Month: May 2015

70 years later.

Posted on

Today Jasmine and I did something we didn’t expect to do. We went to the 70th anniversary celebrations of freeing Holland and Poland from Nazi occupation. I didn’t have that penciled in at all for today…

I’m the type of guy that will go on an adventure if I can find the time and have the means.

Jasmine and I were driving through downtown on our way home from my favorite princess store. We had dropped Heidi off at the school earlier and went to get spray white lithium grease. When we drove past Victoria Park I noticed about 150 or more people in orange shirts and a lot of bikes in the park and pointed them out to Jasmine.20150530_111336(0) 20150530_111215 She asked me what they were doing and I told her I had no idea but I knew it must involve bikes… She asked if we could go see. So we did. Saw a few little friends along the way too.

We got there for the opening parade of veterans with a pipe band and the speeches.20150530_111733(0)20150530_111521 20150530_111533 We stood quietly and watched all the speeches and awards and wreaths that were distributed. It was touching to be a spectator. Even for the dancing… 20150530_115824Those Polish dancing-girls really like to twirl.

The crowd was mostly people of Dutch and Polish heritage. I really felt proud to be Canadian through the whole ceremony. While watching the commemoration someone gave Jasmine a bouquet of tulips and someone else gave her a small Canada flag. 20150530_113314That was so nice.

We stayed for just over an hour and were invited back to the Dutch hall for a free hotdog BBQ… We had to turn it down in order to get back home.

When we got home I met with someone who bought our bike trailer. Turns out that they live 3 blocks away… They got a great deal and I got a little more space! I know that their kids are going to love being towed around in that thing. (I would have loved it!)

After the trailer left  for it’s new home I went over to the shop for a few minutes and then grocery shopping. I wanted to BBQ/ smoke a chunk of salmon today so I got some from the local grocery store. I really like United Groceries. They are an Asian store and have great stuff. You can’t find fresher fish anywhere in London. You can’t beat the prices for fruit and vegetables either. This week Siracha Sauce is on sale too.

After supper I found Jasmines other bike. I was using it to pile bags of sails on in the garage attic. I will get it down tomorrow sometime. It needs to be gone over and tuned. I picked it up and then the neighbors gave us one that was just a little smaller. She chose to start to learn on the smaller one. (I think Heidi chose for her…)

We went out after supper to get Jasmine water shoes. She will need them while using her kayak. She has to learn to get in it without anyone holding it. She also has to learn how to fall out of it. The bottom of the lake ware we sail is gravel and we have Zebra Mussels. They will tear up bear feet so water shoes are the answer. While out I found a pamphlet at the store for pet insurance… I’m shaking my head… 20150530_201805 20150530_201818

I plan to go look at a tool box tomorrow morning with my friend Chris. If I decide it’s a good fit it looks like I will need a tarp to get it home in the utility trailer. More rain again tomorrow.

That is good as I have a bunch of online stuff to do for the charter.


Today I put Mr. Toad’s trailer in the shed at the shop.

Posted on Updated on

Today I put Mr. Toad’s trailer in the shed at the shop.

I am amazed at how well it pulls with new bearing grease and pumped up tires. (40 psi instead of 60 psi.) When I brought it home I just guessed at the amount of air in them. They seemed hard enough…

I installed a 2×6 onto the upright on the drivers side rear with a couple deck screws. It was 18” long. Just long enough that I could see it in the mirror. I watched as I drove and the trailer didn’t bounce too much on the way over. The 2×6 was also handy for backing up. At least I could see what it was doing in relation to the car. With out it you could only see the trailer in the side mirrors. And by the time a 4’ trailer is in view of the side mirror it is just about sideways…

I took the tongue off and stored the trailer standing up on the front edge. The back has the lights so it was out. It was heavier than I expected. I know it is supposed to weigh 130 lb but with the aluminum plate for decking it was heavy. I could lift it myself but I wasn’t in work clothes. I was in clean street clothes and didn’t want to let the paint touch anything I was wearing. Good thing too. My hands got covered in slightly wet paint. It came off with varsol.

After dropping the trailer off I picked up Jasmine from school. Heidi was sick today so she didn’t go to school.

The girls went out to a potluck for dinner while I stayed home. I am too busy with boats to go.

While they were out I got a few things out of the garage. One was a wagon for behind the bikes. We used to use it to haul Jasmine around in when she was small. Now she is too big so It has to go.20150529_201155 20150529_201222 I took pictures and put it on Kijiji tonight. Some other family can love it.

I didn’t find Jasmines other bike… It’s stored in the attic of the garage with a bunch of other stuff. I really didn.t look for it. I just got the trailer down from up their. It came down a lot easier than it went up! Both times I didn’t have help…

Tomorrow I will get her other bike down and pump up the tires so she can ride a bike more her size. I told her that she could ride her bike to school next week if she practices all weekend. She is excited!

Daddy Daughter dinner boiled!

Posted on Updated on

It was daddy daughter dinner night tonight. Heidi had a staff meeting that runs late.

I had planned to take Jasmine to the yacht club and either sail if there was wind or take Mr. Toad her kayak out. I was also wanting to cook hotdogs over a campfire for supper.

We got home and had a snack and I had a quick shower. By just about the time I was ready to go Heidi walked in the back door.

She was sick and couldn’t attend the staff meeting. Sick enough to not want to go to the yacht club with Jasmine and I.

So I decided to stay home and look after my beautiful wife. There was stuff to do here anyway. I did make hotdogs for supper. Boiled… Not as fun as cooking them on a stick. (I still have 8 in the package for another day soon!) Heidi didn’t want to eat so we made her a mint tea with fresh mint from our yard.

On the way home from school Jasmine told me that she wanted to practice riding her bike so she could ride it to school this year… This is new… She has been afraid of riding her bike lately… Something changed today.

Today Heidi rode her bike while Jasmine walked and ran… Some of her little friends at school rode their bikes as well. I think Jasmine either doesn’t like running or thinks riding a bike is cool now.

We let Heidi rest while Jasmine and I practiced riding her bike up and down the street. She still isn’t confident enough to ride around the school yard at the end of our street. I think that is because there are other kids their that may see her wipe out.

She is getting a lot better! She can do skids now.20150528_192627 (Unintentionally at first…) She even made me bring Heidi out to watch her go up and down the street.20150528_194257(0) 20150528_194622 20150528_194624 Cute.

I did get to the wiring on the trailer tonight I also got the paint out and finished painting it. I did a few more spots underneath like the springs and the cross members. I also put a 2nd coat on the fenders. So It is finished enough to be put away until I can find time to make a box for the top of it. Fall probably.

OI will take it over to the shop tomorrow or Sat and take the tongue off and put it in the small shed. I was over their today cleaning a spot for it. it will fit nicely on one side if I stand it on it’s end. I will still be above to move things around in the shed afterwards too. (That’s important!)

While at the shop I took pictures of some things that I want to sell and get rid of. Things that I won’t ever use again like my HVPL paint sprayer.20150528_151641 20150528_151505 It takes up a lot of room and I could use that room. Also the small rototiller I have and the tailgate for a F150 that I don’t own anymore…

I’ll put those things on and hopefully get that shed space back soon.


Posted on Updated on

I couldn’t get to the trailer today. It rained and I didn’t want to try and solder in the rain. I probably could have done it with the torch but that would have been overkill.

I didn’t even get to race the sailboat… Rain again.

It would have been fun. It was a reef type day for sure. Lots of gusts out of nowhere. Lots of wind makes racing the Siren 17 much more fun. It actually gets up and moves if it’s windy. If it’s relatively calm… It sails like a brick.

I can’t forget that we now have racing on Sunday afternoons now. I’ll try this Sunday again.

Tomorrow is daddy daughter dinner. I may surprise her with a hotdog cookout at the yacht club. Weaners cooked over the fire. Mmm! I won’t use the old stairs for fuel. Their is lots of fresh cut wood at the club since the falling of all the dead standing trees.

The Emerald Ash Borer has done it’s best to the ash trees. They are all dead. This past winter the conservation area went through and fell all of the dead trees. (They did miss a few but I’m sure they will get them this winter.) All those trees are cut into 3’ sections. That’s a handy size for carrying burning on the bond fire. Half that size would be perfect.

I hope to get out and sail tomorrow and still get to the trailer lights.

I did check the tires today.20150526_190422 They are fine. Just like new. Kind of anyway.

Picture is form yesterday. I still need to paint the fenders again.

It’s back together.

Posted on

I picked up tubes today for Mr. Toad’s trailer. It seems I was going about looking for them the wrong way. Instead of going all over town looking for a 4.80/4/8 tube for a trailer tire and going to the usual places I should have just gone down the street to the Home Hardware… That’s where I found them finally. That was after calling around to different stores.

I changed things up a bit this time. I asked for a tube for a wheel barrow tire. 4.80/8.

It has me wondering if they would have them if I went to the gardening section of the store’s that I went to before…. I can’t be bothered.

I found out that Laser supply has them.20150526_165757 Laser has it’s head office here in London. So if need be I could stop in there and get them. That was the plan if any of the Home Hardware’s didn’t have any in stock.

I mentioned that they are for a wheelbarrow… They are the same tubes as for the 1200lb, 8” highway tire. 20150526_165929I cross referenced the product #’s…

When I got home I put the tubes in the tires. I forgot about soapy water… I fought to get them in and ended up using the box end of a 15mm wrench to push it in. It worked but took about 10 min per tire. I didn’t damage the paint as much as I thought I would putting them in. I did pull a bit off when I pulled out the old valve stems.20150526_184128

I filled the tires to 60 lb like it says on the tire and realized that they shouldn’t have so much in them. They are not in the best shape and the cracks really showed at 60lb. So I let down to 40 lb. Still enough for my purposes. I’m not hitting the highway anyway. The cracks don’t look so prominent at 40 lb.

After I pumped them up I touched up the paint and put them on the trailer. Then I put the fenders on. I still need to give the outside of the fenders one last coat of paint and it’s done.

Except for the one light I need to wire back in. I’ll do that just before I paint tomorrow.

It’s looking great! 20150526_190441 20150526_190452

I lift the trailer up on it’s side. (Kind of) It sits on the tongue, tire and the corner of the deck that gets it up high enough to work on it. I would have done that tonight but it rained.

Those little 8” tires mean that it is one low trailer!

I remember last year thinking that I should have the same size tire on all my trailers. I have two that way now. I could make a third just by getting new tires and changing them from 13” to 15”. But the Siren 17 has 12” and my utility trailer has some crazy old front end off a truck as the axle with 6 bolt rims and now Mr. Toads trailer has 8”. That’s 3 axles I would have to change to have the same tires on all.

I think I will put up with the odd tire sizes for now. But I know my next utility trailer will have 15” for sure.

Clinic day. Lets get the clown!

Posted on

It was clinic day for Jasmine today. So I picked her up from school after lunch and took her to PMDU Oncology Dept. at Victoria hospital. We are lucky we are so close to her hospital. I met a family from Sarnia today that is staying in the Ronald McDonald House while their daughter is in treatment. I didn’t ask what type of cancer she had. Sometimes I do sometimes I don’t. Depends on how the kid looks. She had trouble talking so I thought it best not to ask.

I like going to clinic with Jasmine. I see it as a chance to learn more about her cancer and to help her learn about her cancer. Learn about life too. I think it keeps me grounded in a way. Reminds me of what is important in life. Living it! 20150525_135645

When we got to clinic we had to check in with the nurse at the catch all PMDU desk. While doing that I heard Ollie in the Oncology area. I told Jasmine to run and give him a big hug. She felt shy so I told her to check herself in while I ran and gave him a big hug. She thought that was too silly so I didn’t. I did jump into the doorway and point and loudly say “Their he is! Get him!” Jasmine laughed.

She gets along with Ollie very well. All the kids do.  I really like him myself.

(Video of Ollie:)

I freak him out. I just give him things to look up on YouTube when he gets home… He writes them down and looks at me strange the next time were in for clinic. (He writes the things down because you can’t search that stuff on the computers in the hospital… I hope you can’t anyway…)

Today it was touching when a young lady came over to Ollie while a bunch of us were chatting and gave him a big jug of maple syrup as a thank you for being there and doing what he does. He accepted it gracefully and thanked her. Then their was this pause in the conversation. (like an uncomfortable pause…) So I said… Loudly…

“Lets rub it on him!” I told the guy beside me to use his phone to take a video of it so we could put it on YouTube. Everyone erupted in laughter! Even Ollie.

We didn’t get to put maple syrup on him but I gave the kids a good idea for another time.

Thinks kind of went like that afterward until we got to see the doctor an hour and a half later. Their was balloon glove making and a lot of laughing. Lots of drawing too. See the syrup on the desk to Ollie’s right…20150525_143310 20150525_143316I had no idea that he keeps so many Sharpie markers in his jacket pocket. He must have had 20 different colours. I didn’t even know there were so many colours. He made Jasmien an ostrich balloon because she asked him how to say ostrich in German. (He’s not German…) I have no Idea why she wanted to ask him that. Not sure she does either…

Turns out he didn’t know what ostrich was in German. No one did. We had to go off to see the doctor then. While we were in our room Ollie came in with another balloon with Ostrich in German on it.20150525_143324 20150525_144035

After clinic we went for ice cream and then home to see mom.20150525_160425

Jasmine didn’t even whimper when she had to give blood today. I think that has something to do with dad being there instead of mom. Heidi tells of large bouts of tears when she gives blood. That hasn’t happened for years with me being with her.

That may be from me showing her the size of the needle that I get stuck in my arm to give blood. I remind her of that each time I give blood. I got her to hold my hand when they poke me like I do for her.

I decided to paint the rims for the Mr. Toad trailer tonight. I had a can of white paint in the basement that was just going to sit there if I didn’t use it. They turned out nice. I have two coats on them now. 20150525_194619I have clamps keeping the tire from touching the inside of the rim. Before I got  it, it sat for years with flat tires in someone’s back yard. So there was mud and a little rust inside. I cleaned that out and painted the inner bead area.  I may need to do a few touch ups when I put the tubes in. Oh well. So much for waiting to paint them.

I think I found tubes for the tires at Home Hardware. I see them online and just need to check the local store inventory.

Elusive trailer parts.

Posted on

I took the hub off Mr. Toad’s trailer today. It was a little grindy when you spun the wheel. That usually means that you need bearings. Guess what I found… It needs bearings…

I’m not going to put any in right now. I will in the fall when I get to building the box that goes on it. I took the bearings that were in it out and cleaned them. I also looked around at a # of stores this afternoon to find bearings. No luck! (That’s why I’m going to wait for fall. I should be able to source them by then.) So until then I will just use the old bearings with new grease.

I’m not taking it far anyway. Just planning to take it to the shop and put it away until I build the box.

I think I may have found a box supplier. There is a place in London that gets big stuff shipped in in plywood crates. They sell the empty crates for $20 each! So I will take a look there when they get more in. If I can get one pre made I’ll be a happy guy.

Just after lunch we went out to the lake for a sail. All of us! Heidi is feeling a little better. She had a great time.20150524_131830 20150524_131841 So did Jasmine. I let her sail for a bit. Up wind this time too! She has more to learn. I kept hold of the main sheet all the time she was steering. Good thing too as it was kind of gusty today.

The open house looked well attended today. We didn’t give any rides though. We were there to relax.

After our relaxing hour and a half sail we had to get Jasmine to a friends place for a play date. After dropping her off I took Heidi to the hospital to visit our neighbour Majella. She had surgery last week. Once free of all the family I went out inner tube shopping. I looked for bearings as well. No luck on either! The 4.80x 8” seems to be really popular right now. (It’s the same size a wheel barrow tire takes…) I could have got 2 ply wheel barrow tires for $4.99 each. But they were a little too flimsy.

I noticed that Princess Auto has them in stock online. I amy see if I can order them to the local store so I can pick them up their. If not I may just order them anyway. $9 shipping.

Earlier in the day I took the fenders off the trailer so I could paint the frame and springs that they hid. I gave the fenders a quick scrape to get the rust off the inside and a quick coat of Tremclad. 20150524_115353 20150524_195917When I was doing this Heidi saw me with the paint. She asked me if it was rust paint… After I said yes she asked me to paint the inside of the lid of the kitchen garbage can… So I did that tonight when we got home.

After the garbage can lid I put together the one hub and bearings that I had just cleaned and painted earlier. It  looks good! So I removed the other side and started cleaning too. It was a mess as well. Bearings needed at some point soon. I have the bearings all cleaned and ready for grease.20150524_205338 20150524_205332 The hub and dust cap is painted and drying along with the wheel nuts.

I took one side of the flat tire off the rim. Not really off.I just pushed it down so I can insert a tube and  clean the rim. While cleaning the rim I decided that they need paint too. So I really cleaned both rims in preparation for paint. I’m going to wait until I get the tubes before I paint. Less mess that way and less chance of messing up the paint job.

When we were out today going to get Jasmien (After Heidi and I had a little rest at London Ice Cream!)20150524_173904 the car made a odd jerking while I tried to accelerate. No lights came on the dash so I kept driving gingerly. It did it about 15 more times before we picked Jasmine up. After we left the car stalled on the road… The check engine light came on too!

I usually carry the code reader in the car I drive just in case of such things. So I checked the code on the side of the road and had to google with my phone what the code was. It was the crankshaft positions sensor! The thing I changed last Nov! So I got under the hood and started checking wires.I found the wire almost unplugged! I plugged it back in and the car started fine! So we drove the rest of the way home. No jerking motions this time. I’ll have to wrap a zip tie around the plug so it doesn’t do it again.