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Archive for 2009

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Dec 31

Two Christmases

Category: Journal

Christmas has come and gone for most of us and we were lucky enough to have two this year. First was Christmas with my family on the eve and day. Christmas eve is usually one of my fav's as we attend we usually attend a traditional Christmas candlelight service. However this year was not the traditional service as we attend the production at Trinity Baptist, all I have to say was wow! The presentation they put on was amazing!! From angels coming down from the roof to a giant snake, amazing lights, and crazy animal costumes myself and the boys were enthralled. Rhys during each scene would just exclaim WOOOWWWW!!! and then after AGAIN!! Making everyone around us giggle.

Of course after all this we all headed back to our house for some much looked forward to grub and the opening of presents. This year my mom made sushi and I made up some gioza which my grandma's were none to thrilled about but we still had the traditional german fair of cold cuts cheeses and baking to keep them happy. I think my brothers where happy too as there was little food left (somebody really needs to cook for those boys).

Next as always in our family came the presents and boy what fun to watch the boys open theirs. Christmas is really for them is and is so much more fun with them as it is really magical. Of course as typical kids we really only needed to let them open one present and they are good to play for awhile. Oh well what fun there is more!! 

In the morn of course their was stockings from Santa, what is becoming traditional eggs benny in our house and then off to my parents for turkey dinner yum!!

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Now after all this Naomi's family arived all in town after the weekend and we got to start it all over again. This time the dinner was one of my fav's roladan (beef wrapped around bacon and a pickle and cooked in gravy yum!!) turkey dinner came two days later on new year's day! Then we were off to open even more presents!! Yikes sometimes I think the presents get out of hand but it is fun. It was so much fun to watch the boys be the "elves" and hand out everyone their present, they just loved doing this as I remember loving it as a kid too.  I think that is one of the great things about Christmas now with our own kids is remember what Christmas was like when I was a kid a trying to re-create that for them.

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Amounst all of this we there was of course lot more that happened. We finally got snow but too late for Christmas but the boys got to use their new shovels and "help dad" shovel the driveway. As I had 2 weeks off work as well as usual on weekends and when I have time off I usually make a really good breakfast. As you saw above on Christmas morning it was eggs benny, and on another day one of my recent new recipes my interpretation of eggs florentine (see below), and amounst that was breakfast fajitas, omelets and my version of grilled cheese sandwich. Someday I will post these recipes. 

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We all here at the Mackhouse hope you had a great Christmas as well and would love to hear about it. Please feel free to let us know. I will now leave you will some pics of the boys and their "tea party" which they insisted on having.

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Dec 24

Merry Christmas!!!

Category: Art,Journal

It's finally here! The day we have been planning for, shopping for and waiting for well the eve of which but in our family that is all when it begins. So we would like to say from The Mackhouse a very very Merry Christmas!!!!! and we say that with great joy as we it seems that lately the true meaning, celebration and spirit of this season has taken a huge hit. 

Unfortunately I was un-able to find adequate time to create the annual Christmas card and not without trying (I started 2 weeks ago). I am very sad that I wasn't able to do it and apologize as i know many of you really look forward to it. If i get some time in the next few days I might zap off a quick one. In the meantime here is a sketch I did while in a meeting ( I really find the sketching and doodling while in meetings helps keep focus and fill the boredom). Enjoy!

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Dec 20

Staff Christmas Party 2009

Category: Journal

This past Friday was our annual staff Christmas party and as usual it was quite the party! This year it was again at the Grand in Kelowna here as it is the only venue that is big enough to hold us (Kelowna sure needs a convention centre). The food was great especially the prawns and salmon.. yum, and the way they had the ball room done up was just awesome and of course the photo booth was lots of fun.

The highlight though was how much Naomi went all out for this party. She got her hair done, makeup, dress and jewelery. She just looked amazing! All in all it was a really good time except that we didn't really see that much of each other sadly with socializing. 

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Dec 14

New Family Addition

Category: Journal

The weekend mark the addition of a new member to our family as the kids got their Christmas present early. On Saturday we presented the boys with little Leeloo the family dog, a week earlier than we had thought. The boys were so excited and have quickly become attached to her. 

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Now the hard part starts with training her and getting her used to the new family. Many sleepless nights are ahead for me!!

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Dec 12

Christmas is Coming!!

Category: Journal

Well here we are and all of us especially the boys are getting very excited about Christmas. Both boys are really into it from setting up decorations to shopping and wishing everyone merry Christmas. Tristan just loves to where his santa hat. 

This past weekend we set up the tree and all the decorations around the house and got the kids to help out as much as we could. This year we have a new fake tree as our last one was a hand me down and was looking a little ragged over the years. Plus i really wanted a tree with the lights already on it as i was tired of tangled strings and lights that didn't work. This tree i bought last year after Christmas and got an amazing deal and it is HUGE ok well huge for our house. Unfortunately we didn't have hooks for our new decorations so Naomi had to head into town to get some so we finished the tree once the kids where in bed.

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Dec 01

Fire has been unleashed!!

Category: Journal

Card-Jitsu: Fire has been un-leashed!! What is this you ask? Well it is the latest project i have been working on at work over the last 9 months or so. One of many projects but probably one of the largest of the many. Card-Jitsu: Fire is the next stage in the Ninja experience on Club Penguin and so far the game has met with great success (yay! was a lottle worried to say the least). It has been a crazy last few months just getting this thing done. 

The ninja experience for those of you who do know all started a year ago in November with the release of Card-Jitsu our trading card game both on-line and off-line. In this game players would challenge each other in a game based on rock, paper, scissors with a few tweaks in an effort to become a ninja on the site. This game became hugely successful almost turning Club Penguin into Club Ninja. It was cool as I had a small part in this game but more was to come when I was tasked at expanding the Ninja experience.

So for the last almost a year with a small team and then later a much larger one when all is told we pitched many ideas and finally rested on what is now the Fire game and expanded Ninja experience. We took the basic symbols we had and expanded on it creating the fire game. Using similar elements of the Card-Jitsu game to make it familiar and then using a board game element we have what is now the Fire game. Basically once a player has "leveled up" and become a Ninja they now must continue along their journey and master the element of fire! Only now they can challenge up to 4 players (believe me the was a challenge) and earn items to complete a full Fire ninja suit to become a fire ninja. The images below will give you a taste of the experience.

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So far to date this game release has been crazy successful with much relief. Their was much blood, sweat and tears on this (literally) and I think it paid off. The cool thing is being part of it and the largest project I have worked on to date aside from the CP DS game but that was really a small part. The biggest thing is though that their was a huge team on this one to get it all done and who all put in crazy amounts of work. Thanks to all of you!!! You guys truly rock and deserve much much credit. Above all i would really like to thank Russ who put in many many hours on this and was put on the hot spot to deliver and he did in spades!! You are an inspiration man! 

I will leave it at that for now as this post is getting long and I must get onto the next project as it's deadline is looming…

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Nov 16

4 Years and counting

Category: Journal

Here we are and it has been 4 years and counting on this of late sadly neglected blog. Of course I can come up with a thousand reasons (excuses) as to why this blog hasn’t been updated in awhile but i will spare you all for now. Let’s just say the last few months have been very ummm…. crazy and busy and tiring.

The latest has is that for that last 3 weeks and a bit we have all been sick at one time or the other. The Doctor thinks it was the big H1N1 and well i can believe that. Naomi in the end ended up with phenomena and I held off till that this last week to get sick myself.

Now with all being sick in the past and new fronts on the horizon (hmm i think that is redundant). We are looking forward to getting this blog rolling again. First with new pictures and updates of the last few months (lots happened) and new things. Please bear with us till then and thanks for your support.

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Aug 07

Enjoying the summer

Category: Journal

It has been a long time since I've written a post – it's a lot harder to do stuff like this between the kids and working full time.  By the time the kids are in bed I'm usually exhausted!    Since I've written last, Tristan started wearing glasses and Rhys started walking.  Well, Rhys just recently started walking – it's quite funny really.  He doesn't pick his feet up off the ground very high so it's a little awkward still.  And he falls a lot.  Give him a month and I'm sure he'll be golden!

Troy and I took some time off over the long weekend.  Daralynn and Sheldon were here with their kids so we got to spend time on the water with them.  We have been really blessed with hot weather (a little too blessed, judgeing by the fires) and have been outside on the water a lot. Both our boys have been celebrating a lot of firsts lately.  Rhys has had his first steps, his first words, his first time enjoying ice cream and corn on the cob.  Tristan has had his first pair of glasses, his first sailing trip, his first ride on a sea-doo, and his first wasp bite.

We have been trying really hard to spend quality time with the kids – taking them to playgrounds and including them in gardening when we're not at work.  As you can see by the pictures, we have been spending a lot of time on the water – the best part of summer!  Well I know all you really care about is the pictures, so here they are!

First Day with Glasses / Gotta love Costco Samples!

Corn on the cob – our favorite!

Just one more story Dad? / Picnic in the Park

New Water Boat Rhys / Shelby likes the water too!

Into Everything! / Tristan's first Sea-Doo ride

Grandma and the Girls / Tristan and Annika boating

Sailing with my Dad / Look! I caught a fish for you!

Look Mom!  I'm cool like you!

 

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Aug 06

More Summer Fun

Category: Journal

Another week of summer has past although a much more cooler one. We some crazy excitement with the insane rain storm at the end of the week. This was very welcome though as he insane hot and dry weather does become tiresome at times. Maybe my lawn will get green again. Of course in typical Mack fashion we had our roof redone this week and wouldn't you know it weren't quite finished when the rain came. We faired well and now have a new roof and lighter pockets.

Today is our family day with an excursion to the park after a great eventing spent the night before with the Beckers. The evenging went really well with the kids behaving and playing fairly well and bedtime going really smooth. The evenging was even relaxing an he mackhouse burgers were especially good.

We are now on our way to the mall for some shopping as I write this in the car. I had originally started to write this in he park will Tristan played with Naomi and Rhys slept in the stroller. The rain however came and I lost the post into he infinite world of ones and zeros. Oh well it has been a great day so far with a good sleep in had by all (very rare) And waffles and peaches for breakfast. The mall is coming up the street so it is time to go.

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Jul 07

Birthday & Tattoo

Category: Journal

Today was avery interesting day. First off it was Craig's B-day so Happpy Birthday bud!! and with that came a really cool gift from Ginny of a Tattoo.

Craig's nickname is HOS and about 4 years ago i drew up this design to go on his drum kit. THe design is the letters H-O-S in a tribal pattern and he instantly liked it and i had a stencil made to fit the kick drum. Well over the course of the years he has talked about getting it as a tattoo. So today on his B-day Ginny arranged as a surprise for him to finally get it. I was fortunate to be on hand to witness the event. I have to say it is a huge honor to see your artwork being put permanetly on someone. Craig i hope you really truely like it man as it is going to be with you for a very long time. 

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