Thursday, March 31, 2022
Wednesday, March 30, 2022
My Old Brain has trouble with the New Coffee Maker
It is replacing two machines which pretty much broke down simultaneously. Our tassimo machine, which was really Shauna’s old machine, gave up the ghost one recent morning. Seeing as it was second hand already, that it was the time for it to cross that famous coffee ground bridge to the great plantation in the sky
In addition to the tassimo machine, we also had another machine, our main machine, which would make big pots. However, it was also on its last legs and no longer rendering the coffee very hot. Its flow had also all but reduced to a dribble. This symptomology (of the slow drip) leads me to believe that it was a male machine because that’s kind of consistent with what happens to elderly males — in my experience, that is.
The spiffy new thing works well, and we feel better about not adding plastic pods to the landfill. We don’t even need paper filters with this shiny newfangled thing.
But I have a problem with it, and I don’t know why. In point of fact, I have forgotten to insert the mugs four times, thereby causing the coffee to pour all over the place. The latest occasion was on that recent very early morning (as described in yesterdays post) when I had awoken in some discomfort at 2 o’clock. I actually got the first mug right, but two hours later I forgot the mug for my second pouring — and I do mean pouring.
There is something about the sequence of setting up this machine that causes my brain to feel that I have completed all of the steps when I haven’t, but I can’t figure out why that is the case. When I am in a compos mentis state of mind (it does happen), I look at the machine and wonder why I have this difficulty, and quite frankly, I don’t know.
I admit that from time to time, I would make an error with one of the two other machines. This didn’t occur frequently, and it was usually that I forgot to actually add the coffee to the big machine. But 4x in two weeks with this gadget seems quite ridiculous.
I have always always been an absent-minded, daydreaming sort of person, even as a child. My mind is prone to wandering, and I forget things. This is not new, and I don’t think it presages mental decline although I am pretty darn sure that I am not getting smarter.
Whatever it is about preparing this machine that makes me feel like I have completed all of the steps when I haven’t, I am not sure. But I would like to figure it out and get over it before I pour too many more dollars worth of coffee all over the counter and floor.
Tuesday, March 29, 2022
Another Cost of Aging
So it is 3:30AM, Sunday night (or Monday morning), and here I am writing this post for Tuesday. If that isn’t early enough in your estimation, I hasten to add that I have been up for more than an hour already. I certainly hadn't planned it this way, but here we are.
As you know, I do get up rather early at times, but 2:15 or so just about takes the cake.
On this occasion, I was awakened by soreness in my nether regions and soon decided that I wasn’t going to be able to sleep through it. It was not (and is still not) a killer pain, but it is enough to keep me awake. This phenomenon also occurs sometimes during the day, but one just lives through it then and carries on. It’s just hard to sleep through discomfort down there when it happens at night.
So, I went from bed to chair, turned on the electric blanket because I was feeling a bit cold in the middle of the night. (Well, why else would one turn it on? Duh.) But as odd as it seems, I also applied cold. Yes, I placed a freezer pack onto my sore nether regions, first on my front apparatus and then on the rear.
The cold treatment seemed to help a bit initially, but I am now somewhat sore again, so I am probably up for keeps after a grand total of three hours of sleep.
This is another cost of aging, just not a monetary one as in the previous post.
Since I also decided that I may as well make coffee, I have effectively reduced further the probability of getting back to sleep. So here I am doing this and that on the iPad. Maybe I will watch a photo tutorial, and I do have a book to read although I don’t know if I am exactly perky enough to concentrate, especially since I am still contending with soreness.
Perhaps I shall force myself to endure another round of the freezer pack.
This particular pain is random and doesn't occur all that often, thank goodness, but it does happen more often than I’d like. It is yet another cost of aging and one that doesn’t exactly bring joy to my heart
Monday, March 28, 2022
Costs of Aging
Sunday, March 27, 2022
Coffee Selfies and Sue's Shoot
Saturday, March 26, 2022
Birthday Hat and Cookies
Two years ago with the advent of the pandemic, Sue had to settle for a drive-by salute from the family. Last year, with yet another phase of COVID raging, we suffered through a cold garage party. This year, with everyone well vaccinated (although the kids will just get their boosters today), we had a more comfortable get-together.
As we waited for the pizza to come, Sue opened gifts. I don't know where my head was, but I didn't think to take pictures. But this is an image of the front of the card that I made.
Shauna made Sue don a funny hat, and we did take a round of photos.
Friday, March 25, 2022
This ↓ is m'lady, who is 75 years young on this day, which I hasten to add is also the Celtic New Year and the New Year date that Tolkien used in Lord of the Rings. (I think I have always mentioned this, ever since I learned of it, because I think it is so darn cool.)
Thursday, March 24, 2022
A Different Look
Wednesday, March 23, 2022
I Was Sooo Cold
You may recall my New Years Eve fireworks photos. Goodness know that I showed enough of them. But here's another to refresh your memories. It's the building — the old schoolhouse — on the right that is the main subject today.
Now that there is much less snow, I had it in mind to try for a dawn or even a sunrise photo featuring the schoolhouse, so I headed out yesterday morning.
This wasn't the photo that I came for. To get a sunrise, I would have to be way over to the left. I never got there. I will explain, shortly.
Tuesday, March 22, 2022
Sunny and Sheltered
This is a rite of spring. I look out my window and see this.
Monday, March 21, 2022
Looking Up on our Main Street
Last week, Sue had a Looking Up theme, so we headed downtown. It was also a b&w theme, so I processed some of mine that way too. I used my longest lens although I did not have it extended all that far — just around the half way mark of my 400mm
I deliberately blew out the sky, by overexposing, on these photos of St Andrews Presbyterian church. It is technique that is sometimes effective, but I am not too impressed by these results. You probably can't see the 1887 date at this size, but it is there. A few years ago, the property was sold to the All Nations congregation.
As is plain to see ↑ I decided to put two different detail photos into a diptych. It was last-minute decision, and I hadn't processed the two photos with the same tones, the tower being a bluer tone. I didn't think this diptych is important enough to edit further.
That is quite the ornate tower for a church. As ornate as the architecture is, however, I can’t exactly endorse the interior pews, for I once attended a concert there, but my gamey back couldn't hack those old-fashioned pews. People must have had strong backs in the late 1800s, but I am nothing other than a weak, modern homo sapien.
I do like the next photo of the tower on the old Federal building that once housed the post office and inland revenue. It is now privately owned. We were in there for an open house tour a few years ago, and I remember being impressed by the commodious vault.
Sunday, March 20, 2022
Banal Sunday Morning Post
Good Sunday Morn. It is still dark out there at 6 o'clock, but I don't see water on the window. I sure did yesterday when it rained quite a lot. This helped the snow in the backyard to begin to disappear — to the point where we began to see some ground. However, the pile in the front from clearing the driveway all winter, remains quite high. Progress though.
So, while Mother Nature gave the car a free and much needed wash, no one in this household even stuck their heads outside. One of the things we did was binge-watch Unforgotten. We had watched 2 of the 6 episodes on Friday evening at and after supper.
We usually watch a program at both lunch and supper — a program — but on Friday, we watched 2. At lunch yesterday, we intended to watch 1 more, but then we thought, it is Saturday afternoon, and we're not going anywhere, so let's keep going.
I had broken down and purchased the series on Apple TV. It's a favourite British series of cold cases. It is really produced and acted well. We had seen the first 3 seasons on either Britbox or Acorn, but series 4 hasn't made it to those streams. It's a PBS series, and we don't get PBS at the moment.
It's not often that I would rent/buy a series like this, but Unforgotten is special. Along with Endeavour, we find it the best of the current crop of British mysteries. We are also currently watching The Bay. It is pretty good but doesn't reach of the level of the other 2.
One other thing I did was to make little cards for Sue with information about her sister's, Heather's, visit next month. She is coming for a visit and book talks at two local libraries and one in Ottawa. While all of these places will promote the event in their own ways, Sue likes to hand out information for those whom she might meet with in the interim.
So, I made a little card for her — 4 on a sheet that she can cut out and place where she will.
Saturday, March 19, 2022
The Worm Moon
I have a few more photos from our foggy morning (not really a foggy morning) photo shoot.
On the way to our intended destination, I was absolutely delighted to keep seeing a glorious full moon appearing off to my right. We were travelling, so I just thought that I would enjoy seeing it and not fret over not getting a photo. Okay, I was fretting, just a bit.
When we arrived at our destination, however, there it was shining over the river. Silly me, though. After we parked, I wasted time sauntering over to the spot, just to check it out even though I had just seen it in passing. Oh yeah, it looked very good shining through tree branches.
I sauntered back to the car, fiddled with my gear, and sauntered back to the spot, but by then, the dadblasted moon was partially obscured behind the clouds. Then, we lost sight of it completely.
I did get one photo before it disappeared. The photo didn't turn out too well and probably wouldn't have, even if the moon had remained full. I converted what I had to b&w because I found the pre-dawn blues too overpowering.
The sun was coming up behind us but not along the river. So getting a sunrise photo wasn't working out either.
Then, about ten minutes later, a gap in the clouds enabled the moon to make another appearance before dropping below the trees, and we got our photos. This spot was to the right of the above photo. It was nice of the gaggle of geese to provide some foreground interest on the edge of the ice, but they did begin honking at me, thus announcing their displeasure of my activity. Like some people, they seemed to take issue with the camera.
Friday, March 18, 2022
The Final Photo of the Morning
Wednesday, March 16, 2022
A Glow on the Horizon
Ever since Danica started to work part-time at the grocery store, I have sometimes been her taxi, or I guess her Uber in this day and age. While some of the requests are irregular, every second Sunday morning has become a routine. That’s her main shift: from 7 until 3 on Sunday. She also usually has a Tuesday afternoon and evening shift. Keeping the shifts down to a reasonable number was a condition from her parents for her taking the job.
The kids are at Mom’s on alternate weekends. On those weekends, I have been picking Danica up at 6:45 for her 7 o’clock shift. I don’t mind. In fact, it helps me to feel useful.
To be on the safe side, I set three alarms: watch, phone, and Alexa to get me up at 6 o'clock. I have never needed one.
On this past, time-change Sunday, I thought I might finally require the help of those devices, but Lacey and bladder provided sufficient impetus for me to arise. Would I have been able to get back to sleep if I hadn’t had to get the girl? It's possible but doubtful, for being able to go back for another hour of sweet repose is a very infrequent occurrence.
It wasn’t my scheduled week to drive her to work, for it was to be her dad’s weekend, but he and Jonathan were still out of town for a hockey tournament. So yes, of course I would be glad to assist once again.
There was almost a last-minute hitch. Our neighbour had asked if he could park in our driveway on Saturday night. Of course, he could. Then, the request came from Danica, and of course I would do that too.
I didn’t put the two events together in my head until later. So, at the last minute on Saturday night, I informed the neighbour that he needed to move his car out by 6:30. He managed, but I had been concerned that he would sleep in. When I asked if he had remembered the time change, he responded that his phone would take care of the issue.
So, here’s the part that I want to get to. There was a pre-sunrise glow on the horizon when I was driving Danica along the highway, which more or less faces east. I don’t remember seeing that glow on previous Sundays, but I saw it this time, despite us being a whole hour earlier. Spring is coming.
Before I leave off, it strikes me that some may be wondering why I drive her. “Where is Mom?” you may ask. It’s because I am invariably up anyway, and Mom works hard and, unlike me, has the ability to sleep in. So, I fulfill two helpful functions. I get Danica to work and allow Shauna to sleep in. It’s a small contribution when I am not particularly in a contributory phase of life.
Will it Go?
The Last Train
There's no doubt that Sue's 365 project requirements are also getting me out of the house with the camera. On Sunday, here them was b&w along with stairs/architecture. B&W is her theme for the week and stairs/architecture were the additional prompts for the day.
It was another tough day with miserable, cold winds, but out we went.
I thought of this building with a mural and stairs. It didn't work so well for Sue, but with some finagling in both camera and edit, I somewhat like this result.
|When I posted this on FB, a local enthusiast told me that it wasn't actually the last train but it was|
one that had gone through town. He wasn't sure if there ever was a photo of the very last one.
Carleton Place was a small railway hub as north-south and east-west lines intersected with the town. The east-west line was actually one that ran the breadth of the country – at least sometimes – but it was long gone by the time that we arrived here in 2005. The north-south line expired a few years later and was converted into a long, recreational trail.
Since it is Sue's b&w week, I also decided to convert my image.
This ↓ turned out to be Sue's photo choice for the day, which had a subset theme of awesome. This one doesn't have stairs but it does have rather awesome architecture. It's our town hall, which has made an appearance in many of my photos over the years. I like it with the tree branches, which is not something that I would be likely to think of doing.
Monday, March 14, 2022
Sue's photo theme for last week was golden hour: the hour after sunrise and the hour before sunset when the light is low and, well, golden — on a good day, that is. It was winterish and dullish last week and days hadn't been all that good for light, but a theme is a theme. I think these weekly themes are contrived by folk in California. #kiddingnotkidding
We did try one day when there was some light. The first two spots we went to didn't offer much hope. I tried a few shots butt ended up trashing them. However, Sue got a few that she thought she could use.
Eventually, we found a location, not new to us but new on that day. The light was pretty good for a few minutes, and I was able to get a result that I like quite a bit.
Sunday, March 13, 2022
Here's to Light and Colour
Sue bought window film to um stick to our windows. When you affix it, the light will sometimes catch it and cast colourful patches on walls or floors.
It recently cast an interesting pattern on the wall which is at right angles to the window.
That was in my den that gets morning sun. There is another piece of film on the bedroom window that catches the late light. Sue once got this delightful photo of Lacey sitting in the rainbow.
And here is Sue bathed in the light.
This is the box that may guide you if you want to try out window film. I suppose that we got it through Amazon, like most things any more.