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Monday, March 24, 2014

Audrey Carol

March 22, 2014. This photo should have been the first taken... or posted... but newborn babies don't look exactly like this upon arrival into the world.

March 22, 2014. Safely arrived at home for the first time.

March 22, 2014 - and all is calm... at least right now. Grandpa relaxing with sleeping Audrey.

Here is the close-up of the star attraction.

New parents - are they trying to figure out what to do next?

"...and his mother kept all these things in her heart." (Luke 2:51b)

Words recorded 2000 years earlier, but this which mothers do has not changed over time.

March 24, 2014. Today's photo of Audrey from David.

 March 22, 2014 Celebration

Ben and Catherine 35 years! Left to right: Kiera, Sharl; Anita, Don, Kie, Tim, Ben, Ed, Catherine, May, Jonah and Kimberly.

Saturday evening we gathered to celebrate Ben's & Catherine's 35 years of marriage. 

Double Happiness really; we also had a new family member to talk about.

Of course David and Winnie were expectedly absent; home from the hospital a few hours earlier with newest family member, Audrey Carol.

Oddblock Station Agent

Addendum March 29, 2014

"A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains for ever."
(Ecclesiastes 1:4)

90 years may have passed, but nothing has changed between new mothers and their first born child.

1924 - A new mother when this photo was taken. My grandmother holding my father

2014 - A new mother 8 days ago. Winnie holding my granddaughter.

I was born early enough and have lived long enough to see and know the people in both these two photographs. God's favour is upon me.

Addendum September 06, 2014

This is the stuff that grandparents do. A few more pictures...

August 28, 2014

Audrey September 04, 2014

Taken for Audrey's baby dedication at our family gathering on September 06, 2014

Addendum November 18, 2014

Babies don't stay babies forever... and not very long either.

November 07 2014

Addendum December 08, 2014

Addendum April 25, 2015

Audrey: Tastes Great! - Grandpa: I wish I knew what she was eating.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Baby Dot has Arrived

Congratulations David & Winnie!!

A new arrival comes into the world.

Today, the wonders of technology allow us to see images of events as they occur. 

Can you remember a time when we had to wait days for a roll of film to be developed, and we hoped that the pictures would come out okay?

Wasn't really that long ago.

She arrived a few weeks early, but... Baby Dot was born at 11:58 on March 20, 2014. David took this picture within minutes of the awaited event and sent it to us. Baby and both parents doing well!

Excited grandparents are doing okay too.

A spring surprise sprung on us on the first day of spring!

Baby Dot must have wanted to see winter; she arrived today at 11:58, one hour before the official start of spring which was at 12:57 this afternoon. Maybe that was enough of winter too.

Welcome to the world! Life's challenges are not long in coming.

A few hours later and sleeping like a... well, you know.

Audrey Carol - early morning, March 21, 2014

With praise and gratitude to God!

 The Oddblock Station Agent

Addendum March 21, 2014

A few more of the photos taken last evening...

Ben holding new granddaughter

Catherine holding Audrey Carol

Grandpa holding the tiny baby... she is really that small.

Kie with Audrey Carol

The two happy grandfathers with Audrey Carol. This was not a staged photo! Holding a newborn baby again is like riding a bicycle, you do not forget how to do it.

The two happy grandmothers with Audrey Carol. I'm certain they'll soon be making lots of plans for shopping for her. Maybe they already have.

What does our newest family member think of all this attention from the grandparents?

The photo says it all!

Bored already? We haven't got started yet.

You don't really believe this is all, do you?

Friday, March 14, 2014

More than Just a Dot Really

Baby Dot

More than just a dot really... but this is the name that Winnie and David have given to the child they are expecting.

Mom has already rolled out the welcome.

When a life starts out, he or she is really no more than a dot on a screen, but that new person is a life nonetheless.

Clothing ready in preparation. We do not know is if Baby Dot is a girl or a boy... but I do not see much pink here. Is this a subtle message?

"For thou didst form my inward parts, thou didst knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise thee for thou art fearful and wonderful. Wonderful are thy works! Thou knowest me well; my frame is not hidden from thee, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth. Thy eyes beheld my unformed substance; in thy book were written every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them." (Psalm 139: 13-16)

Caution - crib under construction! Quoting the words of brother-in-law Kelvin, "Assembling and taking apart Ikea furniture is Winnie's favourite pastime. If you give this job to someone else she'll turn into the hulk."

Although taken a few years earlier, all Baby Dot's grandparents are gathered together in this happy scene. Left to right: Kie, Yeu-Tin, Don, Catherine and Ben.

Left to right: Edith and Jonah. Two of Baby Dot's cousins together on December 25, 2013

Baby Dot's parents quite a few years earlier... on January 29, 2003.

Is Baby Dot a girl or a boy?

We should find out in about a month from now. 

The Oddblock Station Agent

Addendum March 20, 2014


A new arrival comes into the world.

A few weeks early, but... Baby Dot was born at 11:58 on March 20, 2014. David took this picture within minutes of the awaited event and sent it to us. Baby and both parents doing well!

All four excited grandparents are doing okay too.

Life is a gift from God, whether it be a new life as we see here, or a new day for those of us that have been here for a while.

With praise and gratitude to God!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


Two weeks ago (Thursday, Feb 27) my angiogram procedure went well and the news received afterward was very good. 

The nuclear stress test I had about 3 weeks earlier showed up abnormalities in both the ECG and the imaging. That news was not something I had expected because I completed the rigorous treadmill part of test problem free and pain free. An angiogram was quickly scheduled for another look.

About 20 minutes before the surgeon started, he informed Kie and me that depending upon what he found, he would put stents in if needed, and if so, then I would stay in overnight. This last minute news was unexpected but made sense. Nonetheless, he also told us about the possible risks doing the procedure; heart attack, stroke and/or death, and then I had to sign the consent form.  Not the best things to hear just before going in the operating room.

I was awake the entire time and the sedatives given to relax did not work at all. I tried to pretend nothing was going on but I was gripping the table with both hands as if holding on for life. The technology and the imaging on the TV screens were amazing. I could see my own heart and arteries perfectly clearly; not indistinguishable like an x-ray or ultrasound.

"For thou didst form my inward parts, thou didst knit me together in my mother's womb."
(Psalm 139:13)

This image was selected at random from the internet but does accurately reflects the type of images that I saw. If anything, the images I saw on the screen were actually sharper and clearer than this example.

The results came very soon afterward (within half an hour) directly from my cardiologist and the news was actually better than I had been hoping for; a very welcomed surprise.

My stent is clear and no sign of clotting. No additional stenting was required and the other two artery blockages are not severe and not a concern. I do have some permanent mild to moderate heart damage from the heart attack but hearing this was not new. In time I should be able to resume and continue with most normal activities. Going for a hike again on the Appalachian Trail in Maine is very unlikely though, but I can live with this.

I did have one minor problem afterward (which was an expected possibility) when the nurse got me up to get ready to go home. I went to the bathroom and the wound opened. The nurse got me back into bed; clamping the artery for 20 minutes. That hurt quite a bit.

After a few more hours of resting I tried getting ready again and everything was okay the second time. I also got home okay. Not very much pain afterward and certainly almost nothing compared to tooth nerve  pain, but I did feel as if I had been punched in the groin.

Upon arriving at home I went to bed and stayed there still until the following morning. I did not move all night. Maybe those sedatives finally worked! Regardless, I did not want the wound to reopen, which would have meant a 911 call and trip back to the hospital. Kie stayed at home the Friday following; I was not supposed to be home alone for 24 hours in case of possible bleeding.

Honestly, within the hours of a day that nurses and doctors have to work, I do not know how they are able to do what they do, working with so many different people with differing problems. I have no complaint. My only negative comment about hospitals is they rush patients out too fast; but this is not new.

I am very grateful to God for the good news I received and I am truly happy to be home.

The Oddblock Station Agent