Monday, December 10, 2018

Sue's Prize

Almost two years ago, I posted the following photo and more in this post, The Amazing Sue and the Amazing Afghan.

It was a complicated and involved piece, so I had Sue do a guest blog explaining the process: The Afghan Explained.

If you weren't here then and/or are interested in this sort of work, you are invited to go back to those two links above, particularly the second and read all about it.

That afghan was given to Shauna, but the next year (last winter), Sue decided to crochet another. I meant to post about it at the time but never got around to it. Sue thought that it would make an enjoyable winter project, and it did. Besides, it would be nice for her to have one too. I think a second reason is that possibly someday both grand children could have one.

But come this year, Sue decided to give hers away — to the cat lady.

There is a lady in town who functions as her own personal humane society and rescues all sorts of cats. She has them vetted, inoculated and neutered. The cats who are not suitable to be homed are placed in well tended rural barns and still cared for. But most cats are able to be passed on to forever homes.

Of course, this is at great cost and this year the vet bills came to $65 000.

So, she fundraises. For example, next weekend, she will run a seasonal bake sale in the local high school. But she has also just had her Christmas auction. I donated a framed photo which brought in just a little money. Our friend donated some cartoonish cat paintings, which people loved. They did very well at the auction.

But I guess you know where this is headed. Yes, Sue donated the afghan that she made last year. The cat lady held a raffle and sold 100 tickets for $10 apiece. There were four other prizes to be one, but everyone coveted Sue's afghan, and, unsurprisingly, it was the prize that was claimed by the winner.

Sue's work resulted in the bulk of cat lady raising $1000 for her wonderful work. I think both of these ladies are fantastic.

Meanwhile, Sue is working diligently on the third iteration of the amazing peppermint afghan, and I wonder about its destiny.

Sunday, December 09, 2018

Home Tournament

More hockey. It's winter in Canada after all.

JJ's team had their home tournament yesterday, a one day event that had them playing three games. They won two, lost one, and finished in 3rd place. The team that they lost to was really really strong: good size with excellent skaters and stickhandlers.

JJ had a tumble in the first game. I like how the ice/snow kicks up.

The goalie led the celebration after the first win.

The boys were a bit over-powered in the second game with much action around their net.

Goal for the other team

Despite being very busy in that game, the goalie enjoyed a relaxing moment with the puck in the other zone.

Third Game: and a chance to drive the play more. 

When the referee points like that, it's a goal. And the players' stick are raised in celebration. They scored a lot and won handily.

Traditionally, there is a team photo on the ice after winning the final game of a tournament, but there was a bit of a mix-up, so I was asked to take one in the small dressing room. With a long lens it was difficult to get back far enough to get the whole team in. Ironically, it is my own grandson who was cut off on the right.

But I did get this photo of JJ all alone but still in action.

Friday, December 07, 2018

Danica's First Volleyball Game

Danica tried out for the school volleyball team and made the B squad.

Tuesday saw us travelling to a nearby town for a little tournament and her first games ever. Two courts plus spectators in a little gym made it a very compact venue. Unfortunately, our seats ended up being on our team's end, facing their backs.

But it was a momentous occasion of sorts, and I'm glad we made it. We only stayed for the one game, but at least we were there to support her that much.

When I saw this sign upon entering the school, I was quite amused. I mean to picture a volleyball game taking place in the library ...

Our girls arrived late. They were almost bumped from the first game, but they took to the court in the nick of time. In time for the anthem, announcements, and prayer (Catholic school. I gritted my teeth. lol). We had positioned ourselves at one court but had to move to the other, and as previously reported, we got to look at their backs. Fortunately, there is some turning in the game, and I was a bit to the side too.

Danica got to serve once and was disappointed with the results. I was right next to her with a longish lens at that, so this is my rather tight shot.

The final score with our team with the red numbers, followed by a gathering at the bench where Danica is the tall one.

And that was Danica's first volleyball game. We learned later that they won their division that day.

Thursday, December 06, 2018

Second Hockey Shoot

I knew that once I shot one game that I would continue, which is partly why I held off for quite a while. So, after photographing that tournament game on Friday, it was back to league action on Monday.

After a quick supper of turkey stew at their house (Yes, that broken stove stew!), we were off to a 6:30 game at the arena.

The game started as many do, with our boys being swarmed and hemmed in their own zone for perhaps the first five minutes. But they kept the puck out of their net and took over for the rest of the game, winning 6-1.

My shots were better than in that first game. They will never be terrific shooting through the think glass that is marked where the pucks hit it, but they do capture the essence of the action.

This is Jonathan in white reaching for the puck in the middle of the action.

A few other photos.

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

The First Hockey Shoot of the Season

JJ has been playing hockey for the best part of two months already, and I have been a negligent photographer-grandpa. You see. I hadn't taken any photos at all. I just wasn't in the mood.

Of course, when the season was beginning, I still had other projects to keep me busy: typical autumn photos and then that early autumn snow that I posted about here.

But as other photo ops begin to diminish, I am more interested in taking hockey photos.

Mind you, these were at a tournament in the city, and I am not always keen to photograph in other arenas. However, Sue cajoled me into taking my camera anyway, and when I checked out the venue, I decided that I could be comfortable taking pictures there.

We are in blue.

Our goalie is probably our best player, and he almost has to be
as the team is not all that strong this year. They are improving a lot, however.

Trying to advance the puck with a backhand shot.

They scored on this play and won the game 5-2. Yay team!

Jonathan plays defense and is not often in the thick of the action, but I did get this shot. He's number 6, on the right.

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Someday My Prints Will Come

It was time to print on the weekend.

After the recent municipal election, some Councillors will be out of a job come January. For their parting gift, the staff at town hall contacted me about this photo. Could I print 4 copies?

I will have to ask how and where they found it, as I took it almost 6 years ago.

Meanwhile, I try to change my two displays with the seasons. I have one at a local coffee shop and one at a hair salon. I know the hair salon seems unusual, but the proprietor displays the work of a number of local crafters, or artists/artisans if you will.

So I also printed up some winter scenes for the coffee shop display. The 4 copies of the townhall photo are on the right, and the winter photos are on the left. I already had 3 of those prints from last year, but the others are new. They are mostly taken in our park by the river.

Now, I must contemplate what to do for the salon display.

Monday, December 03, 2018

We Really Cracked Up This Weekend

Here's a little happening that would make a fine addition to my recent posts. You know the ones: I am not making ...  Enough already! I refuse to repeat that title, but here is the account.

It happened on Saturday when we had company.

Sue was boiling the Thanksgiving turkey bones in order to make a big pot of stew later that day to serve for supper. We always do this. We've had the stove for 13 years and have usually done this twice a year: once with the Thanksgiving turkey and once with the Christmas turkey. (Note: with Thanksgiving and Christmas more than 2 months apart, many Canadians cook a turkey on both occasions.)

Sue had just stirred the pot and turned around toward the sink when she heard a fearsome cracking sound. She turned to see this. ↓↓↓↓↓↓

The pot had been on the right front element, and you can see how the cracking spread.

Can I say it now? This really cracks me up.

But no wisecracks from the peanut gallery, please, 'cause we're cracked enough as it is. At least this is what our daughters and grands tell us.

Maybe I should really be on cr---. No, I won't even write that in jest.

Needless to say, the traditional cooking of the stew was halted immediately.

We had a store-bought lasagna in the freezer, and that had to suffice for supper or dinner (your choice). I have read recently that battle lines are drawn over these two words, with folks fighting righteously for their preference. This is the internet after all.

Meanwhile, the boiling of the bones was completed later that day at daughter's place. And the rest of the ingredients will be added and cooked later today for our weekly family supper, which will of some necessity be held at their house this week.

I am pleased to report that in addition to the usual Christmas expenses, we have added a rather large amount in the expense column. Not to worry though as our pensions have been increased by $12/mo for the coming year.

For the price that we were forced to pay for the new appliance, you'd think it would come embossed with gold, but I am sorry to report that is far from top of the line. Besides, the cost is exceedingly inconsequential because mighty rich we are.

Yeah sure. Cough. Sputter. As if. Wishful thinking.

Note: the stove had already been repaired once, and the oven was still a bit off, so after 13 years of use, we did not even contemplate trying to have it repaired.