Categories
life

Going Out Again

It’s been two weeks since my second shot and the other night a few friends and I went out for a drink together. We went INSIDE the establishment! It actually felt a little bit awkward wearing our masks in around all the mostly full tables as the patrons imbibed but it felt natural to drop the mask and for that night anyway, as far as we were concerned the pandemic is over.

Of course it’s not over, but that first taste of normalcy felt great.

Categories
life pandemic parody

Pandemic Medley

This two and half minute medley of classic pop songs with Covid-19 parody lyrics is just what I needed to get through this pandemic.

Last week I booked a vaccine appointment for my mom but last night she let me know it had been cancelled. My friends suspect the Alberta government was letting people overbook knowing their wasn’t enough supply and then turned around and blamed the federal government when the shipments didn’t arrive. It’s a bit on the conspiracy theory side for me, but I guess you never know. I was able to rebook her this morning at another location for a day later than the cancelled appointment.

Update: January 27 — my mom got her Covid vaccine.

Categories
life pandemic

Covid Vaccine

My dad got his first Covid-19 vaccine this morning. He’s got an appointment for the second shot next month. I booked it for him shortly after they opened for reservations. I think it’s probably pretty common for “kids” to book for their elderly parents. It feels a lot like trying to get concert tickets—you don’t mess around.

Categories
life

Birthday

Greg would’ve been 41 today. Instead he’s forever 18. Here we are about age 4 or 5.

Categories
Art life

Allan Jensen

As an art teacher myself, I often think about the art teachers I’ve had over the years so I felt great disappointment this morning when I learned that Allan Jensen, my former jr. high and high school art teacher, died this week. No further details were given.

Along with being a great art teacher, I remember him most fondly for organizing and chaperoning a school trip to Japan in 1993.

He’s the one pictured on the far right. That trip was a once in a lifetime influence on me. I will always appreciate the art lessons and the inspiration.

This has been a tough year. He’s the forth person I knew personally that has died in 2020.

Update: Here is his obituary.

Allan Jensen
1941 – 2020
It is with great sadness that we, the family, announce the passing of Allan Christian John Jensen in Medicine Hat on Saturday, December 26, 2020, at the age of 79 years. He is survived by his half sister, Evelyn Schafer as well as four nephews and their families. He was predeceased by his mother and father; two half brothers, Alvin and Gordon Pfiefer as well as his close friend and brother-in-law, Richard Schafer. Allan was born on September 18, 1941, in Drumheller, Alberta. He was the youngest of four children to Ella and Peter Jensen. Allan began his teaching career in Munson, Alberta where he was the principal. He furthered his career at Crescent Heights High School in Medicine Hat as an art teacher, where he retired. Allan loved to travel and led tours around the world. He was heavily involved in the art and cultural community in Medicine Hat which was his greatest passion. A Celebration of Allan’s life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Allan’s name may be made directly to the Hat Art Club, 399 College Avenue S.E., Medicine Hat, T1A 3Y6 or to the charity of one’s choice.

Categories
life

The Silent Generation

“Do your parents like the Beatles?”
“My mom does.”
“But not your dad?”
“Well, now he’d probably say they’re ok, but as a kid he thought they were a bunch of wild long haired hippie teenagers. He’s not a Boomer you know. He’s part of ‘The Silent Generation’.”
“Silent Generation? I’ve never even heard that term before.”
“Yeah, that’s because they’re silent.”

Categories
baby life travel

California Dreamin’

We’re off for a family trip to California next week and a couple of days ago realized that not only are we losing an hour from the change in timezone, but we’ll also lose an hour because next week is the time change.

It occurred to us that this abrupt two hour change might be hard on our daughter, The Little NessMonster, so we’ve started advancing her bedtimes by 15 minutes per day. Her usual bedtime is at 7:00 and by the time we leave she’ll be going to bed at about 9:00pm which seems crazy but at the same time, it will make it easier for Halloween since we won’t have to worry about her being woken up by trick-or-treaters.

We’re very excited for California and despite widespread black-outs due to high winds, fires, and the dangers of fires from downed power lines… Palm Springs area isn’t supposed to be affected.

(via poweroutage.us)

Categories
baby family

Ian

Last week, we welcomed new baby boy, Ian, to our family. His stats: 9lbs (4.1 kg) and 20 1/2 inches (52cm). He likes snuggling, eating, sleeping, and processing food. Both mom and baby are doing great — most importantly… he’s a sweetheart.

Categories
life

2016 Year in Review

A lot of people on social media couldn’t wait for 2016 to be over because, they believed, 2016 encompassed more than the usual number of unfortunate events for one year.

I haven’t checked but I’m pretty sure 2016 wasn’t worse than any other year. Of course, last year there were a couple of pretty impactful events. The UK’s decision to leave the European Union (Brexit) and the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States of America (Endpire1) are, no doubt, going to have lasting consequences.

However, for me, 2016 was one of the best years of my life and it flew by so fast, I can hardly believe it. The biggest highlight of course being that in 2016, Andrea and I got married.

Here’s a quick recap with links to a few of the blog posts I made last year:

  • Teaching in Brocket for Alberta Works — I loved that job and feel a real connection with my students
  • Presented at SWATCA — my first time presenting at a conference, was very happy with the glowing reviews.
  • Sascha — after a long and happy life, sadly, Saschi had to be euthanized.
  • Hutterite Colony — rounding out my Southern Alberta teaching experience, my time on the colony won’t soon be forgotten. I felt a great connection with the kids and the rest of families there. They treated me both as family and as an important part of their community. I felt bad leaving them for…
  • Teaching New Media in Taber at W.R. Myers — Even though I was hired to continue next year (temporary) at the colony, my dream-job (probationary turning to permanent) came up and I had to take it.
  • Drone Fair — attending the first Drone Fair in Calgary with my brother was a chance for us feel more like we did when we were kids. I loved hanging out and chatting while learning about remote controlled aircraft. It was a super fun weekend and he even came home with a new drone.
  • As a summer job, I was thinking about door-to-door sales for the home security/home automation company, Vivint. I did a bit of training with them and though excited about the product and the opportunity, in the end some cultural differences gave me second thoughts.
  • Summer in Waskesiu (Prince Albert National Park) — great time on the lake but I only caught one fish all summer.
  • Our riverside wedding — Nestled in next to the gorgeous South Saskatchewan River, we said our vows and got married in front of friends and family.
  • Started my new job at Myers — teaching New Media, Finance, Animation, Computer Science, and CALM. I feel so lucky my teaching career is finally taking off.
  • New Teacher Conference — travelled to Calgary for some professional development. First time travelling for work.
  • Adobe Education Exchange Classes – honoured to be recognized for my artwork
  • Visiting family in Medicine Hat and Saskatoon for the holidays

Here’s hoping 2017 will bring many more great memories (and more blog posts).

1. As far as I know, I just coined the term “endpire” — meaning the end of an empire. Hopefully it catches on.

Categories
life

Just Married

Andrea and I got married on Saturday. Sunshine filled the sky while love filled the air. We couldn’t be happier.