April 2018

April 1st -2nd

“Mercury Forecast”   Mesa 32 degrees   Calgary -10 degrees with snow

I traditionally put a April Fool’s joke in here but the only joke that kept coming to mind was the Edmonton Oiler’s. So I decided this year to take a different approach and be more respective of people’s intelligence and not tease them.

“Memories” 

 I rarely get fooled by anyone and there are only two times I can remember.

First was by my secretary  Jennifer Sargent. Busy day at work and forgetting it was April 1st Jennifer walks into my office and hands me a call back note ” Call Mr Wolfe at ### ####” Busy day I pick up the note and dial. The phone rings and it is the Calgary Zoo. Immediately I knew and said so to the person on the other end. She says laughing were you calling for Mr Wolfe or Mr Lion ? I was caught !

Second was on my 50th birthday. I knew something was up by the phone calls coming to the house but i couldn’t figure out what. We went out for supper downtown with a few couples to dinner. I thought ok nothing to surprise me here. After supper someone suggests we go to the Bent Elbow pub near Ed Buhnai’s place where over the years I ate tons of wings so I thought this should be a fun time. Being me I had to be the first car in the parking lot so I was rushing and speeding to get into the lot. I didn’t notice any obvious cars which is rare for me and walking through the door of the pub I was greeted by a whack of people, friends, co-workers etc.  I was caught off guard again !! Fun time !

I am sure they may have been others but these two come to mind quickly.

I do remember a time when Mom changed out the sugar bowl with salt and Dad covering his cereal and the surprised look on his face when it was salty.

The temperature hit 35 degrees today on my Jeep. Wonderful.

Talked to Darlene & Mom today. Low key Easter with everyone busy so they went out Tony Roma’s which is a great place.

I trimmed all of our trees today. In the heat and 20 ft trees is a little difficult. I was very lucky to have Pat being our clean up person and Bob helping me dump the trimmings into the dumpster. I have everything done now to leave early Thursday morning. Check out at the office, pay my bill and cancel Jabba internet and off. Not looking forward to the cold but a unfortunate reality.

Had a bite by some kind of double pricked animal. Spider most likely but the tooth marks look identical to a vampire bite. I maybe becoming a werewolf with the rate of hair growth in my ears. LOL My leg has the bite and while not hurting it is constantly  itchy with red rash and swollen. No polysporin so hopefully just disappears.

Trees all trimmed up and hauled away for another year.

All trimmed for another year

The weather this time of year is amazing. Hitting 90 above and staying warm outside until late in the night.

Another wonderful golfing day. Starting to get pissed off with slicing. I had to hit back from other fairways  on a way too many holes.Funny thing is I made some wonderful second shots right onto the green. Ended up with a 84 due to three putts and a couple of lost balls. A lot of fun with the guys golfing in the heat. This year the course was clever in deciding not to lower their rates until April 9th knowing there are still a lot of people here and they can get full rate for another 9 days.

After golf we went for a few drinks to Ernie’s place. His neighbor stopped by and at 87 years old he golfs a few times a week and was sharp as a tack. Sounded like a Iowa cattle farmer. His family buys calves in March, feeds them and brings them to market each fall. Mostly Black Angus. I only hope and pray that I can be in the shape he is in at the same age. Remarkable.

Suitcases all packed. Jeep loaded except my clubs as my final game is on Wednesday then I leave for home. My tools and truck parts take up a lot of room. A lot. I will put in my clubs after golf on Wed and zip up the storage cargo bag with the suitcases in. I can’t load these as I can’t open the door for my clubs if I do this first.

Bob, Pat and I went out to Fat Willy’s Burger night on the patio. The last time for this season. The though of leaving this perfect temperature is hard. I checked the 14 day forecast in Calgary and finally by mid next week 10 degrees. I may hit some nasty weather in the mountains on my way though if the reports are correct. Most likely over blown though.

Thought of the Day 

You know the 6 month long vacation ( USA, Canada) twice a year in pretty nice.

April 3rd-4th

“Mercury Forecast”

  • Mesa 33 degrees or higher next 7 days
  • Calgary -3 to -7 degrees with 3 of the next 7 with snow
  • Lethbridge -1 to -7 degrees with 3 of the next 7 with snow
  • Edmonton – 3 to -8  with 2 of the next 7 with snow
  • Brecon – 10 to 13 degrees with 6 of the next 7 with rain

It is a shame to be heading north.

Finished packing, washed out the garbage can, washed the bed sheets,, swept the floors, cleaned the shower, did the dishes, got the money and paid our caretaker, checked out at the office, dropped off all of the extra food at the food bank, threw out the household garbage, said goodbyes to the neighbors, washed a few clothes, got travel bag ready, got a haircut, washed the bird poop off the back patio and front deck, so I am just about ready.

Interesting article below from the Globe that is funny and very real.

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/article-my-husband-and-i-have-joined-the-snowbird-generation/

Last day for my men’s league at Whirlwind. I still struggled controlling the slice and had to take a a couple of penalty strokes but still ended up with a 84 which considering everything I can live with. Love this course and I can do better. I am hoping next year the slicing is gone and I know I get get below 80 with a little luck on this course. A wonderful foursome team and we won money so all is good. First time Hole #14 didn’t get me. I was trying some of the lessons I took out but I had to go back and live with what I was given to help my score.  Today I had a Ft Macleod guy, a Brandon guy and a Edmontonian.  A fun event. Today was hot hitting 93 degrees before we finished. Love it !

Came home and had a good bye drink with Pat & Bob along with Ron then starting loading the Jeep. It is FULL. Turn water heater and water off after morning shower and all set to hit the road. I am going to see if I can get to Idaho Falls or at least Pocatello for tomorrow night. Depends on traffic, snow, gas stops, and tiredness.

Thought of the Day 

One of the nice things about having a get away home is returning to your real home. ( except the snow)

April 5th – 8th 

Depends on internet and driving time how much I can enter.

On the road for two or three days depending. Canada I am coming home ! Winter please be gone before I arrive.

I say every year WHY did I come back. NEXT year for sure it will not be so early. This weather in Canada is ridiculous and I am not even there yet.

Got up early and started out. Left at 6:30 am but was still caught in the rush hour traffic as we have to go from the far east side of greater Phoenix to the very west to get on the highway. Even without traffic it is close to 1 hour. But with heavy stop and start traffic it takes a while.

The Jeep was LOADED. Stuffed to the roof and when I backed out of our drive pad the cargo carrier hit the ground. Truck parts and Harbour Freight Black Friday tools and additional deals. I am lucky Fred offered to bring my bumper back.  First stop was Wickenburg for gas and a breakfast bite to eat. I tried my neighbors idea on the postal numbers at the gas pump and lo and behold it worked. Bob is not just a pretty face you know. It threw me for a loop as about a mile away from the gas station I realize I left my visa card in the pump. I rush back and there it was still sitting in the holder. Good thing no one pulled up to that pump. On the road again with the temperature hitting 92 degrees and the a/c on full. Remember that temperature 92 degrees 

The traffic is fairly heavy all the way to Vegas and beyond. The I15 between Vegas and Salt Lake is similar to the volumes between Edmonton and Calgary.  Hard to set the cruise with the heavy volumes. The Jeep only has a 22 gallon tank so you need a few stops. Not knowing where the next stop is I always fill with about 50 to 75 miles left before empty. I was surprised though as with the heavy load and cruise set at 80 to 85 mph it averaged 17.9 miles per gallon. Got to love that.

The first day my end stop was Salt Lake City for a couple of reasons. It is half way between Mesa and Calgary. Going thru this town takes an hour and I hit it right at peak rush home time. So i decided to stay and fight the traffic in the morning.I filled up ready for the am and knew after my quick free breakfast I could hit the road. Nice room and priced right. Watched a bit of golf and then hit the hay. Sometimes after driving long distances it is hard to go to sleep right away. It happened again. LOL

Up and hit the road before rush hour. Fail. This town gets up early. HEAVY traffic with pouring rain on a 6 lane wide freeway isn’t to drive. Worst case scenario. A semi hits the guard rail and burst into flames in the pouring rain. Go figure. I sat on the freeway for at least 1/2 hr slowly moving past the truck as the cops figured it could blow. Rained heavy for a couple of hours of driving  but above freezing so no issues.

A couple of gas breaks, food breaks and then about a hour before Butte we are stopped on the Interstate. You don’t mind a small stop even up to a half hour for them to clear up things. We sat on the highway for 1 hour and 5 minutes. A typical bullied as a youngster traffic cop figures why should he be in a hurry. The traffic I am guessing stopped would have been 20 miles long considering the volume. Instead of detouring , allowing meridian or ditch passing he made us sit for a minor accident. Both lanes full stop.I would hate to be pulled over by this no mind, power tripping cop. We need to hire smarter cops. I think most African Americans would agree with me. When we finally moved and with the volume it was like the Indy 500 right after the accident on the highway. That was fun though !! I needed all 285 horses to keep up.

Then snow started covering the sides of the road. The surface was wet and icy through the mountains. Here is the kicker. The temperature was 22 degrees. Refer to above. THAT IS A 70 DEGREE TEMPERATURE CHANGE I experienced.  Due to it being so cold you couldn’t trust if the wet pavement was frozen or not especially the bridge decks.

Ugly but beautiful in some strange way

Jeep has brown icicles hanging from it everywhere from the splash back and sticking on. Good thing I am not in the Enclave. Montana seems to throw boulders down on the highway for traction. It was like being a target at a gun range with the stones being thrown. I would prefer pure sand/salt and let the drivers be normal. I took at least 4 big hits on the windshield. My side still chip, crack free, Jackie’s side not so much.

It was getting late with all of my delays so I decided to stop in Great Falls and spend the night as I wouldn’t have made it into Lethbridge until late that night.Worked out well as I got to see the end of the Masters round and I am able to visit with Jess and family tomorrow. Things always have a way of working out.

I stopped at the Holiday Inn Express in Great Falls to see about a room. They had lots left they said and it would be $125. I walked back to my car without them saying anything. Next block a new great looking Comfort Inn. Walked in and the young lady says yes we have room and they are $ 118 with discount. I said I am sorry but that breaks my $100 limit I set for a room and started walking out. She yells ” I can give to you for $102.” I stated it was still over my limit but since she was so polite and tried to help me I would book. She gave me a upgrade GREAT room.  You just have to ask. LOL

Masters. The players are getting killed on this course. Makes me feel good seeing  players like Sergio shooting a 81 and 78.  Did you guys see Tony Finau in the Par 3 “break” his ankle and reset it himself. That is one tough cookie. And to walk another 18 holes and be top 10 with that ankle. That is amazing.

I went over to the Golden Corral and had a wonderful supper. Their service and food are exceptional. I wish they had real plates, glasses and cutlery though. Great meal and a decent price. Full but I was cautious as that place can be dangerous. I watched as they cooked my steak to exactly my liking. You add the mashed potatoes, gravy, veggies and salad bar that is a good meal.

Eyes are a little tired with the rain,14 hours driving and looking out for slippery spots through the passes. The Jeep to me is a wonderful driving vehicle but at 130 kph it isn’t as relaxing as the Buick to drive. You have to pay just a little bit more attention.

Relaxed in my GREAT room , have my free breakfast and then head to Lethbridge in the am. Miss the 92 degrees already. Next year I will buy more insurance. I would have this year but I haven’t seen much of Jackie all winter so figure I better head home. Freezing rain for Great Falls and snow flurries for Lethbridge. Why ? LOL My truck was covered in ice and snow flurries. It took the heater a while to melt off the ice from the windshield. I had to break down and switch to runners instead of sandals as my feet were getting too cold.

I had to drive a little slower with the roads ice covered from the freezing rain and left over snow. I checked my weather app and saw a Winter Storm Warning for Calgary on Saturday night so I wanted to get home before the bulk of the snow hit again.The border crossing only had about 10 cars in my line which is good. I am impressed with the border guard. Overzealous and by the book to a tee makes the border crossings time consuming and cumbersome. The guard I had was very professional, knew the rules and used her discretionary powers wisely. I had every receipt in a zip lock package and a total sheet listing each purchase and the totals. The rules state $750 Canadian duty free per person not counting tobacco and liquor. I was considerably over that but when I explained I had thought my wife would be travelling with me ( we would have been under limit then) but had to leave early to take care of her Dad and my purchases were from November to April she politely waved me threw wishing me a nice day. Impressed and appreciated. The border crossing shouldn’t be a revenue generator for the government over a few $100 bucks over limit. I purposely didn’t buy any alcohol as the limit  is too small at  1.15 litres. They quite often make you pull over to pay duty on alcohol.

I took Jessica, August and Atticus out to Boston Pizza for lunch as Penny had just started working again. The kids were great. August did dump a half a shaker of salt on the table to play in and taste. Added a bit of pepper. Note to restaurants. “Don’t leave the shakers on the table if you don’t want kids to play with them”  I had my first taste of being Canadian again and enjoyed a Ceaser. Love them. Especially at Boston as they do them original with celery. ( the correct way)

Jessica let me drive their new 2017 Ford F150. This is a nice truck with the prefect options for them. The V6 eco-boast has lots of power and being a full 4 doors it has loads of backseat room that helps with boaster and or car seats. It has the trailer reversing system that I will be interesting in seeing how it works. They should get years of enjoyment out of this truck. It also is a lot safer pulling their trailer than their previous vehicle.

August was a little grumpy today but Atticus was smiling most of the time. He is a very very easy baby to take care of. Different personalities completely  between the two boys and that is what makes it so fun seeing each one grow up.

I was having fun. August doesn’t appear to be. LOL

I went downstairs into the Basement Salon to check it out after the girls had it modified to a smaller space and achieving a nice family room out of it also.

Penny’s Basement Salon look absolutely wonderful and a superb decorating theme.

Then on the road again as i was watching the Doppler radar and Calgary’s heavy snow fall warning was supposed to hit around supper time. Have a said I hate snow. First though I forgot to mention I HAD to stop at Tim’s for a Ice Cap and  a couple of Timbit’s.

The snow started coming down quite heavy at times.

April in Calgary . Great !!

I got home in decent time before the bulk of the snow fell. Unpacked everything and put it away. Jackie was out. My travel case which was supposed to be waterproof wasn’t. Everything was fine though.One could consider it pre-wash of the clothes really. That heavy rain in Salt Lake had to seep in most likely through the zippper.

Nice to be home , relax and sleep in my second home bed.

Watched the Humboldt tragedy vigil which was very well done. If you can have a favorite speaker at such a horrible time I would say the team chaplin was excellent. The WHY ? and the WHERE? speech was very real. It will be a long recovery for that town and especially the families with such young kids gone. Sad.

They haven’t said but I am guessing it will be discovered the semi went thru a stop sign. I can’t imagine what that driver is going through. From the skid marks, semi on the secondary highway and the fact it was a t bone it indicates driver stop sign error.

I had thought I may whip up to Edmonton for my Mom’s birthday on Sunday but being tired and the heavy snowfall coming down I decided to wait. I did get to relax and watch the Masters which was nice.

Wonderful sleeps. Missed the morning news as I slept in a bit. Odd. Had my smoothie in bed and watched the second parts of the news. The kitchen sink was leaking while I was gone and Jackie had it covered with a towel so no one could use it. Not easy not having a kitchen sink to use and for so long. First thing on the agenda was to fix this. I hate kitchen sink taps as with the plumbing and waste disposer they are difficult to get at. Pulled everything out. Started at 9:30 am and finished by 12:30pm so not bad. A little frustrating as expected but back to normal again. One chore done. Plenty more to come in the upcoming days.

Phoned Mom this afternoon as trying to sneak in between calls on a birthday night isn’t easy to do. It looked like Mary/Alfred put on a nice get together for Mom which is very nice.

Happy 86th Mom

Thought of the Day 

Funny how sometimes to fix one thing another thing breaks. LOL 

April 9th -10th

I won’t use my “Mercury Forecast” as being in Calgary the comparison doesn’t matter as I am here. Stuck here !  What I do know is I hate winter. 2 feet of snow on the lawns and only plus 7 degrees isn’t spring!

Went and got groceries as we needed some items I like that i classify as good food not all of this pretend to be healthy stuff like yogurt and flax. Nice as the grocery store was empty mid day so I got the groceries done relatively quick.

Talked to my brother Alfred and he said my truck was done. The only thing left I need to do is find new used tires for it and install my new bumper and armrest. Here is list of what Alfred replaced on it. New shocks, upper ball joints, lower ball joints, inner tie rod ends, outer tie rod ends, new CV shafts,CV boots, pitman arm, idler arm, serpentine belt, idler pulley, tensioner pulley, water pump, power steering pump, pressure hoses, plus heads were removed and drilled out for broken exhaust bolts so new gasket set for heads, intake, oil leaks fixed and exhaust. Plus the seat covers, new armrest, new windshield, new locks for canopy, bumper, fog lights, ashtray, oil change, new anti freeze, tranny flush and racing strip. Quite a huge undertaking when you consider the fact the top part of the engine was removed and having to put it back together. Hopefully it will run for a long time time without any issues. I still need to back flush the heater core which I will do when I can use a garden hose outside. Dodge again in their “cheapness” used a thin cheap heater core that plugs easily. It is a main issue with Dakota owners on their forum. I put $3000 worth of just parts alone into a truck worth $1500. LOL

My New Work Truck

I am thinking of it as an investment as getting wood, sand, gravel etc for our lot just got a lot easier. I have the parts needed to make a roll out tool rack for the truck bed I will do when I get it back to Calgary.We will most likely go up this weekend to Edmonton to visit Mom and drive back with the truck.

Worked on my old Ryobi table saw this morning. Replaced and rewired for the new power switch with a safety key. Short wires and difficult spot to get at but got everything wired up with new ends and wiring and works like brand new. I have a huge blood blister on my thumb from a pinch caused by slipped pliers. Ouch !

Bought a fast setting epoxy as there were two plastic spots in the casing of the tablesaw that had cracked. Used bungee cords to hold them in place and glued them together. I am hoping this special super strength epoxy will work or I will go to plan B which is to melt the plastic together. Time will tell here as of right now it is strong. I bought this inexpensive saw when I was doing Victoria’s basement and over the last 8 years it has done a lot of work for me and Corey. More than worth it the price i paid.

Next item was Corey’s air compressor. I took it apart again. Long story short . I GIVE UP. I put a new power switch in it, I put a new pressure switch in it and I still can’t get it to run. The wiring is so close together I cant get a good reading on which has power or not. The only thing I can think of now is I received one defective switch. These things are simple but things can go wrong. I can’t spend any more money on it as a new one is $129 and one hour shop labour is $80. I hate to fail. !!!! But I am at a loss.

So a couple of fun great days in the far north so far.

Thought of the Day

I did not fail. I just found out what didn’t work.

April  11th

Had a text from Fred today that the Critter Getter had sprayed our house in Mesa. He sent the text about noon hour and said the temperature already was over 100 degrees. I love that. Fred doesn’t really like it that hot but I am sure he enjoys the cold beer in shade a lot better than freezing your butt off. I prefer warmth and am very lucky I sweat very little. I might perspire a bit the odd time.

Today was Day 1 of building my Air Compressor cart. If you throw tools around or stack them etc they get broke. I like my tools too last. I am still today using a power mitre saw I bought from Trail Building in 1980 to do my mouldings in Mayfield.  My circular saw that Corey still uses everyday was bought in 1983 from Trail also.  An 8 1/4 Makita which is still perfect. Air compressors get thrown around too much. This cart will have castors to move the compressor around. It will have a auto rewind 3/8 air hose 25ft  reel. It will have a extension cord holder to wrap it around and a spots for my nailers, and nails. One trip instead of 3 or 4 trips. I will post a picture when I am done. Starting a 10 am and worked until 4 pm. Retired person hours. I got the bulk of it done today hopefully I will have it filled and painted by tomorrow afternoon.

Squatting and bending kills my back as it is a little sore which is the first time in months that I can remember.

I am not interested in the NHL playoffs with my two favorite teams not making the cut. I think I will cheer for Winnipeg but I am not familiar with players. Need some one to cheer on.

I rather had fun watching a young couple having a fight right outside my balcony. Crying, screaming, running off then back again. Head holding, wild arm movements. Shouting to get in the car as he was embarrassed as she was yelling and screaming. To add injury to insult when he went to start his car, it wouldn’t. Difficult to understand the words with the sobbing but a much better performance than a day time soap opera. Young love.

Decided to go with Jeff to the golf screens. Let me tell you if the screens were accurate and that is the way we golf we should give up. Took us 1 1/2hrs to do 9 nine holes. Our nine hole score was Jeff 89 and I 82. The screens ARE NOT ACCURATE at ALL!  Plus they cost the same as a full 4 hour  real golf game. Driving range only next week.

With the freezing rain and then snow the Deerfoot tonight was as slippery as I have ever seen it. People were down to 50kms per hour. It was extremely icy  and with the windshield and mirrors  freezing over so you couldn’t see very well at all.

No scrapper and mirrors and windows froze solid

On the way home I had an idiot pull out from the shoulder right in front of me. I was sliding right into his rear end with the horn blasting hoping he gets going quick enough. Got to love ABS as I pulled over onto the shoulder and missed him. These are the people that need their license taken away immediately and have to pass a test every year to maintain it. You can’t legislate stupidity but you sure can manage it with strict rules.

Another wonderful cold spring day. And parking outside as I rented my parking space until the 15th.

A couple of beer and pounds of wings at the Bull were awesome. Our waitress Micala was superb and actually won a point of discussion with me. Darn!  I still got to bug her calling her drink a pint when it is 14 ounces. I ordered a 3/4 of a pint please. !  While not mathematically correct I didn’t tell her.

A fun evening !

Up this morning and watched the news and nothing bog happening but a lot of chatter.

Over to Victoria’s place to finish my project. During my construction as always I modified my plans for extra strength and this put a few measurements out. When it was wet I tried to install my compressor and it appeared not to fit. That meant a rework this morning. But I guess  my design and measure was very precise. I wiggled it in with a sigh. I measured three times and cut once and achieved perfection. Impressed myself.

Cart holds, guns, nails, hoses, extension cord etc all in one easy movable cart

I went to Princess Auto and picked up my connectors, quick release couplings and short hose to finish it off. I think this will work just great. My only unknown is the height of the canopy on the truck so it can stand up. Time will tell.

Lots of quick couplings, small hose, blow gun, hose etc

I was planning to head to Edmonton to give Mom her card and gift but the weather forecast wasn’t the best. I want to drive the truck and Jackie the other vehicle in good and relatively warm weather.

I came back a full week to early. A late spring start. Having said that I love being home with Jackie even if it is just watching TV. I especially like the conversations.

Thought of Day

Have you ever noticed how anyone going slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster is a maniac.

April 14th

Jackie and I both slept in today as we decided after talking to Alfred and looking at the weather forecasts we would wait another week before heading up to Edmonton. Mom’s birthday card and present will just sit and wait. The forecast states rain today and snow/rain tomorrow in Edmonton. With our weather I am in no hurry for the truck anyways. The one thing not fixed is the lack of heat as the heater core needs back flushed and we can’t do that until we can use a garden hose and driving with out heat or defroster isn’t good.

I went with Jackie to visit Peter today. He is doing ok relatively speaking but has to be lifted out of bed into his wheelchair, fed, changed and is difficult to communicate with. Although after not seeing me for close to 4 months he has no problem recognizing and putting a name to a face. The mind is a wonderful thing when you have full function of it. Peter’s ward is made up entirely  of people that need extra attention. It is shame the smartest, richest, best looking etc all end up staring into space and drooling just like every one else. From being a child to being child like. Getting old , with the incapacity to be self sufficient is a shame. The older guy or lady that fell asleep and didn’t wake up has it so much easier on themselves and the families.  Jackie fed him as much as he would allow even though he is scary skinny now and should be eating a lot lot more. Nice visit.

After our visit we headed to Victoria’s place to pick them up to go bowling. It most likely has been 3 to 4 years since we last bowled. Our first alley was booked up with a company party so we headed to Chinook. Luckily it wasn’t jam packed and we got a lane right away.

6 year old beats 61 year old .

I will say this right away as I am sure a child of mine, a grandchild of mine and a son in-law will mention it.  I a 61 year old man lost to a 6 year old boy. Yes without bumpers Jackson BEAT me. Out of the 5 bowlers only one managed to break 100 barely. That is how bad we all are.One strike only and three spares total. Jackson was pretty happy he beat me. He did extremely well knocking pins down just about every end. One more time yes Jackson, Corey, Victoria and Jackie BEAT me. I NEVER like to make excuses like I have a sore toe, charlie horse or tired etc but on my bowling hand I was dealing with an extreme raised and painful blood blister just waiting to burst and spill blood all over the bowling alley. It would have been a blood bath with my thin blood. I dealt with the pain very man like but my performance succumbed to a dismal finish with the agonizing pain. Most likely the third worst pain a human can experience right behind  #1 gout,  # 2 child birth and then bulging blood blister #3 .

A blood path waiting to happen on my thumb I use to throw the the ball.

A few ends left . 4 out 5 did not make 100 points. We suck at bowling !!

Notice the sore toe. LOL

I won’t live this down. Yet in my heart of hearts I am sure if I wasn’t handicapped by excruciating pain I could have easily won.

After bowling Cor & Tor treated us to supper at Brewsters. Very appreciated. Great meal, steak and Caesars to drown the pain and the pain of losing.

A fun day !

Thought of the Day 

There is a difference between playing in pain and playing injured. I am convinced I play better with bigger balls. 

April 15th 

First thing. I am still hurting from my bowling loss. My thumb blood blister is throbbing. With each heart beat I see it raise and lower like an alien is going to explode out of it. LOL

I do think 10 pin is easier due to the number of pins and size of balls.

The mind is an amazing thing. Dreaming last night and most nights I don’t remember but I did last night as i was working and dealing with a customer. A Totem manager had phoned me and asked why we shipped 20 of each Easy-In when they had ordered 16 only of each. I had instructed the warehouse staff when quantities are close to full lifts and it is a larger store fill the order to the full lift quantities. As soon as the manager heard the reasoning he was fine with it. Why your mind goes back to a work thing 4 years after retiring and close to 10 years after being the  General Manager running the warehouses is amazing.

“Memories”

Speaking of Totem. I remember years ago with Ray Laberge the buyer at Totem making a request and with the combined door knowledge and creativity of Ray,ex-my shop foreman/lead sales desk, Terry Peppler and I, we created the first ever reversible hinged Easy-In French Door program.  Between the three of us, we created the door, the pricing that made sense and packaging required. It was simple as Ray agreeing to pay the extra dollar amount for it and us including an extra strike jamb in the package with instructions on how to hang it.  The customers had to choose a swing and then cut the header out of the jamb strike not being used. Hence instruction sheet. Then I had to work with our IT department Ken Wilkie to create a bill of materials that pulled the products correct for inventory and costing. The product worked great and we sold loads of them. Another Totem created product was a reversible exterior jamb pak. Sold an amazing amount of them. I wasn’t happy with our packaging on these but they still sold well.

I see more snow coming our way. Even the weather forecasters are tired of the word snow. I have a few appointments for next week I need to get done.

What !! 20 more centimeters hitting us today until tomorrow night.

The high is expected to be only 1 degree with snow all day tomorrow. Both daughters have tentative travel plans so they will need to take caution.

Here is a picture of Atticus with my Dad’s hat on. Jessica has a picture of August with it and I am sure Jessica wears it quite a bit also.

Atticus with his Great Granddad’s Jesse Willard’s hat on.

Finalized my budget numbers today from March. I was little slow this time with travel and being busy doing things. Our tax refund came this month so that was good. A few extra budget hits with the Dakota, golf, auto repairs and maintenance, speeding ticket, and flights, hurt were not quite covered by the refund. There were good things that showed up also so even after spending more than budgeted for the final number wasn’t unexpected.

I still haven’t accepted my bowling loss. !!

Thought of the Day

The poor squirrel was heard saying.” I hate winter. It is going to take until July to thaw out my nuts.”

 

April 16th

Ok it’s not funny anymore. No I am not talking about about my bowling loss. I am talking about the winter weather. Heavy snow fall again.

April showers ?

The saying April showers bring May flowers is a way off. The flowers are still froze deep in the ground. Snow is covering everything and it keeps falling. I am really disliking this weather this year. It better be a great summer as the winter in Calgary has been bad. I can’t start anything outside first due to the snow and second because it is cold outside.

A few things to get done this week. Rock chip repair, doctor call, and project pricing on the decks.

Snow keeps falling. Victoria is dealing with one lane traffic on a snow covered highway and Jessica is dealing with freezing rain and wet highways today. Me, I am dealing with looking outside and seeing the snow accumulate close to 5 inches already.

Jackson GOT me. Fingers behind the head trick. Kid catches on too quick.  But did he get me ?  Man coming out of his head.  I am just that good .LOL

Working on deck pricing today and shed pricing.  Hope to install my roof rack this week if the weather becomes normal.

Coming back from Tim’s I had a lot of fun.  I was doing the speed limit thru a school zone when this younger women in her fancy Q60 Lexus blew past me. Two tickets for her if caught. After the zone I caught up to her and saw for a second she wanted to come into my lane as her signal light came on for a second. I speed up to be beside her so she couldn’t switch. We both stopped at a stop sign a little further ahead. Knowing in my mind she wanted or needed to get over to my lane I was going to do the same speed as her. She boots it. Gets the jump on me as I figured she would try to pull in behind me. Aggressive move. Love it.Her Lexus has some power and with wet snow/slush everywhere she got into my lane in front of me to make her exit she wanted. My passive aggressive nature got the best of me but I did enjoy it. She most likely never clued in I was doing this due to her speeding though thru the school zone. LOL  Makes life enjoyable !

“MY RANT “

Most of you know my thoughts on traffic cops. I have the utmost respect for our police force in every job category other than the entry level, traffic cop. The investigative, criminal enforcement, special ops, tactical,under cover, security ,beat and internet cops etc all are amazing and I would have no problem with them receiving much higher pay as a lot of them put their lives on the line and do an incredible job. NOT so much with the traffic cops. This is the entry level position so all “beginner” cops start here and the authority goes to their head. At JELD-WEN I couldn’t hire a sales rep unless they had a university degree as a standard policy. You only need grade 12 and a drivers license to be an RCMP or city cop. It would be interesting to see the psychological analysis of these guys as I am sure a lot of them have been abused, bullied, with low self esteem and the idea they are given immense power over a average citizen is very becoming to them. And the force hires them. And it is going to get worse as the amount of applicants gets less and less .The “rant” is a result of watching the news tonight. CTV did a story on a guy getting a $150 ticket for having a bike rack on his car. The police force ” Policy ” was it obstructed the view of the plate. We all know it is related to photo radar and loss of revenue as police forces are subsidized by ticket revenue. The cop that gave this ticket out instead of being protected by ” policy” should have been reprimanded and given a lesson on common sense.  Can you imagine going home and feeling you did a good job by handing out this ticket.  Amazing !  And police forces wonder why the respect overall for them has declined.

BUT THAT IS JUST ME ! 

April 17th 

Getting late in the month and still winter. I got excited today as I started to research out quantities, lengths, availability , quality and pricing on Fred’s and I’s decks and sheds.

We received fantastic pricing from a long time friend, and former boss Lorne Schreiner the current General Manager of Nelson Lumber in Edmonton.With his input and the professionalism and knowledge of one of his inside sales people Kelvin the experience was wonderful. Great service, pricing and product knowledge. Nice to deal with a company like that and it was fun talking to Lorne again. I will see him I am sure this summer as Fred and I will need additional product for Fred’s lot. Most impressed with the garden shed construction and quote. This is a garden shed not a throw together thing like the big box stores sell.  Just checking on the siding and I noticed we need to make our rafters which was surprising. Very happy overall though.

One of my first jobs and a great company  to deal with.

“Memories” 

Nelson Lumber was one of my first jobs while in school. I built trusses on the night shift in Edmonton at their truss plant in Winterburn.  My boss there was Terry Carmony.( spelling may be wrong) and he was awesome. Made going to work fun. The day I left as I took a job as a apprentice electrician he wanted an arm wrestle. He wins I have to stay. I win I can leave. I ran out the door as he was a huge man. LOL  Fun job !  Depending on the truss sizing he would set a goal for us to build each night. My friends and I would work like dogs, meet our goal and then drive our car over to the Drive In movie right beside us and watch some of the  show. Get back to work and punch clock out when our shift ended.. We didn’t want him to know we could have built double his goal. We should have been paid per truss rather than by the hour. LOL 

Lorne Schreiner was the manager of Henderson’s Edmonton when Marshall Wells went broke. I was working at Marshall Wells at the time and they sold Weiser locks. Ken McGver the Weiser rep put in a good word for me with Lorne and after an interview Lorne hired me. This was one of the best groups of people I ever worked with. As a group and with Lorne’s leadership our sales went thru the roof. I was always a great salesman but I loved to watch Lorne work his magic on customers with his building relationship skills. Quite impressive. Fortunate for me 4 years later Lorne recommended myself as the Manager of the Calgary operation. Very grateful. My transfer to Calgary was even easier as I sold my house to Lorne in St Albert where Fred Keys was our neighbor.Led to some very good years in my career.

I drove out to my RV lot to double check some measurements. THREE FEET of snow still in the lot. I felt deflated. The streets in the resort sure need gravel as they are on the muddy side. This is on the management’s to do list so hopefully sooner than later as people pulling out or in are going to rut the roads. Especially with the larger motor homes and 5th wheels.   I won’t be able to order any product or start work for at least a week right now unless the weather warms dramatically. Tried to measure as a double check but the snow up to my knees and the tape having nothing to measure from didn’t allow it.

I stopped at Woody’s to pick up a bottom toilet gasket as I need to repair ours in the motor home.  Last trip of the year was fishing in BC and I noticed the water not staying in the bowl. RV toilets are a little different than home toilets. No pee traps to hold gasses from escaping. RV toilets rely on water staying in the bowl to eliminate any smells. So with ball gaskets and flange gaskets I started the SHITTY job of removing and cleaning the ball in the toilet. It’s not the smell so much as the being afraid of some disease with the germs everywhere. Toilets in an RV are tight. Trying to work in a small room with tight spacing isn’t easy. Being the first time isn’t easy. I have to say though the job went very well. New gaskets, cleaning and reinstalling took me about 3 hours but the toilet is like brand new now. I didn’t test it under pressure as the water isn’t hooked up yet but everything indicates all is good. Nice when you have no hiccups and things work perfect. Nice out at the lot though with no one around. I turned on the furnace and worked away. Brought every tool I needed and some and done !!!

I feel for the fans.

I wonder how the Oiler fans are feeling. I watched a few ex Oiler players traded away that are performing in the playoffs admirably. Flames fire a few coaches. Oilers keep adding old Oiler alumni.  Which team do you think will do better next year ? Not a fair question as there is only one right answer and it doesn’t start with an E or a O. LOL

Thought of the Day 

Virtually every study shows precisely the psychology of being a sports fan is : The sense of goodwill, bonding and shared purpose that comes with being a fan has a ripple effect that can benefit all aspects of living. A city with a losing team has the exact opposite on the fans and the city. A city enduring these losses can vote in political elections absurdly, hire the wrong personnel as they are living in the past and just have a depressed demeanor. 

April 18th -20th

Weather getting better. Melting is starting.

Finalized the shed and deck with Fred so all that is needed is him to contact Nelson to order and set up a delivery date.

Double checked my deck sizing and I am going to make a small adjustment to make it easier to install. The second deck will be 5″ taller ( one step up) and butt up to the first one. Snow was melted enough to get a better idea. After a couple more days of double digit  temperatures I should be able to finalize it. The Gazebo i want is 12 x 16 so I have to make sure the deck sizing fits and allows the slides to come out. It is close as I have to leave 5ft by code between the deck and the shed or property line.

I find it very relaxing and enjoyable out at the lot.  The 1/2 mile section of gravel road from 22X is pretty rough and potted so hopefully the county gravels and levels soon.

Went and picked up my lab work requisition but couldn’t get in until Tuesday. Booked it for then. Have I said I hate doctors.

Met Jeff at the driving range tonight. I notice Jeff is holding his club different and appears to be striking the ball better. Nice to see and hopefully he will have a great year on the course. I do know watching the ball flight it was better than I have seen for a while from him. Golf is a funny game having to work on it constantly. I was striking the ball extremely well and was happy with my irons. The driver even was quite good with only about 2 wonky slices. I can live with that. I don’t know if it was because the balls were frozen or something else but the flight distance seemed less than normal. You get no roll with the water and snow on the field though.

Finished the night off with wings and beer at the Bull & Finch.

Stopped off at the golf course, Heatherglen to check into any Marshaling opportunities for this year. They had a very interesting and new concept we discussed that I think is amazing.  I do think a young pretty girl would be more effective than a old fart but I love the concept and idea which I will let everyone know about after it’s implementation. I have to take a 2 1/2 hour course and test with a 80% pass. They give 5 attempts to pass so it must be a difficult test. It looks like only a week away from start date here if the water is absorbed readily.

As a Albertan we all want to stop the oil to BC.  I think we need to start refining more oil ourselves instead of worrying about large pipelines. In Arizona even on dead empty I never hit $30 to fill the Jeep. Usually about $25. I fill up today at $1.25 a litre and the fill was over $70 bucks. That is sick.

First public Golf Course opening on Monday announced today. They will over run with the amount of golfers wanting to start golfing. Fox Hollow and hopefully a few others later next week. This weekend is the telling time.

Heading to Edmonton in the morning so will be away for a couple of days. I will post when I get back. On my to do list is, see Mom, give birthday present and card, see Alfred and pick up my work truck and stop at Mel’s to pick up my new bumper assembly.

Quick trip to Edmonton.

April 20-22nd

Jackie and I  had a good drive up to Edmonton. It is amazing how busy that HWY 2 is between Calgary & Edmonton. We stopped for Tim’s at Carstairs to have a quick lunch and continued on. Funny as I think this is the first time EVER that the further north we went the less amount of snow we saw. Calgary when we left had snow on the ground Edmonton was dry. Very unusual.

Just before hitting Edmonton Mom phoned as she had a make up event to go to so we decided we may as well head out to Alfred’s to pick up the truck.  Hitting the Anthony Henday  all I could do is laugh. A freeway and the slowest drivers I have ever seen. The difference between the two cities is amazing. I prefer fast drivers any time of the day.

Alfred was near the end of taking a large birch tree down when we arrived. We had a good visit with him and Garrett & Mariz . Garrett is a tree removing expert so the tall tree was no issue.

Looked at the house and garage for staining this summer. The one side of the house is TALL and will be a little difficult to do. I plan to spend a week and hope to get it done this June.

Started up the truck and headed out. First 1/4 mile scared me a bit as i saw blue smoke following me and the truck didn’t burn oil previously. Luckily in a bit it disappeared. I was watching all of the gauges to make sure everything was good the whole way. First impression was it drove and sounded like a new truck. It steered very well, no pull and ran very well. Funny as I was driving down the highway at 110 kms Jackie kept pulling away speeding. Later I discover due to the fact that the truck had 215/75r15 tires on it and was supposed to have 31 x 10.50 x 15 tires the speedo was out by close to 10kms. I am going to change to 235/75r15 which are only 1″smaller rather than the 2 1/2 inch the 215 are.

Near Mom’s place while waiting for a train the check engine light came on. I am sure it is the idle sensor. Unfortunately it didn’t go off. I will reset the PCM when I get back to Calgary.

We took Mom, Alfred and Mary out for supper to a great restaurant in Stony Plain.  Higher end Italian place called Sorentino’s. We highly recommend this place. The food was excellent. Garlic special night. Funny thing this is the same  name of the restaurant in Vancouver that years ago I had a 5K fake charge put on my visa. Nice evening in Stony Plain my old stomping grounds.

Breakfast and a lot of talking at Mom’s place. I have to say that this place was smart. They recognized the fact by putting couches and chairs near the exit encouraged a lot of seniors to sit and fall asleep right near the door. Not a welcoming sight when you first enter the doors. Now they have replaced these with a piano and it is like night and day entering. We had a fire alarm event this morning so someone must have burned their toast.

After lunch we headed out home. Busy highway again and Jackie was speeding again. I thought for a while the alignment shop didn’t align the steering wheel until I discover it was the heavy wind coming from the side. The truck drove nice. Very easy driving truck, quiet and enjoyable to drive. I filled up in Edmonton and hit home with a half a tank of gas left which is good. When I drove it up to Edmonton I filled up at Carstairs and drove it out to Alfred’s place it supposedly was on empty which is odd so it is getting double the gas mileage now. Can’t go wrong with that.

Stopped and picked up my bumper at Mel’s in Red Deer . Talking to Mel he is very excited with his new RV lot so Fred & I may some more work coming up.

A good weekend !

Thought of the Day or perhaps a RANT

People too often behave like cows. They plod through life, dumbly believing the government’s lies, swallowing Big Pharma’s poisons, and ignoring the obvious conspiracies all around them. People work too much and play too little. Corporations bleed us for profit and governments strangle our liberty. And we all just take it. We let socialist governments destroy our economy, our heritage and the only vocal people are the small noisy minorities. We need OIL, changing the national anthem should have been a treason charge , paying terrorists, legalizing drugs, now looking at legalizing prostitution, indigenous rights have to stop somewhere, people-kind, trade spats that are unconstitutional all due to two names. Trudeau and Notley. Come on people stop the insanity. !   Edmonton I am talking to you specifically as I am sure of the rest of the province. 

April 23 -24th

A beautiful day starting to look like spring.  Robin’s are loving it and I am loving it. Did a few things on my computer then headed out to work on the Dakota. First I cleared the check engine light. I wanted to see the code but either missed it or it didn’t work. Light went out and after driving a few miles and idling did not come back on.  All things good

Installed convex mirrors on both sides. I noticed while driving home from Edmonton this truck which has basically car mirrors has a 6ft long blind spot on each side. That doesn’t work for me as I hate not being able to switch when I want without shoulder or double checking. Got them all installed and perfect. If you are driving in a city these are a must. Especially with a vehicle with a small V6 with only 175 horses when you compare it my Jeep’s 285 horses. Hard to get out of the way. They made an awesome high horse V8 version of these which would have been nice to have.Put on my Camo steering wheel cover as i love the feel of these. I then worked on the dent and with the puller and some back panel tabbing and the dent is 90% out. A crease in the metal and right around it can’t be removed without pounding, sanding, putty and painting.  Retrieved my centre console lid and went to install it. Fail. Fred and I searched the wreckers in Mesa and looked at about 15 Dakota’s and couldn’t find the one we needed. This option is ultra rare. I also searched Calgary before heading south. I found one on EBAY and hated the price but as they are so rare I decided to buy it after researching, talking to Corey, and more researching. Turns out Dodge made three different console lids. The one I bought is 14 inch and today I discover a 18 inch one  is what I need.  FAIL. I can’t return and I don’t care for EBAY so most likely will just eat it. Darn !! Checked EBAY again and don’t see one.

Then onto the bumper. The front end damage was more extensive than I originally thought. The frame and bracket on one side is bent and the bracket on the other.  Being bent they were  extremely difficult to get out as access didn’t allow a socket to get to them. Took me three hours but I finally got them out.  After removing the bumper I discovered it was impossible to hang the new bumper. I need a torch and a big hammer. Fred says he has one and will bring it down with him when he comes. Darn ! I am thinking the brackets maybe made out of spring steel to “cushion a hit” so I maybe able to cold straighten them with a pipe wrench and strong arm and a big maul. LOL  I will see.

Went for my blood work again. Now just waiting for the doctor phone call which I am not looking for to.  Life is funny.

Jackie and I drove out to our lot tonight to check on it. The snow has dramatically declined and it has dried up enough to look at getting wood so I will look at delivery dates tomorrow.  I most likely will adjust sizing a bit to move out the motorhome without having a struggle. I don’t want to be difficult to get in and out as that will serve no purpose. It is a odd feeling not being able to do things yourself. To put on the roof rack as Jackie in her old age is now to weak. To move my boat myself without installing the wheels isn’t easy. I love the feeling of being out there in the country with it’s smell and quietness.

Golf courses opening this Thursday as we have about 4 out of 6 days being over 20 degrees coming up. Yes spring.

First thing this morning after my breakfast in bed was to head to Auto Zone. I returned a few parts and core charges and got back $150 so that was a good start. I bought more degreaser and and spent $20 at the car wash. The engine compartment and under carriage looks great and now with no leaks will stay clean. Vacuumed more. That MDF dust is insidious.It hides everywhere and is very difficult to get it all. A few more tries and each time closer to being done. I could smell oil and was worried I had a leak. I then discovered the issue. Under the rear seats are small compartments. There was a pool of oil in one of these from a jug of oil thats lid wasn’t on good enough. Got that cleaned up and it is smelling nice.  I washed the inside of the box out and was totally covered in spray of dirty water.  Waxed and shiny again. I need to get the rust check soon before it gets eaten up a bit.

After supper I had Corey and Jackie meet out at the lot. The snow is JUST about gone. I picked up the neighbors BBQ as the wind must have thrown it to the ground. The three of us managed to get it on and then Corey and I worked on the bolts to secure it. Every year we struggle. Finally three years later after struggling again we discover an easy way. Third time lucky or are we that dumb. LOL  Made it quite easy to do with our new system. I will remember that next time I need to remove it. Driving home that weight and wind deflector sure does make a difference on power and gas mileage.

While we were working away Jackie was playing with Jackson at the play ground. I find out later she hurt herself. Old people in playgrounds are dangerous. While there Jackson had an incident that when Corey and I heard the story we killed ourselves laughing. Jackson had his rubber boots on which are quite high. He ran into a mud puddle and in the middle of it his feet got stuck in the mud. He reached down to show Grammy he was stuck and lost his balance and fell right into the mud. Jackie said the look on his face was priceless. She thought at first he was going to cry but when she started killing herself laughing he did too.

Thought of the Day

A early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese.

April 25th

The next few days are going to be warm. Averaging 21 degrees is wonderful. Today was the coolest of the next three at 14 degrees.

Up early this am and heading out to our lot. Just before Indus I witnessed a horrific violent accident. Remember I am an advocate for driver training. Heading east on 22x. I look down for 2 seconds and when I look back up about 500 yards in front of me a semi truck explodes.It hit head on a oncoming vehicle pickup that was trying to pass. Another semi in front of him pulled over and slammed on his brakes but the pickup guy didn’t move over. Right at impact the semi bursts into flames while the pickup is spinning around and around in the center of the highway. The semi on fire after the impact jack knifed into the ditch. From my perspective it was impossible for it not to be a fatality accident. The other semi driver stops and runs over to the burning truck.

Odd as I thought Diesel  wouldn’t explode like gas yet it went to instant fire and then inferno.

I decided to do a u-turn as the highway as I knew it would be closed for hours. Took the country side route. Coming back to the highway I was only a 1/4 mile past the accident.

Horrific accident

It was unbelievable the amount of cops and firetrucks rushing to the scene as i was driving. Watching the news we discover one person was killed only. I thought the pickup driver for sure but the semi driver must have jumped out quickly.

I won’t RANT but this was 100% the fault of a stupid pickup driver. Test every 5 years or more  !!

For a warm day coming it was 5 degrees feeling like 0 when I got to our site. Started the fireplace to warm up the motor home.  I brought the morning paper so first thing was reading the news. Then gloves on and start digging. I had sections of 4 inch thick ice to break up. It was thick, heavy and difficult to break up.

Thick ice

I needed to break up the ice to get to the ground to start leveling for the beams. I had 3 – 4 x 4’s from last fall I used to level the area for the beams. I started to move gravel. And more gravel. And more gravel.Find the high spot and work around to level. The one end beam will have 6 inches of gravel under it and the other is dug about 2″ into the ground. After moving the gravel I managed to get all 4 areas where the beams will be laid all level.

I have no square or straight line or angle to work from. The lot has angled sides and the back is also at an angle. I find this difficult to work with as the only indicator is a visual. Angles look off from certain angles. I will need to get over it having angled driveways, shed pads etc. I look down at the other lots and everyone struggled with this.

Even after special instructions to make sure the pressure treated wood was in a separate lift or at least on the top of the lift it didn’t happen. How a manager in a lumber yard doesn’t give his staff common sense instruction is beyond me. The first lumber required are the joists and beams. Separate lift or on the top of the lift. Seems easy but it didn’t happen. Took me a long time getting the beams and joists out of the bottom. You basically have to re-pile the entire lift. That I did. Funny thing I don’t remember 6 x 6 PT  12 ft posts weighing so much. LOL

PT joist on the bottom

Moved all of the lumber and re-stacked the lift and set aside some joists closer to the deck. Next was carrying the 6 x 6 posts to the level gravel areas. Like I said I forgot the weight of these things. When you drop them and move them around to get level they are firmly in place. To level all of these side to side and back to front takes a while but completed the job and happy with the progress.

Beams leveled for first deck and joist ready for cutting and install tomorrow.

The first larger deck will house a 12 x 16 Gazebo with curtains which will provide the privacy from our neighbors behind us.

12 x 16 Messina

 

I have a golf game tomorrow early afternoon so I won’t get a lot done. I am hoping I may get the joist carriage all done for the large deck.

Thought of the Day 

It is not the beauty of a deck  you should look at ; its the construction of the foundation that stands the test of time.  

April 26th-27th

Up and at it first thing this morning. Loaded the Dakota with all of my tools.  Headed to Corey’s to pick up my saw. Man is that 12″ sliding mitre saw mounted on a stand HEAVY.  It isn’t easy to load. Set up my construction site and started to work. Only issue is a 12ft long board is difficult to cut and hold the weight. I need to built an adjustable height holder for the long wood.  If you are cutting half or close to  it is fine but if cutting  a short piece it is difficult. Switched to speed square and circular saw for a lot of the cuts.  Pretty happy with the progress today as the main frame is close to being done. One issue I will fix tomorrow with a ratchet strap being my second set of hands. For a shorter day I was happy with my progress.

Packed up everything  and headed home to go golfing at Heatherglen. Jeff tonight even though the score wasn’t as good as he would have liked played better than I have seen for a long time. His striking the ball was fantastic. He drove every hole extremely well except a hiccup here and there. Irons were struck well and accurate. A few missed chips and putts killed the score but he played very very well. Nice to see !. I played ok. Not super happy. I will take a 85 first game back after a bit but a few too many errors. Next time. Pars seemed hard to find tonight. Muscles were sore tonight and tight but the warmth helped to play with them. Warm weather and a fun night.

Plus beer and chicken wings always cap off a good night.

Paid my HOA fees for Mesa this morning.  This fee hurts as it is $5000  every 6 months. But when you consider the amenities, 4 pools, 8 hot tubs, 2 golf courses, tennis courts, pickle ball courts, massage and hair dresser on site, 1000 capacity dance hall, crafts, quilt making, jewelry making, hiking clubs, tours, wood shop, concerts, karaoke nights, bingo, and the list goes on. The way we think of it is we can’t go on a 2 week vacation for 10k and we get this place for 6 months of the year. Sweet deal considering.

Ran out of water late in the afternoon. Hydration is a needed thing and in the heat with nothing left to drink sucks. I could have driven  in to Strathmore but having to put all of my tools away wouldn’t have been easy.

Just a wonderful spring day and the resort was starting to be active with families. We had our first wiener roast tonight which was a lot of fun. Jackie had  every thing we needed with mustard, ketchup,relish, onions, cheese, potato salad, macaroni salad, coleslaw  and chips. A awesome “summer” meal. Jackson had a blast and loved the playground. Met a few neighbors today which all seem nice. We  have a Ricky & Michelle right behind us and a Rick & Michelle right beside us. Should be easy to remember.

First wiener roast on our new lot

 

Made sure my no interest for 6 months payment plan on my decks went thru correct so all is good there . I can pay it down as I have the money over the summer. I will look at doing the same for my shed as it will be about $2k.

$1.33 a gallon of gas. That is ridiculous. We had oil over $100 a barrel and were not close to this. Crooked someone. Some carbon tax blame but not all. Where is the investigative reporters now ?

Thought of the Day

I look and feel my best sitting in a chair, on a deck with a cold beer in my hands. Just saying !

April 28th 29th

Up and at it this morning. I thought we would get it completed today but fell short by just a little.

First was to complete the frame structure. A lot easier having someone hold the end of a 12 ft long board. We got that all done and started on the decking. First let me say my deck was 100% square and level so that helps decking go on easier.  I was using my $165 for a box of stainless screws and my new Camo hidden deck fastener system. I love the ease and the look of no screws in the boards. The tool is heavy duty and worked perfect by spacing automatically each board. If there is any negative it is the tool doesn’t pull or push the board together. You manually have to do that. So if you had a lot of warped boards it is a little more difficult but still works out great. I would give it a 5 out 5.

Awesome system

I won’t say it is lot longer using this but it is slower. But the results look wonderful. I would recommend having two tools and two guys doing the same board from each end which would make it go a lot faster and easier.

The only reason the first deck took a little longer than I would have liked was our wood issue. I was pleased with Home Depot on everything ( went with them as they had a no interest 6 month deal) except for the 12 ft “Premium” Cedar boards. I have NEVER seen boards that were milled in some cases close to 1/4′ wider in the middle than at the ends of the boards. We struggled for a long time until we realized we had boards not the same width the entire length. Never have I seen this before. It was very annoying as the boards weren’t cupped and looked beautiful. I have to do some research on this before I go back to  the store to TALK to them.

All done except for about 10 boards and the 22.5 degree corner to make. Ran out of time.

Last few boards

Cedar skirting after cutting off beams and it will be done. I may put arbor on the back using 6 x 6 concrete mesh to grow vines on and add privacy. I will fiddle with that as time permits. Next will be the gazebo.

Drove out to finish this morning and worked for about 15 minutes and said ” Self are you insane? it is too cold to be working outside.” It was 7 degrees and windy so I packed up and headed home. Went over to visit Peter with Alan & MaryAnn. Nice visit and decided to have a dinner/supper at OJ’s. Our meals were great and a lot of fun talking. Haven’t seen them since January.  Great day overall and now paying bills and relaxing.

Thought of the Day

I would rather wake up in my RV than any city in the world. 

April 30th

Up earlier this morning to head to Red Deer. What a day it turned out to be. Arriving at Mel’s place Fred was already working on his Land Cruiser installing new LED lighting. A little fuse issue and then let there be light. These things are BRIGHT !.  Amazing Amazon deal . He will definitely be able to see thru the bush now.

Started on the front bumper. We needed to bend the frame straight and the brackets straight. You could use washers to adjust the height and slot holes for side to side alignment but the brackets have to be straight. Fred used his torch to red hot heat the metal and with a large pipe wrench and bar and slide pliers we did our best to get them level and in the correct position. Mounted the bumper and perfection with side to side clearance, perfect gaps around the grill and lights.

We had to whip into town as the headlights were in dire need of correction, placement, and missing a alignment screws, and holder bolts. Got it all fixed and with a little adjustment everything came together. One bulb not working which I will fix at home a little later. Having the lights all lined up and the new bumper fitted perfect the truck is looking good. Fog lights all hooked up and working. Nice !

New bumper looking good.

Amazing what a few things can do for looks.

It was like Christmas today. New bumper on but even better Fred gave me a moose antler set and an old cow skull and a small compressor. I need these items for my “western” themed RV lot with my old fashioned Saloon.  My shed I build will be our “Happy Our Saloon”

Our shed look a like

I will stay on the look out for half or full wagon wheels to complete the look. The compressor may or may not work which I will test as Fred recovered it as a unwanted item.

Paid a whack of bills. Organized to get Alfred’s trailer as Fred & I are going to build his shed Wed-Friday. We should be able to get it done before Friday.

I gave his FORD TRUCK shirt early. He is still adjusting to Ford from being a Chevy guy and this will reinforce his new LOVE of Ford. Once he puts it on he will proudly wear it proclaiming his new patronage and loyalty.  Made me smile as i handed it to him.

Thought of the Day 

The only American car manufacturer that builds a vehicle without using taxpayers dollars. That has to say something.

 

 

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