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Sunday, December 31, 2017

New Years Eve with Steve and Penny

After a really nice meal at home (lobster and shrimp) we went to Steve and Penny's for a great party. William brought his drawing book along and did about a dozen portraits of people at the party.

Friday, December 29, 2017

amazing Pathfinder find at the library

We went to the Sherwood library branch to see the Catherine Blackburn exhibition at the small Dunlop Gallery there. The art was very good and I'm glad we braved the cold for that. I'm even more happy for the amazing find we had as we entered and looked at the discard book rack and found seven hardcover Pathfinder books. I've bought two of these for William and they retail between $40 and $50 each. Someone must have just donated them to the library who just re-sell them for ONE DOLLAR EACH!. That's about a 98% saving. 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Blue Velvet

Other than driving Margaret to work, we had our first stay-at-home-day for the season. I put on Blue Velvet for William for the first time. He didn't find it overly violent. We really enjoyed seeing the comic relief of the jock bullies. 

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Lunch with Erik and Julia

Brunched with Erik and Julia (meeting her for the first time). Talked about American cities, structuralism, and food.
Later in the afternoon, Paul, Terri, and Xander came over. We played Axe Cop Munchkin. Paul stayed for supper then we went to Murder on the Orient Express. A very full day.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Star Wars Imax on Boxing Day

As our last event for the year with the girls before they leave town, Margaret bought us all tickets to see the new Star Wars movie at the Imax theatre. Movie was fun. We got there an hour early so managed to get decent seats (third row center). Back to the house for a few cookies afterwards, but we didn't manage to fit a game or anything into the day due to other commitments. Sad goodbyes to Kiki who will return to Toronto. Hope we see her again. 

Monday, December 25, 2017

Christmas Dinner at the Hotel Sask

With my sister Lori away on a family vacation, Mom decided we should all go to the Hotel Sask for Christmas Dinner along with their friends Gerry and Helen. This was quite enchanting. The food was good. We had interesting conversations and a generally nice time. 

Christmas morning

We slept fairly late (for our household) and had a leisurely morning opening gifts and having some breakfast and candy. I got the cooking torch I've wanted for years. William got a mysterious Axe Cop Munchkin game from an unknown sender. Margaret finally has a new backpack, replacing the one I gave her 25 years ago. 

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas Eve at Gertrud and Fred's

George managed to get the bathroom renovation complete a couple of days ago (but for the door) so Christmas eve charged ahead with Kiki and Kristin in town and everyone together. Goose was perfect, as was the strudel. Lots of socks and pjs for me, gin and paints for Margaret, and other nutty stuff all around, but it was really about the girls. Kiki turns 18 soon so this might be her last Christmas in Regina. William and I made the "George Washington egg nog" earlier today and brought half of it to dinner. It was a hit. 

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Globe Theatre

Margaret bought us all tickets for the second last day of the "The Christmas Carol" at the Globe Theatre. This is likely the most enjoyable of the Christmas plays I've seen them do. Well acted and well staged. My favorite moment was the turning point for Scrooge in his past as his lover tells him she is leaving and wishes him a merry Christmas. His present day self begs him to do something but he just says "bah" and turns away. His path is set for the decades to come. Chilling moment. The lights come up and it is time for a humorless break. 

Friday, December 22, 2017

Turkey dinner

Turkey day! Not a holiday or anything, although we did pull William out of school for the afternoon so that he'd be able to help with family stuff, but I did choose this day as near-but-not-too-near the other holiday meals to choose to cook up a pre-feast. William declared "roast it and they will come" so we opened up invitations and had a fabulous evening with Richard and Gerda, talking until the wee hours about pot, cameras, politics, environment, and all kinds of other stuff. It's been years since I've connected with them at since an intimate level. I couldn't have asked for a better evening. Margaret's new haircut looked great and Gerda dug an exiting 50 foot roll or 35mm film out of the freezer for my next project.

scanning pictures

I've been spending a lot of time scanning photos, partially for archiving but partially to spread that archive to others during the holidays. This week is the Bessai slides and one of their old albums. 

Thursday, December 21, 2017

big improv night

William and I went to the home for the holidays improv night at the Exchange. Lots of people we've not seen in a while including Daniel Maslany. The crowd was big (over 150 I think) so I think I occasionally missed jokes but a really fun night. 

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

testing the 35mm camera

I shot about a minute of 35mm black and white film to test the camera I bought. To reflect upon the nature of old technology, the act of viewing, and the insular nature of media archaeology, I had Geremy and Vishal standing near each other but not interacting as they both looked at the world through old devices, Geremy with a stereoscopic viewer and Vishal with the moviola. While setting up I shot some images with my phone and made them into this animated GIF. The actual film isn't developed yet. 

Tuesday, December 19, 2017


I tried to start baking this Tuesday. I made Nanimo Bars, which are not actually baked, but are awesome. 

Monday, December 18, 2017

High school

With only five days until winter break, William has homework due tomorrow in every one of his courses. He killed two hours on a math problem before I noticed and came to help. I couldn't help. Even upon looking the answer up, we couldn't make sense of the problem, figuring we didn't understand the formula required. However, the next problem worked with the formula, as did the one after that. Upon careful review, the problem must have a typo in it. This isn't helpful.

William drove to school on his own today. First solo.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Latke Party

We've missed out on this for the past couple of years but finally were able to attend the latke party this afternoon. Great conversations and food. It's all Steve's secret recipe (he adds carrots). 

Friday, December 15, 2017

Driver's license

William passed his driving exam today and is now licensed to kill, I mean drive. He's worked very hard at this and we are very proud of him. He wasn't really sure if he had passed or not. The tester was nice and calm and didn't seem to find fault with little things. I think it is a matter of confidence that William now has. It is stressful to drive with someone who is not confident. He is good out there now.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Christmas tree challenge

It was a challenge to find a tree this year. We went to four places and finally found a few (only 8 remaining when we arrived, only 4 remaining once we left with ours) trees over 6 feet tall. This is rather feeble compared to most of our previous trees. Probably won't hold even half of our lights and ornaments, but at least we got one.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Sylvia's opening and haircuts

I missed my haircut last December before the Filmpool open aperture talk and finally got around to rescheduling it. Feels good. Went to Sylvia Ziemann's opening at the AGR. Her drawings, of which we own one, look even more amazing once they are all put together in one room. Dreamy and intoxicating.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Justice League

Temperature at 7 degrees so I barbequed elk burgers, bakes some cookies, and hosted Allan for supper followed by Justice League. He showed us a prototype of his new book.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Sending out cards

We've been working on cards for a few days. I don't know how many we'll get out this year. Not as many as we did way long ago, but more than the past couple of years. Back in the 90s, Margaret and I used to do 2 or even 3 big mail outs to friends every year, usually 75-100 items. This would be Christmas cards in December but could be a post card set if we went on a trip or some other celebration card if not.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Indian grocery on south Albert St

We went for lengthy drive today, hitting a few regular spots (such as the comic store where we ran into Ron and Karen doing some x-mas shopping) and irregular places, such as the Aroma Grocery, which I'd never been to before. We picked up some frozen naan and then some warm samosa's from the counter which were really great. We ate them in the rain outside of the store. 

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Bow Ties

William loves bow ties. He's had a few over the years, all either clip on or fakaroo in one way or another. He got a real one a while back but can't tie it. We were at the craft sale at the Centennial Mall today and I bought him another tie with the condition that they teach us how to tie it. The instructions, especially the last step, is horribly difficult to visualize and follow but after trying a bunch of times, and with both of us talking through it and watching simultaneous YouTube videos, we started to get it.