Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Easter Egg Hunt!

This year, the boys had the opportunity to participate in an Easter Egg hunt held at Camp Samac by #ScoutsCanada.

The cost for the event was $5, and included an egg hunt,  treat, and a crest for all Scouts Canada members.

The boys each brought their baskets, we were pre-registered, and they joined the next 'big group' out hunting with minimal wait.  As it was a drop-in event, there were several fields 'populated' with eggs, and the groups rotated around, with the fields being re-populated in between.  the kids collected empty plastic eggs, that were turned in at the end for a treat.  The kids had a choice of a variety of mini-bunnies, or a three-pack of cream eggs, etc.

Little kids were encouraged to join the front of the pack....

There were tons of coloured eggs throughout the route

Buddy brought his binoculars to help him find the eggs

The trout were running upstream to spawn:

All in all, it was a great day, and a great event run by Whitby/Oshawa Scouting

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Help, I've fallen and I can't get up!

Its been way too long since i updated this blog. So long that my dear wife has started blogging in my absence. There is no excuse for my tardiness, but we have been really busy on things ill-suited to this space (like putting fiberglass patches on the under body of old rusty cars. Do you really wanna read about that?)

But apparently there was a birthday party in there too, and so happy birthday Buddy. And we did some other stuff like raking the yard (ooh! Aaah!) and opening the pool ridiculously early (Dang that water is cold!) and some shopping and whatnot. Really, apart from the birthday, you haven't missed much.

Oh yeah Easter - Easter was in there too.

This year we tried to cut back on chocolate since we always buy way too much and end up with sick, cranky kids for days on end. We had some Hershey Kisses and one bag of eggs for our hunt, and we got the kids one bunny each, plus toys instead of tonnes of eats, for about the same price.

And it seemed to work.

Monday, 28 April 2014


This year for Buddy's Birthday we had a 'beach party' in the basement.

Being the good, timely, on the ball parents that we are, we sent invitations out.... five days ahead of time.  oops.

Since invites went out so late, I let the boy invite 14 of his closest friends... expecting to have only a few show up.  Of course, almost all of them came, and including Buddy & Cuppa, we had a full basement with 13 children.

Each child got a Hawaiian lei upon arrival

And I was very lucky to find a free beach printable pack online to decorate with:

(Buddy helped cut out some of the smaller circles)

We had games, like fishing:

Pin the flag on the castle:

And everyone's favourite, the limbo.... they limbo'd under, they jumped over, they just kept going around & around 

A pinata, because we just didn't learn last year:

(The pinata is fun, but the kids just can't break it.  And inside, it was slightly hazardous)

Food, of course:

Where, despite having 13 children on a mostly white carpet, there were no messes..... we had a 'picnic'

And floats:

And all of his friends brought him some great presents:

It was an exhausting two hours, but well worth it.  Despite having planned activities,the kids mostly kept drifting into the toyroom to play, which was fine.

The kids each took home a loot bucket with treats and beach toys:

Which served the secondary purpose as a place to put the pinata treats and any prizes won throughout the party.

It was a fun & exciting two hours for all of the kids!

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Master bedroom Paint Completion

A few posts ago I talked about priming and painting the master bedroom.  Well sometime between getting home from Algonquin Park and heading out to the sugar bush we managed to get all the paint up. There are still some touch-ups here and there where a roller touched the ceiling or where a second (third) coat is needed on the cutting in, but overall the effect of the paint is there now.

We ended up deciding to paint the walls with Benjamin Moore's Yarmouth Blue (HC-150 in Sherwin Williams Superpaint - we had a free can). For the ceiling we used Feather Down (OC-6) in Benjamin Moore's ultraflat ceiling paint. Finding a colour for the accent wall was difficult and forced us outside our usual scheme and into darker, stronger colours.

At the local Benjamin Moore Paint store, we got out chips of our colours and took in our new-to-us tapestry. The designer worked up a scheme for us. To our surprise she went straight to the chocolate browns. We decided to go with "Willow" which we feared would be overpowering, but so far is quite pleasant. To be honest, I think its too dark for the tapestry, but we have a backup plan if we aren't happy with the end effect.

Here is the new look:

Lights on...

Lights off.
With the paint done we can move on to next steps. Tonight we have a local contractor coming out to quote us on new flooring, and then we will be looking into replacing the trim in the room. The trim will be painted in "Feather Down" to match the ceiling, but in a higher gloss. For reference, here is the old colour, but on a different wall. So far our work looks much better.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

I am NOT a Thrifter. I swear!

It seems like every blog I visit has folks thrifting and buying stuff from charities and in support of community and stuff like that. I dig it. I even like the idea of buying used over new, and I love the idea of finding treasures in a junkpile, I just don't have time for thrifting and antiquing like I'd like to. Besides, most of those antique places and thrift houses are only open during business hours, so when would I have time to stop in anyways.

And then last week, I found myself on 3 separate occasions in three separate antique-junk-thrift stores, and came home with TREASURES! Plus I got that old shaper I blogged about like, yesterday, so I guess I'm on an old, used, and abused roll. Here's what I've scored...

The greatest hit has to be this gravy boat. Somehow I have managed to survive my entire life without ever owning my own gravy boat. I would go to thanksgiving at other people's houses and envy their gravy boats, but now that I have one of my own, I can stay home for thanksgiving and not feel like I've missed anything. Not that I like gravy or make it or anything, but now that I have a gravy boat, I might try.

Not as great as the gravy boat, but still great in its own right was this set of 4 juice glasses. I know they are pretty pedestrian (except that they are wavy glass) but they are great because every day at breakfast our boys either fight over the plastic juice glasses (everyone wanted the blue one today) or they get out the big honkin' water glasses and want a huge glass of juice, which always leads to a lineup at the washroom just as we are about to head for school.

And the wavy glass looks cool.

While I waiting at the cash, I happened to notice a rack of CD's from my youth - and there at the top, in a badly abused case was R.E.M. Automatic for the People. Sure I could download this for free from Napster (90's reference) but hey, for a buck, why risk having the law bust down your door? Keep on rockin' in the free world.

They had one shelf of old abused tools in the thrift store, and I was surprised to see three plumb bobs in the pile of rusty saws and hammers. I remember my dad having one and watching it swing and spin until he gently put his finger beside it and checked that his whatever would be exactly over the other whatever, then marking the spot on ceiling where the nail, or joist, or wall would line up. Dad's plumb bob was a piece of hexagon-shaped steel that had a point ground on one end, and an eye on other to tie a string to. The plumb bob I picked up looks like an art deco piece. Its almost wrong to put it in a tool box!

Another shot... yup, I paid a whole $4.00 for it.

My final find is truly amazing. I can now say I am the owner of a tapestry. Our tapestry is intended to go in the master bedroom once the decorating is complete, but for now it is hanging in the hallway. I need to start referring to the hallway as the gallery so it sounds more pretentious. Also, our bedroom is now "The Master's Chambers." unless that's a washroom. I'm not sure.

I love the frame this came mounted in too, but it needs a touchup here and there due to the chipped stain. I wonder if the frame could be painted the same off-white as our ceiling, or if that would be a mistake.

I almost don't want to post the tapestry until we have it in the room, but its so cool, I don't think I can wait either. Even as a standalone, I think its great. here it is.

I needs a shelf under it with a pile of old books and a globe or two. Where are you when I need you Gretchen!

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Antique Shaper!

I picked up this ancient 1/2" spindle shaper last night. I got the tool for a song, but now I need to find tooling for it, and that will get real pricey real quick.

This shaper was made by Henry Tools - a now defunct company that was founded in London Ontario back in 1945 and operated until about  1953. I love the old office table this has been welded to. the cups over the casters kindof remind me of an elephants feet.

Like a fisherman presenting his catch, I present the latest tool buy... The sub $100 shaper.