Saturday, January 14, 2017

Skating at the Park

Throughout the 80s I can clearly remember the fire department in Goderich flooding the tennis courts at the town pool area on Nelson Street.  The ice rink was that big - basically two tennis courts wide and long.  There was another rink too.  A secondary rink on the grass area for figure skating.  The tennis courts were reserved for hockey.  It was a source of memories for me, and good ones at that.

By and by however the courts did not get flooded in subsequent years during the late 80s and into the 90s.  I suppose it got to be too much work, or too much liability in case of accident.  For whatever the reason there wasn't a community minded outdoor skating rink for quite sometime here.  For a few years in the mid 2000s there was a rink up on the square in Goderich.  I was never on it.  Nor do I remember it lasting that long.  Again the reasons for its demise could have been unpredictable weather, not enough volunteers, too much cost or liability of course.

For the past 3 or 4 years a group of volunteers have resurrected the outdoor rink at the tennis courts.  It has two sets of rinks each about the size of a NBA sized basketball court.  One of the rinks is skating only, and the other has a perimetre set of 4 foot high boards and nets for pick-up hockey.  There are about a dozen different implements such as shovels and such to clear the ice, and a number of benches to sit on to put on skates.  A dedicated group of volunteers flood it when it is appropriate to do so, and by all accounts it gets used quite often.

Molly and I hit it up for 45 minutes or so today.  There was always about a dozen other like minded people on the skating only side, and about a half dozen kids playing hockey on that side.  The sun was poking out and it made it really nice with the accompanying blue cloudless sky.  Molly seemed to do much better then she does indoor at the YMCA in town.  I can't explain that, however it seemed like it to me.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Nature Walking

The holidays presents lots of extra time obviously.  We used this time to be at the YMCA of Goderich a number of times to go swimming and skating as a family, and also just to poke around town and out at the farm.  I can't remember what day it was, but it was a nice sunny day so we took off for Hawkin's road to see how the trails and the 25 acres (at Shelly's farm) was holding up.

I had been out there a few times before New Years Eve with the cross bow in hopes to fill a deer tag.  Despite my best efforts, which are poor, I didn't, but did see lots of sign and undoubtedly the deer, lots of rabbits and coyotes are enjoying the trails that I have slashed.  Unfortunately I did not or have not seen and turkey tracks....

At any rate we got on the trail and just heard the pains and screams of wild children.  Without fail Molly complains that it is too this, or too that....  it is too wet in the spring, too buggy or mosquitoe-y in the summer, too many leaves in the fall - her legs were tired this time walking in the snow.  However I try to deafen her calls and and enjoy the walk.  Not 50 feet into the trail I saw what I thought was a jack-rabbit.  Not a cottontail, but a sizable lepus.  Wally was pulled along on a polar bear sled and it was a nice hour or so for all of us.

Molly got a sled for Christmas.  It was your standard "saucer" variety.  We told her she could have a go on it at a place on the way back from the walk at the farm.  She had it in her head after seeing Wally in his sled at the farm that she should be able to ride on it rather then walk.  Saucer sleds aren't the kind that someone gets pulled on....

On the way home we did manage to stop at a sledding area and it worked out just fine.

Last but not least Wally just had his second birthday.  He had it with just a bit of fan fare.

Forgetting My Password

So getting back into things with passwords can be a nightmare.  In September there were no less then 4 or 5 passwords with school to log into the network, to take attendance, complete assessments, finish some reports on students, log into the federation information, and of course the school email system.  It was all forgotten or changed from what I once knew and remembered.

The same can be said with me for this website.  Posting every month doesn't do too much in terms of remembering the login.  However here I am, successfully logged in and adding away in 2017.  We all made it through the holiday season and though there isn't too many pictures, there were lots of memories and stories.

December finished up with a number of school cancellations before the 23rd or December.  To be honest I thought it was going to be quite difficult to make it that far into the month and keeping everyone on track.  Thanks to a few weather cancellations it happened.  They seemed to help in two ways - it made completing work a lot easier because there was less time to do it.  And secondly it just gave enough of a break to want to get back and complete the things that needed done.  So I didn't bat an eye when the closure notices appeared.  I still made it to a health and safety inspection, two in fact, and got plenty of work done at home which both caught me up, and moved me forward.  And it is even another cancellation day today!

So Christmas was just a terrific time for everyone.  On the eve, we went out for dinner and drinks to  a friend's house, where we were joined by other friends.  We were not too late.   The kids were wrapped in beds not long after eight - Molly being very excited, and Shelly and I just hung out and did those last minute things that needed done, and watched Die Hard.

Christmas morning came early.  Before seven.  Santa did in fact make it to the house and dropped off a sundry of useful and necessary items that people asked for and needed.  An electric blanket, Husky car mats, pink hockey helmet and Paw Patrol paraphernalia.  There were other goodies too, but those were the highlights.  Later that afternoon we continued in the joyous spirit with dinner and drink at my uncle Larry's, joined by relatives of all stripes.

Boxing day was spent much like the previous day with an early morning rise, and the same activities of drink and gifts and food at my dad's.  It was the least busy boxing day in terms of numbers in quite sometime.  But that is the way it goes from time to time.