Saturday, 26 December 2009

Xmas with Grandkids

As is so typical of Wenda and me, we are down with a bad cough at Christmas. We celebrated Christmas with Tracy, Frank, the kids, and our extended families together in their nicely renovated house. The living room is large enough to accomodate all the people and presents that Santa brought in the middle of the night. We really enjoy seeing the kids receive their gifts. Tracy prepared a wonderful turkey dinner, with a setting for 12. Now rest rest rest.
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Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Me and The Torch

The olympic torch passed just a couple hundred metres from our house today. John here from Belleville transferred the flame to his torch right at the street corner by our house. His two young kids were there just as proud as punch that their daddy was going to carry the torch. It started snowing just before the torch arrived and quit just after it left ... a fitting blessing. I was surprised at all the support vehicles with loud music blaring that accompany the torch. Click here to see more pics of the torch.
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Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Engagement Book

This is the final page of an engagement book that I had made for a customer. The picture was shot at Whitby Harbour on a cold day in October. I used my large lens to put the background slightly out of focus. When it came time to assemble the pictures in a book, I started to search for a song or poem that I could include in the picture, so I googled the words beacon, love, arm on the internet and found these words in a song. It is amazing how the words really add to the picture.You can click on the picture to see it bigger.
I now have two books that I have created recently and Wenda and I will be delivering them to the clients before Christmas.
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Friday, 4 December 2009

All I Want for Chrsitmas ...

It was a PA day today so Aiden had the day off from school. We took Aiden, Quinten and Lexy to the new swimming pool in Newcastle today - it has a great kiddie pool with dumping overhead bucket, arched spray and a section of water/air jets we call bubble mountain. The kids loved it. Earlier in the day, I took pictures of the kids and here I have made a short video of Aiden with his missing teeth. Turn up your speakers and click here to see the video.
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Saturday, 28 November 2009

Taking a Shot

Today was Aiden's first game of hockey. Up until now he has been working on skills and drills with the coach. A lot of his training from Soccer seemed to be at play as he would naturally swing back to protect the net. He is a pretty good defenceman. Click here to see more pictures of Aiden in his first hockey game.
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Thursday, 26 November 2009


Wenda and I were babysitting for the evening, so I took a quick shot of Aiden before he went off to bed. I bounced the flash off the wall to the right so that I would preserve shadow detail on his face. The boy is growing up very quickly and I find that these kids change so fast.
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Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Aunt Laura's Tea Room - Bethany

Today, we took Wenda's parents, Aunt and Uncle out for a drive in our van. Of particular interest was this Tea Room in the little village of Bethany. It was a quaint little place with all home cooked food from the Chicken a-la-King, or Quiche, or Meatloaf are nicely prepared right in the kitchen. All the pies and deserts are also home made -mmmm delicious. This place is A&W approved. Unfortunatel, there is a rather extensive gift shop attached to the tea room, and Wenda found many reasonably priced items of interest.
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Monday, 23 November 2009

The Wreath

Here is the wreath that Wenda and I (mostly Wenda I must admit) constructed from 2 hula hoops, oodles of garland, acrylic balls and gold pine cones.

Sunday, 22 November 2009

Xmas Lights

Today was the annual Santa Parade in Newcastle. It is rather unique in that it is an evening parade - with all of the floats having lights on board. The parade itself begins with a barrage of fireworks right on the main street of town.  The grandkids loved it all. We have put up our lights while the fall weather has been mild.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Saturday Visit with Grandkids

Well I am starting to feel better and it sure is good to get out of the house for a change. We babysat the wee ones while Aiden went to hockey. The kids seem to be changing so fast. Today's photography exercise is to try and get that highlight on the subject's (better known as the grandkid's) face. I have aimed my flash up and behind me so that there is no evidence that flash was used. Click here to see more pics of the subjects - also known as the grandkids.
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Saturday, 31 October 2009

The Unicorn

Lexy was a cute little unicorn for Halloween this year, Quinten was a lion and Aiden was a transformer character.  Quinten even helped Nana to make apple crisp - he peeled the apples - what a great helper. The kids had a great time making their jack-o-lanterns and going out for goodies.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Refined Portrait Technique

I have refined my technique for taking portraits. This picture was taken with window light as the main light, but with flash bounced off the left wall to lighten the shadows on the left side of the picture. If I had used straight on flash, the picture would appear 2 dimensional - you need shadow and detail in the shadow to make a good portrait. I also did a bit of skin smoothing in photoshop to bring back that youthful appearance. The key success to this picture is the fact that flash was used, yet you cannot see a flash shadow. I have been studying for the last couple years to develop this technique and now I believe I have it - just need more practice.
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Sunday, 25 October 2009

Playing With Leaves

I tried to hire a couple of kids to help with the leaves but they have a whole different idea of work than I do. Click here to see a few more of the pictures. Remember you can click on the picture above to see it full size.
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Friday, 23 October 2009

A Hole in the Head !

Aiden wanted to show us his cavity where a tooth once happily lived. This tooth has been hanging by a thread for a week and yesterday he became parted with it. While we were visiting we took some pics of the rest of the young ones. Quinten is always very expressive and Lexy seems to be the new Disco Queen. Click here to see the slide show.  You may need to click on the triangle at the bottom to make the slideshow run. To see Aiden's picture on this page full size, just click on his picture above.

Monday, 12 October 2009

A Visit to the Apple Farm

It was our friend Merna's Thanksgiving with her family and we were invited along to take pictures.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Model of Railway Station

Greg, a friend of mine came in to the Historical Room on Saturday to show us a model of the old Grand Trunk Railway station that was constructed in Newcastle in 1856. The actual railway station has long since disappeared from the local landscape. Greg's model station is part of an HO model train project that he is working on.
Click on the picture to see it full size.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Nanna with Kids

Now that Aiden is attending school full time, mornings are with Quinten and Lexy. While Lexy just loves books and would have you read to her for hours, Quinten is more into puzzles and games. Click on the picture to see it full size, then  Click here to see more of the kids with Wenda in the mornings.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Naked News Interview

We had a fun day down at the CNE - exhibition grounds visiting the Home Show. All of a sudden I saw a media personality and asked if I could have my picture taken with her. If you have not heard of this news organization, you can see their website at naked It is a bizarre news organization in which the women news reporters strip down to nothing while delivering the news. Fortunately, my interview with Roxanne did not require such gimicks.
We had a great dinner with friends at "The Old Spaghetti Factory" before doing 'the grand tour' up Yonge Street.  Click here to see more.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Aiden Plays Hockey

Today was one of Aiden's first practice sessions of the season and you can see some of his competitiveness showing in the picture.  Only two kids scored on the goalie and Aiden was one of them - he put it between the pads.
On another note, two kids were pushing each other in front of him in the line, when Aiden cross checked the back of one and they both went down.  When he comes off the ice - he is sweating buckets so he is really in to it. He participates 100% in these practices. Click on the picture to see it larger.

Saturday, 26 September 2009

Orono Chili Cook-off

Bev is a most talented secretary for the Newcastle Village and District Historical Society. Not only does she keep Bell Telephone in line (you can imagine how difficult that is), but she also keeps our organization on the up and up going in a positive direction.  Here she is playing and singing at our entry for the Chili Cook-off competition in Orono today. Click here to see more pictures of the Chili Cook-off.   You might have to click on the triangle at the centre of the bottom of the page to make the slideshow run.

Sunday, 20 September 2009

Quinten Plays The Blues

We took Quinten and Lexy to visit their great grandparents Ken and Doreen today. The kids were good as gold and travelled well. Other than one quick 'potty stop' at the side of the road, the journey to Lindsay was pretty good. Quinten tapped his blues buddy (grampy) to pull out a spare harmonica and they played some sweet tunes together. Click on the picture to see it larger.

Thursday, 17 September 2009

Open House at School

Today was open house at Aiden's new school. Oddly enough I attended his school 21 years ago when I installed the windows in his classroom when it was built in 1988. His teacher is a real nice young guy whose grandfather coached Frank in soccer. All these conincidental connections are a bit strange.
Aiden loves his school and the first entry he wrote in his journal says "I like this school because it has three recesses." That was my favourite part of school when I was his age too.... more strange coincidences.

Monday, 14 September 2009

Quinten's First Day

Today is the first day for Quinten to attend nursery school. Wenda took him down to his new school and he was totally undaunted. He made friends quickly and settled in just fine.
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Sunday, 13 September 2009

Busy Grandparent

The weather continues to be perfect. I took Aiden to the Orono Fair today where he made a new friend on one of the rides. I brought him home full of cotton candy and lemonade. There I found Quinten taking Lexy out for a ride on the Plasmo car and they seemed to be having a great time of it. This grandparent stuff sure keeps one busy. Remember, by clicking on the picture above, you can see it full screen. Click here to see more pictures of the day.
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Tuesday, 8 September 2009

First Day at School

Today was Aiden's first day in a regular school program and of course, it is the first day to ride the school bus to school. At first the bus stopped, then drove on ahead, then stopped and backed up to get him. He seemed to be OK. There were a couple older friends of his on the bus to show him the routine. Sure wish I could have seen him in his new school, but that would not have been cool. Click here to see a few more pics of Aiden before the bus arrived. Remember to click on the triangle at the bottom to make it play the slideshow.
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Friday, 4 September 2009

A Day At The Beach

Our summer was just too short this year... most of the summer was cool and wet. This was one of the few days that the kids could go out and enjoy the beach. There were hundreds of people at Cobourg beach today. Clean water, beautiful sand and ideal temperatures made it a very popular spot on the shores of Lake Ontario. The slide show begins with a picture of Doreen, then goes on to the kids at the beach.
Click here to see the slide show, then press the triangle at the bottom to make the slide show play.
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Sunday, 30 August 2009

Cell Phone While Driving

A girl these days just has to keep in touch - even it seems while driving. On Lexy's birthday, she received a Flintstones special, Princess Edition foot powered car - complete with a cell phone. So she took her new teddy for a spin around the living room and proceeded to send text messages while driving. Her birthday party was a great success with lots of kids playing all through the new house. Frank rented a giant jumping castle for them and the kids had an absolute ball. Click here to see more pictures of the kids.
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Saturday, 29 August 2009

Today we dodged the worst of the rain and Aiden's team played 2 games for the final of the season. The first team they played was stacked and was able to run up quite a score on Aiden's team. The team won the second match. I think the kids grew considerably in their soccer skills this summer thanks to Frank's great coaching. What a team !
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Monday, 24 August 2009

Bridal Pictures Added

For the last few days, I have been shooting young women in their bridal dress. I need photos for my photography business website, so I was very pleased that our daughter Tracy and a neighbour Tara volunteered. I now feel that my website is rather complete. I have my first customer calling to make a deposit for a wedding a year from now, so it is looking promising. Click here to see the photography website and the bridal pictures.

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Lexy Poses

Lexy was in a good mood for getting dressed up today - cute as a button she was, so we got out the photo gear and took a few snaps of the little doll. Kinda looks like a Shirley Temple on the good ship Lollipop.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Blow Out The Candles

Grampy's Birthday Cake. Well when you are 89 and you have asthma, it's hard to blow out all those candles without a little help from a friend. Aiden volunteered to help grampy out.
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Quinten's Haircut

It was a hot day today and the kids came over for a BBQ to celebrate their grampy's 89th birthday. I did not have a recent picture of Quinten so today was a good day for it. We set up a little splash pool and a spray fountain for the kids to run through - the kinda stuff that kids like to do on a hot summer's day.
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Thursday, 13 August 2009

Kids Visit

I have some new equipment - basically very portable studio type lighting that I am experimenting with this week. Today, when the grandkids visited, I was able to get in close and get a few candid shots. Click here to see more of the candid pictures.