back from holiday in mexico


hello, hello. tressa and i are back from holiday in the mayan riviera. we stayed at barcelo beach resort which was very nice. the weather was sunny and about 30 degrees celsius the entire trip which was great.

at the Japanese a la carte restaurant Tressa and I ziplining over a jaguar and crocodile pen - really

we went on day tours of xcaret, a catamaran, xplor, party hopper pub crawl, and shopping in playa del carmen. the wedding of tressa's friends angie and brad was very nice along the beach and had a mariachi band play during the surf n'turf supper.

xcaret is a huge ecopark. we snorkelled, saw exotic plants and animals, bought a giant corona bottle (like 2L) and saw a spectacular two hour show about the history and culture of mexico. xplor is an adventure park where we went on 8 of 15 ziplines (tressa had never ziplined before and overcame some jitters - so yay for her!). we also got to drive an amphibious vehicle through a jungle trail which went over suspension bridges and down into dark, water filled caves. it was cool!

for the most part we did not buy souvenirs this time around. tressa did find two nice dresses and a dress shirt for me. on one of the first nights we went with half of the wedding group on the 'party hopper' tour. this went to three bars including 'senor frogs' and 'coco bongo' and was a lot of fun.

unfortunately, sometime between 1:15am an 1:30am when our group exited early back to the resort i lost my camera. we had some great, goofy shots at xcaret and the party hopper that are lost forever. for the duration of the trip, we bought a couple disposable cameras and some souvenir photos. we will also get pictures from other people's cameras (there were about thirty people altogether for the wedding) in the upcoming days, so not all was lost.

on the catamaran by the pulsing heart at xplor

the wedding was very nice. i am sure tressa will discuss it in great detail on her blog http://www.tressakirstein.blogspot.com/

food was great. we went to four a la cartes - mexican, spanish, french and japanese. ocean was warm (salty of course), pool was refreshing. it was a good trip, but not completely relaxing - we packed in so many activities, because tressa had never been to mexico and wanted to see as much as she could. this was fine by me for the most part as anyone who knows me can contest that i need some help getting up most mornings, even in a tropical place. one of the days we did go to the resort spa and get massages, so that was nice. oh..we also got sea sick on a catamaran ride later that day...

after a not so fun twelve hour travel day yesterday (for whatever reason we had to fly cancun-toronto and then toronto-saskatoon), i was back to work today.

tressa has found out that her education internship is in saskatoon with a friend of hers, so that is good news! her first final is tomorrow morning. we are getting the counters in the condo replaced tomorrow, so that is good as well. and then we are off to tusq restaurant and then the symphony in the evening with nick, kendra and vince.

 

departure for mexico! housewarming


Vince, me, Nick, Brad St. Patty Tressa and I St. Patty

Low key St. Patty's 2010

Brady, the son of eeyore Tressa bought me for being together for one year, and I at the house warming.
Brady and I Snacks at housewarming
Above right - some of the food at the house warming. We also got some very nice gifts - like a sexy spice set, cactus with yellow flowers and sticky needles, and spirits. Thank-you!

on saturday we had a "house warming" for our condo - though she has lived there for two years now. we ate, drank and played games with friends - it was good.

We have worked hard preparing for our vacation to mexico (16 hours to go!) and are packed and ready.

now we get a week of much needed tropical relaxation, fun and adventure.

 

great events on the horizon


i have two great things coming up which blend love, travel and music

st. patricks day heart
tressa and i will have dated for one year next weekend. we met on st. patrick's day, but the first date was a little later. next weekend we happen to be in regina and will visit some places that we enjoy and have a night on the town.

next, we are going to mayan riviera, mexico from march 31st to april 8th! i was there last year and am returning to be part of tressa's friend angie's wedding. i really enjoyed the trip last year but have tours that i did not get a chance to experience (was not enough time). the rio secreto, or secret river, tour lets you put on wetsuits and head lanterns and go in an underground cenote system with narrow tunnels. exciting!

as well we will visit xcaret which is a giant nature eco park - partly natural, partly manmade - that might take the entire day :) - animals, plants, snorkeling

i am excited to be going with tressa and for the buffets...ha. so much good food.

finally, david gray is coming to saskatoon, and i am a fan. i have got tressa to like him too, and we have 3rd row seats in a small-medium sized ("comfy") venue on may 18th
david gray in concert

 

recent events, good fortunes


So what is new with me?
Well, a lot! In chronological order:


I watched some very good World Junior hockey games including both semifinals. The second semifinal between USA and Sweden was very, very good. Extremely fast and skilled players. Thought Sweden should of won that contest.

Got sick (ok I guess this part was not 'good fortune'). Had strep throat for almost two weeks, missed some work and had a low key New Years.

Tressa's luck turned around! She has had a lot of good fortune in 2010 including health, accolades and financial events. She is my lil' panda and I am very happy to still be with her.

I finished doing a technical review for the first round of editing of the upcoming book PHP: The Good Parts. It turned out to be more time consuming then I thought it would be, but was an honour. For my effort, I get some free books of my choice from O'Reilly and my name in the book, so that is very cool.

 

tressa is my cooking muse


tressa is a good cook. she gave me two good reasons to learn how.

  1. her meals tasted much better than mine - so I thought "I should cook too, then meals would always be good"
  2. it is somewhat embarrassing to not be able to cook (and now I feel better since I can cook half a dozen good meals)

here is a sample meal by tressa - beef kebobs with a baked potato and caesar salad. yummy!kebobs by tressa

there are additional benefits - financial, convenience (leftovers), health

 

 

oh the joys of a canadian winter


recently in saskatoon and throughout the province, we have experienced frigid arctic air and strong winds. this has resulted in a week or so of -30° C to -35° C temperatures with windchill of -40° C to -50° C.

extremely frozen car somewhere from else

this means frequent car starts if you work at a place without plugins, boosting friends, frostbite in a few minutes....mexico sounds nice about now. so does my automatic car starter getting installed in mid january (should of booked when the temperature was nice)

on the plus side, this is good movie watching weather.

 

Challenges


I enjoy challenge. You probably do too. Without challenge their is boredom and routine. However, I have to qualify this. For challenge to be enjoyable:

  1. it has to be solvable, or atleast appear solvable
  2. you have to make progress every so often. be thrown a bone or two.
  3. it has to be something that puzzles not a challenge because you are doing things the hard way or with an inadequate toolkit ie) rebuilding a car engine with only a toothbrush is not enjoyable
 

cooking #3 - herbed chicken parmesan with orzo pasta and baked broccoli


I made a herbed chicken parmesan with orzo pasta and baked broccoli, all from scratch. it was delicious!

Tressa holding herbed chicken parmesan

I am getting all my recipes from a cookbook i bought called "cooking light: the essential dinner tonight cookbook". I recommend the entire Cooking Light family.

 

our baby cactus, sonni


Here is the succulent, which we named Sunni, that I bought Tressa. He's growing - about two inches now and was transplanted.

Succulent Sunni
 

great weekend, disappointing loss at Grey Cup


as everyone who watched live, like me ; ) (free ticket from work), or on tv knows, this was a tough loss for rider fans to take. montreal alouettes beat the saskatchewan roughriders 28-27 in 97th grey cup. up by two touchdowns and two-two point converts with less than a quarter to play, the roughriders let victory slip away. lack of first downs when it mattered and a very costly last play flag. as rider fans we are not used to being ahead...comebacks are easier to take from the other perspective

and then the alouette fans came out of the woodworks! was a sombre scene in downtown calgary after the game - nothing like the explosive party it might have been...

tressa and i lucked out on our hotel - a fairly independent, brand new one - acclaim hotel - by the airport with rooftop hot tubs for only $130 night. i recommend it

we were very tired from driving, but managed to miss most of the blizzard that apparently took place (but not the overly cautious drivers who were causing some problems). and we saw a bad crash aftermath in a really foggy stretch.

 

Favourite Albums of 2017

Words of Wisdom

When one teaches, two learn.

Robert Half

More Quotes & Lyrics

Spotlight Album

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!!

Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds - Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!! (2008)

This album has been a staple of my music collection since it's release in 2008. I think it is one of Nick Cave's best albums. The album is moody and full of lyrical imagery. Dark, trancy at times such as on the track "Night of the Lotus eaters". The lyrics of this album are very strong and is what draws me back to it time and again. The track "Midnight Man" is an absolute gem:

Hold that chrysalis in your palm See it split and change It won't do you any harm It's just trying to rearrange

It was born to live a day Now it flies up from your hand It's beautiful It's the one they call your ever loving man

Wolves have carried your babies away Oh, your kids drip from their teeth The nights are long and the day Is bitter cold beyond belief...

...Close your eyes, sleep in him Dream of your lost sons and daughters Me, I'll raise up my dorsal fin And glide up and down the waters

The closing track "More news from nowhere" though just under eight minutes could go sixteen and I would be quite happy to listen to it all.


nick cave-midnight man

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