Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Ice skating!

For the second time ever, Alex has ice-skated! On the weekend, one of his friends had an ice-skating birthday party, and I thought that that was a great idea!!! I got to go skating again for free!! YAAAYY for me!!

Alex wasn't sure he was going to need me to help him because he didn't know if he could skate or not since he'd been before (previous post from a long time ago for my long time readers). But once he got on the ice, he realized that he did need my help! We has a bit nervous at first:
but he got better and eventually really started to enjoy himself!
So much that he started to tell me that it's ok, and that I can go around the rink by myself if I wanted to... So I did! He was eventually even able to pick himself up off the ground a stand up properly... I know that this doesn't sound like much, but remember, he is only 4, has only been on ice twice in his life, and lives in Australia never having seen snow.

He never really picked up the idea of skating though, he rather kind of walked around on skates. I thought this was ok since with each step his confidence seemed to build. So I was proud of my boy.... Very proud indeed my friends. And one day, he may even get to play in the NHL with the best team to ever grace the ice.... The Calgary Flames... Ah well, a man can dream...

A few more pics of Alex skating.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Lunar Eclipse

I'm not sure how much of my readership is aware that last night there was a lunar eclipse, where the moon turned a beautiful blood red colour... Or at least it did if you were not enshrouded by streetlights etc.. and then it was an orange colour as I was informed by work-mates living in more populated areas of Sydney!

We got Alex excited to go out and see a "Blood Moon" as he started calling it and he liked it. I explained to him what was happening using the flashlight on my mobile phone as the sun, one fist as the Earth, and the fist as the moon... Moving the moon such that the Earth blocked out the sun (ie phone) such that the moon (fist) was now dark. I think he understood it..

The two.. less well taken pictures were taken by me by Bec's camera while taking full use out of its zoom features... But you can see the beautiful red colour of it... The second is after the red was done and the moon was returning to its nice white colour, but still half covered by the Earth.. Thus the black bit at the top left...

The other two, much more well-defined pictures were simply taken off of Google Images....

Gotta run back to work now though...

Friday, August 24, 2007

Not much here...

There, you've been warned.

There will not be much in this blog mainly because I don't really have anything to say today. I know. I cried too.

Well, the past few weeks I have been pretty busy... Painted the edging around my house green (it looks great, but I might have already said that previously), a bit of painting on the inside of the house too. Then, while Bec, Alex and Mads were down the coast Mon-Wed, I removed the grout from between the tiles in the hallway, and put new grout in all on Monday night... on top of re-painting the laundry skirting boards. A long and busy night that was. But the laundry room and the hallway look great now. Makes me proud. And that's why you're reading about it!!!

Sucks to you eh? I figure I have to start saying eh again since I am moving back to Canada in December.

Work is moving forward slowly. Too slowly for my liking so I started a slightly different project which meant that yesterday, and Wednesday were pretty full on. And I won't know how well it worked for a few weeks to a month and half hopefully.

Real-estate guy is coming to take pics of our house early next week, and then it'll be officially listed! Yay!

I watched the new Harry Potter movie Tuesday night. I liked it. It was much darker and more adult than the other films, and I like the way the series is going. I do think that Harry, Ron, and Hermione are looking older than they are supposed to be in the movie though. But it still worked for me. I did feel that it was not as fluid as the other movies though, like there was stuff going on behind the scenes within the story that we were not privy to. But the movie worked, and I think I liked it more than all of its predecessors, and I am looking forward to the next one! I have recently started reading all the Harry Potter books. I figure that since everyone and their dog seems to have read them, I should hop on board so I get the pop culture references which use it as its base. Great books though! I am now up to the Order of the Phoenix (the new movie) and it is a good book so far (the 1st 100 pages or so, out of 700+).

I did something naughty this morning. And it's all because of Mom. Alright, it wasn't that naughty! A few weeks ago, Mom asked me about my lap top and will it work in Canada. I am pretty sure that it will, I should just need to get a new power cable thing since the power here is 240V and in Canada it is 110V or something like that. But it got me thinking that I wouldn't mind a new one since mine runs pretty hot, and has the biggest power brick I have ever seen (a power brick is the brick looking black box part of the power cable). So I went into a shop today to see what was on offer. There were some really pretty looking machines. Unfortunately, the only ones that I liked were just under $3000. Why do I have such expensive taste!!!!!

Well they were really nice, Centrino Duo processors at 2.2 - 2.4 GHz, 2Gb RAM, 512Mb Nvidea graphics chips, massive hard drives... What more could I want, besides a massive price drop!!! Well, I think that I will wait for the price to drop considerably before I look again, I can't justify anyone paying $300o for a computer. Nice lap tops yes, but I don't really need a new one just yet.... Maybe next year.

One final note though... People, don't forget about your blogs just because Facebook is new and blah blah blah. you don't get nice ramblings about nothing on Facebook... you get short little quips that give you nothing. A blog at least allows a story to be told, a ramble to be writ, and a stronger insight into the writer...

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


Final product, signed and sent. Graduation in early Dec. Nuff said.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Work Choices...

Sorry about the delay on my posting... Been a little bit busy what with getting the house ready for the market... Not a lot needs to be done as the house is alright, just a few superficial things. The problem lies in the fact that I don't have a lot of "free" time to do the work.. BUT I have re-grouted and sealed the shower, painted the entire edging on my house which took a long time (3 days) and forced me to go up an extension ladder as high as it would go... I didn't like it Jan, not at all! Did some ceiling fixing, and some tiling... mowed the lawn, fixed up a wall a bit, and there may be more.. but that's kept me busy.

Anyway though, that's not why I decided to post today (or I found a few minutes during the first lunch break I've had in about 2 weeks)... And it's about the Work Choices legislation that the Howard government has put in place. I must let you know, that what I am about to say comes from a COMPLETELY lay persons perspective, meaning that my source(s) are the media, largely from people for and against the new legislation. But I think that the points are valid because I assume that the majority of voters are in my shoes, ie not about to read the actual document etc. I am also not taking sides because I don't know what the opposition has proposed.

From my limited understanding, Work Choices gives the employee the right to bargain for better working conditions with their employer on an individual basis, and also the removal of unfair dismissal laws. This gets around the Union movements. BUT, the opposition has asked what is there in place to stop the employer from screwing over the employee by first firing them (removal of unfair dismissal laws) and then offering them their same jobs at a lower wage with reduced benefits etc? I think that this is a fair question. The opposition has made several TV adds with this effect, where there is a woman who is being forced to work overtime despite not having to previously because she is taking care of the kids. You know the type of ad, a sob story. But the question is put forth.

To combat this, the Howard administration has done a big media campaign in favor of the Work Choices legislation saying that people under 18 won't be ripped off by employers because they will need the parent or guardian's signature on the contract as well... And that adult workers will still have holidays, overtime pay etc etc... Pretty much saying that "It's the law" for employers to abide by the working contract. But (me and Rebecca) don't really see how this answers the questions put forth by the opposition: Can you be fired and then asked to sign a contract for lower wages etc?

By saying that a kid can't get ripped off because a parent needs to approve the contract prior blindsides the issue. If the employer is offering a really low wage, and the parent doesn't like it, the kid doesn't work, and the employer will eventually find someone who will fill the role. So some kid, somewhere gets to work at this crap wage because it was a job. In a capitalist society, doesn't the employer hire the worker who'll accept the lower wage. But then this leaves the kid who didn't take the job, out of a job, and making no money as opposed to a little bit.

I guess simply what I'm trying to say is that of course an employer has honour a contract, "it's the law" but with the contents of the contract under no legislation, who's to stop an employer from offering sub-standard working conditions within the contract.

I think that this model works well where there is a large surplus of jobs, but as soon as you get more than one person vying for the same job, the wages and working conditions are pushed down because it is in the employers best (profit-wise) interests to hire the person who'll accept the lowest wage.

I anyone knows more about this system, please feel free to comment on it, as I may be wrong, but this question is in the heads of a lot of people and could mean a loss for the Howard government in the upcoming election.

In all fairness though, the official web-site for Work Choices is HERE, and the offical web-site against Work Choices is HERE.