Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Our Retirement Home Part Thirty-Eight (Exterior Stone Veneer Part 2)

This year I finally had the chance to start installing the stone veneer around the patio (below the deck). Last year we bought a small electric cement mixer in the States (from Harbor Freight Tools, something like our Princess Auto store) so I wouldn't have to mix the mortar by hand. It works well (small batches at a time) and is just powerful enough to do what its intended to do. On a commercial site it would be useless but with a little love and care it should last the life of the project. We have had the stone sitting on the cement pad under the deck for three years now and has been the home for various squirrels and chipmunks who store sunflower seeds in and around the pile. Naturally they began scolding me for removing pieces of their house but lately ignore me and are often underfoot or watching my slow progress. And it is slow. Trying to fit uneven pieces of stone without leaving too many gaps requires a lot of patience, a good eye and a sharp disc grinder. For larger cuts I use my small tile cutter with a stone or diamond blade. Around the exposed wires on the wall we have special shaped stone to support the cameras, lights and speakers, and a protective cover for the propane outlet we had installed just in case we put in a patio BBQ. We had prepped the walls back in 2013 - refer to Our Retirement Home Part Twenty-Eight (Exterior Stone Veneer Part 1) and were getting anxious to finish the job. Hopefully the weather will cooperate the rest of this summer and I will be able to finish before fall. I am enjoying the challenge and stepping back each day and admiring what I have accomplished feels good. As I remind myself -  pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work! gws

First row, north side of house, propane stove vent

south side of house and a much deserved refreshment

south side completed, corners going in around camera and speaker

Thursday, August 6, 2015

William & Amy, July 2015

William and Amy, Notre-Dame-des-Bois, Quebec, July 2015





Aunt Thérèse Bourgoin

Once we had said our goodbyes to Mommy and Daddy, wishing them a fun time in Jamaica and not to worry too much about the kids, we crossed the Champlain Bridge and headed east on highway 10 for home. With the truck bouncing around it didn't take long before the grandkids were asleep, waking up as we arrived in Sherbrooke when we stopped to visit with Marie's aunt Thérèse. She was one of the children's great aunts still living and this was the first time she had seen Amy and William. She was thrilled to bits that we had dropped by and was amazed how good they were. I was silently praying that this would be a sign of things to come!  gws

Lara's Birthday

Before picking up Amy and William and bringing them home with us for 2 weeks (Phil and Fer were flying to Jamaica, their first time alone in 3 years!) Marie and I took Lara out for her birthday. She chose a Brazilian restaurant, le Milsa, in downtown Montreal, We had the churrascaria, a Brazilian staple, different meats that have been grilled on long skewers (beef, lamb, pork, chicken, turkey) and cut directly onto your plate. You eat as much as you want - Phil take note - and actually have to turn the server away! It was crowded - so this type of place is popular - but unless you are a meat lover stay away!  gws