Friday, June 13, 2014

Spring 2014

I will start this post with some very good news - but news that hopefully I won't have to mention again. Earlier this month Joshua had to be admitted to the Children's Hospital in Montreal after choking on some meat at home. Jesse's fast reaction to get his fingers down Joshua's throat and pull it out was the difference and we all are thankful for his quick thinking. I cannot bear to think of anything happening to my dear sweet grandson...


June so far has been a nice month on the mountain and I have had time to finish staining the deck, solar array and started on the job of painting the metal stairs outside with black Tremclad. Next year I think I will go with green. Meanwhile I have been able to continue work on the master bathroom (grouting and caulking) and will soon have some photos to show the progress...

And also this past few weeks we have said goodbye to our two faithful friends...

Next week we are off to spend a few days with Phil, Fernanda and her parents who are arriving soon from Mexico to greet the arrival, on the 18th, of William. We are so very blessed and waiting eagerly for yet another special treasure to fill our lives...gws

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Alain Lefévre, Festival Saint-Zénon de Piopolis

Last Saturday Marie and I attended an evening concert in Piopolis at the village church where last summer we had seen Oliver Jones, the renowned jazz pianist. This time was a very special night because we had tickets for Andre Lefévre, the famous French Canadian pianist and composer who is renowned the world over. Monsieur Lefevre performs to prestigious venues with international orchestras and has appeared with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in London, the China Philharmonic Orchestra, the Hamburg Symphony,  the Detroit Symphony, the National Symphony in Washington and many more. On Saturday he chose to honour the small Festival Saint-Zenon-de-Piopolis and 200 or so rapt people who crowded into the small church. His program included Bach, Haydn, Rachmaninov, Chopin, André Mathieu (another French Canadian prodigy) and an utterly brilliant piece by the French composer Maurice Ravel. That performance left the player and the audience drained! Bravo!  gws

Saint Zenon de Piopolis

Lac Mégantic from Piopolis

Our Retirement Home Part Thirty-Two (Master Bathroom Part 4)

Bathroom window with tile ledge

After almost six months of work (and more to come) I have finally finished tiling the master bathroom, all 108 square feet of it. The next step will be grouting, sealing and caulking before installing the toilet, sinks, bathtub and shower. I am generally pleased with the final results and, amazingly enough, I didn't drop or break one tile, ending up with a few extra for any future repair work. I did make some cuts a mite short or too long though, sometimes forgetting the old adage: measure twice, cut once. The most difficult part of the whole job was building (and rebuilding) the frame for the shower stall and ensuring every wall in the bathroom was level. I used Mapei Ultralite mortar throughout the whole area and found it ideal to help level the tiles whenever the walls were slightly out of plumb. My laser level helped keep everything straight as the eye can easily pick out an irregular line of tiles. It was the best investment I made during the project. I also used two different sized wet saws that I bought at Crappy Tire to do the cutting (the tiles were all 24x12 which we had ordered online and some purchased here at Rona) and went through four or five diamond blades. I started buying the blades in the US as they are half the cost, even though they all come from China. These tools were indispensable and worked very well in spite of their fairly low initial cost. Hopefully they will last until I finish the other bathroom and living room. I subscribe to and find their many tips not only humorous but a great help. If you plan to do any major tiling projects I recommend them highly. I am sure once I am finished this bathroom should withstand any siege against it and last forever!
    Meantime this past week we sold our Dodge Ram to a fellow from Quebec City, and traded our old 1989 Toyota 4Runner locally for next winter's snow removal.. We were starting to look like a used auto lot and still have to sell or give away our '99 Dakota which is rusting quietly down by the cabin. I also erected my scaffolding on the south side of the house to replace some more shingles I noticed were missing from winter. I actually managed to climb onto the roof without incident and fix the problem. Now I'm wondering if maybe I should just leave the scaffolding up till next spring...gws

tiling shower enclosure

Tiling the niches and shell mosaic

Tiling white border around walls

Tiling shower curb
Niches framed, ready for grout

corner tiled with cutout for radiant floor and air exchanger-bathroom fan control

Thou also, son of man, take thee a tile and lay it before thee, and portray upon it the city, even Jerusalem, and lay siege against it and build a fort against it, and cast a mount against it, set the camp also against it, and set battering rams against it round about..