Monday, August 2, 2010

Eat, drink and go camping

Vacation time!! Two weeks of unwinding.

Deb finished up last years video of our camping trip in The Park (Algonquin) which should be fun to watch tonight as part of our pre-outing dinner. I got to take a look at it.....I have to tell you, some parts look prime for YouTube or FailBlog.

Yesterday was the annual horseshoe tourney (I did not partake) but a huge number of people were there....biggest draw yet. Good pot luck dinner to end the day too.

Today we get the cats and bring them up to the cottage. We'll also be prepping for this years camping trip (I'm doing an Orange/Tarragon chicken breast, Stuffed Beef Tenderloin, and a Stuffed Pork Tenderloin for our dinners). Miles says we don't go camping....we go eating.

Made an cocktail up yesterday afternoon to beat the heat..
1 ounce Appleton rum
1/2 ounce coconut rum
3 ounces pineapple juice
Top up with soda water and ice and a twist of lime

I'm sure I must have seen this somewhere before - can't remember exactly.

As we're on dial-up - pictures are going to have to wait til we get back.

Monday, July 12, 2010

"But, if you never take time, how can you ever have time."

After an insanely busy week at work,l it was nice to be able to unwind over the weekend. A weekend that started off with a great BBQ at Dave & Elaine's. Ordinarily, I don't feel comfortable at large get togethers, but I really felt at home that night. Thanks for putting on the dinner - I think it meant a lot.

It was fun and if it weren't for the work being done at the cottage, we would have stayed later. Great times - we really have to try and do some things like that again. Even on a small scale.

Saturday was spent poking away at whatever was needed. I wasn't intending to do any serious work, but I started on a little garden shed and I guess I got right into it. Oh, by the way, pounding nails into dried 2x6 hemlock might be a great work out for the arm, but not so much for the hardware. There were a handful of nails that bent rather than be hammered in (3" galvanized at that) and I broke the head off the hammer I was using. So I opted for my 3lb sledge to finish the job so there were less.....disagreements. Take a look at what the shed was sitting in - maybe it was originally meant to be an ark.
My friend Darryl was up to put the finishing touches on the power to the shed (got a whole new panel in there now) and no more power problems in the cottage itself. Ahhhhhhhh.

Satruday night was a hoot - we had a lot of fun and stayed up a long time. Deb had a great idea to put a bargain chandelier in the gazebo (just a plain matte black 5 arm single bulb thingy) but does it ever do the trick. We must have been out there for hours and I whipped up a few improvised drinks over the course of the evening. I really got stock up for the holidays.

So, now we are looking at our dwindling summer weekends and wondering how much we can squeeze out of them. It seems that there is never enough time to do the important stuff, work always gets in the way.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Finally back on -

I was going to rant about my battles with technology (having to fix our home network and the ERP launch at work) but instead, I'll move on to more important things.

Onyx (our newly adopted cat) is fitting in quite well. It looks like Stitches (our "fraidy" cat) is warming up to him. Jezebel is another story.....(there's a reason she earned that name). They'll get it sorted out - they eat together, sleep in the same room....there may be the odd slap-fight, but nothing serious.

The canoe gets a tour on the lake for the first time this year, this weekend. Because, for the first time this year - I won't be doing any construction. YAY for ME.

We are getting a new electrical panel put in at the cottage. Sort of got tired of using the old one as a secondary heat source.

The big launch to the weekend is a bbq with the gang on Friday - looking forward to that.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Yesterday's sevice for Wendy was nice.

After a week of running on auto-pilot trying to grasp that one of "our gang" was gone it felt good to be part of the huge number of people that came out to pay their respects. Being able to share stories was great, being able to re-connect with old friends was even better.

Wendy had so many varied interests, she was able to open channels for people who might not have connected, otherwise. Putting the odd small comment on a pic or a post just to let you know she was there turns out to have been a big deal for me now.

I go through a lot of blogs my friends have as links, but rarely post anything. That needs to change.

So - I think I am going to try getting serious about updating this blog, making sure all my contact info is up to date in my email and phone. And I am going to try and use the internet as well as Wendy did.....she pretty much set the bar.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Under Construction

Well, the work in the shop is progressing - thanks to a bad cold, not quite as quickly as I would have hoped.

The strips have been going on nicely, but to get a nice colour balance at the bottom, I've had to play around with some of the strips. Nothing major, but I had to use a couple of old strips to get a nice solid dark cedar in the middle of the canoe. The alternative would have been an inconsistent light/dark blend which I wasn't crazy about.

So, I've built up all one side of the canoe bottom. Next step is to trim off the excess and finish it down to the center line. It's a good thing I put the basswood strip in where I did. The curves to the center get more pronounced as you move in and it was a wrestling match just to get that in.

The old strips I found were as hard as a rock - they had been around for years. It took a pile of clamps and bungees to keep it in place. But the end result should be beautiful.

There is still a pile of work to be done and I'm probably going to be hard pressed to get this finished before May.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Colour me boring

Hmm - not exactly exciting, but....

You are most like:


You are bold with a dark side. You make clear lines wherever you go, though you color outside of the lines. Many people may just see the surface of you and think you are merely plain, but you have a lot of depth to you as well.


Take this quiz: Which Crayola Box of 8 Color Are You?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Ok - so it's not exactly Lego

So, I've been able to spend more time in the shop with the canoe, and it had been going extremely well up until this week.

The wood I am using is of extremely good quality and the work I put into the forms and strongback have made putting the first few strips on, very easy.
I have a bright basswood accent strip set in between some dark cedar. Once the finish is on, it should come up quite nicely.

This part of the caone is relatively flat, so the strips went on very quickly. Once the first strip is on (the bottom most one in this picture) and perfectly level, it is like putting siding on. A bead of glue in the cove, center the strip on the boat and tack it in to the forms with a finishing nail (just to hold it in place while the glue dries).
But as you get to the "curvy bits", getting the strips to stay snug to the form becomes a little more difficult.

After laying a couple of stips each side, I came back to the shop the next day to see that the boards had come away from the form (despite me securing them with bungee cords while the glue dried). Apparently, this is not uncommon and probably could be avoided if one used narrow strips.

You can see that the form (well used now and is probably having trouble keeping the brad nail from moving around) is about almost a quarter inch from the strip - and this would get progressively worse.

So, off to the web to find some solutions. Al had told me to use a clamping system with wedges that would force the boards into place.
This is the best solution and some forums have also said using a heat gun on the strip before placing it in, leaves it a bit more pliable.
I boiled some water and saturated the wood to get a little more give in it before putting the clamps on. Seems to have worked.

This is going to be slow going for the next few days, but it should work. There is going to be plenty of sanding and "improvisational" carpentry before the fiberglass goes on.
There are systems that allow you to create a cedar strip using only clamps. This way you don't get the small nail holes in the wood. But, I'm guessing that those are a little more advanced than what I'm ready for right now.