September 2017 Sturgeon Trip

September 1st   Will post when I return !!

Sept Long weekend  to Sept 9th

A busy 10 days. A very fun 10 days. Too much food. Too many drinks. Not enough exercise. Great laughs and fun times. Have I said being retired is the best. Sorry !

As we left Calgary earlier on Friday we missed most of the traffic on the highway. Pembina Prov Park takes us for some unknown reason close to 5 hours every time. I have tried numerous different routes and when you add up the gas stop, the Tim’s stop or construction issues it comes in around the 4 1/2 to 5 hours.

We knew where our pre-booked sites where as Keith had booked them and let us know. The bulk of this group are Mayfield community residents prior, and present. Our first house we bought was in Mayfield in 1979.It cost us $63,000 dollars and the sale of beautiful 1967 RS/SS Camaro to get the down payment. Jackie had to sell her 1969 Beaumont which was extremely nice also for the deposit. I had a company car so our plan was to use that. That plan lasted about a year before I bought my Corvette. Anyways, all Mayfield people with Keith and his family being involved with them in sports living vicariously through their children. Nice group of guys and ladies.

Campsite in open spots at Pembina

The dynamics of the group has changed quite a bit as the children now are all young adults with children and come out also. The main focus was the ladies floating down the river after drinking paralyzers and the guys golfing. Now the kids are a big part of it. I sort of liked the old concept. LOL

About half of the group with the bulk of them having Mayfield as the connection.

The smoke was heavy all of the way up and continued with the extra accumulation caused by campfires.  We should all get together for a class action lawsuit against BC and their damaging smoke.

We had the bottom part of the park again. This is a very nice provincial park all with power sites only but it has some major drawbacks. First the bottom sites are all open with no trees in between each site. The majority of the sites are individual fully treed sites. This concept works great for a group though as everyone is together and the playground is close. The sites need a lot of work though. They are incredibly unlevelled.  I hate to have my tires lifted in the air so I use blocks and others struggle with their fold down jacks and boards trying to get their units level. A campground should try to have as level of sites as possible. The worst thing about this campground is the cement parking blocks used on each site. They are tire killers and body denters to the extreme. I know the why as they attempt to keep idiots from parking on the grass but a simple tree placement works better. We moved them at Keith’s site for his unit. I had to jiggle back and forth numerous times to try to make ours work. Got it all in and when I went to open the door the steps wouldn’t drop as they hit the concrete so moved again.

Got all unpacked and set up and headed to the golf course with Keith to see what we could do. The course was in pretty good shape and luckily Northern Alberta has had it’s fair share of rain this year so the fairways and greens were good. The rough was kept too long though as our balls hid in it, too many times. Not a bad game with Keith ending up with a 95 and myself with a 84.

First hole Par 3 179 yards elevated green. Play difficult

Getting home we were lucky enough to be invited by Amanda to enjoy her Chili supper. She made enough chili to feed a tribe. ( the Harry family is just about a tribe). Delicious chili with a couple of unique  items in it like Chick Peas. ( don’t try to make chili healthy, LOL)

I picked up some items on the way back from the course and grabbed the Edmonton Sun to read. Off subject but I am convinced Mayor Iverson is leading a propaganda campaign that is bordering on the radicalization of the Edmonton population in them believing they are the best. Now Edmonton has always had an inferiority complex towards Calgary. This could be a long paragraph so I will try to keep it short. They are starting to believe :

  1. They will get the Amazon head office
  2. They will win the Grey Cup this year
  3. They will win the Stanley Cup this year
  4. They have the nicest beach in city limits
  5. They have a better climate than Calgary

All figments of their imagination and perpetuated by Iverson in the media and newspapers. The radicalization of the Edmonton population is a threat to society as the up and downs of emotions they are experiencing are more often than a new brides pants and affects will be long lasting. I will correct some of the “imaginary” beliefs they have. Amazon wont be in Edmonton- no skilled labour, way too cold of climate to operate in, not a real international airport, horrible roads to deliver product on, and high taxes due to Iverson spend and burn policy. Grey Cup- the poor Edmonton population had their hopes so high with a 7-0 record until reality set in and now they are in second last place. They have no defense or top receivers. Won’t happen this year. Stanley Cup this is the worst case of over selling I have ever seen. Spend all of your cap on two guys and have no one else to put on the ice. I am sure the fans are going to love to see Mc Happy Meal skate all by himself now for 10 years without a hope of winning. I do love seeing the disappointment again rear it’s ugly head. Like the Eskimo’s the Oilers will use the excuse they are hurt and injured. Suck it up. Beach- a freak of nature happens and it is the talk of the town. It is sand by a dirty river. Please . Climate  I have to do some research here but I will state right now there is a HUGE difference between the two cities with Calgary almost being called tropical. I will look into the real facts. I will give Edmonton a couple of kudos though. Great ice rink ( tax payers nightmare ) Nice foot ball field and complete ring road albeit so busy you only travel at 20 kms hour.

Back to what I was saying. I was reading the Sun when I came along a very interesting article. A DR Gifford Jones had an article on Cholesterol. What was most interesting here is a licensed doctor that after having a major heart attack 20 years ago refused and is still refusing to use a statin. He has researched as a doctor would and had concluded the use of these drugs is really poisonous and extremely hard on kidneys and muscles.  In his research he concluded that as a species we are all Vitamin C deficient. Vit C is the holy grail that actually reduces plague in the arteries.  One sentence of his article I like is ” Cholesterol is part of every cell and if you start to tinker with nature there’s always unintended consequences. Any one that has followed my blog will remember the numerous articles about this. This is the first article where someone has living proof has given a possible solution though.

While we were golfing the paralyzers and ladies hit the river for their float as it was quite warm bordering on hot. They came back to the site looking and feeling just fine. They had fun !

Jenny at the river keeping busy

Keith and I had a few crib games and I earned my name back again with a 2 win 1 loss record.

Started to pour around 7pm which is the first rain I have seen in months of any volume. Not only did it sound nice it helped knock down a lot of smoke.

A cooler day all day today. We had a relatively early tee booked and hit the course. I played semi ok but had two blow up holes ending up with a 84 which was tied by Keith. Normally I keep and record the score as a tie but we had enough time we thought we would have a one hole playoff. Keith won the hole and the tie breaker.

A few beer and rums and then the ladder golf tournament. Had lots of fun with this. Team Harry/Larry went undefeated beating all opponents. We had one close game with Jackie/Amanda combination but managed to win on the last throw.

Jackie attempting to hang a set of balls

I set the furnace at 65 degrees and it ran a fair bit all night long. A person sure can sleep good with dark, cool and fresh ( smoky) air. You sure can tell fall is coming.

At 2 am someone’s truck alarm went off and it took a while for the guy to find the keys.

Jackie and the girls were out golfing early this morning. The temperature was only 10 degrees on Jackie’s cut line but she took off. They had to dress for it for sure. Fresh fall type weather.

Had another few games of crib with Keith coming out the winner this time 2 to 1

Another wonderful day and night out camping.

Jackie headed home relatively early but as I said it does take at least 4 1/2 hrs or more to get home and she has a contract starting Tuesday am.

Keith and I went for our last golf game and the temperature was quite warm today.

Fun weekend

Another wonderful September Long weekend completed

After getting everything together I headed over to PineRidge RV Resort to meet up with Fred. Sat around a bit then decided the best thing was for us to head to the clubhouse for supper for our early exit in the morning. Fred’s new chip in his cart sure makes that thing fly. What a supper we had . Both Fred and I ordered the Turkey Dinner special. Amazing food. I loved the butternut squash that came along with the turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and dressing. Great !

We decided as the paving crews were coming in first thing we would be out of there by 8am. Set the alarm for 6am to get everything done. I parked in Fred’s spot and we loaded up the boat and 5th wheel for our trip. Just as the crew arrived we were all set to head which turned out great. We started to head to Pinehurst Lake. ( too many Pine’s ) Pinehurst is about 4 hours northeast of Edmonton. Rustic provincial no service campground on a beautiful lake. Clear water with no algae was nice to see. We had about 10 miles of gravel to travel on which is very very dusty. Last time we were there Fred marked on his GPS a different route out which cut our gravel in half but still dusty. We found a great spot only feet away from the lake and in the shade which was great. Got everything set up and decided to launch the boat a couple of hours of fishing before supper and dark.

Loading up the boat I backed into the water with Fred’s truck and trailer. It is difficult to see the trailer and the tongue makes the trailer react quickly so backing up this unit takes a little practise but I managed fairly well.  Fred does a remarkable job of lining up the boat and using the motor to push it on the trailer. He does this perfectly every time which isn’t easy. Funny thing happened though.After backing up I set the parking brake on the truck and went back to clip on the boat and winch it tight. When I went back to the truck I couldn’t find the release for the brake. I had to ask. Fred doesn’t use the parking brake and was quite worried it would stick. Two different trains of thought. He doesn’t ever use the parking brake and I always use the brake. I feel the brake removes the stress on the internal gears of the tranny and it is usually just a cog to hold the weight. I said I will do some research on this and send it to Fred. I never used the brake again on his truck. LOL

https://www.yourmechanic.com/article/why-you-should-always-set-the-parking-brake

If you think about it a 5ooo pound truck and a 8ooo pound trailer all held back by this little cog called a pawl. How many of you have driven on a slanted driveway and put your car in park and have it fall back and clunk. That little cog holding all of the weight. Put on the parking brake before putting it into park. Remember when these used to be called the emergency brake?

The guys finger is on the clog ( pawl) that engages in the gear set to hold all of the vehicle weight if a parking brake isn’t engaged. Wear and tear plus stress is huge on this little gear and clog.

First day fishing was slow. We ended up with only three fish. One for Fred and two for myself. Fred’s first fish was nice one at 7.5 pounds. My first was nice at 6 pounds . We thought we were in for a few good days of fishing. Especially with  the lake being so calm and the weather being so beautiful. We always laugh stating whose counting but it is built into me,I have to count.

DAY ONE

LARRY 2 FISH

FRED 1 FISH

LARGEST FISH FRED and the largest of the trip.

Fred’s largest of the trip at 7.5 pounds

Largest for Larry at 6 pounds. I need to learn to hold the fish better to make it look bigger like Fred’s . LOL

Back at the site we started to feel the wrath of the mosquitoes. We drove to get our free firewood and loaded it up even though it wasn’t the best by any stretch. It didn’t burn very well at all but Fred had some dry stuff in his truck we inter mixed it with. Wonderful Pork Burgers made by Johnsons with cheese and bacon in them I believe along with corn on the cob. Excellent supper.

Made our plans for tomorrow over drinks. Plan to spend a long time on the water and get those elusive 20 pounders to our boat. Bear warning signs and bear poop right beside our campsite. More drinks and discussion around the campfire as it was a warm night.

Who said a rustic campground without services and a fishing lake area is unsophisticated. We had gin & tonic’s to drink. The natural instinct is to raise your pinky on this drink. I always thought gin & tonic was a girls drink as we used to refer to them as ” panty removers”  but they tasted very nice. Two guys camping though I couldn’t see the gin fitting in. Liked it !

It looks like I was drunk on this Gin & Tonic. Perfect pinkie finger extension though.

Our rustic site right beside the water

Over the course of the night it cooled down. It was a full moon night which was incredible as during pee breaks in the middle of the night it was as bright as midday.

Lucky to have my Toby Keith paper cowboy hat along as we hit the water in the morning in the full sun. Backed up and unloaded and loaded without using the parking brake on the steep incline. Fred had a new knot he taught me to use. Polymer knot. 10 times easier, faster and holds perfectly compared to my old knots especially on the spider wire line. I will use this knot every time now.

The lake was dead still and sun full hot. Amazing day and this is September. We hit every hot spot and trolled over 30 miles of shoreline and not one large fish today. We caught 21 fish today but who was counting.

Todays catch

 

I forgot another funny thing happened. Fred needed to talk to his real estate agent , wife and a business deal he was working on so we drove 5 miles to high land trying to find cell service which we finally did as the campground is a dead zone. As we were unloading the boat a bit later his phone connects to the radio in the truck and he misses a call. We unload and while waiting for me to park the truck and trailer and jump into the boat he get cells service on the lake. Go figure and a strong enough signal to make everything work. Bonus.

The new jaw openers are great. Safe on the fish and easy to use. Thanks to Fred as he gave me a pair and I used them a few times.

The campground we are staying at is most likely 90 percent full. All older retired guys with lots of them bringing their wives out. September and full is amazing but luckily lots of guys and gals knowing what they enjoy and relaxing and enjoying it.

Tonight’s supper was homemade meat loaf. I asked Fred to send me the recipe as it was one of the best tasting I have had and I love meat loaf. Less or no tomato paste in it which I think was the biggest difference plus the pork burger added.

DAY TWO

LARRY 13 FISH

FRED 8 FISH

LARGEST FISH LARRY

Another great day. Sunny and no dew. First day with a small breeze which will keep it a little cooler. From our site we hear the waves lapping the shoreline. Near us the old fart almost dead guy get up at 6:15to start his generator. Why ?

For us we go up a little later with no rush and had our sausage and egg breakfast. We were on the water by 10 am . A slow day fishing and we spent a lot of hours on the lake. No big fish again today.

Just as we were docking my hat blew into the lake again but we recovered it and Fred made a hat reshaping form on the table for it. LOL

Hat being reshaped after hitting the water again

DAY THREE

LARRY 9 FISH

FRED 4 FISH

NO LARGEST FISH  as none were picture worthy.

We had perfect BLT sandwiches , some rum, beer and scotch for the Irishman and another great day done.

I didn’t get my big one again but it was a blast of a trip. Great lake, nice campground, wonderful food, fun conversation, radicalization intervention, learning new things and enjoying ourselves.

Great lake

WONDERFUL FUN FISHING AND CAMPING TRIP. Great company and having a wonderful cook along is a definite benefit.  Awesome food . UNTIL NEXT YEAR when we get the big one !!!

We had a good drive back with no issues.  Got everything all squared away at Fred’s place and I headed on the highway. I took the range road and HWY 20 back which had very little traffic on it but with a stop for gas etc it still took me 4 1/2 hours to home. Nice to be home after 9 days away. Calgary is till smoky though.

Thought of the Week

FISHING – An acquired skill that involves, casting, baiting, trolling  and jigging while at the same time, cussing, sweating, swatting, and drinking.

September 10th

Great to be home and sleep in my home bed. Nice Jackie is in it beside me. Funny after 37 years you miss having that hot body next to you. I am sure she might miss the snoring also.

Well today was an unusual day. It ended all fine but it was unique. Jackie arranged to have everyone here for a get together to celebrate Peter’s birthday.

THIS IS NOT A VIDEO. IT IS  SCREEN SHOT   

We had arranged to have Audrey & Michael visit with all of the kids before Peter was being picked up.  Everyone started to arrive. We had at our condo , Jackie & I, Victoria ,Jackson, Penny, Jessica, August, Audrey, Michael, Alan, Maryann, Danielle, Kennedy, Shelton, Carter, David, Kristen along with Olive and Talo.

Kennedy, Alan and Dave fixing the world

The one missing headliner Peter the reason for the gathering. Jackie left to pick him up and things went wrong. When he attempted to get in the truck he sort of got stuck. Jackie actually wrenched her back trying to get him into the car. It required his home care workers help to fix him up and after the ordeal he wasn’t up to visiting and wanted to return to his bed.

Party goers

I headed out to pick up the KFC i had pre-ordered as Jackie was late. We also in the treats and snacks put out some of Fred’s canned pickles, beans and carrots. They were ate so fast i had to keep refilling the bowls. I love KFC for events like this as one you get over 16 people it is much easier than having to whip up a  large meal. A hectic time in the condo with a few glasses of pop spilled,

Jackson & August

few glasses of water spilled, two pee stains by the pups and one broken ornament.  The combined laughter and louder voices made it a smile day. So in honor of Peters birthday we had great food, a wonderful marble birthday cake and we even sang happy birthday to the guest of honor and video’d it for him to watch. Hopefully he doesn’t think he was here and can’t remember it. A fun day for sure though.

Nice family gathering

I had an issue today for the longest time  with EDGE. I tried every trick and even uninstalled the last updates which were the issue. It was going to be a take the machine to the repair shop until I tried to load Chrome and as luck would have it I managed to make everything work except losing my bookmarks and favorites. I gave EDGE four years and was happy with it but if you aren’t going to perform it has to go. Think about this Microsoft gives a download to “fix” their programming and it results in a crash. I end up paying to fix their mistakes. Not cool but then again they are the ones that say “just restart ” or Control Alt Delete. I saved a few bucks but caused a few hours of setup work for myself. Oh wait I am retired I have the time. Before the Mac people reach out and say you should buy Apple let me say this minor hiccup compared to having a operating system that isn’t even the same league is an easy take.  In the world over 1.5 billion use Microsoft versus 55 million using Mac.

I did my research and was very surprised on the difference in temperature between Calgary and Edmonton averaged over 12 months being only 2 degrees. Shocking really. Global warming must be real. LOL   But I will say this. If you were a glass of water at 34 degrees you would be a fluid running liquid. Two degrees cooler and you are rock hard and a solid frozen piece of ice.  Which would you rather be ?

Thought of the Day

All i can think about is the guy that shook the family tree and all that fell out was a bunch of nuts.

Sept 11th 

We all remember where we were when the towers fell. It was hopefully a once in a lifetime event. The memorial museum we visited in NYC was an incredible tribute to the lost lives.

On a happier note today is Peter’s birthday. I hope he knows he had a great birthday party in his honor. Jackie will be seeing him today with a piece of cake and a present.

Peter’s birthday picture from last year !

Happy Birthday Peter !

Looking at the upcoming weather it is like going from summer to winter. High’s in the single digits and lows close to zero for the week. Darn I hate cooler weather. I could have 24 degrees all year long and be very happy. That is asking for a lot . LOL

By now the two straight losses, AGAIN, to the Stamps must be setting in. It is so nice to be in a city with heart, grit and skill not just media hype. The Esks will again lick their wounds and carry on but at an entire different level. I would have loved to see the reaction of the crowd in the last 35 seconds of the game.

GO STAMPS GO !!!

Picked up my new saw at Lowes today as they had a fantastic deal on a 12″ dual bevel mitre saw. Saved $250 from retail list  and was $350 less than Home Depot. This is a beautiful saw and will last me until I cant use one anymore. At 65 pounds plus the stand it is a little awkward to move around but size matters when you are cutting 5 1/2 crown or 6 x 6 timbers. Love the saw and as Tim the Toolman says “AGH   Aghh”

Super deal

45 reviews and 5 stars from  42 of them. No laser light was the only negative comments. While nice sometimes inaccurate and hard to see in the day light anyways. What ever is wrong with a pencil mark ?

First use for this will be Fred’s table or Jessica’s privacy screen and outdoor kitchen project. Hate to spend the money but if you want to do something right it requires the needed equipment.

I had a golf game set up with Jeff tonight as looking forward the weather isn’t going to be good. Tonight other than being smoky was hot and wind free. I great night for golf.  Not golfing for while had a small impact but still did ok not stellar like i hoped. But that is the game of golf.  I have been stuck in that 82 to 87 scoring range mostly due to one or two holes were I lose a ball. Had a wonderful stir fry for supper so the night was capped off well.

Thought of the Day 

On one hole I remember exactly my putt and I didn’t miss the putt I just missed the hole.

September 12th- 14th

Lousy sleep last night, the first in along time. Thinking too much which used to be a work thing. LOL . Had my normal schedule thrown for a loop as right at 8 am the fire alarm and the flashing light testing happened in the condo. Don’t they realize people are trying to sleep. lol

I took the motor home in for it’s oil change and service. Everything is like brand new.  I pumped up the tires to the max and increased the air suspension by 20 more pounds. I think this may be the ticket as the sidewall roll was a way less and hitting a few bumps was fine. Time will tell. Went out and picked up a few groceries from Sobey’s  and then back to pick up the motor home. I tried to adjust the door and tightened the bolts and in the process squished my finger bringing a tear to my eye.

I have spent quite a few hours on Fred’s table. My grandiose ideas have made this quite a project. My fault taking a simple concept table and making it one of a kind. I know it is going to be by FAR the nicest table they have ever seen. I spent 6 hours yesterday sanding alone. It is starting to come together and looking awesome. Tonight the plan came together for the benches as this was complicated to make the sizing, spacing and new concept work out. I am happy with the look. No pictures until done.

Two nights in a row with a lousy sleep which is amazing as this is unusual. Oh well !  Up early this morning for my men’e league. Most of the guys didn’t show up. It was about 5 degrees and drizzle when we started. I golfed with another Larry about 70 yrs old and a wonderful golfer. I wasn’t cold at all. I had my Under Armour shirt on, covered by a Adidas Clima-warm pull over and a rain proof jacket. The only thing cold was my hands which I had a remedy for. I had pocket warmers from Canadian Tire which are incredible. Squeeze these for a bit and they give off a lot of heat. I used them in my Nike winter golf gloves and I was fine. We had a few holes of fairly heavy rain but still had a fun day golfing. Had a few beer and a bite in the clubhouse which made for an enjoyable day . First time in a long time I never kept score as it was a doesn’t matter game. I even had a birdie today which would have paid me money if the group had come out.

Went over and worked on the table from 3 pm to 8 pm with Corey helping out the last couple of hours. Everything is so much easier with two people. Loving the table ! Corey will finish the last seat and hopefully I will complete the seat supports and beams for the last side tomorrow. The carriage bolts caught me by surprise with their pricing. In fact today a birthday card did the same thing. I was kidding with the clerk and she whispers to me ” I know, my family buys them at the Dollar Store”

Thought of the Day 

If we weren’t meant to have midnight snacks why did they put a light in the fridge ?

September 15th

Another cooler day. Another terrorist attack. Another Korea missile launch.

MY RANT

“Pennywise Tips”

Salesmanship, marketing, calculations, bordering on deception, profits, mismanagement.

I guess this could describe a few organizations but today my rant is on the Federal Government in conjunction with our banks.

The government has set up rules and regulations governing RRSP’s. If I asked most people the bulk of them would say it is a  good thing. They were created in 1957 right when the baby boom was happening but nearer the end of it. The government recognized the population wasn’t saving  enough money for retirement and created these as a vehicle to use. There was no CPP until 1965. The rules of both programs have changed over the years . The biggest change to the CPP happened in 1996 when the program was under funded and the potential to run out of money was happening. Today the CPP program as far as funding goes has no issues. The banks jumped all over the concept and created some exceptional marketing ideas ie Freedom 55 and promoted this program as a means to a “rich” retired life. The main concept of the RRSP was not only to help you save money but also to reduce your taxes while earning more and then when you withdraw be at a lower tax rate.

Here is my beef. The tax rates need to be adjusted to make sense and to make the RRSP a good thing.

Federal tax rates for 2017

  • 15% on the first $45,916 of taxable income, +
  • 20.5% on the next $45,915 of taxable income (on the portion of taxable income over $45,916 up to $91,831), +
  • 26% on the next $50,522 of taxable income (on the portion of taxable income over $91,831 up to $142,353), +
  • 29% on the next $60,447 of taxable income (on the portion of taxable income over $142,353 up to $202,800), +
  • 33% of taxable income over $202,800.

    RRSP Withdrawals Withholding Tax

    When a lump sum amount is withdrawn from an RRSP, the amount of tax that will be withheld is:

    Withdrawal Amount % Federal Tax Withheld
    From $0 to $5,000   10%  (5% in Quebec)
    From $5,001 to $15,000    20% (10% in Quebec)
    Greater than $15,000   30% (15% in Quebec)

Look at how muck you pay in taxes if you are currently working. Look at how much you pay when you withdraw from your RRSP.  Yes when you received your OWN money back after making a RRSP contribution it was nice and you liked the program. Fast forward 20 years and you start withdrawing.  Where is the advantage ? The banks have used your money for 20 years to make huge profits on a program they solicited and the government makes sure it gets it’s tax money and more.

As i have said before this is one of Jackie & I’s biggest financial mistakes. We put all of our money in RRSP’s. I see people with unregistered money ( yes paying taxes on the gains) but being able to remove their money fully and only the allotted income tax on it at the end of the year. I see people invest in real estate and only pay the capital gains ( taxed at a lower rate). Plus not having to wait a full year to get your real income tax rate amount back.

This is only my thoughts but if I could go back I would NOT invest the bulk of our money in RRSP’s. They have an advantage for lower wage earners. They have an advantage for non savers.  For anyone in the middle class the tax implications are not investor friendly.

Think about this. Let’s say you have 1 million in RRSP’s and you start withdrawing, but you only really have $700k perhaps a little more if you can live on a lot less than you would like.  All of the marketing and even a lot of advisers do not give out all of the information or in a lot of cases guide you correctly. Remember they are paid a commission and the more money you invest with them the more money they make.

Jackie & I are very fortunate here as an employee perk receiving a small break on fees and non commissioned  professional advisers but we experience this issue everyday. The government needs to change a few things.

Why tax “earned” cpp and oas  money ? People work their whole life and now receive a cheque and we tax it. Why even tax anyone that is retired. They paid their whole working life.

The financial world is misleading a lot of people. I have heard people talk about their adviser and investments and the KNOWN calculation of CPP and OAS isn’t even mentioned or calculated as the adviser wanted the client to invest more money

Funny thing on this. This wouldn’t even be an issue if we would have saved for a number 3 million dollars. LOL  Wouldn’t be an issue if the interest rate was 10%. LOL

BUT THAT’S JUST ME

You all know  I am forever trying to save the name Larry . There were literally millions of Larry’s named in the 50’s. It will disappear if we don’t all try to preserve it. The kids like “new” versions so perhaps Laree, Lare, Lary, Larie.  I previously mentioned a while back the famous Larry’s in the world but I wanted to also let you understand if you are named Dave, Rock, John, etc would you have a top selling video game out. I think NOT.

Top selling video game , namesake

Worked the bulk of the day on the picnic table. It is looking wonderful. It is a one of a kind unit. Only one bench and back to get done and then stain.

Thought of the Day

All my life I thought air was free. Until I bought a bag of chips and then filled my tires. 

September 16th

Fall is coming with this weather. Only two above today. Jackie kept up her morning routine of the gym at 7am. I am not getting up at 7 am to go the gym. Watched some golf and the news. We decided to go visit Penny, Jessica, August and Olive today. A great drive and hardly any traffic which made it nice. For a easy quick bite I whipped into Tim’s at HIgh River and right beside them was the A & W. Jackie wanted Tim’s so she went in to get hers and a ice cap for me. I went into the A & W. As we knew we were going out for supper later I had a small chicken burger. I received my chicken burger, and ate the entire thing before Jackie got back to the car. I usually like to drink and eat together as it feels better but I was getting hungry with the wait. The ice cap for desert with a Tim Bit was great.

Had a wonderful visit with Jessica, August and Olive in the backyard where in Lethbridge it had to be at least 20 degrees or more. Their backyard looks absolutely awesome and feels wonderful to sit in it.

Love the look of their backyard. 

After our visit and Penny finishing work we got ready to go. The girls were looking at a new house ( yes right after everything is done)  as they need more space with a new kid on the way and the salon taking up the entire basement . Two little boys tearing around I can understand. I used to be able to build a deck or basement reno with our girls no problem but now with two young boy grandkids another story as they think they are 2 and 6 year old Mike Holmes. So on the way went to look at showhouse they were interested in. First let me say this house was amazing. The design is a cool modern look which is carried through out the home. Lots of space with over 2000 sg ft. Beautiful big windows and lots of them and the neatest part is the enclosed alcove into a backyard paradise. Lots of parking for clients and easy access to the basement but one concern that they have hopefully thought of is: NO BACKYARD AT ALL. The kids would really have no place to play as the alcove is designed as an adult space. Time will tell what they decide.

For supper the girls picked Miro Bistro. Unassuming front and quaint entrance. Wonderful decor and amazing food. For sure will be back and everyone in Lethbridge should visit this place as I am sure they would love it. Very nice of the girls to pay for our supper for Jackie’s birthday. Very generous.

You have to visit this place. The food was fantastic

Miro with Jackie, Jess , Penny

Miro birthday 2017

 

We got home about 11pm but had a great visit and meal together. Fun !

Thought of the Day

Travel while your young and able.  Don’t worry about the money just make it work.  Experiences are far more valuable than money any day.

September 17th

A big day for someone.

Jackie is celebrating her birthday today. It is amazing how fast time flies by. First thing this morning off to Home Depot to pick up some brackets and stain. Worked on getting the benches done, sanding and staining. The brackets with slotted holes I think will solve any shrinkage issue on the width side. They also were easier to use and I believe more effective. We spent about 4 hours and after a bit of work on Monday morning I will be done. I love the looks of this one of a kind unit.

Then off Boston Pizza for Jackie’s birthday. We had Michael, Audrey, Alan, Maryann, Danielle, Kennedy, Chris, Jackson, Victoria, Corey and us. Another great meal at Boston Pizza and a fun time together.

Jackson enjoying his Grammy’s birthday

EVERYONE LOVES DESERT

You just can’t go wrong with a party at Boston Pizza. Not Miro quality but very good tasting

As I said time flies. I have known this girl now for 41 years and she keeps getting better and better. She might disagree on some issues about this but it she is pretty easy to live with someone you like, some one you love, some one that makes you laugh and laughs at your jokes. It is funny how celebrations make you think about the everyday little things. Happy Birthday Jackie and here is to another 30 plus of them. I don’t want her to get too old as getting too old isn’t fun.

Jackie as a child

Jackie being sexy 1983

Jackie my Edmonton Sunshine girl 1981

Jackie’s Retirement Feb 13th 2014

Hope you had a wonderful day which seemed like we were celebrating every day the last few. LOL

 

Thought of the Day 

Never laugh at your wife’s choices. You were one of them.

September 18th 

Last summer like day for a week. This Friday is the first day of fall though and I don’t remember a year as good as this one forever.

Another project done. Had to whip to the Depot to get one more quart of stain. Installed the last bench. Stained with a second coat.  This is looking great and I am hopeful Fred & Terry feel the same. Took a way way longer than ever expected but I am happy with the end result which for myself is what matters. I will post a picture on Monday when we get back from Vancouver fishing when Fred loads it up on his trailer. If we can lift it. LOL

Last day of good weather, last day of golf this evening with Jeff for a bit. Just checking ahead in October of what is on the up coming agenda and it is relatively light. First time this year.  I will tune up the golf game mid-week for Arizona. I can do a few clean up things which are always needed. I need one full day to catch up on inputting expense data and a couple of days to organize the pictures on my computer into albums and delete the duplicate I create when I downsize them.

Never had one opportunity to Marshall this year due to the slow down and lack of golfers. I have to email the golf pro to see what kind of deal he will give me when my course closes early October.

Fun warm night with mixed results.Overall I am happy except the three putts as with Jeff. We managed to finish all 18 holes before dark which was excellent. Fun night

Thought of the Day

Don’t take life so seriously .Life is simple. Eat, drink, visit places & friends and golf.

September 19th

Remember the question of Calgary versus Edmonton on weather. Here is what Edmonton looks like today while we are basking in the sun.

September 19th Edmonton snow

I think the smoke in the air andd the massive amount of I dust sucked in building the table has affected me. I am hacking. Can’t be a cold as I started my Vit E program and I never get colds.

Up and out the door this morning. I basically ran a Spartan race today. I parked my Jeep tight to the motor home as I noticed I had a couple of clearance lights burnt out. Got the lenses off and took the bulb to Napa. Bought a few extra. My Spartan race was up and down from the ground to the roof rack on my Jeep at least 5 times or more. Installed the lenses and no go. Push the bulb in and out and no light. The number on the bulb was different so I thought perhaps the contacts may be a little off. Pulled out a working bulb and tested in and no light. Now what. I pushed and pulled and twisted the bulb and wires and like magic I saw a little light. The ground screw on 4 lights had worked itself loose and the light wouldn’t stay on. All fixed now. Started the fridge and looked at what I needed to buy. I will load the fridge tomorrow and fill with gas and we will be set to go. I spent the entire day cleaning the motor home, washing the Jeep and playing with lights.

Thought of the Day

I normally don’t watch hockey teams that suck. But when I do I watch the Edmonton Oiler’s.

September 20th 

Slept like a baby last night. Jackie even got up in the morning to go to the gym and I didn’t even hear her. That is amazing for me. Very nice though. Yes to the odd dose of NightQuil.

Finished off getting everything ready.  I filled the tires to maximum and the air bags with another 20 pounds. Should ride a little rougher but the Michelin roll should be gone.What I didn’t get for food or if someone has a disliking to something we can pick it up in BC. Quite amazing though the cost of eating for four days versus eating out. Huge difference being one of the reasons we choose to RV it to Langley. The weather there for our four days is perfect at 19. to 20 degrees each day.Should be a fun road trip with Fred, Mel and Alfred.  How can you go wrong with four guys, fishing, drinking, eating and road tripping. Should be a blast

So no posts until Monday .

Thought of the Day

Remember the guy in the workplace safety meeting when the question came up,” What steps would you take in case of a fire”  ” Huge fast ones !”

Gone fishing to Langley BC for the huge Sturgeon

September 25th 

( it will take me a few days to accumulate pictures so come back for a look)

First thing is to describe the trip.  Insane, ludicrous , ridiculous, unbelievable, incredible,crazy, fun, astounding, stunning and a once in life time trip. ANOTHER ITEM MARKED OFF THE BUCKET LIST.I could go on but all I can say it was the best fishing trip ever. I have gone fishing on Langara Island BC, Campbell River BC and numerous fly in trophy lakes like Namur, Grist, Winefred in Alberta but no fishing experience comes close to this. A Langara  Island trip is $ 5000 dollars for three days and while amazing this trip beats both the price and experience hands down.

Alfred was out of his house at 2:30 am to meet Fred & Mel in Red Deer before 6am. Both Alfred and the guys were getting an early start as Alfred arrived early in Red Deer and all three of them arrived early in Calgary. I headed to the motor home to warm it up before their arrival. Wouldn’t you know it a fall winter snow storm hit. Alfred had to drive to Red Deer in a blizzard and the guys were also experiencing snow. It was cold out.  Loaded everything and on the road before 9 am. It is close to 1000 kms so I figured about 11 hours to get there with the advantage of having an hour time change.  The snow luckily ended just past Banff otherwise we would have had a long haul. BUT the construction we encountered was abundant. Lots of stops with flag ladies holding us up and miles of 30 or 50 kms zone. The TransCanada is eventually supposed to be twinned all the way by 2025 so expect delays for years on this road.

I pumped the air to the max on the tires to eliminate the Michellin sidewall roll and added 20 pounds to the air suspension. Made a wonderful difference and driving that much easier. Fairly busy traffic all the way. Not an eventful trip which is a good thing. Our first stop was Kamloops for gas and walk break. Then on to the Coquihalla highway. Great highway but a lot of 6, 7 and 8 percent grades that not only eat gas but wear and tear on the engine and brakes. And the driver. I have to say that ALLISON Transmissions as a company should be given the best rating and awards for both vehicle operation and safety.

Best company ever

Not only the smooth intelligent upshifting but the absolute needed item the grade brake built in. Going down a 7% hill with 30,000 pounds pushing you the speed uptake is instant. I would get to the top of a hill and hit the brakes once and the brake would kick on. If the speed increased too much hit it once again and it would drop another gear. I could go a down a hill easier than going up which with a lot of trucks and motor homes most drivers fear the descent much more than the ascent. It was amazing. On one 18 mile long uphill at 7 percent a warning temp light for the tranny came on but other than that perfection. The Chevy 8.1 Vortec used all 340 horses and 455 pounds of torque on these hills. I don’t think any other gas engine could have done the same.  4000 rpm and 50 mph going down unless corners happened quite often These 8.1’s are referred to as a beast when towing. Having said that on the long grades loaded with everything including pulling the Jeep we were down to 30 or 40 miles per hour. Love the combo Allison and 8.1. Gas another thing though. The round trip was 1868 kms with us spending $900 on gas. ( 900 divided by 4  couldn’t have bought you a one way air ticket so we were miles ahead )

We ending up hitting our campsite around 9 pm. Nice campsite but again insane that people don’t understand the importance of a level site. I had both front tires about 6 inches off the ground to make it level to pull out the slides. A mistake I made was giving away my plastic stackable blocks as I could have raised the coach and then lowered it back to level on top of the blocks. A newbie Rv’er even came up to me to ask if what I was doing was ok as he was having the same issues. Not my preferred way but acceptable  short-term.

Fred was kind enough to buy me a new stainless steel coffee perk which is wonderful. BUT between the coffee and the pop drinks added to alcohol I didn’t sleep well any of the nights tossing and turning. I have to do a few experiments with this to determine true cause . I know two beer can keep me up all night so I go for 6 beer and it is much better.

Our guide Braeden came for a short visit and a beer to our campsite to organize for the next day. Wonderful younger guy with great personality. I will give all of his information below as if you want fish and have a great guy this is your man.

Out on the water by 8am. Beautiful boat and smooth water in the channel. A nice 350 Chevy small block in it.  We head out and start to fish. We have four huge spool reels with heavy line. He uses a large single barbless hook baited with a piece of salmon. I would say within 15 minutes we had a hit. When you set this hook it is like setting it into a log. This when the fun starts. Our first fish was a 8 footer and we dragged him to shore after the epic struggle to wear him out. These fish are incredible. No teeth, large mouth, small eyes and like an armour plate protectors all over their body. Prehistoric looking and protected which is a good thing. DONE we did it and landed a huge Sturgeon fish. We were all happy, excited, and relieved as last time we caught nothing and Mel was just plain tired after fighting with this monster. We took turns bringing in the fish as they hit.

One word Awesome

To see an 8 ft fish literally explode out of the water, his complete body is amazing. The weight of these monsters being around 250 pounds or greater against a river current is a struggle. My arm with the broken bicep was a pain and in the ass I should go back and sue the doctor that told me not to get it repaired. But I was still pleased with results of pulling in these guys. IF ONLY they would have had a left hand reel it have been perfect and seeing the struggle of everyone with the weight it would only make sense to pull up on the rod with your right arm the strong one and reel with the left but we didn’t have that option.  Fish after fish we caught with our first day being 10 fish and losing a few. Pulling these things to shore for a picture is neat as they are giants and tired right out. As is the fisherman. They look cool, they feel neat as they have a dolphin like skin with armour, no scales and a huge mouth with no teeth. I love the Sturgeon look.

Smooth waters

This is water the river look like driving out to our fishing spot. Clear water and little current.

Mansions along the bank of the inlet.

Numerous huge homes and boats along the inlet to the main Fraser River. Spectacular landscaping , homes and boat docks.

The giant mouth on these monsters. The are like huge shop vacs that suck up food from the the bottom of the river. They use their smell which is supposed to be out of this world to find their food. Braeden uses rubber gloves to handle any hooks, bait etc.

Bent rod !

Mel with a battle on his hands

Looks like Mel is tiring.

Braeden on the look out for a hit.

Our first fish near the end the boat.

FISH ON !

Tape measure on length and girth

 

More awesomeness !

Here is a link for our first 8 footer !  NOTE DOUBLE CLICK AFTER OPENING TO GET SOUND. Newbies !!

https://photos.app.goo.gl/Y5GSAOwOxFODkWJA2

Another couple of excellent videos:

We ended the day just in time as Braeden was driving his jet boat thru 1 ft of water as the tide was out to get us back.

Another monster

Cooked a great supper of BBQ pork chops, mashed potatoes and gravy with sweet peas. Our entire grocery bill came to $50 per person for the trip which is less than one meal and a few drinks at a restaurant. Four guys work together pretty good, setting the table, peeling , cooking, and prepping it doesn’t take long. I was inside the motor home working with the can opener for the gravy. One can opened perfect and then I struggled with next one. I had it a little bit open but was quite annoyed with the cheap opener. Fred pops his head in and looks at it and laughs ” You have the can upside down ”  It appears the wrong side of a can doesn’t work too well.

We were all tired and went to bed early. Hard work fishing, drinking beer on the boat, sitting in the sunshine on the boat, eating good food and then drinking a few rye’s will do that to you.

Next day same timing and scheduling. Warmer day but just the right temp at the 20 degree mark. Today we all had sore muscles. And again our guide was amazing finding the right fishing spots and set up to be successful. Another wonderful fishing day with us getting 7 more giants. Our total for the trip was 4 – 8 footers, 5- 7 footers, 5-6 footers and 3- less than 6ft .  17 fish in total with four tired sore muscled guys.  Braeden had a “managina” which was a holding belt for the rod  but we wouldn’t use it being the tough guys we are. In the shower next morning each of  us discover large hickeys on the sides of our crouch. Hurts !! Our last fish with Alfred on the line took three full flights out of the water. One time jumping no more than 10 ft away from the boat. Love it our guide sounds just like a NHL announcer play by play as he knew when these guys were going to jump. Funny thing after landing the last one Mel and Fred were sitting on a log on the beach resting when Braeden asks if we want more. We were all lucky when Mel says ” I’m done” and everyone chipping in “yes me too”. We had about an hour left but we were happy, content and very tired fisherman.

We had one fish at 8 feet long and a 37″ girth estimated weight at 280 pounds and 85 years old.

Big guy beside boat

 

 

We laughed as Fred said he wanted a shirt that said ” I fought the fish and the fish won”

Giant beside boat

How to measure one large fish 84″ and 37″ girth

They had no teeth

Hand gone !

Amazing sized fish

Looks like hard work !

8ft high jump

 

Our last fish was a five man total effort as one one guy tired another took over and so on. Even Braeden had a pull as the tension puller locked. Incredible fishing.

 

8 ft beside the boat

Having a 8ft fish jump right out of the water is quite a sight !

Mel and Braeden

 

On the water we see this barge go up empty and return with an incredible amount of gravel. Looked like a 100 truckloads by the pile and the barge had sunk 4ft into the water

What a great looking group and fish too. !

Another wonderful BBQ chicken breast, salad and cob corn, and ending with Rye’s and pop after. Braeden  came by for a farewell drink and visit. Super guy.

Streamline Guiding , Braeden Szlabon ,778-389-3474 www.fishinginvancouver.ca

Hire this guy for a once in a life time expereince

We booked for 16 hours of fishing and fished for 15 hours landing 17 Sturgeon .

That is OVER 1 fish an hour. !!!!

 

Left the campsite early morning for another drive. Sunny and warm so no issues for us going home. Lighter traffic and no construction work happening on Sunday allowed us to make better time. I also was pushing it a bit heading home . Stopped at Kamloops again for gas and a bite and more road ahead.

Half way home on the right Fred spots a huge Grizzly Bear only 100 yards away and he is huge and beautiful.  Nice spotting. Happened again as on Hwy 8 Fred spots a small deer trying to cross the highway. I think my deer whistles caught his attention but I will never know.

Made it home and drove over to Corey’s place to pick up Fred’s fine dining table. I hope Terry likes it. I love it and am proud of the looks of it. It does need to be covered until Fred decides on a protective sealant.  It took Corey and I a lot longer than thought but it was worth the effort. Used the traditional bread board look on the seats and back rest but tried a mitre outside on the ends instead of the straight bread board. Slotted brackets to try to work with the shrinkage were used also for the first time.

Fine dining picnic table

Thought of the Day 

The world needs more pictures of people holding fish and less of people holding a camera in front of a bathroom mirror.

Sept 27-28th 

Worked on loading pictures on my blog today and organizing them. My smart phone is out of storage so I have to buy another flash drive and clean it out again.

Drove up to Edmonton today to visit Mom. She has had a medical issue come up and I wanted to check in on her. Luckily for everyone she is doing quite well with no residue side affects and just very very fatigued. Very lucky. It was good to see her doing so well.

Hugh Hefner dies today. He did open the western world up to understanding how “stiff” we are about nudity and sexuality. He most likely did more for women’s rights than anyone else as he gave them the freedom to express themselves. His first edition featured a nude of Marilyn Monroe

The famous logo

He built quite an empire with clubs, mansion, clothing line and the magazine which was first started in 1953.

The magazine brought frontal nudity which was taboo but was more famous for it’s jokes, cartoon pages and political and news articles. Hugh was 91.

Best cities in the world to drive in .

The leading German marketing and research company ACBD Agency was commissioned to carry out the massive survey. They started by first examining the world’s top 500 cities with the most registered drivers. Once that was done, they narrowed it down to a definitive list of 100 cities for which all the necessary data was available and could be readily collected. Finally, they came up with the best and worst places to get behind a wheel.

They used information from the World Health Organization to compare pollution levels, data from the TomTom GPS system to measure traffic speed and congestion, police statistics to examine traffic deaths and injuries, queried all relevant cities about gas prices and parking costs, questioned civic officials about public transit alternatives, and polled individuals about incidents of road rage they had experienced.

After crunching all the various numbers, Calgary emerged as the 10th best major city to drive in worldwide and No. 1 in North America.

That’s pretty impressive. Now if only we can keep the Flames in town.

Drove out to Banff today to visit with Alfred & Mary who were staying at the Tunnel Mountain Campground in Banff.

The Tunnel Mountain Campground is embarrassing. We have this wonderful National Park and beautiful mountain town Banff and we have people camping here. They have renovated it and destroyed it. I will never tell anyone to camp here. It is like a Walmart parking lot with each person getting a fire pit. Looking at the campers I see where they were coming from as 80 % of them were rental units and asking these green drivers to  back in may not work. We were in Village 2 A section. DO NOT CAMP HERE especially if you are looking for a a normal treed campground. I give it a ONE out of FIVE.

Banff was unusually busy . A tremendous amount of Japanese Tour buses. The streets were packed and alive. I love the little shops along the street.

We decided to have supper at Wild Bill’s. We had a great server from Scotland that made the evening enjoyable. Wonderful food and atmosphere. We had a very nice visit over the meal and enjoyed the campfire in the middle of the lot at Tunnel.  Ended up getting back home around 11 pm. It gets dark about 7:30 already. Light traffic.

Thought of the Day 

I don’t like to go naked as I always end up tripping .

Sept 29th

Hot day hitting 26 degrees.I had marked a tentative date this weekend to go down to Taber but being very busy this week and seeing the weekend weather coming up and I didn’t hear from anyone so assumed it was off so I headed to the motor home and started fall winterizing. First to the car wash. Then filled the tank with gas and StaBil. Drained the grey and black tanks. Filled the propane to the max and headed back to the storage yard. I started at 10:30 and worked until 5 pm. I cleaned out all of the food and canned goods. Loaded my mouse catchers. Went through my checklist for fall close up. I can normally  winterize any unit within an 1/2 hour but this motor home every year causes me issues. It had two by passes for the heater and filtering system. It has a built in pickup system and it has a control valve. Inevitably i go through one jug just trying to get the fluid to run where and when I want it. I drained the fresh water and left valve open. I left open the grey and black knives and left the hot water heater plug out. Checked all faucets, showers, toilets etc for pink and filled the p-traps. Covered the tires and a/c unit. All done.

Then I started to wax and polish. I have about 1/3 left to do and my arms were getting too tired to continue, as I was also. A full day but almost done though.

Another full year and lots of camping. We had a blast camping and had a wonderful summer. This got me thinking. People that retire and have no hobbies, don’t camp, don’t fish, don’t golf must have a lot of free time to fill and a lot more money. LOL   Speaking for us camping is our number one favorite things to do. Then golfing as singles or couples. Fishing is a close second then comes building things. I like filling in time with reading, walking, biking, and blogging. Love having our family close to see and to do things with.In the winter our Arizona time is special. I love my variety of friends as each have different likes and dislikes but always one or two things in common.

Making plans this weekend when I am driving down to Mesa already.

Darlene has an invite for Thanksgiving which I always like as i love turkey dinner !

Thought of the Day

Camping- spending a small fortune to live like a homeless person.

Sept 30th -Oct 1st

Went out to the motorhome and spent another 5 hours polishing and waxing it. It shines so good I can see myself in the paint. Love it

Decided to take Jackson to a movie and a sleep over. The movie he chose was Lego Ninjiaro. I am getting used to these kids movies but I honestly would like to see a good action movie. Maybe once he gets a little older. LOL

The movie snacks and before dog were our supper which isn’t the healthiest but does make for a night out supper. Jackson had a good time and was very well behaved.

Movie night supper

The movie ended fairly late and we headed home. Jackson had a full day so after playing for while went to bed very easily not like his Mom or aunt. LOL

Our own elf

Got up and we were bad ( bad grandpa) as Jackson missed his swimming lessons to come with us to Lethbridge. I checked the weather and Lethridge was expecting -5 to -9 temps coming up so I wanted winterize the girls trailer.

Everyone is different but they sure liked to hide everything in different spots on this one. The hot water bypass was under the back bed and the pump with a built in draw hose was under the front seats. Got it all figured out and only used 1.5 gallons to finish the job.

Had a nice lunch and visit with the August, Penny, and Jessica.

Thought of the Day

Like the Chipmunks used to say ” Winter sucks it is  going to take until July to thaw out my nuts”

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