Gratitude – great babysitter, night out, tidy living room

I am grateful for a great babysitter. Jes worked at Coop’s daycare when he was little; she’s great with our kids and they are comfortable with her and always glad when she comes over.

I am grateful for a kid free night out for dinner with my parents. I cannot recall the last time that happened. I don’t think it has since we’ve had kids.

I am grateful for a tidy living room. It took 3 consecutive kid-free hours to achieve it, but the boys were with their grandparents all morning and I went hard on it. Not sure how long it will last but I’ll enjoy it while I can.

Gratitude – quiet kids, recipe experiments, reno progress

I’m grateful the kids are winding down in their room tonight. Those guys were DIALED UP.

I am grateful the zucchini lasagne concept recipe worked out nicely tonight. It was an experiment that needs refinement, but initial tests appear positive.

I am grateful that the only thing that came up in the recent inspection by the city of our reno project was a requirement to replace the top 10 inches of drywall along the edge of our garage. I am also grateful for help from the folks, who assisted in moving all the crap that had to be moved to facilitate said replacement next week.

Gratitude, X-Men, not making lunches, and eating them.

I am grateful for movie night. Tonight it was the original X-Men. It came out in 2000. Didn’t seem like that long ago to me, but that’s because time goes fast when you are having fun, I guess. I think also because Patrick Stewart hasn’t aged since then. I don’t think he aged before then, either, come to think of it.

I am grateful it’s Friday. The weekend is great for many reasons, not the least of which is not making lunches for kids the next day. I love not making lunches!

I do, however, like eating lunches. I am grateful for a nice lunch at Efes, a great Turkish place downtown, with my spouse and parents today. The folks head back to Calgary soon, so that may have been the last lunch with those guys for a while. I have to enjoy that kind of thing when I can, and I did, today.

Gratitude: Date night, more daylight, Beavers on the beach at night.

I am grateful for a fantastic date last night. We went to Zambri’s, a fancy pants Italian restaurant I’d heartily recommend if you are in town. The kids were with their grandparents. It was a fabulous meal, and we made no other plans for the night and did not rush it. Usually, I think the limited opportunities for child free time mean we try to pack it all in; last night reminded me how nice it is to slow it all down instead.

I am grateful for the daylight, even though it was rainy today it’s still apparent that dawn is coming earlier, and sunset is coming later.

I am grateful for a walk with the Beavers on the beach in the dark tonight. It’s nice out there at Cadboro Bay, even in the dark, and the only thing more fun for those kids than looking for rocks and seashells is looking for rocks and seashells with flashlights.

Gratitude – brothers getting along, cherry blossoms, farley




I am grateful for the first cherry blossoms this year.

I am grateful for Cooper, who drew a very nice car on Farley’s hand when Farley asked him to yesterday.

I am grateful for Farley, who really enjoyed the swings before school yesterday morning, and who woke up at 5:30 am to crawl into our bed this morning and whisper slowly and deliberately, “Mama. I love you. I love Papa. And I love my brother, Cooper”.

Gratitude – empty inbox, talk talk, kids in restaurants

I am grateful for an empty email inbox, I’ve come close a few times, but I don’t remember that happening for a long, long time.

I am grateful for Talk Talk, who I was aware of but didn’t really listen to at the time, but have discovered recently via Radio Paradise, which is another thing to be grateful for.

I am grateful for the sense of accomplishment that comes with completing stuff that’s been on my to-do list too long.

I am grateful for some fine kid behaviour, and the event itself, at a
restaurant with my kids and my folks tonight, despite debilitating hunger and slower than expected kitchen service.

I am grateful for this blog, which provoked me to think, “Aw cuss! I still have to be grateful tonight” about 5 minutes ago.

A short family history of my great-grandfather, William A. Howlett

After my grandfather died in 2012, My mom, going through his old stuff, found this document he wrote in which he paints his family history in some pretty broad strokes. In it, he manages to sum up the lives of a number of people over 100 years into a 2 page word doc. It seems like the kind of information that someone searching for genealogy stuff might want to find, so I figure it might be useful to have on the internet. If that describes you, dear reader, well, I am pleased to be related, or at least that you are interested. thanks for taking the initiative.

Going through it, it’s really fairly dry, but if you try to unpack some of it, there’s some pretty good narrative in there.

For example:

In the spring of 1906, my parents came to Tisdale via rail and settled on the homestead.

They first lived in a tent, and later in a shack located on the adjoining quarter section. The first year they cultivated ten acres with the aid of three horses and a Verity walking plow. The horses died of swamp fever, and they turned to the use of four oxen. In 1913, they purchased an I.H.C. model tractor and threshing machine. Their first car was a Model T Touring, purchased in 1916.

Grandpa wrote this about my great grandfather. It’s a few matter-of-fact sentences, but I can only imagine that was quite the 11 years, going from living in a tent on a farm, using livestock and elbow grease to work the land, and ending up owning farming machinery and automobiles. I bet there were a lot of intense emotions felt by William and Isabella Howlett. Intensely cold, in a tent, on the prairie, in the winter, how could one not question the decisions that led them there? And barely a decade later, driving home from a auto dealer in your new-to-you Model T; home to your well equipped farm with all this new-fangled machinery; to the land you’d been working and home that wasn’t there when you started. There must have been a great sense of accomplishment, right?

Anyway, here it is, internet, use it as you will.

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Gratitude – helpful kids, bbq, folks


I am grateful for kids who are adept at helping put together Ikea furniture. We put together the vanity that will be going into the main bathroom today. I wonder if they’ll remember putting it together when they were little. I bet they will, because I will remind them.

I am grateful for my BBQ. I kinda forgot about it back there, but used it tonight.

I am grateful for my folks, again. This must be getting monotonous, always grateful for the folks, but when I am under the weather and Julie is away and my folks swoop in and take the kids for the afternoon, I kinda have to be grateful, because if that’s not nice, what is?