Monday, June 19, 2006

A Really Cool Father's Day Gift From Cheryl

Was it technology? Nope.

Was it something yummy? Nah, it was better than that.

Was it something dressy? No, Cheryl knows that ties are not my thing.

So? Whadjaget? Well, I had to get up at 5:30 am to go and get it. Ha ha! I didn't have to wear a wetsuit, but I did have my PFD. I got to see a seal, an osprey, and a heron. The first and third animals I got to see pretty close.

At this point, I'm pretty sure family and friends have figured out that my Father's Day present was to go for an early morning sail or paddle. I had a great time and have Cheryl to thank for it. I should thank the kids too, for not aggravating her too much while I was out. I got home around 9 am and she had waffles made up for us, yum!

This year Cheryl signed me up for a one day, early morning paddle put on by the city Parks & Rec. There were just under a dozen of us out on the water yesterday morning.

The city had some nice new kayaks and equipment. All of the boats seemed to be new as of the last year, so they were not at all beat-up like you see in most public or camp recreation programs. Purists may grumble that they are 'tupperware boats', but it's really not feasible to use laminate (fibreglass or kevlar) kayaks in rental or public recreation programs.

There were a mix of Nimbus and Necky kayaks there. I was quite familiar with the Necky boats they had, as I used to work for a paddle shop just down the road from the Necky factory. The Nimbus boats were completely new to me as Nimbus was only building laminates at the time I worked in the industry. They seemed to be quite nice, but I was content to hop in the 'tubby' Kyook and leave the 'sporty' boats to the others in the group - almost all of whom were not experienced paddlers. I figured our guide might want an extra hand in a stable boat if anyone dumped their boat - though it was probably not very likely given that we were at slack tide on a very calm and still morning.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Melissa's birthday present

Melissa's birthday present
Originally uploaded by Allan & Cheryl.

A really rare thrift store find. A nearly new Norco Tumbleweed in almost mint condition. Now she needs to learn how to ride it! No training wheels on this one. We are hoping she figures out how to ride a 2 wheeler on the very tiny 2-wheeler at Grandpa and Grandmommy's sthis summer. This new one is still a bit big for her and she's very intimidated of crashing. It also would be hard to learn on as she can't touch the ground quite yet while sitting on the seat even on the lowest sitting. But this is a quality children's bike in excellent condition that should last her quite a few years until she's ready for her full-sized bike. The older smaller one we picked up for cheap last summer will be on the list to get fixed up for Maddy when she outgrown Michael's tiny toddler-sized bike.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Our floor arrived ...

Now we can have our living room back!

The housing development where we live is upgrading the ground-level flooring in all the units and yesterday was (finally!) our turn. Because we had our linoleum recently updated, they only did our living room, but we're ecstatic just the same.

They're going to finish up by putting in the new baseboards today and then we can get started on putting everything back. Whew!

In addition to the baseboards, they also have to put in a transition strip between the wood laminate and the linoleum. Because of the thickness of the laminate and the foam underlay, there is a significant rise, but I'm hoping that it will not be any worse than the transition was from linoleum to carpet.

You can see here a little of the interlocking lap and groove joinery between the laminate pieces. I'm sure this is a reasonably effective system of keeping the floor together, but I still wonder at the lack of nails.

The other thing we're going to have to do now that the flooring is in is to get our area rugs cleaned. Thankfully we live in a "country" kind of town because our laundromats will take horseblankets and area rugs. If we were more in town, we'd be stuck with taking them into the back yard, hanging them on the swing set, and hosing them down like we did last summer.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

When the angle theta on the terminal side ...

If you've never read Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss, you haven't lived. And you really haven't lived until you've heard Cheryl reading it to our kids.


When beetles battle beetles in a puddle paddle battle
and the beetle battle puddle is a puddle in a bottle...
...they call this a tweetle beetle bottle puddle paddle battle muddle.

But I have to say that as of tonight I have finally heard something to top even Fox in Socks, and that is Cheryl reading her trignometry lesson to the kids as they lay in their beds.

When the angle theta is on the terminal side ...

I am drawing a triangle now. I am labelling it O, N, P. This is the hypoteneuse. (Cries of wonder from the children: "What's that?" It's not a mongoose, a hypoteneuse.)

The sine equals the opposite over the hypoteneuse. The co-sine equals the adjacent over the hypoteneuse. The tangent equals the opposite over the adjacent. The co-secant equals the hypoteneuse over the opposite. The secant equals the hypoteneuse over the adjacent. The co-tangent equals the adjacent over the opposite.

And while you're thinking about that, I thought I would share some of the latest art produced by the M's.

School bus - by Michael, aged 5. Water-based paint on tractor-feed printer stock.

Farm house and tractor - by Michael, aged 5. Water-based paint on tractor-feed printer stock.

Card for Auntie Gail - by Madeleine, aged 4. Crayon on card stock.

Rainbow Girl: reverse of Card for Auntie Gail - by Madeleine, aged 4. Crayon on card stock.

Storybook cover: made for the first storybook written by Melissa - by Melissa, aged 6. Crayon on card stock.

Today was the last concert of the Fraser Valley Symphony's 05-06 season. From Cheryl's accounts it went very well. However she had to make her season-end good-byes a little wistfully because with next year's return to college work, participating in the orchestra may have to be set to the side yet again. Our family are all very proud of how well Cheryl has done with the orchestra and I for one am hoping very much that she will be able to continue with the FVS.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Fab Five Photo-shoot Falls Flat

The title may be a bit of an exaggeration because it didn't fall flat entirely. Still, you gotta love the alliteration.

This morning Megan decided to have a hissy fit about something (throwing a wobbly as Gail would say) just as Cheryl was trying to get some updated photos of our Fab Five. We got a few really good shots, but this first one with Megan's accusing finger was priceless.

Note - some of these pictures are marked private, so you'll have to be logged into your Flickr account if you're a family member or a friend if you want to see them bigger or with more information.