Archive for the ‘personal’ Category

uninvited guest

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

This picture was taken by someone at work this morning – it seems that the outside of a 26th floor conference room is a handy breakfast spot (even though it must have been totally freezing – it was -4F at that time at street level).

From the message I was sent: “The following picture was taken today (1/11) looking out the window of conference room 2661. He left when we walked into the room and took the bird with him. The feathers and, umm, “marks” on the window remained.”

Click on the picture for a closer view:

Uninvited guest

we go hd

Monday, January 14th, 2008

Last weekend we finally got a new TV – a Sony 32″ LCD which so far is working out very nicely. Being a flatscreen model it takes up way less space than our old TV and of course the picture is considerably clearer.

We also changed from a regular TiVo to one of the new high def models. I felt bad disconnecting the old TiVo box as it has served us so well through the years but having HD and dual tuner capability in the new box was too good to resist. Tomorrow evening the cable guy is coming over to install the digital cable cards so that we can have the full HD experience.

lunch with mrs m

Thursday, January 3rd, 2008

Now that Emma’s rolling with her new job and is working in downtown we decided that we should go for lunch at least once a month so that we have time to see each other. Today we did that for the first time, and it was really fun – quite a novelty to have time to hang out in the middle of the day and pretend to be grown-ups in our smart work clothes.

cold and cold

Sunday, December 23rd, 2007

Today it’s just damned cold. Very windy and snowy. Yesterday it was less cold and wet snow fell which turned instantly to slush; shortly afterwards the temp dropped so suddenly that it froze solid. Sidewalks impossible to clear, just icy. Today it’s snowing – nasty hard snow which no matter which way you’re facing it goes right into your face and down your neck.

And to make it worse, I realized this morning how selfish I am to be complaining about having to shovel the snow from the sidewalk outside our nice warm house. There are so many people who can’t afford the heating, or who don’t have houses. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be homeless at this time, especially as a fair proportion of the homeless in Minneapolis are working families with kids. Makes you think, and hopefully makes you want to give something to people who are helping out.

see my house

Tuesday, December 11th, 2007

Google maps have added a few more cities to their street view functionality, including Minneapolis. This means that when you’re looking at directions you can also see pictures of what the street or intersection looks like. They’ve even done my street, and our house looks pretty decent. The pics were taken during summer, so the front yard is all verdant and neat (now it’s covered in snow).

storm pics

Friday, December 7th, 2007

We’ve had a lot of snow this week. Lots of sidewalk shoveling to be done, which is a bit of a hassle, but can be nice to do if you’re out in the evening and it’s quiet, plus it’s a good workout.

Commuting has been tough – not so much for us, living and working centrally in Minneapolis – especially for people in the suburbs. One person at work left the office at 3:45 on Tuesday and didn’t get home till after 7:30 (it usually takes her a half hour). Here are some pictures of traffic issues in the snow.

family baby news

Tuesday, December 4th, 2007

This just in (or should I say, this just out): a new second cousin for Dara – one Reuben Jack Arthur Hope. He’s the first boy Hope of his generation (of this branch of the family) so the pressure’s on him already. Congratulations to Tom and Mrs Hope, and to Reuben!

bermuda pictures

Monday, December 3rd, 2007

Finally, pictures of our Bermuda trip. It’s been so cold in Minneapolis I haven’t been able to stop shivering for long enough to be able to type, let alone use iPhoto. Anyway, I think the pics came out pretty well – here they are

secret life of granny

Tuesday, November 20th, 2007

I was casting around the web to find more information about my Granny. I was surprised to find this page from the Sunday Times in 2005 – scroll to the bottom of that link and you’ll find this:

“It’s refreshing even after one sip, but I prefer the one I buy commercially.”
Muriel Hope, 91, tastes Scotland’s most expensive pot of tea, costing £23.80 at Plaisir du Chocolat in Edinburgh’s Royal Mile.

I can’t really imagine her in a place called Plaisir du Chocolat, paying that much for some tea, or speaking about doing anything commercially, but I think that the age would match up, so I guess it really was her.

it’s all relative

Friday, November 16th, 2007

Day … ooh … six or something of our trip to Bermuda. Losing track of the days, it’s just what we need. Today is the coolest day so far, but it’s relative – it’s actually about 70F and it’s still OK to wear shorts. It was warm in the morning so we decided to go to Bermuda Botanical Gardens. It’s a really impressive place, especially considering how little open space there is on the island. Some really beautiful and interesting trees and shrubs – lots of palm trees and an awesome banyan tree which is massive. We nipped into their little cafeteria for lunch, just a wee sandwich served by volunteer church-hall type ladies, all very friendly and quite British. Then as we were looking around the gardens and shivering a little (it had rained while we were having lunch and was quite cool for an hour or so afterwards) we noticed the aroma of something quite, um, herbal. Perhaps better described as something smokeable by the jazz community. It seemed quite incongorous, and we assumed that it was the brawny gardeners who were responsible rather than the nice ladies of the cafeteria.