Sunday, 31 May 2009

Another Wire Donkey

I have been referring to the garage as the stable and to the bikes inside as 'steel ponies' .

After my mountain bike was run over in 2001, I replaced it with another Giant mountain bike. After awhile though, my neck started to bother me. So in 2006, Ruzter raised the handlebars for me by about 3 inches. I rode around with that modification for awhile, but my neck still bothered me, and my wrists, elbows and shoulders were not very happy.
I bought a Specialized cruiser-type bike in 2007 and that bike helped my wrists and my neck, but for some reason, when riding it, my knees started to hurt badly. The Geek and I measured the seat/pedal/ground angle and found the Giant's seat was three degrees less upright than the Specialized. I went back to the Giant as my neck and wrists hurt less on that bike than my knees did on the Specialized.

Then on Thursday, Dea, my athletic therapist, told me my sore wrists were in fact carpal tunnel. I decided then that I couldn't use the Giant anymore, even tho' I did ride it to work on Friday.

Luckily for me, The Geek stopped by Natural Cycle to pick up some cable and said their stable of Batavus bikes had been replenished.
I had been test driving a Batavus off and on for about a year both at Natural Cycle and at Red Bike in Edmonton. (The folks at Natural Cycle were starting to tease me about 'visiting my bike' whenever I came in.) Yesterday I went and bought this one. Be a tightwad, I wasn't ready to spend the money on a truly upright bike, but I figured it would be cheaper than extensive therapy or possibly surgery on my wrists.

Tina and I haven't measured the seat angle, but it feels considerably less steep than the Giant.
The Specialized is for sale. I liked it alot and I am sorry it didn't work for me.

Oh, and in Germany, bicycles are colloquially called Drahtesel. Wire Donkey. I think that is so cute!

Saturday, 30 May 2009

The Outdoor Workbench

The Geek works on the new kitchen counters in the warm (at least it didn't freeze last night) spring sunshine.The long clamps are there simply to balance the project.

I guess these weren't enough of a challenge to warrant a more stable surface.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

The First Hint O'Green

The grass seed is starting to sprout.
As are the rogue onions.

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary

How does your garden grow?
With lots of help from little hands and many tiny toes.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Can't Take Us Anywhere

We tear up their driveway,
punch holes in their door...

and corrupt their children.
I have no idea why Ruzter and K let us come to visit!

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Bathroom Reno Phase 11: The Sink

Now that we are able to fully utilize the bathroom, we will have to remove the non-necessary items from the cabinets above the sink. No more filler or scrapers, hello toothbrushes and toothpaste.

It is hard getting used to the fact we have another sink. I filled up the kitchen sink with hot water and dishes, then muttered to myself because I couldn't wash my hands.
The Geek started brushing her teeth in the bathroom, but finished in the kitchen.

We will take some re-conditioning.

The bracket upon which the cabinet rests.

And I don't want Tina to get too used to her new workbench.

Monday, 18 May 2009

The Fates Will Have Their Day

The Geek painted the bathroom countertop, then reached across to the workbench where the filter from the shopvac was left when she removed it to vacuum up the last bit of water in the basement.
The filter 'coughed' as it went over the wet paint.
She had to wait for the paint to dry full so she could sand the grit off and apply the last coat of paint again.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

We Are Chaos Junkies

The paint on the bathroom countertop was not dry yet so The Geek figured she might as well move the plumbing for the kitchen sink while she was hooking up the connections for the bathroom sink.The contents of the armoire room were moved away from the cupboard to facilitate the new holes in the floor.The contents of that cupboard were moved into the living room, where I am keeping the laundry I cannot do because the drain in the basement is still too full of water to use the washing machine. I'll solve that problem tomorrow.

And at this very second, we have no functional sinks on this level of the house. Which is much better than it might have been if The Geek had proceeded with her original plan to remove the countertops while she fit the new ones. We might have been without a kitchen sink for...eons.
The water should be back on in here in about 45 mintues.

Saturday- A Peek at Summer

The tulips are and the vinca are blooming,
The celandine is getting ready to bloom and to then set seed.And I went to a greenhouse and bought my bedding plants. Hopefully this year the tomatoes will produce; I'm going to plant them in a new location.

This is indeed a very odd spring.

Friday's Blizzard

These are the road conditions around the province on Friday after what was hopefully this year's last blizzard.
The 'horizontal' road marked with orange is the road that leads to my parents' farm. I haven't yet asked my dad how driving was that day.

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Brick Houses Don't Float

They just fill up with water. We have no idea where this came in.
Our part of Winnipeg had close to 4 cm of rain, and the ground is likely still very frozen.
Surprisingly enough, neither one of us owns a pump. We borrowed this one from our next door neighbours, as I can imagine there has been a run on pumps today at the local stores.We have discovered that the basement slopes, with the northwest corner being the highest and tipping down to the southeast, where there was at least three inches of water.

And this is the resulting lake in the front yard and on the sidewalk; at the this point we had only pumped out a third of the water.

We Treat Our Fixtures Well

Here is the bathroom sink, all comfy and cozy on the chesterfield, pillows and a blanket at the ready.

Its just waiting to be picked up and carried any day now to its new hangout in the bathroom.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Is That A (gulp) Spider?

This certainly gave me pause as I went down the basement stairs earlier today. I guess I haven't been down there since The Geek was fixing...whatever it was she was fixing.
Even up close, it is still a little un-nerving until you realize they are only clamps on what I think is a strip of tire.

Monday, 11 May 2009

The New Brain Bucket

I have been long overdue for a new helmet. My current one is older than N1, and he will be eight in a few weeks.
My problem? I didn't just want any old helmet. I wanted something a little more understated, and that wouldn't look odd when worn with a skirt. I liked the style that equestrian riders use. Darrel made the synapes click when he told me to then buy a riding helmet. I don't know why that didn't occur to me on my own. It is generally alot farther to fall from a horse than a bike so their standards must be pretty high.
Tina had control of the computer at that time so she googled equestrian helmets. I liked the look of the Troxel helmets, so I went over to Greenhawk, a supplier nearby and I now have one. (Greenhawk by the way is a very nice smelling store; leather always smells good. Lumberyards also smell very nice.)
And just in time. The padding decided to fall out of the current one on Friday.
Here are some other cool helmets, Yakkay and Tail-Wags, neither of which are sold in Manitoba-yet.

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Stop Teasing Me!

These look suspiciously like doors.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Don't Worry Mom!

I won't get you a scooter for Mother's Day, no matter how much the advertisement thinks I should.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

More Backyard Improvements

On Saturday I went and bought some Eco-Lawn grass seed. It supposedly grows in the shade, so last night The Geek and I moved the rock edging for the garden and shovelled some of the dirt to the rough area beside the back fence to flatten it out. I spread the grass seed while she went on her first garbage eve expedition for 2009.

So far the birds haven't made a feast of the seed. Hopefully there is alot of other food out there for them right now and they won't be tempted.
Closer to the house, the tulips are starting to get serious about this spring stuff. Maybe there will be flowers by this weekend. And The Geek's first haul from garbage eve. These two bikes, plus another one that is slightly larger than N3's blue bike.

The neon orange and green show up alot brighter at dusk.

Sunday, 3 May 2009

The Blue Bike

A few weeks ago my sister and her husband bought N2 a new bike. While they were at Woodcock, N3 was zooming around on a pedal-less push bike.

For the next while, all he talked about was 'My blue bike'.

Last summer, The Geek found a little bike on one of her garbage eve trips.
She took it apart, fixed the brakes, and painted it blue.
The magenta rims are all that is left of the original colour, but it gives the little bicycle a bit of pizazz. The Geek intentionally left off the crank, since N3 doesn't know what to do with pedals anyway.
N3 likes the bike, but it is a bit too big, and he can't touch the ground.
The Geek modified it slightly, but it was still too big. So she modified it more and while it doesn't have the same curb appeal,
he can touch the ground. It will be only a matter of time before he is off to the races.

Saturday, 2 May 2009


We have three rhubarb plants in the backyard, all split from one that was rootbound. All three are in different stages of growth.

Rhubarb is down right creepy looking as it first emerges from the ground.
Then the leaves are all sickly-looking and crinkly.
Then they finally start to look more attractive as they open up.
This year I have to do a better job of cooking it before it gets all woody.