29 Dec

Visited the Vancouver Aquarium, it's undergoing a large expansion/reno. Haven't been in there since I was young, maybe in around or soon after they closed the zoo portion. Andrew enjoyed parts of it, however, he was more interested in anything that had a button than the fish and other marine critters.

Installed Nicole's sliding shelf, she's happy. Processed some more photos and placed them online.

28 Dec
Long Christmas

Lead up to Christmas was pretty busy, on Sunday after picking up groceries and our free range Turkey, we went to the Burnaby Village Museum and were not overly thrilled as too many people and nothing overly amazing, however, it was a free event. After going to the museum we went to Queen-E park to visit the conservatory, which had quite the light display (we also had two for one coupons from going to the Stanley Park Train) and it will likely be something to visit next year.

Christmas Eve had us going to Chilliwack to visit with Nicole's family, and involved quite a bit of running around getting ready for the night and visiting relatives, and we had the standard Austrian dinner with sole. At the end of the night we came back home to ensure we were prepared for Christmas, as we had Nicole's extended family in the morning for a late breakfast and presents, and then we had my family mid-afternoon for Christmas Dinner. Andrew was pretty spoiled by the end of the day, with Nicole and I not too sure who gave him what, other than a bit too much.

Boxing day and the day after had us resting from the prior few days, and doing some basic cleanup around the house. Whereas today we went out and did some shopping, as I needed new shoes and Nicole wanted to test out some sliding shelves for our kitchen cabinets.

Have added some more photos, and have sent off for a yDNA test for the Ottenbreit surname. Have to contact some more people to ensure I have the correct mailing address for DNA testing, with the primary goal of having a family finder DNA test done on the Skuce line.

21 Dec
No Power

With a tiny bit of snow, which quickly turned into slush, its amazing how bad things can go pretty quick. Power was intermittent for the last two days, and once restored about half the compact florescent bulbs had been fried. As it was a brown-out (only 1 of 3 phases working), only the led lights worked and survived without issue.

Have had my standard time off sickness, although not too bad, just a light cold.

Have been running around for most of the past week shopping, cleaning or putting together Christmas presents. Don't feel like I've accomplished too much.

16 Dec
Winter Leave

Vacation started on Friday, however, was still in work for the last two days, first with the Soldiers Dinner on Saturday and then the Children's party today. Andrew was pretty happy with his present, as he likes his trains. After the Children's party went to Granville Island for some last minute Christmas shopping and then rode the train at Stanley Park (our train barely made it back to the station, as it had some engine problems).

Will be ordering some more DNA testing, including a family finder for the Skuce side. Have found that the Family Finder can do more generations back than what it says it can do, as I've paired the mtDNA plus the FF on my mothers side and compared what I have for research and the match looks like it's further back, and other researcher who've used the FF have indicated that it can go back in some cases 8 generations.
Will also look to test some more markers on the yDNA, as right now it's at 32, and hopefully some others will follow suit to narrow down where the relation would be.

Will fit in some genealogy and family history catch up between the winter festivities. Might even go up the mountains to see play in the snow. Finding is becoming more restrictive, have seen them remove several collections and are making a number of them have their images only available at a research center, which is rather irritating as it's better to verify an image than have to deal with a transcript.

23 Nov
Mini Vacation

Have more than just a weekend off work, as I now have an entire week off. Should be able to get some good sleep and naps in.
Uploaded a few more photos, still have quite a number to go through and process.

19 Nov
Long Weeks

Work weeks and working weekends are starting to drag, eagerly waiting for the end of November.
Bit behind on emails, so if I haven't gotten back to you I apologize and please note I haven't forgotten.

11 Nov
Diamond Jubilee

I got a medal. Apparently I do something right, or I work excessively.
I'll be happy when November is over, as it's all six day work weeks this month.

National Archives of Ireland now has the images for the Tithe Applotment Books online which cover 1823-37. Looking through, some of the entries and townlands are poorly transcribed, which is irritating, but it's easy enough to figure out what it should be phonetically.

Having good success using historic newspaper to glue the various Skuce/Skuse families together. Found some pretty good anecdotes, and can start tying in other items such as early military records.

30 Oct
Photos and Research

Have been able to scan another batch of old photos, with the latest batch being quite interesting, as it contains all the children and grandchildren, and a few great grandchildren of Thomas Skuce (from his two wives)(Thomas is the s/o Francis Skuce and Elizabeth Cole).
Behind in processing the photos and getting them posting online; per album there should be about 1 in 10 photos uploaded, last batch likely a few more.

Due to the amount of items being scanned, including textual, certificates, etc, will likely need to rename the Photo section, and properly develop it for the amount and type of records.

Something to ponder, for the amount of family history out there, most of it is thrown away. As younger family members aren't interested, no children to take care of family possessions, and many people keeping family information close to the chest or taking it to the grave. I'll need to at some point look at where, or to whom, all the genealogical information, books, photo albums and like that I have will go.
The above really applies to my mothers side of the family, as they notorious for having a lack of family history (most of it met bad ends).

Received back some more DNA results, for my mothers side, where I had "Family Finder" testing done. I had thought that I'd done a decent job of researching the family tree, however, of all the 4/5th cousins listed I can't seem to figure out where the connection is, which is rather frustrating. Since the testing is supposed to only be good for up to 5th cousins, then there should only be 32 different lines to trace down, unfortunately going back to the late 1700s there seems to be a general lack of easily available Scottish records.

Went and saw the Wiggles on Sunday, at the UBC Thunderbird Center, as we had floor seating Andrew was able to stand the entire time and had a blast.

9 Oct

Ancestry has just released a large Irish Newspaper resource, however, none of it has been converted to text. So the archive is manual searching only. Google News Archive, unfortunately, is much the same way, as they did upload some indexing, but most of the items with Google are unindexed. This all makes it a real pain, unless one has a very specific event and date to look for.

8 Oct

Very good dinner last night, wine was quite good as we had a nice Riesling and tried the Cranberry wine which was also quite nice. On another note, using real vanilla bean instead of vanilla extract makes homemade ice-cream much nicer.

Took a moment and uploaded some of the Genealogy stuff I did while away. Have also uploaded a number of new photos and updated two others (Previously scanned copies that are now replaced with scans of the originals).

7 Oct
Giving Thanks!

Have been away at CFB Borden, in Ontario, for the last few weeks. The course could've been done within 2-3 days, unfortunately it was dragged out very slowly with the candidates being told to show up late and in some days being finished by noon, and in all reality the course should've been done through Distance Learning.. On the plus side, in the midst of the course over a weekend I was able to go up to Muskoka Co and visit my Great Aunt: we through old photo albums, chit chatted, met my first cousin one removed, and had lunch/dinner. I've brought back with me several slide reels, a family bible (don't get too excited—belonged to James Skuce and starts around 1880), several photo books, and a bit of my Great Grandmothers correspondence (that which wasn't destroyed when she passed many years ago). I'm pretty sure I now have photos for all of Thomas Skuce's family, minus a picture of his first wife unless it's in one of the group shots of family or with other relatives. Will have to rethink how the photo section is setup or split it.

Did some genealogy while away as well, and visited a few cemeteries. Photos and additions to be added when I have some time.

Last day of the course involved only going in at 8am and getting the course certificate. Unfortunately when they sent out the course instructions they indicated that no one should have a flight before 6pm... I was at Toronto Airport by 9am. It was a long wait.

Spent yesterday out in Chilliwack with Nicole's family doing an early thanksgiving, before we host parts of my family today. Can say I'm looking forward to Nicole's cooking, because I know it'll be better than yesterdays, plus the stuffing is hand made instead of from a package. Brought back several bottles of Cranberry Wine, which is made in Bala, Ontario, looking forward to trying it tonight with Dinner.

8 Sept
Going to be a very busy fall

Work week went well, small bits of catchup and numerous emails. It's going to be a very aggressive work schedule in the fall, have a feeling I'm about to lose my weekends–that's the issue with being on contract and not being paid by the hour.

3 Sept
Busy Days

Since being back from Kelowna, we've gone to the PNE, taken in The Taming of the Shrew at Bard on the Beach and had a games day/BBQ with family. Back to work tomorrow.

29 Aug
Back from Holiday

Went up to Miracle Beach on the Island for a week, and then spent several days in Kelowna visiting Nicole's cousin. Overall fairly relaxing, except I didn't sleep well throughout.

On another note, if doing any genealogy or getting genealogical from someone who's passed, it's always better to ask before they're gone, as most family members or other people view it just as stuff to be thrown out.
Downside: Emails, Family Tree File and digital reference material are now gone from the person who is deceased.
Upside: Have two binders of old photos and one binder full of GRO BMD copies.
The material is from Nicole's maternal side, so not Skuce stuff.

17 Aug

Have two weeks vacation, so it's a good time to relax and clear my head a bit.

5 Aug
Rest in Peace

Josephine Skuce (nee Ottenbrite), 16 Dec 1922 – 5 Aug 2012.

4 Aug
Long Weekend

Course is now finished, so I was able to take a few days off work. Going to the fireworks tonight, and looking to have family over for BBQ. Nicole wants to see the Pride Parade tomorrow in downtown Vancouver, so we'll likely go in and see that.

29 July

We went down to the beach just west of Vanier Park and watched the Vietnam display of fireworks. It was quite nice, and wasn't overly crowded. Looking to the other side, at English bay, is was a beach made of people.

Just received our Telus bill, they were nice enough to charge a rate increase and then apply it retroactive. Apparently they're about to do that to the phonelines as well. Gee thanks.
I'd say switch, but being in a duopoly there isn't very many options and the market is lackluster.

I still have a few sniffles, but the sickness is largely gone.

23 July
Man Cold

It seems I always get sick starting on a weekend, or maybe it's just that I hold out on the work week. Spent most of the weekend feeling miserable or sleeping. Right now have a cold or some other unpleasant sickness, and today I was able to make it through the workday and teach. Not too sure what will hold for the rest of the week, but right now have nasal decongestant, cough suppressant and headache remover, however, I would really like if I could fall asleep now, perhaps drinking too much coffee today wasn't a good idea even though I barely slept last night.
Nicole thinks it's funny.

7 July

Not too much has happened since the last update: work, work and more work, also a birthday.
Had my pre-birthday and my Aunt's birthday celebrated at the end of May in Queen E Park, it was quite nice, and a good family get together. Also briefly saw my Uncle from back east, who paid a visit

Have a number of people now working for me for the summer, some days it can be a stretch getting them to do productive work. So far lots of filing, sorting and counting has been going on in the warehouse. I sense a prelude to an inventory check.

So I was pulled from going on course back east to teach locally. This has both positive and negative points. Have made it through the first week of teaching, and the prior week was preparation for the course. Seems like I'll be wielding multiple hats until the course is over. Stressful.

Canada day with work went alright, it seemed I was doing more running around before the day than during, which turned more into a paperwork day... joy.

House selling isn't going the best, the local real estate has turned into a buyers market, as there are too many places selling and not enough buyers, but house prices seem to be holding steady. Banks increased their interest rate, even through the central rate is unchanged, likely due to the change in number of years people can amortize, not amused by that.

Can say some of Nicole and I's relatives are not doing the best, on the flip side we have each other to support in this parallel moment of worry. Unfortunately the end state is not if, but when.

14 May
CTO is another TLA

I seem to be making a bad habit in that whenever I get time off of work I get sick and have stress letdown. Currently have a head cold, which is different from the throat infection from when I was in Boise, could be they're related. Think I need more sleep.

On mothers day went with Nicole's family to a buffet at Harrison Hot Springs. I mark that from now on I'll just cook brunch for everyone, it'll save money for everyone and likely taste better.

7 May
Long Trip

Back today on a several week work trip to Boise Idaho. Can say I'm glad to be back, as I like the green and am not such a big fan of the desert or desert like areas.

Still sleep deprived, but that should be sorted out tomorrow before going back to work, thankfully I'll likely get a reprieve this weekend.

16 Apr
Never ending work

So much for getting time off, looks like I'll be tasked out this summer, not too sure what or when. Week ahead is a catch-up week with work, so everything that's been bumped may actually now get looked at, although it's doubtful I'll be able to get too far into getting it dealt with, and not only is the work piling up, additional duties and other work is too. Maybe I'm doing my job too well, or I'm just competent.

We've decided to sell our place and move up to house. It was a bit rough me coming off a long week into a long weekend with housework, and both Nicole and I have our nerves someone frayed. We've also decided to get a rental to maximize the viewable space here, and I can say it looks really nice and clean, plus the photos for the listing should be quite nice..

9 Apr
Day off

Have Easter Monday off which is nice, spent all of last week and the weekend either getting ready to go to Yakima or on Exercise with no sleep; thankfully the exercise was only 2 days so only 1 night with no sleep. Made it back in time for a nice little Easter Sunday dinner.

Alas it's full steam ahead as there is yet another exercise up ahead, so I'll have to book my Stat holidays for some other time, same with short leave, and an over accumulation of Annual leave. Some time off would be nice.

29 Mar
Burn Out

Year end is almost over thankfully, as it seems that it's rather stressful this year. I feel that I'm doing more than I probably should be and at a higher level which I really don't like, as I'm definitely not getting paid for it. See how work goes tomorrow.

19 Mar

Fiscal year end grind with work, and several trips abroad with work as well. If I'm lucky I'll be able to do some catch up come June.

Spent the last half week down at the training center in Yakima, monitoring/running the Command Post on top of a hill. Only went through three junior officers this time, which is an improvement as in the past the turn over rate was higher. On another note, it's funny how it can snow in a desert.

The final DNA results came in, and are a perfect match with several of the other lines. Would upgrade for further test results, however, as no one else has more results there is not much point, might be an issue of the chicken and egg or who goes first.

28 Feb
First two months of the year

Have been off of leave now for almost two months, with some weeks at work being hectic and some being slow. Year end procurement has now been completed, so now its just follow through for the rest of the fiscal, and a bit of cleaning up and year end projects.

Had a nasty cold a few weeks back that lasted for about two weeks.

Weather has been warmer than usual, with only one day of snow and the rest rain.

Have been concentrating on transcribing newspapers, however, in the next month or so will go back to completing the older US censuses and filling in more gaps.

Received back the initial results from DNA testing, only shows that my side of the Skuce line is related to all the other Irish Skuce/Skuses. Once the rest of the testing comes in, I should be able to infer which Richard Skuce is the half brother of Thomas Skuce, son of Francis Skuce, as there is nothing like cousins all with the same name.

7 Jan
Quiet Week

It's been a pretty quiet week, with it being my last week off work before going back next week full tilt. Ordered off for some genetic testing, which should show how far my Irish line is separated from the other Irish lines. Did a small amount of transcribing, it's getting to the point where it's probably better to touch-up and stream line what is currently online, except for old newspapers which seem to have the gift that keeps on giving (except when it's bad information).

Created a new sub-section under Other Info, for Queries. These are the various items that to me, just don't make sense with the other records or lack thereof.

1 Jan 2012
Happy New Year

New Years eve was nice and quiet, went out to Nicole's parents and spend it with them and the extended family. Sickness seems to be making it through to everyone this year. On the way out we stopped off at my parents to chit chat and watch Andrew play.