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    Too many boxes remain…

    2019 - 08.05

    It’s been over 3 years in the forever house and yet boxes remain, we’ve been working harder at emptying and sorting them lately and been making a reasonable amount of progress. Something that you can do only so quickly and can only handle so much of at a time. But it’s clearly progress. Maybe we’ll finish by the end of the year, or maybe the end of the month (that would be amazing).

    Sleep Deprived

    2015 - 04.24

    How’s this for sleep deprivation? Yesterday afternoon, after Nadia ate a banana on our way home, I didn’t have a garbage bag in my car so I carefully arranged the banana peel on top of the empty plastic bag that was on my passenger seat so that the peel wouldn’t get the fabric mucky.

    Yep. More sleep would probably be awesome.

    A wicked stomach bug has been going through our school, although it hasn’t really hit my class (yet, knock on wood). I’m feeling really sick to my stomach, so I’m hoping that it’s not that, and that I’m just really tired. I’ve been using a ton of hand sanitizer and washing my hands like crazy. Several classes in the school have had over 1/3 of the kids home sick, including our buddy class and a couple classes which contain siblings of my students. :/

    Day Three

    2015 - 04.23

    Third day in a row of blogging since I decided to start again. It’s nice to be stretching my writing muscles…they’ve atrophied quite a bit over the last three years.

    My luck has run out with the broken cookies I mentioned a few days ago… N was insisting on the “BIG??? PEAS????” (please) ones today. Unfortunately we were sifting through the crumbs left at the end of the bag…so until there’s a Costco run, we’re both out of luck. 

    To try and bring Nadia’s bedtime to a reasonable hour, I’ve asked her daycare teachers to try waking her up a little earlier from her nap. Currently, she consistently sleeps 1230-3, give or take some time on either end, and it’s rare that she’s asleep before 11…usually closer to midnight, with a morning wake up call by us around 730. This afternoon she napped 1230-2, and was asleep before 10. This might be the final piece in the puzzle that has been our kid’s sleep patterns. I’m going to follow suit and try to sleep. She woke me up at 2 am, and I wasn’t able to get back to sleep until at least 330, so that made for a two coffee morning.

    Pasta Hack

    2015 - 04.22

    I like long pasta, but it’s a bit tricky for the toddler to eat, and I don’t send bibs to daycare which can make things pretty messy (Nadia wears red or brown on those days). I’m lazy and don’t have time to make two different kinds of pasta separately, or the inclination to wash two pots (lazy: see above).

    My solution: metal colander in the pot. Cooks the orzo and the vermicelli simultaneously. :)


    Hawaii Five-0: Seriously?!?!?!??!

    2013 - 02.05

    I don’t know why I still watch this show, I guess I just secretly hope that it gets better… or maybe it’s that Hawaii is a pretty place and it’s nice to see in HD, or it could be about the Shrimp Truck owner and all his crazy schemes.

    So you have an episode and you’re going to cast someone as a sniper, but who has prosthetic mechanical hands capable of crushing people’s throats.  So who do you cast in that role?  Peter Weller of course… you know Robocop… seriously?

    One thing we have learned…

    2013 - 01.06

    After the move one of the things that we noticed was how much better our TV looked, and it’s definitely something we’ve appreciated while we’ve been sick.  There hasn’t been a lot of anything other than watching TV over the last week.

    Back in the old place we had lots of windows and relatively normal blinds which do a crappy job of keeping the light out.  Coupled with having the TV on the fireplace mantel, giving a less optimal viewing angle and I don’t think we fully appreciated how good our TV looked until now.  Proper viewing height and a blackout shade make a huge difference to the viewing experience.

    I think we always knew that we weren’t getting the most out of our viewing experience, but didn’t fully appreciate how much of a difference it can make.  So if your HDTV is somewhere with a less than optimal viewing angle, or where there’s too much uncontrolled light, try it somewhere else and see what a difference it can make.

    Happy Birthday!

    2013 - 01.03

    Dave’s birthday is today! :) Unfortunately, we’re both sick with colds (his was worse than mine yesterday, mine is getting worse today. Boo.) so we’ve mostly been just hanging out today, although we both needed to go out at different times.

    And since it’s after 7 pm, I think it’s safe to say that Dave won’t be getting a son or daughter delivered to him on his birthday. :)

    Happy birthday, love!

    Sons of Anarchy

    2013 - 01.02

    Dave happened to notice that there was a Sons of Anarchy (SoA) marathon on FX Canada, a channel I didn’t even know that we got. I’d heard some good things about it, so we decided to record it and just see what it was all about.

    So far, I’ve really been enjoying it. There’s a lot of different plot threads weaving their way through the show, with great characters who seem very lifelike, with realistic weaknesses and blindnesses. I also like that there are quite a few references to things that happened before the show started, giving it a depth that doesn’t often appear in shows. We’ve watched most of season 1 in the last couple days, and season 5 started airing in September. Season 6 has been in production, and there’s talk of a seventh which may be the planned end of the series.

    Today I did have to hunt down a SoA/Motorcycle Club dictionary to make sure I actually understood some of the references. :) I really like watching the dichotomy of the affection and (tough) love shown within SoA “family” and the blood families that are involved, versus the ruthlessness that is dealt out to people who are perceived as being outside of the family. I haven’t seen all of the Sopranos, but it seems to me that it was very similar to a lot of the dynamics in that fictional criminal organization.

    Protected Lakes and Rivers

    2012 - 12.12

    Last week a picture started circulating around Facebook:

    On Dec 4, 2012, Canada had 2.5 million protected rivers and lakes.  On Dec 5, 2012, Canada has 82 protected rivers and lakes.

    Turns out that the numbers are off in the image, but it’s still mostly true, to a point.  I wondered what the list of protected waterways was, and here’s what I found (from http://elizabethmaymp.ca/is-your-lake-safe, where they put the list in a drop down for no real reason):


    1. Athabasca River
    2. Bow River
    3. Lake Athabasca

    British Columbia

    1. Columbia River
    2. Fraser River
    3. Great Bear Lake
    4. Harrison Lake
    5. Harrison River
    6. Kamloops Lake
    7. Kinbasket Lake
    8. Kootenay Lake
    9. Kootenay River
    10. Lake Revelstoke
    11. Little Shuswap Lake
    12. Lower Arrow Lake
    13. Mara Lake
    14. Okanagan Lake
    15. Peace River
    16. Pitt Lake
    17. Pitt River
    18. Powell Lake
    19. Shuswap Lake
    20. Skeena River
    21. South Thompson River
    22. Thompson River
    23. Upper Arrow Lake
    24. Williston Lake


    1. Assiniboine River
    2. Lake Manitoba
    3. Lake Winnipeg
    4. Lake Winnipegosis
    5. Red River
    6. Winnipeg River

    New Brunswick

    1. Saint John River

    Newfoundland and Labrador

    1. Lake Melville

    Nova Scotia

    1. Bras d’Or Lake
    2. Great Bras d’Or Lake
    3. LaHave River

    Northwest Territories

    1. Great Slave Lake
    2. Mackenzie River


    1. Baker Lake


    1. Adams Lake
    2. Balsam Lake
    3. Benson Lake
    4. Big Bald Lake
    5. Big Duck Pond
    6. Big Rideau Lake
    7. Buckhorn Lake
    8. Cain Lake
    9. Cameron Lake
    10. Canal Lake
    11. Cataraqui River
    12. Chemong Lake
    13. Clear Lake
    14. Colonel By Lake
    15. Cranberry Lake
    16. Cranesnest Lake
    17. Detroit River
    18. Dog Lake
    19. Dows Lake
    20. Duck Pond
    21. Eagle Lake
    22. Fairy Lake
    23. Fenelon River
    24. French River
    25. Gloucester Pool
    26. Grand River
    27. Holland River
    28. Holland River East
    29. Humber River
    30. Indian Lake
    31. Joseph Lake
    32. Katchewanooka Lake
    33. Kemptville Creek
    34. Lake Couchiching
    35. Lake Erie
    36. Lake Huron
    37. Lake of Bays
    38. Lake of the Woods
    39. Lake Ontario
    40. Lake Scugog
    41. Lake Simcoe
    42. Lake St. Clair
    43. Lake Superior
    44. Little Bald Lake
    45. Little Cranberry Lake
    46. Little Lake
    47. Long Island Lake
    48. Loon Lake
    49. Lost Lake
    50. Lovesick Lake
    51. Lower Buckhorn Lake
    52. Lower Rideau Lake
    53. Mary Lake
    54. Mitchell Lake
    55. Moose River
    56. Mosquito Lake
    57. Murray Canal
    58. Muskoka Lake
    59. Newboro Lake
    60. Niagara River
    61. Nipigon Lake
    62. Nipissing Lake
    63. North Branch of Muskoka River
    64. Opinicon Lake
    65. Otonabee River
    66. Ottawa River
    67. Peninsula Lake
    68. Petawawa River
    69. Pigeon Lake
    70. Pigeon River
    71. Pollywog Lake
    72. Rainy Lake
    73. Rainy River
    74. Rice Lake
    75. Rideau Canal
    76. Rideau River
    77. River Styx
    78. Rosedale River
    79. Rosseau Lake
    80. Sand Lake
    81. Scugog River
    82. Severn River
    83. Seymour Lake
    84. Sparrow Lake
    85. St. Clair River
    86. St. Marys River
    87. Stevens Creek
    88. Stony Lake
    89. Sturgeon Lake
    90. Talbot River / Trent Canal
    91. Tay River / Canal
    92. The Canal
    93. Timiskaming Lake
    94. Trent Canal
    95. Trent River / Canal
    96. Upper Chemong Lake
    97. Upper Rideau Lake
    98. Vernon Lake
    99. Welland Canal
    100. Whitefish Lake


    1. Canal de Beauharnois
    2. Lac des Deux Montagnes
    3. Lac Memphremagog
    4. Lac Saint-Jean
    5. Lachine Canal
    6. Richelieu River
    7. Riviere des Mille-Iles
    8. Riviere des Prairies
    9. Riviere Saint-Maurice
    10. Saguenay River


    1. North Saskatchewan River
    2. South Saskatchewan


    1. Yukon River


    1. Arctic Ocean
    2. Atlantic Ocean
    3. Pacific Ocean
    4. Saint Lawrence River

    I’m not really sure personally how I feel about it.  To some degree I’m inclined to oppose it on principle, but I haven’t done any research to see if I actually think that this change is dumb, and just because the conservatives did it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s stupid.  That said, it definitely seems like a step in the wrong direction when you just look at the numbers.  Must say that I don’t feel motivated to look into it further however, because if I find that it I disagree, then I’m left opposing a majority government which will continue to do what it wants…

    Baby Registry

    2012 - 11.02

    So we’re in the process of trying to come up with a baby registry.  So far it has been way more difficult than I thought it would be.  There’s so many options out there, and so many things that they at least want to sell you.  So far we’ve looked extensively at Sears and Baby ‘R’ Us.  Does anyone have any other recommendations, or good or bad experiences with baby registries?

    • Were there any items that you received that you thought were useless but turned out to be indispensable?
    • Were there any items that you asked for that you never used, or regret getting?

    The other challenge that we have with this whole process is that Karin and I are not historically minimalists, but it is where we’re trying to go.  Given that we feel that it’s mostly a learned behaviour, we want to be there from the beginning with The Passenger so that they don’t learn bad habits.  That also makes it difficult to fill out a gift registry.

    That said we think we’ve actually finally managed to get it down to things we probably actually will use when raising The Passenger™.  I won’t claim that we’ve managed to pare it down to only things that we actually need but I do think we’ll use this stuff, and that we haven’t gone too crazy.

    We’ve got two registries at this point, and they do overlap a little (but not completely), so if you do decide to get something from the registry please do get a gift receipt (just in case).

    If you are reading this, please don’t feel that you need to get us anything.  It would be appreciated but we don’t want anyone to feel obligated.  Cards are totally adequate should you feel the need to give us something.  Otherwise, feel free to make a contribution to an RESP (although please let us know if you intend to do this, as we’ll need to manage the lifetime contribution amount, and provide you with a valid SIN).

    The registries are (spaces are added for readability):

    If you’re at a store without the numbers you should be able to find them under “Karin Abel, Burnaby, BC” or under my name.

    Other really cool options if you want to think outside the box a little:

    • bring Karin food after The Passenger arrives (apparently there are some cultures where this is the norm)
    • babysitting ;-)
    • visiting
    • video messages

    That’s the limit of my creativity at the moment.  Somewhat related, Karin’s shower is on November 17th.  She’s a little shy about it, so if you haven’t received an invitation yet, but would like to go let me know.  People aren’t being excluded on purpose.