Thursday, July 28, 2016

Lake Erie Saturday in July (4)

Always a Warm Welcome


Because I regularly visit Port Bruce in the summer, via Yamaha Delivery Service, and gulls are about, I can safely say I always receive a warm and welcome welcome.

Photos from along the way:





 "So, a guy says to me, "Catchin' more than rays?""
"I says, Can't see who you are, sun's in my eyes, so take two steps left.
Then I hears a big splash. Good swimmer, he was."
HA HA HA HA HAAAAH!

Look for the details - swallows skimming, turbines turning

And try the BLT at the Corner View Cafe whenever possible!

Please link to Lake Erie Saturday in July (3)

Photos GH

Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (5)

Down to the Last Steps

"Looking good, I say"

This custom four-plex is almost ready for its return trip to Labatt Park, home of Canada's oldest ball park and best hotdogs.

The trim is now fresh in appearance and the third coat of paint is now dry on the new support pole.


Visiting ball teams and umpires have their own dressing rooms

So, today I'll attach the support platform to the pole and deliver the ensemble to the park for placement in a strategic location. I'll also collect the original chimney (w flag attached) and reinstall it on the new cedar roof. All is well, I say.

More to follow.

Please link to Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (4)

Photos GH

White Pine is for Painting 2

Colourful Start


Three more colour combinations are coming up

The white pine cuts and sands easily. It also takes a coat of paint without a lot of fuss and bother - my kind of wood.

Two of five have jumped successfully onto the production line. More to follow.

Dimensions of faces: 9.5" H x 6.5"W. Sides are 5.75" H x 6"W.

Please link to White Pine is for Painting (1)

Photos GH

My Morning Smile 16

A Few More Sunny Days



My neighbour has a few hop cones already and mine are not far behind. I think a few more sunny days will do the trick.

Then we harvest a million fresh cones!

Please link to My Morning Smile 15

Photos GH

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

White Pine is for Painting (1)

Painted Pine on the Production Line


The production line inside the workshop just got a wee bit longer. Fifteen cedar models have been joined by five white pine, and as is usually the case, when I get out some white pine I intend to get out some paint brushes as well.


Roof slats, roof ridge, trim, perches, etc., are all coming up next

Early days. More to follow.

Please link to White Pine Birdhouses and More (6)

Photos GH

Lake Erie Saturday in July (3)

Up Close and Far Away

Try perch sandwiches at Corner View Cafe, Port Bruce

Watch for large fishing vessels on the horizon line

Please link to Lake Erie Saturday in July (2)

Photos GH

Avocado 39 "Taller By the Minute!"

Patience is a Virtue

Right around three feet tall now

Several months ago my wife planted an avocado seed according to Hoyle (dipped its butt in a glass of water using toothpicks) and we waited a long time to see the first root emerge from its bottom and shoot from its top end. I trimmed the shoot according to online instructions and eventually it stretched about two feet high, then stopped growing for several weeks.

Patiently we waited for the plant's next stage, and recently I saw a wee bit of new growth (no pictures were taken), followed shortly thereafter my its new and improved growth spurt. Six or seven new leaves have sprouted and 10 inches have been added - in very short order - to the plant's overall height. What this all means and what will develop I do not know.

Shiny new leaves are on the move

I'm just going to have to wait and see..... patiently.

Please link to Avocado 38 "Caught Off Guard!"

Photos GH

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Transition Zone 5

The Right Name for the Game

Slow down, Gordie. There's a well-known curve ahead
(Similar photo appears w blog title, top of page)

The month of July saw the end of one set of 90 walks/runs ("Speed Up, Man") and the beginning of another (100 walk/runs: "The Transition Zone"). It seems I know how to pick names for the sets. I did in fact feel like my attempts at shuffling or jogging were speeding up in June and July, and I sense good things will continue to happen in July and beyond. Though I still hesitate to call myself a runner, I believe that by September I will have earned the title, especially when going downhill.

"Whoa. Watch out! Speedster coming through" 

"Transition Zone" seems an appropriate term to describe where I am right now - related to The GREAT Canadian Comeback - for a couple of reasons:

     My sore left foot is healing and to remove small amounts of
     stress I will continue to cycle once or twice per week.

     Though it appears the number of walks will improve this month
     ('Get Out The Door' (GOTD) rate of 80 - 90%, compared to 73%
     in June), the total number of miles covered will be below the monthly
     average again, i.e., under 120. 

I don't mind transitioning downward from 120 miles per month to 100 - 110 during summer months because there is much to do each week (other enjoyable, 'active' activities), and higher numbers might result in more stress injuries. Finding the right training program to mount a comeback is an ongoing business, and I have lots of time to sort things out as I go along. 

"I'll study the numbers each month and sort things out"

More photos from along the way:

 Greenway Park is still my favourite destination for walking/jogging

My Old South loop provides lots of shade during hot evenings

Progress is being made. All is relatively well. 

Please link to The Transition Zone 4

Photos GH

My Morning Smile 15

Days Away

 Old birdhouse surrounded by hop vines and blossoms


Hop vines are blossoming in boom town fashion and are a few sunny days away from producing hop cones.

Please link to My Morning Smile 14

Photos GH

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Lake Erie Saturday in July (2)

Easy on the Eyes



Please link to Lake Erie Saturday in July (1)

Photos GH

The Transition Zone (4)

Another Good Week in the Books

Part of my Old South two-mile loop, Baseline Rd., looking west

Thankfully, recent hot temperatures in London cool down a few degrees after supper and walking or riding is made easier, more enjoyable.

Yesterday evening, the last day of the week according to my calendar, I collected my 6th walk or shuffle or bike ride in 7 days, for a total of 27 miles. Not a bad result during such muggy weather, when it is entirely possible to be absolutely stuck to the vinyl seats in one's kitchen for hours on end.

Biking in Springbank Pk. takes pressure off my left sore foot 

Walking south on Cathcart St., my home stretch

Yesterday's walk, number 10 of 100 in my current set of outings (aka The Transition Zone), may only mark 10% of my goal for the next three months, but my left foot is repairing itself nicely - no hurries, no worries - so I expect positive results to continue.

Please link to The Transition Zone 3

Photos GH

Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (4)

A New Shade of Labatt Blue


Red cedar roof with Labatt Blue paint will stand out (in the rain?)

The restoration project is comely along nicely. The four-plex is definitely sturdier and heavier, with the addition of 4 - 5 dozen nails, and the trim should stand out more than in the past. Dynamic Blue catches the eye - at least up close - in my opinion.

Once the second coats are dry I'll be asking, "Now, where's that chimney?"

More to follow.

Please link to Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (3)

Photos GH

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Lake Erie Saturday in July (1)

Clear Clear Skies

Look closely to spot swallows skimming the surface of the channel 


The drive of 60 kilometres to the lake for breakfast was very relaxing, highly enjoyable. Pat and I gave the BLT from the Corner View Cafe a 'double thumbs up' while sitting in the shade under cloudless Saturday skies.

Please link to Port Bruce Photos 4 

Photos GH

Port Bruce Photos (4)

Industrious Little Creatures


The swallows that are capable of building mud nests under the bridge on Crossley-Hunter Line (about 2 miles south of Belmont, between Highways 73 and 74) do not appear every year as far as I know. When I approached the bridge recently and saw 12 - 15 swallows in the air and darting under the bridge, I figured nests had been built.


Under the bridge can be seen evidence of a lot of digging.... for mud? 

How many trips w dabs of mud would one take to build such a nest?

Busy little birds, I say.

(In London, similar nests can be seen under the Kensington Bridge, near Labatt Park).

Please link to Port Bruce Photos (2)

Photos GH

Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (3)

New Roofs and Paint

50 nails later and all is well

The Labatt Park four-plex really needed a new roof over the tallest section and I had some lovely, sturdy cedar slats on hand. First off, however, just to get the motor runnin', so to speak, I added a new slat and coat of paint to another damaged section known as The Ump House.


 The new colour is lighter, funkier than the original Navy Blue trim

 The red cedar should last for several seasons

I'm thinking that a bit more paint is needed to spruce things up

More to follow in the 'Roof and Paint' department.

Please link to Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (2)

Photos GH

Friday, July 22, 2016

Port Bruce Photos (3)

Great Lines

In my opinion, Lake Erie - and the other Great Lakes - is camera friendly. It is easy to approach and has lovely lines. Next time I visit I will be wearing a swim suit under my motorcycling jeans.



Please link to Port Bruce Photos (2)

Photos GH

Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (2)

New Roof on the Agenda

After close inspection, I see a few significant repairs are needed 

The tallest log cabin section - a duplex, and at the bottom of the pile in this photo - requires a new roof (fortunately, its specialty chimney is safe and secure). Before doing that, however, I will gently hammer 3 - 4 dozen more nails into its logs because that cabin is heavily damaged (and separating into two or three parts) after getting battered about last year.

Another section (closest to us in photo) requires a small amount of roof repair, and fresh paint here and there will shine 'er up, and compliment the rustic tone of most of the birdhouses' exterior surfaces.

I must say, in spite of the battering, this is still one sturdy birdhouse, and within a couple of weeks it should be at home again, safe and sound, in Labatts Park.

Happier days ahead. More to follow.

Please link to Birdhouse Repair: Labatt Park Custom Model (1)

Photo GH

The Production Line - Cedar Birdhouse Models (4)

Progress Interruptess, Eh

First coats will continue ASAP. But....

I have had a slow start to motorcycle season, for a variety of reasons, so when I woke up yesterday I felt a ride should be on my agenda for the day. The weather was grand, the bike started up instantly - as if expecting great things - and away we went. (Port Bruce Photos)

Later in the afternoon, as I was about to paint a birdhouse roof, a friend dropped by with cold beverages in tow. Well, it was a hot day, so a slower pace and some 'rec time' were in order.

Yesterday's log: "Not bad at all"

Prediction: Steadier progress w trim today unless 'stuff happens'

Please link to The Production Line - Cedar Birdhouse Models (3)

Photos GH