Today's Random Thoughts

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Oh this heat! Man oh Man! The next few days will be inside with the AC on! Fireworks in town tonight but these old timers are usually in bed by then... and Canada Day tomorrow- and boy will it be yet another scorcher!'

Had to pay $110 for a new blower for the fan motor in can't be without when it's so hot.

And wow- every time I look in the flyers- and it really doesn't matter which ones, things are on the way up in price The cost of food is crazy. I miss my 99 cent store I shopped at while we were in Arizona- not last winter, but the times before. It's the two of us and the dog, as our daughter has gone back home, but we are paying too much for food. Prices are crazy!

Jake had his vet visit this past week. I tried doctoring him myself for 2 months but his eyes continued to run with some white discharge from time to time. He still flicked his head and it seemed like something was bothering him, and we had planned anyhow to take him in to get some summer tick medications. $236 later- cost of exam, inner ear infection, and what vet thinks was allergies for his eyes/irritation/ eye drops, and the 3 month supply of medication to not have to worry about ticks all summer! We do have another appt though for him mid July out of town. He will be getting a growth removed off his leg again- it was there before, removed, and grew back. Plus dental cleaning. Small breeds like him need to keep up with dental or they get gum disease and lose teeth. 

Gerry had been at the bank last week and the ATM ate his deposit! Without it depositing in our account! He had to go back to the bank the next day and get it fixed and THEY tried to charge us $1 because they had to retrieve the stuck money! Well it wasn't about the $1. It was about the fact that why should WE have to pay to get our money unstuck.. so I called the bank and had it promptly removed!

Some pictures around the yard ...

and be sure to always check for discount codes available when shopping online. Just saved myself shipping with Jake's dog food, once again.

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Congratulations! You are getting married. Wedding planning is officially underway. But upon your research on the internet and from reading magazines it becomes apparent that cost is going to be an issue. You are not alone. The average wedding can cost more than what some couples will pay for a house deposit. If you are feeling the pinch, then maybe adding some DIY touches could save you some money here and there. Here are some tips and tricks to still get that wedding of your dreams, just by adding a few DIY touches yourself.      

DIY invitations can be a big task

Some people would argue that making your invitations can save you some money. But what others don’t appreciate is how much time and effort went into creating them. In the grand scheme of things after materials, you could end up spending not much less than you would if someone had done them for you. This is where research comes in. There are plenty of websites online that could help you create the diy wedding invites you envision, without it taking up too much time. They can send you a premade pack and then all you do is add the creativity yourself. It could save a lot of time and effort and still give you what you need. 

Think about the big expenses 

Flowers and cake can be some of the biggest expenses you face for your wedding. This is where clever thinking and a bit of know-how can come into play. Do you know anyone that can help you with these items? Perhaps you are a whiz at baking. Could you bake your own wedding cake? Maybe a friend has an interest in floristry, could you commission them instead of a professional? Perhaps there are some ways you could downsize the expenditure. There are many options for these things, a lot of which could be done yourself or by close friends and family. It just takes a little research and time. 

Go crazy on the decorations

Adding your personal touches to your day can make it memorable. This is where getting a company to do them for you can cost the big bucks. Place settings, menu cards and such can be easily done yourself. You know what you want, and it can just be a case of putting time and effort into your decoration, that could make all the difference. There are so many ideas for decoration on sites like Pinterest that you would struggle not to be inspired. 

It would all depend on your theme. But you could add some real different DIY touches that will make your wedding far more unique than any other you have attended. Plants in painted pots. Candles with added details. Lace bunting or personalized wine glasses. All these DIY touches can add some luxury to your wedding decoration. 

It’s all in the little details. 

It’s the little details that can make a huge impact on your wedding guests. Often these can be done by yourself. A summer wedding may welcome “flip flops” on the side of the dance floor. A winter wedding may enjoy a hot chocolate station to warm everyone up. It’s thinking about your wedding and theme and highlighting the details that you, as a guest, wouldn't notice or appreciate. 

Capture your wedding in your style. 

If you are a keen photographer, then speak to guests and tell them what you would like. If you are keen to capture your wedding on film then equally voice this to your guests. You could then capture the pictures and video content and make a montage of the highlights. Saving a fortune on a videographer or even a photographer. 

If you need a photographer for your big day, then why not use the images that you get to create your own photo albums. Sometimes this can be a much cheaper way of doing things but also allows you to add your DIY touch to the memories you create. 

Wedding favors to wow. 

Making your wedding favors can be a real nice touch for your guests. They can be as simple or as complicated as you want them to be. Again, searching for inspiration on websites like Pinterest can offer you a lot of inspiration. You can stick with the theme you have in place and create something that goes with it. Wedding favors can be something foodie, a candle or something personal to the guest. This is where all the DIY craft and touches can make all the difference to your wedding. 

Let’s hope these tips and tricks inspire you to create the DIY wedding of your dreams. But if things didn't quite go as planned and there is a change of date? Take comfort in knowing there are change of date cards as well.
Either way - have a beautiful day!

Celebrate Summer with Asmodee

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Looking for  outdoor summer activities or last minute gift ideas ?

It's your chance to spend some quality time with your family over some adventure, strategy and thrilling games. Asmodee is encouraging Canadian families to spend more summer days together. Whether you pair your game day with BBQ or your favorite mixed drink you are bound to have a really great time!

  • Botanik: Develop the most effective network of mecha-botanics, the combination of plants and science! Botanik offers fluid mechanics in addition to an ingenious exchange system, associated with tiles of different groups/colours.

  • 7 Wonders - Duel: Choose the Wonders you aim to build and guide your city through three Ages of drafting cards from cunningly shaped tableaus. Victory can be achieved in three ways: by invading your opponent’s capital, by achieving a monopoly on scientific advancement, or simply by crafting the city that will earn the most victory points in the end. 

  • Unlock! Mythic Adventures: Unlock! is a cooperative card game inspired by escape rooms that uses a simple system which allows you to  search scenes, combine objects, and solve riddles. Play Unlock! and embark on great adventures, while seated at a table using only cards and a companion app that can provide clues, check codes, monitor time remaining, etc. Can you crack the code and unlock the mystery? Retails for $43.99

  • Learn more about Asmodee and what they have to offer, click here

Random Thoughts

Saturday, June 19, 2021

We got the "garden" planted! Okay, wait- it's not really "we"- Gerry got it all planted- and it's not really a "garden"- it's more pails- but you know what I mean.

We've planted food! Tomatoes, onions and lots of potatoes! What we aren't growing though is horseradish. We're gonna save that for the pros like the business of Dennis' Horseradish, who, since 1960, have been producing small batch crafted horseradish. Their horseradish truly takes food to it's next level! Their collection also includes a mustard, beet relish and seafood sauce. Gerry loved his on his steak, but foodies can check out more ideas for food fixings on their recipe page.

When we were out of town a few weeks ago, I had bought a shirt from one store, and when I had went online to their online store, I saw the shirt was on for half price! I was sure to call the store, explain this, and they sent me the difference back, as a gift card for next time I shopped there. Bought a coffee table and 2 end tables as well, and was able to sell my older set, which saved me money on this new set- plus the new set came with two end tables and I only needed one, so was able to sell that one as well.

Have been trying to get myself into entering more contests as my daughter is an inspiration with winning and winning, that I have decided to try a bit harder, putting  a bit more time in, and see what I can come up with!

Gerry installed and AC for my mom today, and we had to do a bit of moving around with our own AC's.  Took one out of a spare room that wasn't being used, and sold it because of the way it was designed and bought a new one for our bedroom, where that one was just not cooling anymore. 

Had to buy a new microwave. It died 2 weeks before the warranty was set to expire, and I think we have been in this type of scenario before. Things dying just before they reach their end of their warranty. Seems like companies know just how long their products are going to last. What we do appreciate though is companies that stand up to their warranties, their products, and have great customer service when things do go wrong. One such company has been American Standard that has not stood up to their product. We had got a shower surround that cracked all over despite being under a year warranty. Was the Axis Shower Wall- model # 363CW. I would love to hear if anyone else had this shower wall and had same problems with theirs cracking. As you can see by the photo, ours is repairable and this company is one we would not use again, as they would not help at all with the replacement. Disappointed.

Why It Was Time to Change Our Skylight

Thursday, June 17, 2021

We have a skylight in our kitchen. One that was put in years before I got together with Gerry and we have been together for at least 15 years.

We had gone away the winter before, as we usually do, and had come home to see that it had been leaking/ dripping, and water had at some point, ran down from it and was splattering on the stove! The quick fix for us was to put some chalking up there. Gerry said the seal had let go, and we would need a new skylight. The frame had also started to rot, which was visible from the inside of our home.


Fast forward to Summer, where the weather is better to do the install, and we found a great skylight from Velux to replace the old one. Our kit from Velux included the skylight, waterproof membrane, and flashing. We did have to also spend an extra $120 for new shingles to finish it up, chalking and ice shield.


The new skylight is a  double pane glass, tempered over laminated , because  laminated glass will not shatter into the home if the skylight breaks – so it is much safer. The glass comes with a 10 year hail warranty, and their NEAT coating which is on the exterior pane,  is designed to make dust and dirt no stick to the glass – so when there is water on it the material will wash off. It also comes with argon gas in between the panes – which is a way of insulating the glass to make sure that the heat inside the home in the winter will not escape through the glass. Also, it comes with a low e3 coating. Low e3 coating serves two main purposes: it stops ultraviolet and infrared rays from entering through the skylight – so it wont change the color of anything in my kitchen. It also  helps with solar heat – so in the summer it lets all the great natural light in while keeping the heat out.

From the stand point of Gerry's install, removal of the old one took about an hour.

Prep of the roof took about another hour, and then the install took another hour, which included re-shingling the area of the roof around the skylight.

This one is better secured to the roof over the last one we had. The last one had two brackets per side to secure the skylight. The new one has a nailing flange all around the skylight. Much better.

If you currently have a skylight, in closing, it should be inspected on a regular basis, to check the seals and shingles around the area... and to consider a brand like Velux.

VELUX is the world leader in the manufacturing of skylights, Sun Tunnels and roof windows. Celebrating 75 years of innovation, daylight and fresh air. VELUX is ranked #1 among customers, installers, architects & renovators. Trust the brand who first engineered the skylight!

How To Cut Your #Internet Costs

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

You may have a great Internet provider, but are simply feeling the pinch every time the bill arrives. It cannot hurt to check in every once and a while to see if you are still getting the best value for your money with your existing Internet provider. Find out ways to cut Internet costs while receiving the service you need right here.

1. Is Your Internet Living Up To Your Expectations?

Most people are surprised to find out that their Internet is not as fast as the internet company promised. It's really more a problem with technology, but it is misleading. How can this help with saving you money on the Internet?

For starters, check the speed at It will show what speed you are actually receiving. Remember, your Internet company probably only specified what speeds "up to" a certain speed to expect.

Depending on how many households in the area are using the same service provider, and problems with the Internet provider, in general, will determine whether your service is fast or not. That's fine if you are just going to use the Internet to check email. It hampers your lifestyle if you watch shows and movies online, or are hoping to play live action games. 

Streaming shows requires a good deal of speed. Though live action games require a fast computer, a solid network, lots of memory, and very fast upload and download speeds to keep up with the pace of game play. The upload speeds need to be at the minimum Mbps with at least 2 Mbps download. Though, the faster the better.  

If you need faster speeds, start out by contacting your Internet service provider. If they cannot resolve the problem, then see what other customers in the same situation did. Did they change out old modems, add a new router onto the modem/router combo, or simply find a new company to provide the Internet?

Sometimes your provider may give you a break on the cost if they cannot deliver the speeds they promised. If they are consistently delivering lower speeds, they might acknowledge that and charge you for a lower level plan.

If it turns out that the provider bought your television provider last year, and it requires the Internet to work, you have bigger problems. They may not have thought out their aim to buy the competition. That means that the DVR never works well, and what used to be great television provider now is sub-par. In other words, shop around for better service and more competitively priced plans.

2. Know The Usage Rate

Bandwidth is something to think about when considering whether you are able to get the speed you want out of your Internet. Check listings of how much bandwidth you require to do what you want. Remember, running television boxes, live gaming, and watching videos are all bandwidth intensive.
However, if you are paying a lot of money and barely use the Internet for anything other than checking email, you may not need all of the bandwidth you buy every month. So, look at the bandwidth you are using versus how much it costs. That will help with the next step.

3. Negotiate Rates

At this point, you have the information necessary to negotiate. It's no secret that most Internet Service Providers never deliver the speed they advertise. But if you were banking on their advertised speed to play games or upload videos, call them out on it politely. If the speed is too slow to use what you need, see about upgrading to greater speed and bandwidth with other providers first. How much will it cost?

If it costs less than your present provider, let them know that. Let them know you are ready to walk, along with your television service contract, and your voice over Internet phone too.

4. Bundle

You may not want the cable company's television service, but signing up for it can save you a bundle of money every month. Do whatever works to cut the bill in half.

5. Buy A Modem

Some providers have notoriously bad modems that they rent out for $10 a month. Just buy one and save $10/month. Modems, especially when called on to double as wireless routers only last 2 years, if that. Some providers have notoriously bad modems that they rent out for $10 a month. Just buy one, and save $10/month. Modems, especially when called on to double as wireless routers, only last two years at that. Get a high-quality cable modem that can provide you with optimum internet performance as speed and efficiency are crucial. Save the money for the inevitable breakdown to buy a new modem.
Save the money for the inevitable breakdown to buy a new modem.

6. Low-Income Government Subsidies

Look into EveryoneOn if you are a low-income household. Information is available at the FCC site. They help you stay connected to the Internet even when your income is dragging.

If you're unsure exactly how to switch your internet, use a guide to learn how to switch broadband to get an amazing deal. It's probably a lot more simple than you think.

2021 Father's Day Gift Guide

Saturday, June 12, 2021

To the guy you looked up to all these years, this Father's Day show him just how much you appreciate him. Celebrate that guy in your life (husband, grandpa, and so on) with these great gift  ideas.

Loops & Wales is your one-stop-shop for all of dad’s socks this Father’s Day. 

The digital marketplace has styles for every dad out there ranging from novelty and quirky designs, to functional styles for every activity from hiking and jogging to BBQing and watching sports with friends. Whether you’re running errands or running marathons, socks are extraordinary companions for your daily life. Loops & Wales features brands such as Carhartt, Copper Defense, Chaps, Hot Sox, Merrell, Sperry and more.


Ekster Parliament Wallet-

Ekster Parliament Wallet is a re-invented bi-fold – just much slimmer, sleeker, and smarter. It fits 4-10+ cards (3-5 in the built-in aluminum cardholder, 5+ in its' flap or/and under the cash strap).
The cardholder is equipped with the patented quick card access mechanism, which pops your cards with a press of the button. So no more fumbling cards!
Parliament Wallet can be made unloseable by adding the tracker card, which you can call from the app and vice versa!
This wallet makes a perfect Father's Day gift, and will upgrade your Dad's style by saving him time!

Jerky Club of the Month-

If the flavor dad savors is the unique taste of premium jerky, our Jerky Club is a sure-fire hit.

Each month we’ll send 3 different selections of the best, boldest cured meats from specialty smokehouses. Each is selected for its incredible flavor, unique seasonings and premium quality. (for Canada) (for US)

The Midland MXT275VP4 Micromobile® Bundle 

This is beyond perfect for those dads that are RV enthusiasts and those campers who love to go off the grid! This full 15 Watt two-way GMRS radio will keep them connected no matter if they are in remote campgrounds or winding roads. It features a fully integrated handheld microphone and comes in a compact package for those with limited dashboard space, and it allows RVers and campers to tune into NOAA Weather Radio to get weather updates from the National Weather Service no matter where they find themselves. The MXT275VP4 bundles a high powered antenna system in addition to the already long range MXT275 that boasts triple the range of handheld walkie talkies. The 3dB gain antenna doubles the radio’s power output, while the cable, antenna and roll bar mount allow the operator to secure the antenna to other adventure vehicles including ATVs, UTVs, and more. The added microphone extension cable allows for freedom of placement during installation and the MXT275 also features a powerful USB charging port, allowing the quickest charge time for all your devices, including cell phones and hand-held radios—talk about the PERFECT solution for a dad who loves to camp!


Great for dad, who has a passion for outdoor life, Gumbies Islander Flip-Flops provide the freedom of minimalistic footwear while ultimately protecting the sole.

Gumbies follow the contours of the foot, the arch of the sole and most importantly provide comfort between the toes, whilst using the most practical, natural and recycled planet friendly materials where possible.

Gumbies Islander Flip-Flops will give that timeless style and are fashionable, functional, fresh and fun!

***Watch this spot for more great gift ideas for dad, coming soon!

Lay's® Takes On Three Epic Canadian Flavours in a #FlavourFaceOff

Sunday, June 6, 2021

Lay's®, Canada's leading potato chip brand, is putting its own spin on some of Frito-Lay Canada's best-selling flavours from the Ruffles®, Doritos® and Smartfood® brands. Introducing three new, limited edition potato chip flavours: Lay's® All Dressed, Lay's® Sweet Chili Heat!® and Lay's® White Cheddar — all proudly made in Canada and now available from coast to coast!

Gerry and I tried these and his # 1 was the Lay's® Sweet Chili Heat!  - he likes BBQ chips and these were similar but with a sweet kick. The name says HEAT but really it wasn't too hot- and he said he was  disappointed when the bag is empty! 

My favorite of the 3 was the Lay's® White Cheddar. I love the Smartfood white cheddar popcorn and these are inspired by them. It's hard not to get carried away with eating them!

This leaves us with the All Dressed- which we both liked but would have liked them more if they had more flavoring on the chips.. felt they could use more seasoning.. so please Lay's® - take note... add more chip flavor to your All Dressed chips!

Canadians can find the limited edition Lay's® flavours at all major retailers nationwide. Fans of the Lay's® brand can also get involved! Lay's® invites Canadians to grab a bag and join the debate online by using #FlavourFaceOff and tagging @LaysCanada.

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