Junior Brown. The best brown dog to ever step foot in Lake Erie.
He was made for this.
Another beautiful morning on the island.
Nikki's favourite season. 🍄
This was the third encore for the Civic Day fireworks. Port Colborne knows how to put on a good show. Canal Days was a blast this year, we enjoyed it a lot and made lots of new memories.
Found this song today and I'm loving it.
And John popping a wheelie.
Android Auto stopped working in Nikki's 2018 Honda Civic tonight out of nowhere. For anyone who has this issue, for us a reset on her audio system was the fix. Going to Settings, System and doing a Factory Reset. After that, when we plugged a USB cable into the Android Auto-compatible port and connected her phone it successfully started setting it up again.
It actually didn't entirely set it up properly until we also manually paired HandsFreeLink, by disconnecting the cable first, then pairing it through the car's Bluetooth menu.
I should've learned by now to shut my mouth and not say things I can't commit to.
In my defense, I really was set on not using Instagram again, as well as never owning a smartwatch. But a few months of isolation from the world -- Instagram being the last thread tying me to the masses -- I started to feel like this guy. I mainly missed the chat and the passing of nonsense posts back and forth to friends and family.
So I got a shiny new Instagram account -- I'm even on Threads and Messenger -- This new account is not tied to my old one in any way. I had to get a bit clever to pull that one off because no matter what they have you believe when you delete your account, Meta doesn't forget about you or any of your details. I also did my best to restrict the new account, denying but a drop of permissions, but I am sure they still collect it all. I did keep the account public because so is this website I suppose. I will not be posting as frivolously as I did on the old account though.
Secondly, and this sort of came out of nowhere -- I got a Fitbit. What happened was a few weeks ago I found the old Fitbit Versa that used to belong to my dad (we inherit their old technologies) and charged it up. I gave it a trial run for a couple of days and really liked the heart and sleep monitoring features.
So much so that I ended up buying the Fitbit Sense 2. I've been wearing it for about 2.5 weeks now, and it's been a great tool and a very useful addition to my aging existence. It's also curbed my need to want to buy -- or even browse -- any other "real" watches. I guess that's an added bonus.
So yeah, two of three things I said I'd never use [again] in my life... What's next? Chat GPT?
Not. Bloody. Likely. That one I can say with 1000% confidence. Everyone around me keeps telling me stories of how it has saved them time or helped write things for them... I find it bit disturbing to be honest. We no longer have to think or be challenged? No thanks.
Whopper-Smacker is a game where you get whopper-smacked by your opponent's pillow, while you're lying down on the bed and covering your face with your own pillow.
Junior had 4 lumps, 4 skin tags, and a non-cancerous tumour on his eyelid removed today.
I found a piece of fire hose on the side of Highway 3 one day, near the 140. Today I made a notebook cover out of it.
I saw this written in Nikki’s planner–she keeps her planner open on the kitchen island to keep track of things–and while I can only guess the tone or frame of mind she intended, I think it describes today very well. With the exception that, to get to where we are today, she didn’t do a good job, she did an amazing job.
Our marriage hasn’t been the fairy tale she deserves. She married someone that repeatedly puts up a wall and says mean things when he perceives things to be a personal attack. She married someone that isn’t there to emotionally support her because he has no idea how to do that. She married someone that, when put on the spot during an argument, can't name one thing he loves about her because he has his wall up, even though he has a million reasons.
In the past 10 years (3,652 days) we had countless great moments. On top of the list is creating the most perfect human who is smart, funny, kind, caring, emotional and supportive. (He’s only 9 but he already puts me to shame in most of those traits, especially the last three.)
These great moments, while absolute contributors to the success of being here to celebrate today, don't necessarily balance out the few negatives which have the most impact. In some cases, our great moments were marred by those negative ones.
I am not the same person I was 10 years ago. I am not even the same person I was one year ago. While my fun, quirky characteristics are still at my core and make me who I am, today I am much more aware than I have ever been.
I’ve never seen things so clearly, and I have never been so grateful for what I have. Not only in my personal life but also in my professional life. I have started to communicate, to share, to feel. To really feel.
All because she chose to be with me. To put up with me, to coach me, to support me.
Thank you for being able to name not one but 10 things you love about me, even put on the spot during an argument.
Thank you for your sense of humor.
Thank you for saying exactly what I need to hear because I need to hear it, even when it’s uncomfortable.
Thank you for being the first person to listen to my ramblings about the little things that excite me that nobody really cares about.
Thank you for growing up reading so many books because John now loves to read.
Thank you for challenging me to be the best dad for John.
Thank you for asking me tough questions.
Thank you for making me call the vet.
Thank you for having the best gift ideas and teaching me that thinking of others is not a last minute thing.
Thank you for always looking for ways to make life better for our family.
Thank you for always giving honest answers to John’s questions.
Thank you for being the most selfless person I know even though I try to make you feel otherwise when I have my wall up.
Thank you for being my inspiration on this journey.
And thank you for making me want to be a better man, not for you, but for myself.
You are more stunning today than the day I met you. I am super proud of all of your accomplishments and feel very fortunate that you have chosen to share your life with me. I love you.
Happy anniversary. ❤
One day John said to his mom "I have a quote I just came up with" and said this.
Nikki sent me this video earlier. I am using it as the first test of embedding videos on my site.
I was part of the Momentum Sea Quartz 30 May preorder which arrived a couple of weeks ago, along with the stainless steel bracelet. I've been anticipating this since January. For the preorder price of $195, I think it was a steal.
Even though though I'm not particularly into quartz watches anymore (I more prefer a nice automatic movement) here are a few things that drew me to the Sea Quartz 30. The Magnum PI association, the overall design, the lume, the sapphire crystal, etc. Having owned Momentum watches before, I knew I can expect a solid build quality.
A couple of years back, I owned a Stowa TO1. I loved everything about that watch, but in the end I found it to be too massive for my skinny wrist. That watch came with one of the best rubber straps. It was a fitted rubber strap, smelled like vanilla, and could withstand anything it was built so well.
I found out that you can get those exact straps from WATCHBANDCENTER (WBC). It's the My Sportivo lineup. I believe Stowa and WBC might be using the same manufacturer - both companies being out of Germany.
After I looked closer at the Sea Quartz 30's stainless bracelet I realized that the clasp might work with those My Sportivo straps from WBC.
I ordered the "Emden" Camouflage 20-18mm to try. The strap was waiting for me when I got home today. I resized it, threw it on the Sea Quartz and the result is... well, you be the judge.
If you're not into the camo print, there are lots of other options. Check out the rest of the lineup. The size you'll need for your Sea Quartz is the 20mm lug width (18mm at the buckle).
Update 2023-06-27: I ordered an orange one of these. See video below. I think that's the winning combination to date. These rubber straps are amazing.
Yesterday we had a crap ton of wood delivered from the Temiscaming Home Hardware for our dock rebuild and the delivery kid shared his life story with us while helping us unload it. He said he's a member of Long Point First Nation and moved to Temiscaming about 4 years ago. I learned through him that being native he is entitled to claim any crown land as his own as long as it doesn't belong to the government. He can live there for the rest of his life, pass it down generations, but cannot sell it.
Anyway I think we ended up hauling about 8 boat loads of wood in the pouring rain. It was a great day.
Going to the Canada's Got Talent Finale was unforgettable. John had a blast, my mom and sister did as well. I have to say it's much more entertaining to go to the live filming than it is to watch it on TV.
They start filming at 4:30PM. I learned this is to accommodate the set changes as they take longer than a live broadcast would allow. They do this until about 7PM. Then they ask the audience to take a 1 hour break. During the break they put the recording together. At this time we're free to roam the theatre. We can go up on stage (get in line!), check out the judges desk (but can't sit), etc.
At 8PM we all come back and they air "live" to Canada the recording they did earlier. Then at around 9:45PM the judges come back and they do an actual "live" broadcast of announcing the winner.
Not much (if anything) seems to get cut from what they record so the filming itself looks to be a "do or die" situation. It's pretty much like a live recording, just with a delayed broadcast I guess...
During commercials, for us in the live audience, there is an emcee who hypes up the crowd, finds talent in the audience to pass the time, etc. For example when we were there they found singers in the crowd, people that could do acrobatics, things like that.
They also have a small crowd of "seat-fillers" to fill empty seats or to act as "fans" to some of the contestants (eg: creating a [peaceful] "mosh-pit" like in this Season 2 Finale).
I also learned that the bristol board signs people hold up like "We love you Howie!" are provided by the production team. They're left on random seats throughout the audience beforehand.
The whole production is very well organized. It runs like a well-oiled machine. It's inspiring to watch how much work goes into it.
Dance act Conversion was the winner of Season 2. They were awesome.