Friday, October 31, 2008

Chess Champ: Viswanathan Anand


World Chess Champion: Vishy Anand

After two weeks of games, the World Chess Champion has been decided, with Vishy Anand of India retaining the title. You can see the report on the final game, awards ceremony, and celebration here.

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Friday, October 24, 2008

Charlotte's First Food

Charlotte is five months old today, and as she's been making a lot of chewing motions, and seems hungrier than usual, we decided to give her a taste of rice cereal (Milupa brand, in case you were wondering. Nothing but the best.)




She seemed to like it. At the first taste she gave a big smile. However, it's a little hard for her to eat right now as she doesn't know how to close her mouth to swallow. An enjoyable experience was had by all, and we'll try again tomorrow!


A little in the tummy, a little on the bib. Success!

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Chess World Championship 2008

The Chess World Championship match is on right now, between the current champ, Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik. Seven out of a possible twelve games have been played, with Anand scoring 5.0 points to Kramnik's 2.0 so far. 6.5 points wins the match, so Anand is looking like the strong favorite at this point.


If you're interested in following the games, you can see a live feed from the official site. Games begin at 6am PST.

Chessbase also has good photo reports on each game, as well as all kind of other chess related news.

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Sunday, October 19, 2008

Just The Three Of Us

We snapped this photo this afternoon, and decided to share it as a family photo and to double as Charlotte's five month post. She's turning five months old this week!


The three of us on a nice autumn Sunday

Take special note of our clever color coordination!


A close up of Charlotte in one of her new outfits!

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Friday, October 17, 2008

Rock Climbing

Our company went rock climbing for the afternoon as a social event. I wasn't so sure about the idea, but once we got there it turned out to be a lot of fun.


On the ascent!

I can't say I did as well as some, but I gave it a number of tries, and learned something in the process. It is actually interesting to be able to climb without the danger of falling. Rock climbing is a hobby that you have to be fairly involved in, but I'd be willing to give it a try again, even just on an occasional basis.

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Thursday, October 16, 2008

October Reflections

With Thanksgiving weekend past Autumn has quickly descended upon us and the leaves are falling and changing everywhere. A cool crispness is in the air and I'm enjoying my favorite season of the year. Too soon the rains will be here and we'll be into another wet BC winter.

We've had an eventful October so far with celebrating our 3rd Anniversary, breakfast out with friends, and adventures around here with our little darling, Charlotte Anne.

You can see pictures of our October adventures by clicking here.

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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Day After The Election

We're through another Federal election, and overall, I think everyone is a bit disappointed. Those who lean towards the Liberals will be disappointed to see the Conservatives increase their number of seats in Parliament. Conservatives are disappointed that they didn't get a majority. And the rest of them, well, they just didn't get what they wanted at all.

Here are a few brief comments on a few topics:

Conservatives

Missing a majority by a mere twelve seats is totally disappointing. I think they deserved it after what they have accomplished thus far. Still, their support base has grown, and I hope they put it to good use. I expect that they will be able to function much as a majority government would, as nobody wants to go through another election anytime soon. Good job, guys, and keep at it.

Liberals

These guys got the beating they deserved. Still, they got a good chunk of the vote, and that is the most unbelievable part to me. They openly promote a country wide carbon tax guaranteed to increase prices, have a leader who is barely understandable, and people still flock to vote for them. Even so, they've lost a lot of ground, and Dion will likely be the first Liberal leader to not become Prime Minister.

NDP

The NDP did well in BC, although they also lost ground. I don't think they did anything great, or made any mistakes. At this point, they are just an extra party, but not a contender for government.

Green Party

With the environment being such a hot topic these days, the Green party has really failed to get any traction. Zero seats won, although they got quite a few votes. Is it because the environment isn't really a key issue in elections? Maybe. Probably the real reason is that they aren't as solid on other key issues and aren't taken seriously. Lastly, Elizabeth May tried running against a very strong Conservative candidate instead of choosing a riding that might have actually given her a chance. It was either just a dumb mistake, or she was trying to take out someone important, but either way she failed.

And now we can all get back to our day to day lives and hope those who are steering the boat know what they're doing!

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Happy Election Day

Election day has arrived in Canada, and we are all eager to find out what the results will be. Polls, like the stock markets, have been yo-yos. Even six weeks has seemed like a long time, resulting in me pretty much ignoring everything to do with it after four weeks. But it's time to get out there and vote; have your say in what goes on in this country of ours.

To put it more humorously: yesterday we all ate our turkey dinners. Today, we get to choose which turkey gets to run the country!

Happy voting, everyone!

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Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

It's Thanksgiving here in Canada, and we send our warmest greetings to all of you. For those of you with the day off (nearly everyone), enjoy the day, and take time to relax and visit with family and friends. We highly recommend a board game or two, which is what we have planned!


October tomatos we picked yesterday

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Saturday, October 11, 2008

Fall Yard Cleanup

With the autumn season upon us, it was high time to remove our summer potted plants. This included our tomato plants which were still producing a few cherry tomatos, but were generally in very rough shape. It's been raining more, and there has even been some frost in the mornings.

I picked about 20 tomatos which were a decent size, then cut down the plants, threw the dirt into the flower bed, and cleaned out the clay pots (broke one too... the new one we buy will be really clean). Natasha and I also swept and hosed off the patio and front entry. Now the yard looks much more organized, and there's less to maintain over the next few months.

Bring it on, winter!

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Friday, October 10, 2008

Joining The Strata Council

Our townhouse complex finally held their AGM and elected a Strata Council. I wanted to have a say in the running and management of the Strata, especially at the start to help things get off on the right foot, so I nominated myself for council and was voted in along with six others.

During our first council meeting just this week, I chose to let others be nominated and voted in as various positions on the council, allowing me to simply be a voting member. With all of the stuff I have going on these days, I can't take on the extra work, but am happy to help support those who are taking the lead.

This is my first time dealing with a Strata, and so far it's been a very educational experience. I think it's a good group, and I am pretty confident that the complex will end up very well maintained and successful in the future.

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Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Three Years Together

That's right, Natasha and I have been married for three years now. I'm sure that beats some kind of statistic these days. Anyway, through the good and the bad, we've made it this far and look forward to the future.

Last week, we went out for an early celebratory dinner at the Cactus Club. The food was really great, and we took photos to share.


Natasha with the Cedar Roasted Salmon


Andrew, about to enjoy the Pistacio crusted Halibut

Also, a special surprise from me:


I am interested to hear from people who were either at our wedding, one of our receptions (we had three), or had some contact with us around that time. If you have any interesting stories, or a special memory, we'd love to hear about it in a comment!

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Friday, October 03, 2008

I've Seen Enough

This marks the end of all election related coverage on this blog, besides a few links and special cases where something special comes up. Honestly, I don't know how Americans put up with 18 months of campaigning. Perhaps they tune it out, or take turns being interested.

Here in Canada, with only six weeks of campaigning, four of them history, I am already bored of the constant back and forth, and daily polls that are endless rollercoaster rides.

I watched most of the leader's debate last night, via online streaming from CBC. It proved without a shadow of a doubt in my mind that there is only one good choice in this election. The rest are either incomprehensible, unfocused, or off base. You know who I'm talking about.

I close with that and will pick up again in a few weeks and in early November for my comments on election results in both Canada and the USA. For the time being, keep yourselves informed, and happy voting.