30 December
Month in review

Currently on my 2 week holiday vacation, and am spending the 2nd week of it being sick (Nicole and Andrew both have colds). Nicole and my family made it out for Christmas with no problem, we had a nice big free range turkey. We hosted Christmas Eve for Nicole's family; and everything went off without a hitch. Andrew provided entertainment for all during both events.

Andrew currently has the Dr Jekyll/Hyde routine of being great during the day but not being happy at night, likely due to teething and not having distractions at night.

I'm now the proud owner of a CanoScan 9000F, it's good for scanning images/slides, and starts up plenty quick. Just need to get scanning now. Finished another batch of transcription today, will likely be done indexing and touching up of the 1891 English census sometime in January.

Kitchen is pretty much done, just have to do some tile work for the back-splash, finish off one of the toe-kicks, and replace some baseboard.

Work leading up to the holidays was the usual rush trying to finish everything. Wasn't happy with the inspection this year, felt like we were done in on the paperwork side of things.

20 November
Working Hard

All the cupboard and cabinets are mounted, the fridge panel has come in and is now mounted. Appliances all arrived, work and look nice. We framed in the space behind the cabinets towards the living room, so that we can mount bookcases, and we've given pretty much everything a nice coat of light green paint (old paint had black in it which gave it a dark, dirty look). Just need the counter people to come in and install, then all the door panels are going on, door knobs will be templated and the Smart Tile will come in.

Remembrance Day at work went without a hitch, just missed the rain thankfully. Just finished doing all the prep work last week for the inspection we're getting next week from auditing and technical staff.

Finished scanning the binder with the family history in it, clocked in at over 100 pages, with several letters, notes and further contact information (from the 60s so no idea if the source information hasn't been destroyed or if anyone is still alive). Only problem I've found is that the photocopier I ordered for work doesn't do OCR (scanning printed pages to text instead of images), so I'll have to find a way to do it with software.

30 October
Hard Work

Getting the cabinet and pipework above the microwave, and then the microwave mounted took two days. I'm glad it's done, and better yet it looks quite nice. Top row of cabinet are done, getting started on the bottom row, missing a few pieces as they came damaged, hopefully the pieces will be in before the appliances that are arriving in a week.

Took a small break last night and scanned/uploaded some more photos.

28 October
Home Reno

I'm almost half way into the two weeks I have off to get the kitchen redone. First bank of cabinets is almost complete, however having issues with getting the microwave range fan installed, as we're moving the new oven over 9" to the right which meant that the pipework had to be redone (and the old vent replaced), unfortunately we can't vent directly to the back as there is a joist in the way. Hoping to get it all done, or as much as possible, before I head back to work, because at that point the new appliances arrive (except the microwave which we already purchased).

Don't really have much time for anything else at the moment. Next on my list of things to do when I have a moment is get another batch of old photos scanned, and when I head back into work will be putting four different family trees (or less but done by different people) through the scan function on my works commercial photocopier. Makes me wonder a bit what was donated to Collections Canada and what was sent to the dump when my Great Grandmother passed away (At least some of the family trees include source and contact information, and include information on where the "Admiral" came into being).

18 October
Tired and Achy

Back from a week out in the field, body feels achy and the tiredness will take a few days to go away..
Nicole apologised at midnight last night for booking the car for oil change and maintenance today, as she'd thought I would get home earlier. Guess it'll be a working day off.

Still have to read through the stuff I received, the trees are done up by different parts of the skuce family (different than the Orval/Bessie tree(s) from the 70s), looks like there are several for the maternal lines as well. Will have to make time to do a sit down and read, as the trees fill several 2" binders.

Looking to buy a good negative/slide scanner at some point after I've redone the kitchen, have bins with boxes full of slides, need to figure what is what and then try to figure out who is who (and where).

3 October
Exciting News

Have just been given several copies from my Gt-Grandmothers collection of genealogical information. Including quite a bit of stuff I've never seen (very old newspaper clippings, character profiles, letters, etc), and photos on the Skuce side going back to the later half of the 1800s. I foresee quite a bit of scanning and reading in my future. Also received some stuff from my Grandmother including pictures from her side of the family.

27 September
Minor Issues

My web editing software wasn't wanting to connect to the server (or vice versa), have it sorted out now.
Work for the past week's been long, with multiple 14 hour days, thankfully next few weeks should be normal.
Nicole wanted a new stove, so we're redoing the whole kitchen. Good part is that whatever we put in will come right back out when we sell the place. Here's to ceramic tops and stainless steel.

19 September
2 Days for the Price of 1

Nothing like having a 20 hour workday. Up at 4am for 5am at work then not done till 1130 at night, and home for 1230am (today). Pretty sure we went overtime on the schedule, and I'm now doing overtime on my sleep.

11 September
Long Day

Work day started early, went with a bit of a sour note, and then continued downhill all day long. It's bad saying people are dumb, but when it comes to technology or workflow some just don't get it. My work load now appears to be going from manageable to hair losing, and I now will have to keep watch in case my hair starts to turn white. By work days end I was quite frustrated, however, the best thing about coming home is to a happy wife and kid.

10 September
Road Trip

Back from a 3 day trip down to several work sites state side, largely useless for me, but I was able to get a nice amount of sleep. Scariest thing was watching TV in the USA, too much violence and they "like" executing people.

3 September
Catch Up

Haven't posted in over a month, of which the first 2 weeks I was on vacation. Incidentally my brother was out from Manitoba over part of those 2 weeks on his 3 week vacation.

Most of my time felt like I slummed - in retrospect it appears I didn't completely slack off. We visited Maplewoods Farm in North Van, which was interesting as it was the last working farm in North Van, and is now a city-owned attraction. Went up Grouse Mountain with my brother's family and watched several shows, and can say I still don't like heights. The entire family gathered including Aunt's and Uncle's for my Dad's 65th birthday. Also went for numerous walks around Mundy Part and Deer Lake. Andrew graduated from the Co-Sleeper to a Crib, and we upgraded from a small BBQ to a good Barbeque. Unfortunately after that it was back to work.

Work over the few weeks I've been back has been nice and not too intense, so getting back into the grind of it all and getting things sorted out. Still quite the backlog to catch up on.

On the weekend of the 21st we did Bathroom Reno, sanded plastered and primed, painted a new colour and put in a New Vanity Mirror and Medicine Cabinet.

Went around the PNE on the 29th with Nicole's family, took in the RCMP musical ride. Plus it was the PNE's 100 year which was interesting, didn't look in the show home as it was just too busy.

On the 2nd September went to Stanley Park after work for a nice walk and Picnic in the park.

Today did the BFT, which is 13km, in Stanley Park. Weirdest part was that the young troops fell behind my pace. Time was ok at about 2:13, but not a personal best. Feet are badly blistered, so probably should get new boots.

1 August

Back after spending 6 weeks teaching in Shilo, Manitoba.
It's good to be home. Just have to get used to the change in timezones, and resist the urge to wake at 4am.

18 June

In the last five days we've been able to have coffee, lunch or tea with five different sections of our family. Andrew has been handed around quite a bit. He's getting more vocal, can turn onto his side again (could at birth, but gained too much mass), and he can now rotate 180 degrees while lying down.

Had fun pulling information from the English National archives, they've made it free access during the English football games at the World Cup, so getting as many images as I can for the 1911 census.

Need to setup a photo section of some sort, have current family photos and photos from the mid to late 1800s (plus early 1900s) from Canada, Scotland, England and Ireland. Still have way too many slides that I need to go through (hundreds, maybe even over a thousand).

13 June
100 Days

Andrew is getting rather big, he's already in his 6-9month clothing, and we've had to bump up to the next size of cloth diapers. Should note that the cloth diapers of today don't really resemble the cloth diapers of yesteryear, all I can say is yay for velcro and quick snaps.

Works been busy, somehow I put in a 6 day workweek last week, which was still better than 2 weeks before where I put in about 12 hours for 3 of 5 days in the week. Taking the next week off, hopefully after that I'll get into a nice groove of regular work hours, and be able to chill in my room during breaks.

1 June
Go Me

Indeed, I have another notch on my belt, so to speak. Pity work is making me feel many years older.

On another note Nicole was going on about something called a Millionaire Family, which I had never heard of, and Google could not find any good results for it, however, it did find an old term called Pigeon Pair, which is a Family with Boy/Girl Twins. For me it's always been a Nuclear Family probably because that's how it's portrayed in Commercial and Marketing material, in specific from the 50/60s, with a set of Parents and boy/girl siblings.

Yesterday, me and my extended (parents, gran, brother and cousin, plus wife and kid) family went to the Tea house at Stanley Park for brunch, food was good and the view was nice. I just didn't find it awe-inspiring though. Same company that runs the restaurant at Queen E Park, so more or less the same type of food.

10 May
Mother's Day

Yesterday was quite a busy day. I was up and doing food prep first thing in the morning, and cooked Mother's day breakfast (in bed) for Nicole. Soon after we left to meet up with my younger brother and mother at Golden Ears so could hike up to the lower falls, which is a pretty flat walk to the lower falls, Nicole and I turned back at that point, my brother and mother kept going, however, I not too sure about the upper falls as the map at the start of the trail has it ending at the lower falls, even though the trail continues. After hiking we darted back home so I could cook up dinner and prepare desert. since Nicole's mother and father were coming over for the evening. To sum it up in one paragraph doesn't do justice to the amount of running around and work that was done.

Have gone through all the VHS tapes today, and captured what was worth keeping, which was almost nothing. Discovered that all the recording that I made when I was younger were taped over with tv shows. Can't exactly say I'm impressed with myself, apparently I was too cheap to buy more VHS tapes at the time. Good news is we can now throw away all the VHS tapes we have.

8 May
Small jobs Day

Several small things were fixed around the house today, nothing major, just small odd item that were mildly annoying. Other than that today was pretty quiet. Went out to the mall as well, and bought a Composite to USB converter so I can save all the old VHS home movies to digital format (hopefully hasn't degraded too much).

Have been back to work for 2 weeks, I miss being at home on PATA, but at the same time I'm annoyed that some of the tasks my stand in was supposed to do just never happened. Hopefully I'll get everything on track for the summer season, however, with the amount of people that have involuntarily left the workplace (read: laid off/contract termination/etc), it is rather doubtful. My optimism was found rather funny by my co-workers, as at work my goals (plus common sense) and the reality of what happens never really match up.

Andrew is getting bigger: he's now about 2ft long, and almost double his birth weight. He sleeps at night, is rather active during the day, and when awake likes looking around. Trying to figure out if he might be teething, as he has on occasion been unhappy, but not tired, hungry, curious or with a wet diaper.

Professional Baby photos are now back from the photographer. Amazing what can be done with a good DSLR camera and lens. Inexpensive digital cameras are about on par with the old disposable cameras.

23 April
5 Years

Today was good. Dropped off Andrew with the volunteer sitter, then we went off and had dinner at a greek restaurant called Kefi's and after saw the film How to Train Your Dragon. It seems each year the animated movies keep getting better graphics. Once we returned home with baby in tow, we watched the remainder of the Canucks game with a cup of tea, and it was nice watching them thoroughly trounce the other team.

Spent a good part of yesterday and a bit of today with out credit union getting everything updated, RESPs and the like setup, and reducing our mortgage rate by almost a percentile. I like our bank, plus they have fun advertisements.

Last checkup on Wednesday had Andrew at another pound heavier, and a centimeter longer, which is good as he's slowing down a bit with the growing as he's getting somewhat heavier to carry. We've passed the 6 week mark so we're now transitioning form the Midwife to Nicole's doctor.

11 April
Day After

Baby shower went well, except that Andrew decided to sleep through most of it.
Can honestly say I'm off cake for awhile.

10 April
Shower on a clear day

Andrew had his last checkup on Wednesday, he's grown another 2cm, and now weights 10lbs 15oz it seems he gaining over an ounce per day. He's outgrown his newborn clothing, and is fast filling out the next size up.

Today is his baby shower, will have to see who is able to show up as it's a sunny day in the lower mainland and there are accidents plus road closures everywhere.

Took the deck chairs out of their protective covers and put on the padded coverings. Still a bit nippy with the breeze, however, it's spring so the deck needs to be good to go. Will have to see about getting a new BBQ to compliment everything else on the deck, plus dig up a few of the planters as not everything survived through the fall to spring.

25 March
Busy Busy Busy

Andrew was measured on Monday at 8lbs 13oz, and has grown over 3cm. The days have sort of jumbled together, and times no longer seems to go in a straight line, Nicole terms it "Baby Days".

Last week we started going on walks, starting with a small 1k around Como Lake, then 4k around Deer Lake, and finally Stanley Park last Friday doing about 6k, which was painful as we started at 3rd Beach walked past the lions gate bridge, then walked up to Prospect point (elevation gain of 60m or about 200ft) and then back down to 3rd Beach, I was not feeling happy by the end.

Seems every day an event or trip is going on, visiting another family member (or extended family), or work, or shopping. Getting tired, plus waking up several times during the night to change diapers.

Excited that the 1901 Irish Census is to arrive soon, and that the Irish Government is transcribing and placing online for free parish records with Cork&Ross set for placement this summer (Parts of Kerry and Dublin are currently online).

15 March
10 Days

Andrew is now 8lbs1oz, which is a gain of 7oz in 4 days. He's turning a little plump.

10 March
Learning Experience

Baby was 7lbs 12oz on birth, then 5oz on leaving hospital, day 3 weight in was still 7,5, then day 6 baby is up to 7, 10 oz and the umbilical cord fell off.. He'll probably be a little buddha baby as he's breastfeeding quite well.

We've gone with cloth diapers, and have used the disposable from the hospital. Have had two bad experiences with the disposable (One with Nicole and one with Nana (Great-Grandma)), and I can say I really prefer the cloth diapers with the snaps, as it is a "snap" changing..

Visits: Going out, no more than two hours, people coming in, ok, as long as they don't expect to be catered to and have phoned in advance.

Baby's nickname has gone through several iterations: from wiggles (before being born), to squirt, now to pipsqueak (little noises) or little chicken (soft hair).

Sleep is probably one of the most critical things, with 2 naps per day for Nicole before nighttime being a requirement. Nicole takes night shift for changing, and I take day shift. Also, always ensure baby has a diaper on, as gravity makes everything come out, and if no diaper on when picking up baby then everything likely will come out... onto the floor (or Nicole as she picked him up before the diaper was on).

Have to say this is a great experience.

6 March

Friday was to be the busiest day for the month with work. I had everything planned out: time, location, who, what and where. Then the planning went out the window early in the morning.

I am now a proud father. Baby boy and mother are fine, and we're now all at home. It all happened a few weeks earlier than we anticipated is all.

My days of going through historical records and microfilm will now be put on hiatus.

28 February
Long week

Downtown was kinda fun, had my picture taken in from of the Olympic Flame, and partook in the atmosphere. It was nice that they closed down Robson street, and to be honest, maybe it should be permanent. Also had the chance to ride the Canada Line, however felt rather small compared to the Millennium Line.

Nicole has been having some quite nasty back pain this last week, and my massage skills have been doing overtime. Thankfully we purchased a support belt that seems to help, and Nicole had no problem doing Yoga once she started using it, plus should be able to go into work.

Went to the theatre with Nicole and watched Avatar in 3D. Visually impressive, and has set the bar higher for effects, felt the story was a bit lackluster. Surprised that the movie was about 3 hours, didn't feel like it though.

Have been to the hospital several times this week, once to see a colleague, and then another day to visit my Gran.

Closing ceremonies had a better rendition of O Canada, as it had received quite the butchering during the opening ceremonies. I liked the closing ceremonies better than the opening, and thought that The Maple Leaf Forever was done quite well, as for the concert part of the ceremonies Nicole indicated that it was for the "Yoots", I must agree.

20 February
Hard days work

It has been beautiful the last few days, sunny sky, and 15+ degrees, even used the barbeque the other day; only problem is that the snow on the mountains is melting faster than the Olympics can finish. Will have to see what downtown is like tomorrow, maybe revel in the ambience, or be irritated by the commercialization.

Spent today, with my Father in Law (mechanically inclined), replacing both the bathroom toilet and the vanity. It all seems quite nice now, as stuff from when we bought our place was rather cheap, so it's now all been upgraded and uses the minimal amount of water and is environmentally friendly. Will be looking to replace the floor and repaint another weekend, perhaps redo the grout around the bathtub too (providing it's still warm and sunny, instead of the standard wintry conditions of damp and wet).

Have gone through the Toronto Star Archive, few nice little notes, but nothing too spectacular. On the plus side, I'm now sleeping well on the bed.

15 February
Yay for Weekends

Haven't slept the best during the past week. Not too sure if it's because of the new bed. Think it may be one bit too firm, as opposed to prior bed. Will give it another week, as the brochure says it takes on average 2 weeks to accustom.

Have just about everything I need to complete the 1910 US Census, and most of the items for the Form 30A Ocean Arrivals. Also decided to get a 24hr pass to the Toronto Star Online Archives, hopefully I'll find something interesting.

7 February
Cherry Blossoms

We were excited for the Bed to arrive last Sunday, the 31th, however much to our chagrin the delivery personnel became sick during the day and were unable to drop it off. I'd taken Thursday through the weekend off of work, so they were able to drop it off early Thursday, only problem was that Thursday evening Nicole and I were on our way to Victoria, so Nicole could attend a conference.

The idea for me tagging along was that it was supposed to be a Mini Vacation, with us spending an extra night there, unfortunately like a Vacation it cost the same amount. This is probably due to us staying at the Empress Hotel (Part of the Fairmont Chain), and then eating several meals there as well (must confess it was good food).

Spent some of my time going around town and in the library.

I was surprised at how many flowers are blooming and that the cherry trees are now in full bloom. This is in contrast with the lower mainland which is about 1 to 2 weeks behind (Will be just in time for the Olympics).
Guess this is why we pay higher taxes, and the cost real estate is a crime. However, bonus is we go direct from Fall to Spring, snow lands on the mountains and usually not on the city, plus by February there is a good chance one can wear t-Shirt and shorts. (note: this is an exception and not the rule for Canada, and as for the province this only applies for the lower mainland and southern half of the Island).

26 January

This seems to come up allot now days, however, as per the subject line I'm inclined to believe that we've turned into a society where people believe they are entitled to everything (or quite a bit), and expect others to do the work.
This was visible in several things today, and this past week, with one such incident where a bicyclist sped through a stop sign and was almost clocked by a truck, and then the cyclist yelled at the truck driver as he believed he had the right of way. Only problem with this is that cyclists have to obey the rules of the road and actually stop at stop signs (4 way stop). I was a pedestrian watching this, not driving, so I had a pretty good vantage of this stupidity in action. I'm sure this is part of the reason they have the Darwin awards, to award those that thin themselves out of the human race.


Spent at an hour extra at work and put together 3 new sofa's, the 4th was damaged as they were pushing them off the truck (apparently the lift takes too long), so I refused acceptance on that one, I'll blame Sears for being cheap (for the material or the labour being cheap). After went home and spent an hour and put together the Ikea drawers today. Fun.

25 January
Blue Sky

Weather has been rather nice as of late, with us actually being able to see blue sky. Often it's just cloudy and lots of rain for the winter months. Temperature has been decent with it being above 10 degrees. Only problem with this is that all the flowers are starting to push up. This year is quite different from last year, where it snowed, and no one could drive (no one has winter tires), but not the same as 2002 (pretty sure it was 2002) where is was almost 20 degrees, and one could suntan at the beach.

Went to the Conservatory in Vancouver a week ago, it's nice and the price isn't too bad, but it's small. Have to say the Bio-Dome in Montreal is much nicer, probably due to size. Walked around Queen-E park after, not much as it isn't spring just yet.

This last weekend we did more cleaning, purchased a new Kingsdown bed to replace our older Ikea foam mattress, which lasted 5 years. Then we nipped over to Ikea to buy a new dresser, which will be dual purposed.

Have found out that the BC Revenue agency doesn't actually answer the phones, after 4 hours with them on speakerphone something isn't right, maybe it's because I want money back. Other provincial agencies usually answer within 5 minutes.

Work's been busy the last two weeks, still lots of things to do, however, considerable amount of uncertainty about what will happen when we roll over to the new fiscal. I'm thinking it's going to be a middle ground type of year, with it not being business as usual, but not being a total collapse as some are predicting. Unfortunately this is brought on by our personnel and resources being over tasked, stretched beyond means and having too many penny pinchers (or bureaucracy or having too many hands in the cookie jar).

11 January
Back to work and unproductive weekend

Went back to work last week, and for all the goals that were set they were all done. Mind the bar was pretty low. The bar is a bit higher next week, plus all the days quite a bit longer, so hopefully everything will get done.

Not much has happened over the weekend. For me it should be relaxing, however, Nicole can't seem to relax, which in turn disturbs my peace. Even worse I find out that Nicole is forgetting quite a bit right now, such as remembering to lock the car (broken into to), paying for parking (fined), and remembering doctors notes (me driving home to get them). Definitely increases my level of irritability.

4 January

Telus upped our internet today, going from 150KBps to 600KBps. Will make downloading documents a bit faster, and we might even be able to stream video from the internet now. Only irritation was that they were supposed to do this a week ago, and that it required a call to them to fix it.

2 January
New Years Day

Yesterday was a fun but long day, which started out with me dragging myself out of bed and heading into work for a New Years Levee. I've always been either busy or way to attend in years past, however, it worked much like a standard social event, and will be good to know as next year we'll be hosting the Officers. Will have to remember to buy enough egg nog to make moose milk.

After lunch Nicole picked me up and we went over to Gran's for Tea, after which we headed to meet my brother at his girlfriend's place, where we had dinner and played many a board game, including Settlers of Catan and Munchkin. Evening was topped off with having desert at Cheesecake etc., which has very nice cheesecake that is almost too light in nature.

1 January 2010
Happy New Year

Title says it all. However, not a new decade because that's 2011 (Went from 1 BC to AD 1, no year zero in between).

Spent new years eve running errands: new wiper blades for the car, spackling some broken drywall, dinner at a greek restaurant called Soleka in Coquitlam. Our resolution was before the start of the new year was to finish gutting our home, ensure it was clean and permanently downsized of stuff. Day before we went browsing for Baby Stollers and Crib's.