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High Up Low Down

December 19th, 2008  · stk

An electrician advised Scott against moving our electric Maytag dryer controls, but we really didn't want to purchase a brand new dryer, just so we could stack it onto our washing machine (and save space in the utility room). Read about how Scott sorted the spaghetti and modified our dryer.

Utility Room Remodel
Moving Dryer Controls so the Dryer Can Stack onto the Washer

Our utility room is pretty small and not well utilized. One of our ideas for gaining space, was to stack the dryer onto the washer. Unfortunately, our older-model dryer isn't a match to our newer, front-load washer. Not only is the dryer is a different make, model and year, but the controls are at the top and back. If we stacked it - as is - you'd need a ladder to dial in a setting and turn it on!

What to do? Plunk down $400-$500 (or more) for a comparable stacking dryer? Our dryer, a higher-end model that came with the house, has an "intelli-dry" sensor that shuts off the unit when the clothes are dry. It works great! Seems wasteful and expensive to purchase a new one, just to stack it.

Instead, we thought Scott could find a way to move the control panel to a lower position. This would enable us to stack our old (working) dryer on top of our newer, front-load washer, for a lot less money.

Our neighbor, Charlie, a retired electrician, thought this would be a tough job. "Do you know how many wires you'll have to extend and move?" he asked, "There's about 30 or so wires back there."

This is one of those cases where ignorance is bliss. Undaunted by Charlie's warning, Scott pushed forward and - last weekend when Rachel was off with Alex in Vancouver and he had the house to himself - he tackled moving the dryer controls.

For a low-down on putting the dryer high up and learning how Scott managed to move the dryer controls ... carry on ...

Moving the Dryer Controls

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Updated: 20-Dec-2008
Web View Count: 44674 viewsLast Web Update: 20-Dec-2008

Record Snow

December 15th, 2008  · stk

Nanaimo - Record snow fell on Sunday, dumping 33 centimeters overnight and in the morning. Record cold temperatures accompanied this record snow dump, changing what had been a mild winter thus far, into something a tad more extreme.

Thirty Six Centimeters of Snow

Rachel and the Oop were off visiting grandparents in Vancouver, so they missed witnessing yesterday's record snowfall.

"When I went to bed on Saturday night," Scott said, "there had only been a light snowfall that afternoon and nothing after that. When the fire hall pager went off at 5:30 AM Sunday morning, I woke up and looked out the window. It was a white winter wonderland!"

Thirty three centimeters of snow had fallen, during the night. Outside, Scott flipped "the beast" into 4-wheel-drive and plowed his way to the North Cedar Fire Hall, seven kilometers away. There, personnel put chains on the front-line pumper (Engine 1), back-up pumper (Engine 7) and the water tender (Tender 6).

Another 3 centimeters fell Sunday morning, bringing the December 14th total to 36 centimeters. This beat the previous December 14th record of 19.8 centimeters, which was set in 2000.

For more Nanaimo snow records and photos ... carry on.

More on the Record Nanaimo Snow

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Updated: 31-Mar-2009
Web View Count: 38872 viewsLast Web Update: 31-Mar-2009
Filed in:Alexandra
Family

Oop Xmas Pageant

December 6th, 2008  · stk

What parent isn't proud when their kid takes the stage for the first time? Alex's school put on a Christmas Pageant and the kindergarten classes all joined in to do a reindeer "Hokey Pokey" dance. (Video included)

Alex Takes the Stage for a "Reindeer Hokey Pokey" Dance

Alex loves to perform at home, taking over the living room, doing her modern, "interpretive" dancing (and sometimes singing). So I figured she'd be all over her Christmas pageant like a dirty shirt, but I was a little surprised she wasn't more "into it" than she was.

Woodbank Primary School put on their annual Christmas Pageant the other night. They had an afternoon performance (rehearsal with the other grades) and a 6:30 PM performance, for the parents. Each class did one (or more) songs on a temporary, elevated stage in the gymnasium. It was pretty cute, watching all the kids perform. Some were really into it and others weren't, but a fun time was had by all, I think.

We sat next to our family doctor, Neil Rogers, who has twin boys starting school next year and another son in 2nd grade. (You know you live in a small town when you go to the "school play" and see your doctor!)

Unfortunately, my camera battery was dead, but Rachel came to the rescue and caught video of "the Oop" doing her Hokey Pokey thing! (They were supposed to be "reindeer" and each kindergartner had a red nose and a head band with cut-out hands as "antlers". Both the morning and afternoon kindergarten classes were combined, which is why there's so many kids.)

Alex is wearing a blue dress and is - pretty much - the kid in the center of the video. Her teacher, Mrs. Pettit, is the one you see in front, waving her arms and shaking her head, giving directions to the kids.

OKAY ... I'll shut up now. Head to the next page to see the unedited, raw footage. (Pasted in a relative hurry for eager grandparent's pleasure)!

Alex does the Hokey Pokey

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Updated: 9-Dec-2008
Web View Count: 17993 viewsLast Web Update: 9-Dec-2008
Filed in:Investing

Some Holiday Cheer

December 5th, 2008  · stk

The U.S. Economy. If you're worried about all the doom and gloom about the U.S. Economy, tired of watching your investments decline in value, worried about your job ... then this video outlining the government's plan to get back to prosperity is sure to cheer you up!

Good News About the U.S. Economy

It seems that every time you watch the news, there is doom and gloom about the U.S. economy. First the sub-prime lending fiasco, then housing prices take a nose-dive, then the government $700 billion dollar bail-out and the financial markets are dropping like a stone. Everyone is worried, not about a recession, but an out-and-out depression. Long-standing companies are folding, the automobile manufacturers are asking the government for help, unemployment is climbing, foreclosures right and left, no-one is building homes, which means more unemployment ... will it ever end?

Anywone who thinks they're immune from the effects of this economic downturn is kidding themselves. This crisis will touch everyone, in some way, at some point.

Fred Thompson, a former actor (of Law and Order fame), U.S. Senator (Republican; Tennessee Senator from 1994-2003) and candidate for the 2008 Republican nomination for President of the United States, has some good news to share, about the U.S. economy. In the 8-minute video on the next page, he summarizes the government's plan for getting the economy back on track. In plain English, he cuts through the chatter and presents the plan in a completely understandable way.

The video is a "must-see" for anyone worried about the economy, the future of their jobs, potential bankruptcy of Medicare, Medicaid or Social Security, their retirement investments or pension, or the financial future of their children! By the end of the video, you'll have a complete understanding of the current plan, faith that the government is doing the right things and peace of mind.

The U.S. economy will be heading for prosperity in the new year ... watch the video and relax ...

Video on U.S. Economy Plan

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Updated: 16-Mar-2009
Web View Count: 22446 viewsLast Web Update: 16-Mar-2009

Future NOT Very Friendly

November 21st, 2008  · stk

We've experienced over a week's worth of poor customer service and technical support, courtesy of our phone and high-speed internet provider - Telus. In the past 7 days, we'e been "off-line" for over 96 hours and had so much static on our basic phone service, that we were worried about contacting 911 should the need arise.

Telus Customer Service: Not helpful, not prompt, not reliable, not honest ... and well, not a lot of very good things.

thumbs up Telus: The Future Ain't Friendly

Two separate phone problems last week left us without an Internet connection for more than 96 hours and with a static-filled (essentially unusable for voice or Internet) line for 48 hours. Calls to Customer Service and Technical Support resulted in a run-around where we were put on "hold" for extended periods of time, disconnected, told placating lies, asked to perform silly "tests", or given wrong information ... all of which left us frustrated and without timely resolutions. Aaargh!

A week ago last Thursday, there was an Internet service outage in our rural neighborhood. It started about dinner time. As it turned out, a "Stinger Card" had to be replaced. It was no big deal, as these things happen from time to time. What was unusual, however, was when the "Stinger Card" was replaced - around noon the next day - Internet service was restored to everyone - except us.

Were we unlucky or was there some other problem? It took another day and a half of frustrating telephone calls to Telus customer support and technical support to answer that question ... and to get our broadband Internet connection functioning again.

Then, on the following Tuesday - after only two full, trouble-free days - our phone line suddenly became static-filled. The Internet was up & down more times than Paris Hilton on a Friday night and the voice quality so horrid, we couldn't communicate on the phone. We worried what might happen if we had an emergency! (FYI - We live rurally, so going "next door" takes a great deal of time and there's also no cell-phone service here ... we rely on our phone.)

Mpre xb0#t "wiy Telus s8cks" ...

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Updated: 21-Feb-2011
Web View Count: 19654 viewsLast Web Update: 21-Feb-2011