Adventures of Prairie Girl and Code Minkey

Surviving floods, thwarting mosquito invasions, enduring weather extremes all while living in our little house...

Thursday, April 26, 2007

The first decade...

It was 10 years and one day ago that I met Michelle. While some people seem to think that Michelle and I write revisionist histories of our lives I am posting this to confirm the truth of how and when we met. We met at the Bytowne Tavern on April 25, 1997. It was a friday and the Ottawa Senators had just beaten the Buffalo Sabres 4-1 in Game 5 of the first playoff series.

Michelle came over to the table to say hello to Alette Willis (ever a trouble maker) who proptly said "Oh Jason Michelle is from Winnipeg she can answer your questions about Duff's Ditch". My fascination with all things engineering had led my curiosity to the floodway that continually protects the 'Peg from the annual flooding of the Red. My fascination with the the floodway soon gave way to a fascination with Michelle and now we are happily married, living next to the Red River in Winnipeg a full decade later.

Thanks Alette.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

The fox has kits again...

Within the last couple of weeks we have seen mama and papa fox readying the den. Lately papa is no where to be seen, and mama is often tailed by three little kits. They play various games. Mama tries to get them to follow her, and occasionally one of the kits will decide: "it's chase my tail time" or "let me practice my stealth moves" (as the kit hunkers close to the ground). It has been very amusing. What has been less amusing (for the kits), but amazing for us to see, are two majestic bald eagles. They have not been seen this weekend, but last weekend they were very interested in all the fox activity. Meanwhile, the ducks are having a great time being sped down the river with the exceptionally fast moving current. Since the ice jam has begun to clear in Selkirk, MB, the river has dropped by over a foot.

It is a veritable National Geographic out our back door...

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Happy Robbie Burns Day

May you all raise a pint of ale to celebrate the day.

Cheers The Canadian/Scottish Code Minkey

Gude Ale Keeps The Heart Aboon

Type: Poem
Chorus-O gude ale comes and gude ale goes;
Gude ale gars me sell my hose,
Sell my hose, and pawn my shoon-
Gude ale keeps my heart aboon!

I had sax owsen in a pleugh,
And they drew a' weel eneugh:
I sell'd them a' just ane by ane-
Gude ale keeps the heart aboon!
O gude ale comes, &c.

Gude ale hauds me bare and busy,
Gars me moop wi' the servant hizzie,
Stand i' the stool when I hae done-
Gude ale keeps the heart aboon!
O gude ale comes, &c.
copied from:

Let's hear it for running water!

Monday morning Michelle got up and moments later I hear: "There's no water". I panic, it has been 1 year since the frozen pipes incident and that's all I could think of. Turns out that the water main had frozen and burst. With our recent warm weather (highs of -7), the break thawed and water gushed into our neighbour's front yard. We went two days without running water. Daily morning trips to my sister's to shower other inconveniences abound. Today was our second morning with running water... truly miraculous.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Let the rehab begin...

Happy day folks! Saw the doctor today and the bone is all healed. After 10 weeks (tomorrow) no more crutches, no more braces...just lots of physio and rehab to build up the muscles. Ahhh...the pain will feel good if it means full freedom!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Aerobics – a full contact sport for Prairie Girls!

Many of you already know that I broke my leg on Thursday November 16, 2006. It was two days before I was scheduled to leave for Ottawa to attend my good friend Rae and Chris’ wedding, spend a nice weekend with friends, and sit through 2-days of meetings doing grant reviews. While attending a BOSU (BOth Sides Up) class, I lost my footing and twisted my leg causing a fracture of my fibula just above my ankle. After seven weeks in a cast and a walking boot, I am finally free…well sort of! I am now wearing an aircast (an ankle brace) and am learning how to walk again. Yippee! You never fully appreciate the little things until they are gone – wearing shoes that match (and are of equal height!), no longer being called new nicknames (the Gimp, Peg-Leg-Pete, Hobbles – some of these names I even coined myself), being able to open my own doors, sitting without (always) having to elevate my leg, driving. Oh the list is endless. Therapy is beginning, but I am doing well.

Monday, January 01, 2007


Happy New Year to Everyone. After a long hiatus and a mild revamp this academic odd-couple is back online. (From Prairie Girl: Jason's odd…I'm unique). Rather than overwhelm with stories of our downtime we will recount our tales from 2006 in a series of short entries over the next while. Of course our planned break was to be a month long in July that has since turned into a half a year so it may take a while to cover our rather eventful grieving period.

From Prairie Girl: I found that every time I would go to the blog, I would see Moe's sweet face and get all weepy. So, I am writing this in Word and will be sending it to Jason to post. I have already planned a number of entries so count on at least weekly tales.

From Code Minkey: Grieving continues, but I blame my absence from blogging on lots of work and procrastination. Between us we continued home renovations, bought power tools, gardened, visited Sweden, injured legs, taught engineers and med students, applied for grants, and wrote papers, drove the Prairies, read lots and I managed some programming.

The New Year looks exciting and we hope everyone enjoys work, fun, friends and family.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Farewell to Moe

As you all know our family included a great character and friend named Moe. After nearly six years with us Jason and I said farewell to our little cat yesterday. In the end his giant personality could not overcome his frail little body. Fortunately he suffered little. We miss him dearly and words cannot describe the loss of such a great friend. Our thoughts are somewhat captured in the following poem:

They will not go quietly,
the cats who've shared our lives.
In subtle ways they let us know
their spirit still survive.
Old habits still make us think
we hear a meow at the door.
Or step back when we drop
a tasty morsel on the floor.
Our feet still go around the place
the food dish used to be,
And, sometimes, coming home at night,
we miss them terribly.
And although time may bring new friends
and a new food dish to fill,
That one place in our hearts
belongs to them....
and always will.
~ Linda Barnes ~

We love you Moe. Mom & Dad.