Still rambling

Friday, June 30, 2006

Check out this picture of my niece

this is a photo I snuck from Carol's blog

isn't that the sweetest little picture???

Thursday, June 29, 2006

The Chevy 72 Hour Sale is now on

..... Thanks to TBS in Atlanta, I am now aware that the 72 hour sale is ON....

According to the anouncer, the sale ends July 5th.....


must be 72 hours american!

Photos of Caledonia

if you are the type of person that reads comments, then you will have noticed the following comments on my last post about WHO took the pictures....

"How do we know that YOU actually took these pictures?? They look pretty professional. Perhaps you had an expert along for the ride with you helping you with your 'picture-taking'??? "

I will not point out anything beyond the painfully obvious...... yes, in fact, I DID have someone along with me when I took those pictures....

and at one point, relinquished control of the camera.....

..... I'm happy to provide some of their handiwork.....

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

No cloud shots today....

Sorry Miss Pamyla .....

Monday, June 26, 2006

Pretty Skyline coming home tonight

I saw some pretty neat clouds tonight on the way home.... to quote Winnie The Pooh.... " Tut Tut, it looks like rain! "

jeepers.... I've really arrived... 43 years old, and I'm quoting Winnie The Pooh

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Strawberry Jam....

Anna and I spent a few hours today making Strawberry Jam.... The " non cook " kind.... Anna did the bulk of the work; she is such an intelligent kid... Hard to imagine that I'm her father eh??!
Anna even made biscuits so we could have Strawberry Shortcake...
and then in the end, we ran out of time.... so they took them home and were gonna have Strawberry shortcake tonight ( I hope ! ) ...
anyway, it was fun.. We had to wash the dishes 4 or 5 times while we were working, so we could stay ahead of the mess; and we had to keep cleaning up the over spray from the blender.... It looked like the scene of a crime at one point!

So the jam has to set for 24 hours.... After
that, I'll be breaking out the toast and jam!!

Saturday, June 24, 2006

God coulda made a better berry

But He Never DID!

That was what Grampie Mackay used to say... about strawberries....

Today, Anna and I went strawberry picking.... we went to two farms... first farm the picking was ok, but the berries were really small.... so we went up the road about a km to a second farm and whammo... huge berries, plentiful and quite ripe..... came home with hands as red as OJ Simpson's gloves....

Tomorrow, Anna and Abby and I will be making some freezer jam.... I've not had a freezer for about 3 years.... until today. I bought a used one out of the paper and so now I can stock pile things and not worry about them going bad in the fridge.... and now, I can make freezer jam and have a place to PUT it...

I'm quite excited .... not sure about the kids, but I am!!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

My week so far

well.... this has been a busy week so far....

Spent the last two days up north ( Burnt River ) inspecting.... it's really peaceful up there.... but no coffee shops, NO BATHROOMS, and no place to eat... since I don't pack a lunch, I've had to mooch from customers this week!!

My girls are adjusting to summer life... Anna landed a full week baby sitting job ( 8:00 am to 4:30 pm every day ) .... and since Taylor had classes Monday and Tuesday, Abby was home alone for those days....... she was pretty bored and we have talked often on the phone...

There was a thunder storm on Monday.... and she got pretty spooked and ended up talking to me on the phone a whole bunch of times. It was sweet. Her fear of thunderstorms is pretty understandable...
just after we moved to Brantford ( it was the summer of 1999 I think ) the girls and I were on our way back to Brantford from St Jacobs one Saturday.... we were driving cross country, down all the back roads!

We had stopped at a little mennonite bakery in Conestoga.. just after we left there, with Anna riding in the front with me, and abby on the first bench seat in the back of the van, a huge thunder storm hit... OUT OF NO WHERE.... it was unbelievable....

Abby was kind of spooked sitting alone in the back, so Anna moved back to sit with her.....

within two minutes, the storm got worse... to the point where i could barely see because of the rain..
the thunder cracks were unbelievable... all of a sudden.... CRASHHHHHHH..... the glass blew out of the side window, where Anna had JUST vacated, and a huge tree branch came crashing through the window... smashed the side window to pieces, broke the windshield in a zillion places ( though it stayed intact miraculously ) .... it was a very very freaky experience.... I screamed for the girls to get down on the floor and STAY DOWN..........I pulled off to the side of the road, afraid of another tree crashing into us, and more afraid of a vehicle hitting us....
But since the window was open and copious amounts ( i love that word ) of rain was coming into the car, I began driving again...with my head out the window so I could see, and pulled into the first driveway I found... desperately hoping someone would be home... the people there let us inside, called a tow truck, etc etc.... dried the girls off.... it was a very traumatic experience for Abby and for all of us really... ( Abby was almost 6 at the time ) .... so ever since then, thunder storms and she, do NOT get along!!

aaaaaaaanyway.... now that I've said that.. abby was home alone Monday when the storm hit, and she was spooked.... poor little kid.... I talked to her a bunch of times, and the storm passed, Taylor got home from school and that was that!

Tuesday at lunch time, she called... I was between Fenelon Falls and Burnt River, driving back towards town.... she called cause she was hungry. I felt like saying.... umm.... if you'll WAIT 3 HOURS....> I'll bring you a SUB!!! poor little squirt!

I started making suggestions as to what she could cook...

how about an egg? nawwww... I don't like eggs...

How about making pancakes? no, I'm not in the mood for pancakes ( HOW CAN THIS BE? YOUR FATHER IS ALWAYSSSSSSS IN THE MOOD FOR PANCAKES ) ...

How about making soup? No, i don't know how... ( oh dear )

Why not make a grilled cheese sandwich?

How do I do that? so by way of Rogers wireless, I taught my daughter how to make a grilled cheese sandwich.... it was actually kind of fun... a bonding time.... and when she was done, she was SO proud of herself... phoned her mother as soon as she got done, to brag! it was SO cute!

I'm proud of you Abby... you are NOW as good a cook as Grampa!!!

Today was a good day over all.... went to Burnt River again ( had an 8:30 appt there ) for CRYING OUT LOUD... Don't these people know I"m NOT A MORNING PERSON?? JEEZ
anyway, I was done inspecting by Noon, and headed to Belleville for a Doctor's appt.

On the way, I stopped at a Strawberry farm in Omemee ( Jacky, one of the underwriters from Farmesr, and her husband, operate a fruit/vegetable farm ) .... and I picked a 5 litre basket of fresh strawberries.... OH MAN WERE THEY GOOD!! I ate half the basket on the way to Belleville......

to quote scripture..... and of the fragments that remained, they collected HALF a basket!!

Anyway, after picking strawberries, I drove to Stirling..... my trunk spring broke Monday... I was pulling my suit case out of the trunk, and managed to pop the spring out of its cradle.... and the lid of the trunk has been crashing down on my head all week!... I took my car to Wells Ford and for $18, they fixed it for me... best $18 I've ever spent!

then I went to the Podiatrist.. what ever THAT is .... actually its a foot doctor... I go there to help get the cracks in my feet taken care of, so that this infection thingy won't come back

His tactics are a little unneverving : He cuts away at the callouses on my feet,
with an X ACTO KNIFE ( seriously, he did... it was AWFUL.... and I'm TICKLISH MAN.. BE CAREFUL! )

When he was finished, he sent me to get some Compression Socks...Since the leg got infected, the left leg/foot/ankle has been swelling up really bad... mostly in the evenings....

It is fluid and blood that collects in the foot, and because the veins have been damaged because of the infection, the "fluid collection" is not getting back up the leg into the blood stream properly... Their suggested treatment is to have me lie on the floor with my foot on the couch for hours ( can you imagine! ) ... and that allows the " grunge" to seep back OUT of my foot.... ewwwwwwwwwwww.....

anyway, he told me to get these compression socks..... they are socks that are designed to uh.. compress the LEG?? and in so doing, it forces that fluid back up into the leg.

I went to a Home Health Centre place..... the first pair the guy tried to sell me... : get this.... BLACK FULL HEIGHT NYLONS.... $119.95 .... are you NUTS MAN??? thats like Sixty Bucks a LEG! I don't THINKS so!!!! I could buy Hip Waders and two rolls of DUCT TAPE cheaper than THAT!

As he pulled them out, in very broken English, he said...

well actually, you should ask the Dr how HEAVY a compression you need... and then come back...

actually, it sounded more like this :

bell ackyually, jew shoot ask dee DOCKTER how mush compreeesshion you shoot hab"

I felt like saying... How much compression can I get for $9.99?????

anyway, to make a short story long, I phoned the Dr, got the specs, and went to another store where they spoke better english ( thats not a slam, honest )

I bought a pair of Compression socks for $32 ... that's only $16 a foot.... a LOT better eh?!!

From, there I went home to my folks house.... and we headed down to the Presbyterian church downtown for a Strawberry church supper... I LOVE THOSE.... ever since I was a kid, going to church suppers is something I love!

it was kinda funny... Dad pulled up near the door, to let my mom and me out, then he went to find a parking spot... as we pulled up and were about to open the door, a lady came running up : OH YOU CAN"T PARK THERE>>> YOU HAVE TO MOVE so that the Ambulance can get out!

We looked over and there's an ambulance backed up to the door of the church... how comforting!

As mom and I walked in, an older gentleman took down the " CHURCH SUPPER " sign, tucked it under his arm and came running past us into the church....
Just as we walked past the ambulance, he passed us....with the sign under his arm...... I looked at him and said....

uh........... So You're taking the sign down, and there's an um... AMBULANCE sitting here... is there anything you would like to TELL US???

He smiled and said.. "yes, the food is REALLY GOOD " and kept right on walking!

DADDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD.... don't lock the car... we're COMING BACK!

anyway, we went inside, and got there just as they ran out of food ( thank GOD ) we came home and BBQ'd hamburgers!!!

and THAT.... is how my week has gone so far!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Fathers Day Lunch with my kids

here are the photos of our lunch together yesterday......

this photo does NOT need a caption!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Happy Father's Day Dad!

Memories flood my mind this morning, as I think back on 43 years that you have been my Dad.
Risking the danger of becoming all sappy, I'm going to reminisce and share some of them with you.... to give you some sort of an insight as to how much you mean to me, to our family.

When I was a kid, maybe 10 or 11, I remember hearing about a second or third cousin of mine, who's dad died..... I think his name was Ron Darker ... Aunt Mildred's son-in-law..... Though I didn't know his kids all that well, they were my age and we were friends. I remember hearing mom say : "Well, they'd spent a normal day together as a family, and sometime during the night Saturday night, he died in his sleep"
It shook me up something fierce, because I knew that it could have been MY dad.... because WE had spent a normal day together.....

for years after that, literally years, every Saturday night I would lie in my bed and in desperation, try to think of SOMETHING that was out of the ordinary that we'd done on that Saturday, so that I wouldn't have to worry about losing you.... I remember still doing that some Saturday nights when I was in college.....

As I have pondered that in the years since, it has helped me realize how important you are to my life... and how much we as a family depend on your strength.

I still marvel at how much energy you have. I have told lots of people that my dad is now semi retired.... instead of going to work at 7, he goes in at 8:30!! I don't think in the 7 years I worked there, that I was EVER in before 8:30 ..... I must have been semi retired, at the time!!

They say that the older we get, the more we become like our parents.... though that used to scare me, it doesn't any more.... in fact, I find myself quoting you all the time. You have taught me a lot of neat little phrases, most of which I won't remember now when I try to write them, cause that is just the way my mind works...! anyway, here are a few of them that I have heard you use:

[1] Busy as a one armed paper hanger with a 7 year itch

[2] Usesless as teats on a steer

[3] When somebody asked you one day how you were doing, you said : " Everbody I can, and the good ones twice!"

[4] Get the hay in while the sun is shining

[5] When Taylor asked about having a friend come to help him work with you once, you quoted Grampie : one boy good, two boys half good, three boys NO good!!

[6] Spending money like a drunken sailor ( I'd rather not say which of us 3 kids you were referring to at the time!! )

[7] a fool and his money are soon parted ( refer to brackets above! )

[8] Madder than a pet coon

[9] When I ran out of gas once, you said ( and continue to say ) " It's just as easy to fill the TOP half of the tank as it is to fill the Bottom half!"

I know there are more that I should be remembering... but those are the ones that come to mind today!

Some special memories that I have growing up....

I remember how much you pampered mom.... Christmas gifts, her birthday, mothers day, valentines day... you always seemed to go the extra mile for Mom.... I learned a lot from that, not the least of which is how important mom was to you!

I remember playing hockey in the yard together in Randboro...... for what ever reason, one particular night we were both taking shots at my old net.... and with a hard puck instead of the normal orange hockey ball. You took a shot, and smashed the left mirror on your car!
It seems much funnier now, than it did at the time!!

I remember going with you in Grampies truck lots of times, to pick up stuff for the store; some of it was used furniture for the bargain barn out back, and sometimes it was to the wholesalers to buy groceries for the store. When I was little, I hated the thought of missing out on those trips.

One particular time we were at an auction, and you bought 3 little tables for $30. Two were really nice solid wood tables, and other was an old rickety green wicker table that was really trashy. I remember looking at you in disbelief, asking how you could spend $10 on THAT table..... you said to me... I don't look at it that way.... I look at it THIS way.....
$15 for each of the two nice tables, and $0 for the old one!
I never forgot that lesson in math.

Some of my most cherished memories as a kid, are from the saturdays when you would take me to an auction when you used to clerk for Art Bennet. Some of those memories are as clear today as if it had happened yesterday! If I shut my eyes, I can hear you holler when you would spot a bid that Art missed, and you wanted him to know! " YEAH... YEAH.... YEAH"

Some of the things I really admire about you:

You have a very strong distinction between right and wrong. I admire that you have a very small gray area in your life.

I admire your work ethic... you work harder now, than most people have ever worked.

I admire how you keep house... I've felt inadequate about my vacuum skills for most of my life, thanks to you!

I admire your generosity... I don't ever remember coming to visit your house, but what you would ask for my keys and take the car and fill it with gas. Thank you for that!

I admire your reputation in the business world. I remember how tight things were when we first came to Ontario. I remember Doug whathisname at the licence bureau, ( when you first got Ontario plates ) saying he wondered if you'd ever be able to make it in Belleville, cause of how big McDougalls were.... I still remember your response : the bigger they are, the easier it is to steal business from them! I admire how much service you have given your clients for all these years.
I also want to point out that Doug Whatshisname is a pretty good friend of yours today!

I admire how you take care of your vehicles..... again, we're back to vacuuming..... regardless, your cars are ALWAYS tidy, clean, and full of fuel!

I admire how fair you have been with us kids. You have not ever showed favouritism to any of us kids.... or to the grand children.

I love the fact that in the first year of her life, Eva was most comfortable on YOUR shoulder.... living proof of how strong and comforting your shoulders are to all of us!

I appreciate how many times you've bailed me out of a difficult jam. Remember the time that i went car shopping on my own foolishly? and ended up with the guy keeping MY ownership, and trying to convince me I'd bought an Olds Cutlass? I had to go back the next morning with you , to get my ownership back.... I don't even want to SAY how old I was at the time! I sure appreciated your strenght then!

I appreciate all the times you've put money in my account when it was a tight month for us. You will never know how much that has helped and how God used you to feed my children.

I admire how God continues to use you, to disciple new believers... Your faith is as strong today as it was the day you first trusted Christ.

I admire your name... your have a reputation that is spotless. I have for all of my life been proud to say I'm Dave Mackay's Son.

I love you Dad, and I want you to know that my life today is what it is because of the things you have taught me, the way you have helped me, and the example that you have set.

I only pray that I can pass of a fraction to my kids, of what you have given me!

Happy Fathers Day!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Anna Pauline Elizabeth Mackay

Anna graduated from Grade 8 last night..... and I have to be honest... Anna made her daddy proud last night !!

When you see the pictures, you'll realize how grown up she really is.... and when you read how many awards she won, you like every one else, will wonder truly who her father IS!!!

To start off, Anna made the honour roll.... she was one of only 3 in her class that made the honour roll!!

AND.....she won FOUR awards.

{1} The Rev. Dr. George E. Simpson Literary Award - awarded to a graduating grade 8 student who excelled in the literary area.

{2} The La Force French Award - awarded to the graduating student who achieves the hightest average in French ( My dad was particularly proud of that one, given our Quebec Heritage! )

{3} The Margaret Duiker Award - presented to a student who has shown perseverance, determination and a willing spirit to stick with an assignment or responsibility, even when faced with various significant challenges.

{4} The pinnacle of the four awards was the Headmaster's Trophy - presented to the graduating student that best exemplifies a life that is seeking to build Christ-like qualities into all areas of their personal life.

I was so proud, I cried....

Way to Go Anna, Daddy is REALLY proud of you!!!!!

Kenzie and Josh Feuding - Part 1

These are photos of the CBA Graduating class of 2006.

This picture sequence is HILARIOUS.... check out the two on the front left... Josh ( with the hat ) is the class clown, and Mackenzie ( in the green dress ) is the uh... fiesty one! Josh was getting on her nerves with his antics, and his glasses..... finally Mackenzie pitched the glasses and the hat...... look at the last picture of the next post ( Part 2 ) .....and see how he is glaring at her.... LOL!

Kenzie and Josh feuding - Part 2

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Just Ducky

saw these ducks last night on the lake behind the house where I live...

I quacked at them for a bit... but they just swam away... I've discovered it's hard to make friends with ducks!!

More Ducks

Back to work

well after almost 3 weeks off, I'm back to work.... I had another bout of cellulitis in my leg... from what I have come to understand, it is a strep infection, that finds its way into the body ( through either a crack, a cut, scrape, bug bite, etc ) ..... it hits the blood stream, and then the infection takes over.... this occurrence was the very same as it was in August of 2004, though I was in the hospital for 10 days that time, only 4 this time..... I'm not a good patient... at ALL ..... and those GOWNS they give you...are not gowns... they are APRONS!

Now I know why they call it I C U ... ugh!

anyway.... I'm back to normal for the most part... still on oral anti biotics, my left foot and ankle still swell a fair bit, so I have to keep my foot up... hard to do when I have to drive, walk and sit at a desk doing paperwork, for my job... regardless, the leg is doing ok, and I'm back to work full time now... Came back to Peterborough yesterday ( Tuesday morning ) and am back into the groove again....

I wanted to say how much my family's support has meant to me through this whole thing... the day I went to the hospital, my daughter Anna came with me ( a friend drove us ) .... and she was SUCH a trooper... stronger by far, than I was.....

she left mid afternoon to go home for some lunch, and while she was gone, my sister arrived... Carol, you will never know how much comfort it was to see you walk through the door.... I almost cried.... ( ok, maybe I DID cry ) ... anyway, thank you for coming Carol! She missed Eva's birthday party ( AND CAKE ! ) all cause of me...

Sunday, my folks came to visit for two days.... what a comfort it was having my family there.... sigh....

anyway.... lest I get all sentimental, I should get my gimpy leg up and head to work!

Thanks for all of you who prayed and called and cared..... and to those of you who impatiently waited for me to blog... I'M SORRRRRRRRRRRRY!!!!

Friday, June 02, 2006

update from almost two weeks ago

I started this on Friday June 2nd ..... have not been in a blogging mode lately, for some reason.... HONESTLY!!!!!!! to quote Beth Fisher!

so here's what I wrote almost 2 weeks ago :

well.... life is coming back to some semblance of normal ( whatever THAT is, to quote Shelley Riimand ) ... Wednesday after I got home to my place in Brantford, my dad and my son and I installed two window air conditioners, had supper with the kids, took the kids home and then just sat around talking. It was good to just talk. Thursday morning, Dad and I did a bunch of tidying up ( since I'd been away so much, the back room and my office were pretty much a cyclone zone ) ..... loaded up the car and came to Belleville.

Mom was glad to get us home.... it's easier for her to worry for me HERE, than to worry about me 3 hours away in Brantford.... I find I can worry when I am anywhere, but that is just me!
Mom is taking charge of the recovery though, which is really neat... I have a Chiropractor appt today, to get some of the head aches dealt with hopefully.... have an appt with a podiatrist next week, and in between, I'm having to regularly soak my feet, and comb my hair....

It's been a weird few days, and there are times when I just shake my head and go.. how'd I get here again?? regardless, there's a real sense that God is in complete control, and that in the end, the journey will have been worth it.

I am missing my kids immensely.... I find it ironic, that the longer time goes on, ( I've been on my own since 2001 ) ... the harder it is to be away from my kids. I figured it'd get easier. I have a very close relationship with my kids and I spose that is why it's not easier to be away from them.

I've found the last 2 years, living in one town while boarding and working 250 kms away, has really taken it's toll on me. I find it frustrating most days, trying to remember if I have everything I should, if I need to bring dress clothes for the weekend, etc etc etc

June 5th is National Hunger Awareness Day

in honour of that, I am writing to let you know that uh....indeed....I am hungry..... and I felt you should be made aware!!!