenings there are a million
fireplaces with logs forever burning and one curls
oneself up and blinks into the flames and nods and dreams,
remembering the old brave days on earth, and the
love of one's Master and Mistress.

I am afraid this is too much for even such a dog as I am to
expect. But peace, at least, is certain. Peace and long
rest for weary old heart and head and limbs, and eternal sleeps
in the earth I have loved so well. Perhaps, after all,
this is best.

One last request I earnestly make. I have heard my Mistress say,
'When Blemie dies we must never have another
dog. I love him so much I could never love another one.' Now I
would ask her, for love of me, to have another. It
would be a poor tribute to my memory never to have a dog again.
What I would like to feel is that, having once
had me in the family, now she cannot live without a dog! I have
never had a narrow jealous spirit. I have always
held that most dogs are good (and one cat, the black one I have
permitted to share the living-room rug during the
evenings, whose affection I have tolerated in a kindly spirit,
and in rare sentimental moods, even reciprocated a
trifle). Some dogs, of course, are better than others.
Dalmatians, naturally, as everyone knows, are best.

So I suggest a Dalmatian as my successor. He can hardly be as
well bred, or as well mannered or as distinguished
and handsome as I was in my prime. My Master and Mistress must
not ask the impossible. But he will do his
best, I am sure, and even his inevitable defects will help by
comparison to keep my memory green. To him I
bequeath my collar and leash and my overcoat and raincoat, made
to order in 1929 at Hermes in Paris. He can
never wear them with the distinction I did, walking around the
Place Vendome, or later along Park Avenue, all
eyes fixed on me in admiration; but again I am sure he will do
his utmost not to appear a mere gauche provincial
dog. Here on the ranch, he may prove himself quite worthy of
comparison, in some respects. He will, I presume,
come closer to jackrabbits than I have been able to in recent
years. And, for all his faults, I hereby wish him the
happiness I know will be his in my old home.

One last word of farewell, Dear Master and Mistress. Whenever you
visit my grave, say to yourselves with regret
but also with happiness in your hearts at the remembrance of my
long happy life with you: 'here lies one who
loved us and whom we loved.' No matter how deep my sleep I shall
hear you, and not all the power of death can
keep my spirit from wagging a grateful tail.

The reputation of Eugene O'Neill as the American Shakespeare was established even before his death in 1953. O'Neill's output was formidable - more than 30 plays, including the posthumously produced classic, Long Day's Journey Into Night. He was a Nobel Prize winner. Reflecting his own tempestuous emotional background - be came from a yeasty but tragic Irish-American family - his plays are rarely engaging.

So his epitaph to his dog is a rarity among O'Neill documents - sentimental, even whimsical, close in spirit to his one major comedy, Ah Wilderness! The dog was acquired at a relatively peaceful period of O'Neill's life. He and his protective third wife, the beautiful actress Carlotta Monterey, looked upon it as their 'child.' O'Neill wrote Blemie's will as a comfort to Carlotta just before the dog died in its old age in December 1940


Saturday, April 04, 2009

Slight bump in our house expansion

Recent Pics from the House Expansion

Our headway on the expansion of the house went a little sideways over the past few days. On Wednesday while at the beach walking the dogs, our youngest Boston Terrier, Emma, (the one with both Cushings and the immune disorder) collapsed and needed to be carried back to the Van. We had hoped that with her and Odin playing so much that she had just overdone it. Yesterday, we took all three to the local Dog Park, so as not to overtax her. Alison noticed Emma's gums were very pale (a sign that her red blood cell count was again crashing) so called our vet for an emergency visit. As we were right around the corner we had hoped to get in soon. We got ready to head off, I thought one more kick of the soccer ball for Odin. Kicked it up in the air, he ran to intercept it and as it was coming down he jumped for it but came down bad on his right rear leg! Other folks at the Park came to offer assistance, very nice of them all. We got a blanket from the van and carried Odin back to it and rushed him to the vet.

Gotta say we have a fantastic Vet Clinic, Glenview Animal Hospital who as always stepped up to help. Turned out that Odin broke his femur bone, but thankfully a clean break that could be repaired with pins and wire. The prognosis is excellent as he is a young dog. Unfortunately it means somehow keeping him calm and restricting his movement, ha ha yeah right for 6-8 weeks!!

Odin back home recovering


Thursday, March 26, 2009

Master Bedroom outer shell almost done

Another Quick update:

It has been a busy two weeks, working 7 days a week, with Joe, Vince and Ian on the expansion. It's great to work alongside those who know how things are to be built. I am learning a lot from them. This physical work is a very rewarding though, great to see and make progress with our expansion. We put the trusses on yesterday, and are to begin the sheathing today. I called a few roofing companies for quotes' yesterday, I had hoped to do the roof myself but with the time available we may have to hire someone in instead.

Unfortunately I had a piece of 1/2 plywood come down and guillotine my upper part of the foot, bruised right through to the underside, so I was hobbling around the job site yesterday. Fells much better today, still limping but at least I can put weight on it.

We have our French Doors for the Master Bedroom, they are Low-E and we ordered the same glass for all the windows in the room (5 others - it's going to be a very light room). Now that it is almost shelled up you can really get a feel for how big it is. Ali and I are just starting to figure out the inside decorations, with a lot of help from Ian ,he has done many homes in England and has been a wealth of information and help while here. More about Ian on another post as it is pretty interesting why he is here in the first place.

Well here is the link to the new pictures, as well posting a couple of Joe and Vince working, yes I work too but not when holding the camera. ;-)


Friday, March 20, 2009

Block wall up, rebar and fill next

Both crawl spaces, under the Master Bedroom and under the Sunroom were completed, well the Block wall portion is. Rebar goes in this AM, three pylons, then inspection. We expect to pour the concrete for fill this afternoon. Then we can begin the floor joists, tomorrow? Coming along very quickly. My limbs are killing me, a lot of work for this office worker. Talk about out of shape, LOL .




Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Day three - Footings in, gravel for crawlspace..

Pretty rough start today, Little Nick kept us up all night with expected reaction to the heart meds he is on which caused him to be very thirsty and naturally want to go out more often, (every 20 minutes). So of course neither of us got any sleep, this is night 3 for me, more zombie than human today. Might have been for the best as we had another 5.5 Tons of gravel arrive, how many shovels is that? This was after we removed the forms for the footings, they came out great. As we were moving the gravel, Vince and Joe were cutting out the access to the new crawlspace. All in all it went very well today, but I do need some sleep as we have more concrete, (skim coat) coming at 08:00 tomorrow... so here's some more video's, no still pictures this time, will try to get some tomorrow...



Day two....footings and lots more gravel

Today we (well mostly Joe and Vince) built up the rebar in the forms, formed up the back area both ready to be inspected and then poured. Due to family emergency I missed the inspection but both Joe and Vince looked after it. Our order of concrete arrived by 3PM for the footings we had two wheelbarrow's going to move the concrete. The front area was pretty straightforward, but the back was a mudbog. A real pain to get keep the wheelbarrow tracking correctly. Nonetheless it did get poured. Vince began Setting the vertical Rebar, Joe was finishing and curring rebar. The gopher, yup that was me, was sent for a resupply of rebar. End of day the footings were in place setting up.



On another note, our eldest Boston Terrier developed congestive Heart disease and needed to be rushed to the animal hospital Monday evening. He spent nearly 18 hours in an oxygen tent, while they fed him drugs to remove the liquid from his lungs, also others to try to reduce his enlarged heart. He came home last night, but is not quite right, also he needs to pee ever 30 minutes.. so naturally we slept very little again last night....The wife also had an issue with an irregular heartbeat, this has been ongoing for a few weeks. She was taken into emergency by her boss yesterday where they tried to get the excess beat range down within some normal numbers...when she went in her BPM were above 160.


Monday, March 16, 2009

First Day of Building

The first day of building has arrived, and what a mixed bag of weather we had, everything from light rain, heavy rain, Sunshine, snow and winds. Just count ourselves lucky that it was not heavy rain all day. We got the gravel in the front area, forms for the footings in almost ready for inspection and then pouring tomorrow. Back area will also be ready to go to, just a matter of getting it bombed into tomorrow AM for the inspection in the afternoon.  We also had to get another 5.5 tons of gravel in today, spent most of the afternoon moving that around, wonderful to be a grunt.  LOL Really though I am very tired for all the work got a little soft sitting around the office I suppose. I did survive the day going to be a bit stiff in the AM tomorrow but also having a lot of fun helping get all of this done. nice to see the progress we have made in one day.

Some Videos:




Some Pictures:

Well dinner time... more tomorrow


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Project begins

Well it begins, and yes it is exciting to start. We have had the Excavator guys in from Atlas Excavating to prep the site before we get the building under way. Sinjur Masonry will be on their way down this Friday and expected to arrive on Sunday. Next Monday we start on the expansion of the House, it's going to be a blast. For those not in the know, it's a little project.  Build an expanded room (16 x 16) at the front of the house, this will become the Master Bedroom. Build a room at the back of the house (8 x 18) that will become the Sunroom, and will have many windows. Our existing Master Bedroom once moved will become the new Computer room, (yes going to build a small Server room - - Geek), with two built-in desks etc..... Once the computers are moved into their new area, then the old computer room will become the new Bathroom, larger, corner tub Glass Block shower Poor-man's ensuite from the new master bedroom and accessable from the existing hall. Current Bathroom, will be gutted back wall knocked out and through to the new Master Bedroom, turning it into a walkthru closet...then....  OK OK you get the idea... going to try to keep this updated daily as well as my flickr site with the days events around the Site.

Bob the Builder....;-)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Odin Graduates from Intermediate Level Training

My Buddy completed his Second level training last night. He really has come a long way, and surprisingly I still have all 10 fingers, for a while there I thought I might lose some....

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Here's Eddie

We started to fill the last little patch real estate I have left on my arm. Went to the Zoo, of course, Colin working his magic again. So without further adoo, here's Eddie. Next sitting comes colour and background.... oh and yes that close to the Armpit does hurt!!

EOF  -  LC

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Help Make Terrace BC Hockeyville 2009!!

Just announced last night, the 10 choices for CBC and Kraft's Hockeyville 2009 contest. My old Haunting ground and place I absolutely love is one of the contenders.

Terrace, British Columbia

One of the most beautiful places I have lived, and talk about a hockey town. Let's help them get voted number 1 as our choice for this year's Hockeyville.

Vote now!! and vote often!

Terrace's Hockeyville page here...

Sunday, January 11, 2009

All geared up and no where to go...

A quick peek at some farkle my wife bought me for the bike...