We have decided to retire our existing bread machine that is at least 15 years old, after Andrea discovered that there was some light corrosion on the inside of the baking apparatus. It is underneath the structure that actually holds the baking pan, nowhere near the food, but it is still “in” the machine, so safer to jettison for health and safety reasons. I knew that everyone went crazy on bread early during the pandemic, and stores are still low on yeast. But I hadn’t anticipated a complete lack of any bread makers being left. Sure, I’d thought there would be some scarcity, but not a complete absence of options. So let me tell you how that went.
My first reaction was to go to the internet, and I must say, bread machines have come a long way from the model we have. My first stop was Consumer Reports which is free to access if I use my Ottawa Public Library card but the search for “bread machine” gave me only two options — a hand mixer and a washing machine. » Read the rest
I frequently write about my goals, but it doesn’t take long before a simple “goals” category starts to attract related posts as a dumping ground or “catch-all”. When I started posting about goals in earnest, back in about 2011, my initial thought was that I was really wanting to convey my “goals for the year”. That year, I created a layout that started with the four quadrants from the Insights Discovery personality profile model, and built upon it as my model. I developed it as my “go-forward” model, and thought it would become enduring, so I didn’t add the year.
In 2012, I updated the design, simplified the layers within the quadrants, and then added detailed tables to track my progress in multiple sub-categories, plus a bucket list.
In 2013, I combined the two previous designs a bit, thought it would be a regular way to display my to-do list (spoiler alert: it wasn’t!), » Read the rest
For the news that has permeated our social media and the decisions that have changed our world, I am struck most by something small. Today, Thursday, is my benchmark from one week ago.
As part of the astronomy group that I belong to, we were in the process of having a demonstration workshop for telescopes, and as the “lead” for the workshop, we were two days from it happening on the 14th. On Thursday the 12th, the news wasn’t quite that dire yet. Things were getting worse, but nobody was cancelling anything yet. And I was debating whether or not to cancel the workshop.
Another member involved in the event emailed me and asked the question, “should we or shouldn’t we”? And it was a legitimate question. As I said, nobody else was cancelling things anywhere yet. It was still business as usual. None of the schools were closed, social distancing wasn’t even a thing really, and all we had was general thoughts about ways to deal with the virus. » Read the rest
Back in 2005, Andrea and I headed over to Lac Leamy for fireworks as part of the annual Casino festival. I managed a few pics, but what I am reminded of most with the fireworks is a ride on the bus afterwards. We got on the commuter bus back to Ottawa, and ended up sitting at the very back. Two young kids ended up sitting next to me, and one fell asleep on the other, with the second on following not to long afterwards, and leaning on me. Their mother came to rescue them and I waved her off, just letting them sleep. One couple took a picture of them sleeping. But when we stopped at one point, and the mother came to get them, the other couple thought it was hilarious that the kids weren’t mine! Fun night. But it all started with fireworks.
I love roses in general, and while red are impressive, I confess I have more of an affinity for Osiana roses. They are somewhere between orange and pink, with many describing certain strands as peach-coloured. I discovered them at a flower shop in downtown Ottawa back in ’95 when I was working in a very drab office with high walls, twisting corridors, and no windows anywhere near me. Each week or so, I would pick up some flowers to brighten up the office.
Yet I often hesitate to shell out the big bucks for them as gifts. I’d rather go out for dinner than buy something a friend of me laments is “just going to die”. Valentine’s Day is the law of supply and demand at its worst. High demand, limited supply, very few substitutes for roses = high prices, almost predatory even. I remember sending some to a friend one time when she was feeling down and alone, and at the rate I was charged for Valentine’s Day, she could have had flowers every week for a month in just about any other month of the year. » Read the rest