Sunday, October 25, 2009

Week 11 - Peonies and yard clean up

Peony (11/52)
Originally uploaded by Twister65
I'm cheating this week. I don't have any new photos from this week to put up, so I'm digging out an old one.

Having said that, there is a reason why I chose this one. Today I raked all the leaves from the front and backyards, and dug up all of the dead plants and flowers. In the process, I decided to split the peony's root into a few smaller roots to plant elsewhere in our flower bed.

I hope they all continue to grow in the spring. Although the flowers don't live very long, they're beautiful and smell really nice.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Week 10 - Patience and a little luck

Patience and a little luck
Originally uploaded by Twister65
We picked up a bird feeder last week and I finally got around to buying a bracket and putting it up yesterday. Almost immediately, the birds arrived.

This afternoon, the squirrels were trying to get at it. At first it was funny to watch them dangling from the pole and the bracket, as the bird feeder kept spinning away out of reach. Persistence paid off for them, and it wasn't long before they were either hanging by the rear legs and grabbing seeds, or sitting perched on top of the feeder. I chased them away countless times before I decided it was time to move the feeder out of reach.

Before doing so, I sat out back with my camera and took a bunch of shots of the chickadees. Patience and a little luck paid off and I got a pretty neat shot.

Monday, October 12, 2009


It’s the Canadian Thanksgiving today!

It’s time for family and friends to get together and give thanks for… blah, blah, blah, blah, blah… *yawn*

We give thanks for everything now. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but to do it once  a year really is dumb and unless we’re talking to the people we’re thanking, it’s rather pointless.

Thankful for friends. Thankful for being employed. Thankful for having a roof over our heads. Thankful for our health.

The list goes on.

Are we not thankful for these things any other day of the year? Sure we are. So, why do we feel the need to celebrate being thankful for these things one day of they year?

It’s tradition!”

What a load of crap. Tradition is being thankful for the end of harvest.

Have you ever stopped to ask yourself why you are thankful for friends? Are you thankful that they took pity on you and decided to be your friend? Huh? Give yourself some credit. Perhaps you’re just a likeable person? Thank yourself for that. Or maybe you should thank their parents for having sex.

Stop bitching about your job if you’re thankful for being employed. Thank your boss for not firing your whiny ass, or choosing you when they had to make a choice of who to let go during a layoff. If you don’t like your job enough to bitch about it, go find another one and be thankful that you have a choice.

While we’re at it, stop bitching that it’s a Monday. At least you woke up in the morning.

Thank a doctor for your health. Hell, thank your parents, or whoever raised you.

The point is, don’t wait for one day of the year to sit around a table, stuff your face, and tell other people why you’re thankful. You can sit around and stuff your face any time.

Tell the people who deserve the thanks and don’t wait for the second Monday in October to do it.

Thank YOU for reading.

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Sunday, October 11, 2009

Week 9 - Mer Bleu Bog

Mer Bleu Boardwalk
Originally uploaded by Twister65
My wife, daughter and I took a drive out to the Mer Bleu Bog for a walk on the boardwalk today. The parking lot was quite full, yet we didn't run across too many people on the actual boardwalk. It was quite cool, and very windy in the open areas of the boardwalk. About 3/4s of the way around the boardwalk look, we smelled a strong cedar aroma. My wife noted that it reminded her of wood shavings that we used for our hamster cage years ago. I love that smell.

Monday, October 5, 2009

A solution to constant MSN Messenger Live disconnects

Windows Live Messenger Mobile

Image via Wikipedia

A couple of weeks ago, I tried to sign onto my personal Messenger account while I was at work. I’ve been doing this for years without any problem.

Not this time.

After a few seconds of being connected online it disconnected me. I could only sign on using an offline status. Online, Busy and Away would all disconnect me within seconds.

I tried my work-related Messenger account and it remained online.

I was stumped. I tried everything I could think of. The same computer, and the same Messenger executable. The only difference was the accounts. I even tried an old account that I no longer use and it also worked fine.

I started to wonder if something changed on our corporate network causing Hotmail messenger accounts to be blocked.

Today, I came across the solution. The solution I found in this thread was as follows:

Have you tried checking your Live group memberships? I had exactly the same problem of Live Messenger 2009 signing in, showing my contacts status then disconnecting - but only when connected to the company network (either directly or through VPN). From suggestions on other forums, I tried using my son's Live ID to sign in with the same result, then I tried using my youngest daughter's Live ID (which I have severely restricted with various bits and pieces) - the connection stayed UP!!!

After looking into this further, I realised that some time ago I had accepted an invitation from my son to join a Live Group he had set up for the family (his younger sister hadn't been able to accept the invitation because of the all the restrictions I had on her account).
I went into the Group options and left the group and Hey Presto! my Messenger now stays connected even within the company network.
Hope this helps someone.

I fixed my messenger problem.

It made sense. About a week before this problem started, I had created a Live Group on Messenger Live. It was the second group I created, the first being created over a year ago. Since I didn’t do anything with this second group, I deleted it and tried going online again. It didn’t work. However, the group still appeared in my Messenger contact list. I shut down Messenger and re-launched it. The group was now gone… and I was able to go online and stay online.

Perhaps something did change on our network, or perhaps it had to do with not having any members in the group I created. Who knows? I’m just happy it’s fixed.

I blogged this with the hope that the solution spreads around to others who are experiencing the same problem.

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Sunday, October 4, 2009

Week 8 – Faces of my children

I discovered the collage feature of Picasa. :)

These are all of my two children, Kyle and Kaitlyn.

Faces of my children

Friday, October 2, 2009


I missed a milestone yesterday.

It was day 250 since I quit smoking.

This is the longest I’ve ever gone without a smoke, since I started smoking when I was 18 or 19 years old. I quit many times over the years, and in some cases for a couple of years, but I always cheated now and then and had a smoke or a puff, and then I’d be good again for months.

This time there has been no cheating.

I haven’t had any real craving since I quit, but as each day goes by, my determination to remain a non-smoker continues to get stronger.

I’ve felt that I had this beat within a few weeks of quitting, and I still feel that way.

This week, my wife finally started reading the book that helped me quit: Alan Carr’s Easy Way to Stop Smoking. I hope she sticks with it.

According to my sister, earlier this week my Mom quit smoking. I think she’s doing it cold turkey.

Life. Is. Good.

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