Monday, December 31, 2012


As I settle in to my new life in suburbia I thought it best that I buy a local community association membership. My pass for McLeod gives me free access to the rinks at the community centre. Over the Christmas break my buddy Adam and I went out for a bit of shinny.

Christina came and watched the organized chaos for a bit (she took the pictures) and later commented that she was quite surprised by all the unspoken rules and somewhat order.

People showup - they pick a team -sit on the bench until its their turn- take a marginally short shift - back to the bench - repeat. 

Don't Showboat

Keep the puck low and your stick on the ice

Maybe I'll just stay on the bench.

Sunday, December 30, 2012


Thanks to my brothers gracious invitation Christina and I had our own private space to stay in while visiting Mom in Saskatoon.

 As a wine, art and single side ponytail expert Chrissy approved of the space,

On Christmas day Christina and I opened our gifts to each other upstairs in the glow of Mom's tree.

My girl was so overwhelmed by the joy of Christmas she simply couldn't control her glee.

What a girl.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Christmas Family Fun

Family time, feasting and presents.

By far the one of the best things I have seen in a long time was Matt, Liam, Claire and Ren playing Kitchen hockey after supper. 

Ren and Claire both played net by literally sitting in the net blocking any chance of goals.
Claire dress reminded me of the 'controversy' over goal equipment a couple years back. She is the Loungo of Kitchen Hockey while Ren is obviously more of a Hasek type. 

The kids played for a couple of hours until the big trade where Matt (who could be considered a Sidney Crosby type) was traded for Grandma (Gretzky coming out of retirement). BTW - Liam is a Taylor Hall type, all speed is gumption.  Matt took it pretty well as Grandma is a wily veteran playing on her home rink. It was a fair trade.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas Season in Edmonton

Before heading to Saskatoon for Christmas Eve with the family, Chrissy and I took in the best of the season in Edmonton to better get in the holiday cheer.

Braving -20 weather we brought our Edmonton Food Bank donation and walked along Candy Cane Lane in the Crestwood Community. Basically, its a bunch of houses along 4 blocks that go all out in decorating their houses and yards. Fun Stuff.

In a nice bit of cross promotion (and perfect blog seque way) Zoo-Minescence at the Edmonton Zoo was being advertised at Candy Cane Lane - On to the next stop!

"The Edmonton Valley Zoo is hoping to make your Christmas merry and bright with Zoo-Minescence – an evening showcase of 11 animal-themed ice sculptures. Join us as we celebrate the holidays in icy style, surrounded by sculptures, lights and, of course, animals!"
After attending ZooLights in Calgary (which we loved) a couple years back Chrissy and I were excited to check out our local zoo's Xmas celebration.

Immediately we were greeted with a fantastic ice sculpture:

And another good composite block elephant.

The rest of the sculptures...meh. The one on Candy Cane Lane advertising the attraction might have been the best of the whole bunch.

We wandered inside for a coffee and some pizza before heading back outside to check out the new Polar Extremes: Arctic Shores exhibit. 

The exhibit is nicely laid out and I think will be a great new asset but for the night it was hard to get a good feel as its still partly under construction with limited signage. 

With most of the animals hunkered down we headed over to the Elephant House for a Lucy the Elephant art exposition. 

As always at the Edmonton Zoo, Lucy stole the show. 

We left the zoo that night slightly disappointed. Although, the experience was extremely economical (5$ a person) it was completely underwhelming.  As a comparison versus Calgary's Zoolights I give Edmonton a 3 to Calgary's 10. 

Next year I hope they add some more lights, more sculptures, more experiences (animal talks, carolers), and just more Christmas.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Being Santa

This year for our Kids Christmas Party at work I volunteered to be Santa Claus.  I figured that the usual suspects who would dress up all have kids of their own and so I would let them enjoy the day with their kids rather than all dressed up.

A couple of pictures of the kids and I from small to big.

After a brief 15 minutes of work I pulled the jacket off and posed for my special lady, the future Ms. Claus.

You're welcome internet.

Monday, December 17, 2012

CP Holiday Train in Edmonton

A week back Christina's friend (and soon to be Maid of Honor) Mary invited us to join herself and her husband (Jason) as they greeted the CP Holiday Train as it passed through Edmonton. We readily agreed and were excited to be accompanying Jason, who is a bit of a 'train nut' (He drives the Edmonton Trolley and Steam Train at Fort Edmonton).

The pictures are presented in all sizes as the combination of people, low light and cold hands didn't produce the best levels of detail and composition. If you want a better look click on the picture for an expanded size.

The lights and stage show were all pretty fantastic. Plus the crowd coming by to see the show donated large amounts to the food bank. A great event put on by Canadian Pacific.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Movember 2012

Another Movember in the books.

"During November each year, Movember is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men’s faces, in Canada and around the world. With their “Mo’s”, these men raise vital funds and awareness for men's health, specifically prostate cancer and male mental health initiatives."

For reason's I cannot fully explain this year Movember had a different feel to it for me. Maybe it was the overshadowing of my new engagement, the novelty loss of everyone and their dog participating or the realization that with everybody doing it, I am basically just getting caught up in slacktivism rather than awareness raising.  Either way, once again I grew out the Mo.

As we were in San Francisco for the first part of the month I made Christina a deal that I would leave the full beard as opposed to the mustache (for pictures sake) in exchange for a donation. So on November 11th I said goodbye to the beard and hello to Movember.

The mustache came in well leading upto what has become my favorite part of the month: The Mike Miller Movember Bonspiel. With my top notch team of curling experts assembled we took to the ice.

On the rink we were a comedy of errors with the sole athletic highlight of the day coming from Greg winning the "Indian Leg Wrestling" match for the hammer before our 3rd game.  BTW: I think this should be the method of deciding the hammer for the Brier and Tournament of Hearts.

Where our team excelled was looking good and drinking beer. Or at least I was good at drinking beer.

After introducing Movember to my workplace last year I stepped back as Mo Sista Dawna took over and brought it to a whole new level. Here's a picture of the firms Mustache growers and their supporters.

And our firms Man of Movember, Josh, rocking the custom made belt.

As I mentioned at the beginning of the post, this year just felt different. I still believe in the cause and in the need for awareness in testing but I'm just not sure if I'll grow the Mo again next year. 

So in closing.
Thank you to those who sponsored me this year. Mom, Stephanie, Chrissy, Dawna, ONPA Architects, Stephen, & Andrew. Your donation was very much appreciated. 

Enjoy this last picture below. It may be awhile till I look this good again.