Welcome to my blog. Here I have tried to capture the adventures of our little family and the trials and tribulations of our never ending garden project(s). Take a look around and leave a comment if you wish. Thanks for stopping by. Jer.


Goodbye to the Noughties

Well another decade is just peeking over the horizon. The Noughties, or O-O's (2000-2009) have been quite eventful to say the least. In 2000 we moved from my hometown Niagara Falls to London. 2003 brought our first child Benjamin and our first house. 2005 brought our daughter Olivia. 2006 put me over the 30 year hump (never to recover). Isaac followed in 2007, also the year that Nina and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary. In 2008 we purchased what we plan to be the home that we raise our children in.
I worked at three different places during the decade, Metaldyne, Keiper and Brose (currently).
I have battled my Crohn's throughout, although the last couple of years have been easier than the early 2000's.
Family has changed significantly during the decade; my brother Kyle married Britney in a beautiful wedding and they remain very much in love. However, the same cannot be said for Nina's side of the family; the decade saw the dissolution of three marriages, sadly all with children as casualties. Happily both sets of our parents are still fairly healthy and a major part of our lives.
Good friends have had changes also, with marriage and children coming along. Some have moved further away, some remain close.
Thankfully I have been blessed to travel through the decade with my beautiful wife Nina, growing closer every step along the way.
Bring on the Twenty Tens, or Tweenies, or whatever.


Pining for this

Pinus Contorta 'Chief Joseph'. The holy grail of my conifer want list...turns school bus yellow in winter...the colder the better. Haven't found a source for this one yet north of the 49th parallel. The search continues.

*have found Pinus Sylvestris Gold Coin which would be a worthy substitute

The other woman...

Well here she is, my iron clad mistress...the new Jeep. She kept me from my real family all weekend.

I am the lead Quality Engineer for the our new launch of the 2010 model year seats for this vehicle.

I spent all weekend working to make sure our first shipment to the customer (all 84 seats) were up to snuff. I am pretty exhausted. And all pro bono since 'salary' staff do not receive OT. They are pretty good about getting us a day off instead but it just doesn't make up for the lost time with the family on the weekends as the day off is usually during the week when Nina is at work and the Ben is in school.

Oh well, there could be worse things in the world. Like not having a job.


Touch of fall

It has been a wet fall so far, but still some good colour. The burning bushes are glowing and the ornamental grasses are putting on a good show.

Colourful entrance to backyard

Southwest side of deck

Hedera Helix 'Thorndale' planted 10/10/09 - love the colour variation in a single leaf


No fear

Where did this kid come from? Our Ben has fear of nothing. Yes I understand that this Garter Snake we caught today is not much of a wild beast but the other day we were at the pet store and he was petting a huge African Rat Snake and a GIANT bird eating spider (as in, it is big enough to eat a bird!). Whatever it is that is flicked off (or on) in his nugget of a brain is definitely not from me or Nina. It is probably also why he has had 3 broken arms in the last two years.
The best comparison that I can make is to my late cousin David (coincidentally Ben's middle name is David, in memory). He also was a daredevil and feared little. He turned out to be a good man and husband but tragically died far too early in a car accident.
I see a lot of David's qualities in Ben, he has a big heart and he is a deep thinker for someone of a whole 6 years. While he challenges us some times with his antics, I know he is going to be a good man like David...as long as he stays off the monkey bars!

Western Fair 2009

Time for the classic annual Western Fair. The last few years I remember it being crummy weather during the fair, and although it threatened rain for the first little while, nothing ever came of it.
We had a great time; Trisha brought her kids which worked out well as the boys did the rides they wanted and the girls had theirs.
It was not quite as busy as I would have expected for the first night, but that's not to say that there weren't weirdos a plenty...and that is not to mention the carnies!

Weather cleared just as we got there

"Burning Man" stunt

This guy is apparently Canada's best stunt man; he went all the way around the track on 2 wheels

Dragon Coaster

WOO HOO! That ride was awesome!

Best friends

That is disgusting (No, I didn't have any)

Nina and Trish 'measuring up'

Ferris Wheel at night


Off he goes

Well, another summer gone means another school year arriving. Ben was off to grade 1 today. I took the day off to make sure he got off OK and that I could be home to pick him up at the bus stop. He seemed a little tenative at first but then he seemed to be better once he saw a couple familiar faces in his class from last year. Hope he has a great day.

Nervous smiles to start the day

Feeling a little better after seeing some old friends

Isaac used a little downtime during the hustle and bustle this morning to do some networking with his agent (aka Mom)


Sayonara Summertime

Well another summer come and gone...though the weather lately is the nicest stretch we have had all summer. Today we decided to pack up and head to the park for a picnic. Liv and Isaac braved the splashpad and Ben decided to hunt for dragonflies.

Change of heart

Taking a break

My beautiful bride

Me and Isaac


Mr. Toad's wild unfortunate ride

Well, to begin this tale let me first give you some context and let you know that I am on nights this week, which affords me the daytime hours to get some much needed work done around the yard. Re: said work, I was out in the front yard yesterday performing the old whipper snipper duties on the edge of the garden and inadvertantly sliced and diced a poor unseen garden toad quicker than a SlapChop! The poor thing pretty much died instantly but his innards (or at least part of them) ended up right in my mouth...after hours of gargling bleach I think I am fine now.


Chilly Corn Roast

Our friend Frank held his annual Corn Roast last night. It was the first year we have been able to make it, usually we already have plans every weekend of the summer. It was a great time, despite the Octoberish weather, and I cannot believe how many folks showed up. There were 5 (or 6?) bands throughout the night that kept us entertained and lots of great food. We will definitely be back.

The crowd

Lots of corn for everyone

Good tunes. One family band of a father and sons played some great Blue Rodeo covers; the oldest son was spot on for Greg Keelor.

Liv flying high on the tire swing

The Classic Isaac pose

Nina and the kids going for a wagon ride

Ben swinging into the sunset

Prime real estate after sundown


Party time!

Nina's cousin in Kitchener was married yesterday. I can't believe how young they looked, I also can't believe that was us 12 years ago...hopefully we didn't look quite so young. Unfortunately we couldn't make it to the ceremony but the kids sure enjoyed the reception...little dance machines definitely don't take after their dad.

The happy couple

First a little din-din and some fancy juice and then it's time to....

Jump around!!! (look closely, he is actually getting air)

LOVE SHACK BABY!!! (Classic wedding tune)


The day that summer arrived...

Well, well, well, look who decided to show! After the longest spring on record, summer showed up on the first weekend in August.
We took advantage of the nice weather and spent the day at the splash pad with the kidlets and then flew the kite for a while. Good times.

The Six Million dollar boy

Running girl

Time to rest

Isaac contemplating getting wet

My head apparently makes an excellent snare drum for Isaac.


Once upon a time...

Nina's work rented out Storybook Gardens for a company family night last night. It was really fun and nice not to have to fight the crowds. And honestly, the ferris wheel was terrifying; especially at the top when the kids wouldn't stop rocking the car back and forth!

Ascent to terror

Isaac tells off a goose with an ice creamy face

Ben decides that this may not have been a great idea

Ben and Liv with the Cheshire cat ;)

Us and Humpty


Hosta parade

Well, if the grey skies and misty rain are good for nothing else, the hostas really seem not to mind. Below is my current inventory in no particular order (Ok, it's reverse alphabetical). Some are a little worse for wear from slugs and maybe too much sun for some, but others are really flourishing and Thunderbolt is my new favourite.

Got this one from an open garden tour. He also grows his own hostas.

Close second to being favourite.

Seems to be doing well in it's second year.

Gotta learn how to pronounce this one.

New favourite.

More tease, less strip this year.

Rather unremarkable, except for the red petioles.

Another cool one, although looks like it is reverting in some areas.

Not thrilled with this one.

Looking pretty rough, hopefully bounces back in year two.

This one was a gift from my neighbour Marianne when we moved in. Her garden is amazing.


Sport of Striptease. Doing well in year 1.

Think this one might be a little big for where I have it now.

Super fast grower and nice flowers.

I have three of these...can't remember why.

Also from the garden tour that I got Zounds at. That was my dream garden...mom and dad came with and agreed.

Hopefully this one 'boldly goes' a little more next year.

This one scares me a little, saw one yesterday and it gets HUGE!

Another classic.

This one is doing very poorly this year and it is right by the front door taunting me.