HAPPY HALLOWEEN
Tuesday October 31st 2006, 6:15 pm

The weather for Halloween is perfect, sunny all day and mild, but there are very few children trick or treating in our neighbourhood tonight. We had only twenty children visit our house last year and so far this year at 6:00 p.m., we haven’t seen any yet. We live in an older neighbourhood, which was built 35 to 40 years ago, and most of the neighbourhood children have grown up. Our dogs, Archie and Penny, will be happy because they don’t like hearing the door bell ring, especially when there are scary ghosts and witches at the door. They are downstairs now and away from the front door, oblivious to what’s going on outside. It is 6:05 p.m. and the first group of trick or treaters have arrived and by 7:30 p.m. we had over fifty trick or treaters. This is more than we have had in the last few years. We won’t have as many treats left over and this is a good thing because we won’t have to eat it ourselves. It’s hard to judge how many will show up at your door every year but it would be disappointing if no one came.



My Retirement
Monday October 30th 2006, 10:26 am

Baby boomers, like me, are getting older and their retirements have already begun. Most teachers, nurses, police officers, government and military employees, who are my age, have already retired because they have government pensions. These retirements are making it easier for younger people to get jobs in these areas, which until the last few years, have been hard to get. Baby boomers, who are now in their 50’s and have no pensions or savings, will probably have to work for at least another 10 years. I would say that most baby boomers are looking forward to the day they can retire.



Michael Moore, Where are you?
Friday October 27th 2006, 10:11 am

I haven’t heard anything about Michael Moore since I saw his documentary Fahrenheit 9/11 and read his book Dude, Where’s My Country, about the US war on terrorism, a couple of years ago. I wondered what he is doing now because I always enjoyed hearing his views. I usually agree with his main points but I find he sometimes goes a little overboard in stretching the facts. I know he has to do this in order to draw attention to some very important issues which people are either ignoring or are misinformed about.



Slow food and comfort food
Wednesday October 25th 2006, 11:28 am

There is something about autumn and cooler temperatures that makes me think about comfort foods such as baked beans, macaroni and cheese and casseroles. I always thought that the Slow Food Movement and comfort foods were the same thing until I looked into it. The Slow Food Movement was founded to “counteract fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions and people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from, how it tastes and how our food choices affect the rest of the world”. The movement is international and promotes local farmers, organic food and a healthier way of eating.



Stop the nonsense and get back to business
Tuesday October 24th 2006, 11:16 am

It is ridiculous that the Liberals and the news media are making such a case out of trying to get Peter MacKay to apologize to Belinda Stronach for supposedly calling her a dog in the House of Commons. You would think the Liberals had better and more important things to do with their time there. Of course they want to take advantage of the situation to make Mr. MacKay look bad which is what politicians like to do. If a Liberal were in that position, the Conservatives would be attacking too.



Firefox and Stumble
Monday October 23rd 2006, 5:57 pm

I just started using the Firefox web browser with an add-on called StumbleUpon. When I click on Stumble! on my toolbar, I get to see a selection of some of the best reviewed and highest quality websites. When I signed up for StumbleUpon, I selected only things I was interested in looking at so just about everything I have seen so far has been interesting to me. I would like to save most of them in my favourites, but that would be too much. These are sites which I never would have found had they not found me. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to discover some very interesting web sites.



Drying clothes
Sunday October 22nd 2006, 12:37 pm

Last week our 12 year-old electric dryer went kaput. It actually started about a month ago by making loud noises whenever it was used, which I ignored. I guess I thought it would fix itself. The noise kept getting louder until last Thursday when it started to smoke and sounded like a jet engine taking off. I knew we had trouble then. We quickly removed the clothes, unplugged it and opened the laundry room windows to air out the smoke smell. We were lucky it didn’t catch fire.



Pictures of an autumn day
Friday October 20th 2006, 10:24 am

I put a few pictures on this site of our trip to the cottage last week, with some pictures of our toy poodle, Penny. Archie was there also but he got too close to the camera for the pictures to turn out. I got only close ups of his ear and nose. I wanted to capture pictures of the leaves turning colors before the wind blew them off, so I took the pictures while we drove in the car. I took several pictures and only a few turned out blurry due to the movement of the car. This surprised me because I didn’t think any of them would turn out.



Garth Turner
Thursday October 19th 2006, 1:09 pm

I used to read Garth Turner’s weekly column in the Business Section of our daily newspaper every Saturday. I enjoyed his comments and knowledge about the Canadian economy, housing, mortgages and investing. I first heard about him when he was the Minister of National Revenue briefly in the 1990’s, when I was an employee of that Department. He gave up writting his newspaper column when he was elected as a Conservative MP in Ontario in the last federal election.



Redecorating and Renovating Homes
Wednesday October 18th 2006, 9:50 am

I am getting so tired of all those redecorating and renovating television shows. I loved them when they first came on a few years ago but enough is enough. Homeowners are obsessed with home improvements. I know that a person’s home is their most valuable asset and they want to protect their investment, but it is getting ridiculous. The shows that really get to me are the “house flippers”, such as Flip This House, who buy run down houses, renovate them and sell them, with a huge profit. I am not against businessmen making money but these people are driving up the cost of home ownership for first time buyers, who have to take out a huge mortgage to buy a basic home in most parts of Canada. If the mortgage rates ever go up again, these buyers will be in trouble.