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Kimler Adventure Pages: Journal Entries
Not all snow is bad! Alex had fun yesterday, tobogganing down our driveway, into the front yard. [A short video of her joy, can be found in this post]
Shredding the Driveway (Sorta)
At least Alex found joy in all of the snow we were handed!
We inherited a lot of 'junk', when we bought the property: an oil drum filled with sludge, scrap lumber and wood, metal pieces, chains, etc. Most of it is scattered across the entire place and we've started cleaning it up, trying to return the forest to a more pristine state.
Not all the 'junk' we're finding is undesirable. One of the items we found was a plastic, steerable snow sled (I think they're called 'snow shuttle sleds', but I'm not sure. We also have a couple of plastic discs and a thin, plastic toboggan.
I bundled Alex up and let her try bombing down the slight incline into our front 'yard'. The thin plastic toboggan didn't go fast enough for the Oop, so I dusted off the snow shuttle and let her have a go at it. (I was afraid that she wouldn't understand the concept of 'steering' and end up in a pile somewhere).
I shouldn't be such an overprotective Dad, I guess, because not only did she get the whole steering concept, but she had a hoot bombing down the driveway. Her only complaint (besides stopping) was that she wanted to go 'faster'!
I took a short video of one of her first runs. Have a look at "Oop - Our Daredevil"!
We're officially moved into our new Vancouver Island home. Rats, deer, dial-up, boxes, wood stoves ... we've been here one week and there's still lots to do ...
Knee-Deep in Boxes, But Functional
It's been nearly a month since we vacated our Edmonton abode. Rachel has been working and living in Nanaimo, renting a room from Liz, who lives close to the hospital. Scott and the Oop have been to California and back, visiting grandparents (who all think that the Oop is 90% cute and only 10% "pain in the ass").
We took possession of our Yellow Point home on October 17th, as planned. It was nice that Cathy (the previous owner) allowed us to put our stuff in the garage, because it meant (in essence) we were ALREADY moved! Of course, the big task was still to haul it all INSIDE and UP the stairs.
We've been here a week. Read on about our current state of chaos ...
At 3 years-old, Alex cannot quite grasp the full meaning of our 1200-km U-Haul move. It's created some funny, touching and endearing moments. Read about them .................
The Oop: On Packing, Boxes & Upcoming U-Haul Move
Two years ago, when we moved to Edmonton, the Oop was not yet a year old. She wasn't walking. In fact, she was just learning to crawl. Moving was easy ... we just put her in a box! Now, Alex is nearly three years old and there isn't a box big enough to hold her.
Packing the house with a toddler has been quite the experience. On the plus side, she wants to help. On the minus side, she want to help.
There have been moments of levity and precious memories, as she grapples with the whole concept of moving, trying to help and with some of the things she says. I try really hard to remember that she'll only be this young, innocent and cute for a short while and that I really should cherish these moments. I don't often succeed, when I'm covered with sweat, two-years worth of dust, tired from hauling too many boxes filled with our endless supply of material possessions (how did we end up with all this CRAP?) and -mostly- just wanting it all to be DONE!!
To learn more about our toddler's perspective on packing and moving, read on ...
Summer Season in Full Swing the Hammer
As a "jack of all trades" and retired geophysicist, Scott often takes on handyman projects, both to earn side money and to get the satisfaction of building something with his hands. (Of course, there's now the hopeful outcome that he'll lose some of those winter pounds he's put on too!) ;) This project, for our friends Dan and Jen, is a new fence across the back of their lot and a fence replacement down the side, shared with their neighbor. They have a large lot and it's something like 200 feet of fence, all told.
Dan has asked to work with Scott, both to learn about fence-building and to help defray some labor costs. This is not a problem and Scott likes working with home owners. It's more fun to work with someone else. Dan only has Monday afternoons and Friday's free, so it'll be a multi-week project.
To learn how to make a better wood fence and follow this project, read on
Consumer Thoughts After Buying a Casio EX-Z850 Digital Camera
The population of the United States is roughly ten times that of Canada. It's no surprise then, that the U.S. has a much more efficient consumer marketplace than Canada. I recently discovered just how much more efficient, after purchasing a Casio EX-Z850 digital camera.
Firstly, I should state that I have no great patriotic allegiance when it comes to making consumer purchases. "Made in the U.S.A.", Canada, China, Taiwan or Mexico, I don't really care. All things being equal, I will buy local, to support the local economy, but in truth, I'm after the best quality/price ratio I can find, with a leaning toward one end of the spectrum or the other, depending on the product. I mean no disrespect to either the U.S. or Canada, as I think both are great. Rather, my experience reflects a growing dissatisfaction over the disparity in pricing, availability, shipping costs, regulations and red tape associated with purchasing products to obtain the best deal.
The EX-Z850 is very new to the marketplace. It was debuted at the PMA Annual Convention & Trade Show in Orlando, Florida, on February 26th (press release). I was happy to get my hands on one at a price well below the MSRP of $399.99(USD), but the convolutions I had to go through, in order to accomplish this, underscores the marketplace differences between Canada and the U.S. This is something that NAFTA is supposed to help fix, but it doesn't really seem to be working too well.
Read on to learn about my purchase choices in Canada, versus the United States and the creative methods employed to obtain the better deal.