The first week with Ezra

It’s been an interesting and trying week with Ezra.  The first couple of days with him were really really good.  The kid slept a lot and we felt a energized.  One morning I even went to Costco with Danielle (who is a life saver being here to help us out) and had a great day!

Then the vampire son came out.  Ezra did NOT want to sleep during the night.  He would feed and then stay awake for a few hours making grunting noises/crying a little.  Ugh.

Let’s back up a little.  The hospital offered a program which allowed us to leave the hospital earlier than usual (we left Sunday afternoon, not 24 hours after the birth!) as long as a midwife can come and visit a few times in the week to do some tests.  At first we initially declined this option but after a really hard first night where I squirrelled Ezra and myself up in the bathroom so Vero could get some sleep away from the grunting and cries…we realized that it may be better to head home so at least I could go into another room with him and get him away from Vero if need be.

This turned out to be the best decision of our lives.  The midwife was incredible.  She came in on Monday and Wednesday and also followed up with an additional Friday just to make sure we were doing fine.  The Monday appointment was pretty good…we all had some energy in us, we asked some questions and she took some measurements and some blood samples from Ezra.

Once Tuesday night hit and the vampire awoke, the midwife saw that we were a couple of adults who were destroyed by lack of sleep.  I couldn’t even comprehend how I could function.  But she put things into perspective and talked us through the issues we were having so far with him (not many at this point other than not sleeping through the night) and we got some much needed sleep that day.

While it would be nice to get a straight shot of 6-8 hours of sleep, the human body can still function quite nicely if it only gets 6-8 hours over the span of 24 hours.  The week got easier but Ezra has kept on staying awake during the night.

As I write this one week after his birth, Danielle and Gaetan have taken Sierra for breakfast and Vero and Ezra are sleeping in the bedroom.  He doesn’t seem to like sleeping in his bassinet in the bedroom so we have figured out that if I sleep on the couch, Vero has enough room to feed him in the bed and create a Fort Knox type barricade around him in the bed so he’s safe and sound when he sleeps.  I’m pretty impressed by the setup.  Last night in particular Vero couldn’t get him back to sleep after 2am and I sat for 3 hours with him watching Star Trek Deep Space Nine in the living room.  It’s nice to be sitting with your baby at first and just taking it in and trying different tricks to put him to sleep.  But after two hours it gets a little tiresome!!

At this point, the only tricks that seem to work is to put a pinky finger in his mouth to suck on and also to come along for the ride of doing squats with me.  He likes dropping down and coming back up.  It calms him.  While I don’t particularly care for the newborn phase of a child’s life (who really loves the lack of sleep and not knowing why a kid is crying?!) I do enjoy stumbling upon some new trick that calms him down.

All is not lost however…he is a great little boy and we don’t see many issues at this point like we did with Sierra.  Sierra had an intolerance to milk protein and soy that we didn’t really diagnose until four months later.  How were we supposed to know that her poops weren’t looking normal and crying her lungs out all evening wasn’t normal?

Ezra seems to be having the right type of stool coming out of him and nothing makes me happier.  We can’t remember if Sierra also was good at the beginning so we will keep an eye on things once a month goes by.

It’s hard not to talk about Sierra when I talk about Ezra because I am always comparing the experiences in my head.

Speaking of Sierra, she is turning out to be a great big sister.  She wants to play with him and hold him and generally be around him but she listens well if we tell her that certain times aren’t the best for playing (like when he’s sleeping).  I think a good relationship will bond the older he gets.

Onto to some pictures!

Here’s a snap of Ezra and I after a night of no sleep.  But he’s already a diehard Smashing Pumpkins fan.  He gave me the thumbs up for my choice of t-shirt.

Here he is before leaving the hospital for the first time.  I’m thinking he’s giving me some type of gang sign?

Proud Papa!

Obligatory “Here Comes the Son!”.  What a great first song to listen to.

”What do you mean he’s a boy?!”

Sierra was very excited to show Ezra all her toys.

We snuck outside onto the front porch to get some sunlight.

“Excellent.”  I think this is the picture in which Nanny was saying she had never seen fingers so long on a newborn before.

Clearly Ezra thinks my jokes are pretty good.

I saw this on a box at Costco and thought it was hilarious.

Grand-maman said that the ladies love seeing a guy push a stroller.

Grand-maman sneaking in a much needed nap.

Sierra playing Frère Jacques on the kazoo for Ezra.  

I’m crushing your head!

I send these shirtless photos to my colleagues every few days.  I know they are happy to receive them.

Hanging out in the living room 

Grand-papa dropped in for a visit

I got some lessons from the bricklayer.  Pouring cement wasn’t all that hard.  I was expecting it to be harder.  I suppose the hardest part is creating the form to put the cement in and I let Gaetan do that part while I slept.  

The final product!  I raced to the daycare to pick up Sierra because we had the great idea of putting Sierra and Ezra’s foot print into the cement before it dried.  We got Ezra’s done and then Sierra didn’t want anything to do with it!  After minutes of trying to convince her it was a cool thing to do, we wiped the slate clean.

First outing with wasn’t a far walk…a couple of houses away!

We survived the first outing together!

A nice family shot



Welcome Ezra!

Sierra was born on a Saturday evening three years ago.  Ezra came into this world in a very similar fashion.  Vero and I had a nap during the day and ate some supper.

“Yahoo I made it!”

I was in the other room when I heard the news that Vero’s water had broken!  We had never witnessed this the first time around so it was new to us.

This was around 6:20pm and we didn’t take much time to get to the hospital.  Let’s just say that the construction zones set at 80km/hr had a vehicle zoom through them this time around!  I figured I had a good excuse and there were no workers present.

The entire event was eerily similar to the first time we came…the hospital was empty on a Saturday evening as we walked up the hallways.  We tried to get into an elevator and the thing wasn’t even working on a Saturday evening so we had to find another one!

We got to the birthing centre and they told us we were ready to go and we should get to work!  They wheeled us into Room 2B219 which was the exact same room we had three years prior.  There are 20 rooms available so I guess fate wanted us to have some similar surroundings?

Ezra is loving life in the arms of a shirtless man.

The people helping us this time around were ten times better than the first time around.  The first time they though Vero had already delivered a baby before so they didn’t really coach her through the process.  This time around everyone was involved in counting down contractions, telling when to push, etc etc etc.  We really appreciated the staff and their hard work but let’s be honest here, Vero was doing all the hard work!

I tried to convince Vero that a baby with this type of moustache NEEDS to be named Mario!  But she didn’t bite.

Out came the baby at 7:37pm and Vero and I were both shocked to see that it was a boy!  Side note: Considering the size of a newborn’s testicles, I am now laughing at the fact that I wasn’t entirely sure if Sierra was a girl or not.  I said to the nurses “It’s a….girl?” And they looked at me like I was crazy and said “Uh yeah, it’s a girl.” Now I know why they thought I was kind of dumb.  There is no room for error when you see a newborns’ testicles and so there we had him…a baby boy!  All signs had pointed to having a girl so it definitely caught us by a good surprise!

Ezra came in at 7 lbs, 13 ounces and measured 21 inches.  Nanny saw a photo of him and remarked at how long his fingers were and thought he may be a fighter. Either that or a piano player!

We phoned a few key members of the family to let them hear the good news and settled in for the night.  It’s interesting how three years can go by and I forget how hard it is to take care of a newborn on the first night.  Ezra decided to keep us up all night long testing out his new set of lungs!  But we love him and that’s what counts.

Ezra Bridger of Star Wars Rebels was the partial inspiration for his name.  It’s just a cool sounding name!

Sold: Fables complete set

This post is for historical purposes so I can track how much I have sold my comics for.

So this was my first real foray into selling some comic books.  I had finally got around to reading all 150 issues of Fables and realized that I wasn’t going to be re-reading them anytime soon so it was time to give them to a good home.

Behold, the entire set in all its glory!

Now, I have sold video games before on Ebay and Vero made me realize I should try and sell them on Kijii first so I can avoid the hassle of shipping and paying fees on Ebay.  It worked out for the most part.

This time around I had placed an ad on both Kijiji and Facebook Marketplace and there were no bites.  A couple of months went by and I was trying to figure out how to ship 150 comic books on Ebay before I went ahead and posted it.  Then THE SEQUEL was getting close to being born so I didn’t bother doing anything more about it.

Kijiji took my listing off automatically after a few months but I had forgotten about the FB marketplace ad and out of nowhere someone from Montreal contacts me wondering if they were available!  He even drove to Gatineau to pick them up.  I had my good pal Benoit handle the transaction as he lives in Gatineau.

So, all in all, it was successful sale, it just took awhile to get going.

I did learn a few things in my first sale though:

  • It looks like selling comic books is NOT the adventure I had imagined when I was 13 years old.  The world has changed.  Now people can either have trade-paperbacks or digital comics on their iPad.  There is a very small minority actually collecting comic books.
  • Knowing that, I really have to price things accordingly.  From what I’ve read on forums, if you want to get rid of your comics, you have to price them really low (except for the ones you know that are valuable of course!)
  • With 10,000 comics in storage, I know that maybe 5% are going to bring in a lot of money.  It may be hard to get rid of others priced at $1 a comic!  That’s a tough pill to swallow when I was paying $4-$5 a comic book.  But much like going to the movies, I have to realize that I’m paying for entertainment and if I can get some money back, I should be happy with whatever I get.
  • I’m now contemplating what to do with my actual valuable comics.  Do I get them slabbed for future investment sake?  I’m not sure yet.

$150 for 150 comic set.  Definitely took a loss on this one considering I’ve been buying most issues priced at $2.99 or higher.  I suppose most of the sales will be like selling at a garage sale.

Strength Training

A few weeks ago I had a really sore back.  REALLY sore.  I couldn’t even walk right at work.  People were saying “Are you ok?” and I thought “Yeah, I just have a really sore back and I don’t know why.”

Later on in the day I figured out exactly why I had a sore back…I was throwing Sierra up and down a dozen times as she was laughing hysterically.

I remember when Vero first told me she was pregnant with Sierra…I hopped on the elliptical with the idea of ‘getting in shape’.  I didn’t want to be in a position in my life where I couldn’t do certain things with my kids.  Sure enough, I lost a bunch of weight but I never really did anything to increase my strength.  I didn’t notice that it was an issue at first considering it’s not really hard to take care of someone under thirty pounds for a few years!

Fast forward to three years later and clearly it’s starting to become an issue!

Andre has really great taste in t-shirts

I contacted my pal Andre with my dilemma…help me get to a point where I can lift my kid up a dozen times without being in pain for three days afterwards!

The key with any type of exercise is finding something that you don’t mind doing.  I hate jogging.  But I love walking!  So I walk.  I also really enjoy the elliptical.  So Andre figured out some interval training I could do with the elliptical which is fantastic.

A week and a half into scapular pushups, squats, lunges, etc etc etc and I’m finally not sore after a workout.  🙂  We’ll see how long this keeps up.  I have a feeling the goal of not being sore while throwing kids up into the air will keep me wanting to be fit the rest of my life.

Andre approves of this post

Sierra’s 38th month

Sierra is quite excited for the baby to arrive.  She is also very inclusive of the family as she frequently says things like “We are taking a ride…Maman, Dad, Sierra and the baby in the belly of Maman!”

After Mom and Dad visited at the end of June I realized that Sierra can understand English perfectly but I haven’t really been forcing her to speak it.  It’s time to change that up seeing that it’s getting harder for English folk to understand what Sierra is babbling on about.  The past month has been home to me always saying “Now…how do you say that in English?”  She sits for a second and then says the entire sentence again in French other than the final word!”  It’s a start!

Vero brought Sierra to the dentist and they said that she can’t swallow the new toothpaste that they gave her.  So the past month has been introducing Sierra to the concept of spitting into the sink.  She finds taking a gulp of water and spitting into the sink to be a hilarious experience!  I’m still not sure if she isn’t swallowing the toothpaste but I haven’t seen a tummy ache yet.

July has been home to some killer weather here so we are happy we purchased air conditioning!  I believe Vero would have sweated herself away if it wasn’t for the air conditioning.  Sierra has woken up a few times in the past month because she is cold so I had to teach her to PULL THE SHEET AND BLANKET UP TO STAY WARM!  We just decided to set her room at 75 degrees which seems fine with her.  It’s not like she’s waking up in sweat.

Dad and Sierra watching Dora the Explorer.  Sierra LOVES this show…we can’t seem to ween her off of it!

Mom teaching Sierra how to wax on and wax off.  I have to say that this Karate Kid book is quite good.  Although I was cringing when I came to the part where Cobra Kai are about to kick Daniel’s ass…that’s a little scary.  I think Sierra said something like “Daniel bobo?”  “Yep…Daniel’s going to get some bobos soon kid!”

This is a neat snack idea that Mom and Dad picked up during their trip through the United States of America.  It’s a cob that you put in the microwave which produces popcorn!

Now that Mom is back in town, it’s time to fix up Sierra’s new bedroom!  Here we are figuring out how a decal works.

It went up pretty good with the help of a level and Mom.

It was surprisingly easy to find Dora stickers on Amazon.  I would have thought there isn’t anything left in that department since the show is so old.

Here’s Sierra seeing her stickers for the first time.  She was quite excited.

On June 29, 2019, Dad has a poutine for the first time.  I still have a hard time believing he didn’t have a bite before.  I don’t think he will have another one.  But the trip to St-Albert was fun.

The family inspecting how curds are made.

The patio is getting finished slowly but surely!  We didn’t care for the look of lattice where we could avoid it so we decided to put deck boards here.  This provides an advantage over the lattice….the upper deck seems to heave and we had that issue with the past deck and every time it would come back down in the spring the lattice wouldn’t be aligned.  This way we are hoping to avoid that issue.

Someone brought a bouncy castle to Mike’s birthday BBQ!  It was pretty cool.  I’m always amazed at how Sierra has no fear on these things.

Hanging out near the campfire

Checking out the swing!

Happy Canada Day!  Considering there was nothing going on in Vars this year we decided to head to Russell where they had a parade.  Sierra enjoyed seeing the horses.

“This snow cone is making my brain freeze Dad!”

Russell had a really great setup for the Canada Day celebration.  Bouncy castles, BBQ and live entertainment!  Here we were taking a break from the sun and listening to some tunes.

It takes awhile for Sierra to warm up to the bouncy castles but when she gets in she doesn’t want to leave!

Sure this photo has Sierra in it but really all I wanted was a photo of this glorious beard!

Alan and Joelle invited us over for a Canada Day BBQ.  It took a LOT of coaxing to get Sierra into the pool.  She didn’t remember how much of a great time she had the year prior.  Here’s a great action shot of her finally taking the plunge!

Mike was dog sitting for a few days.

I’m not even sure which playground this is from!  Vero must have went around town with Sierra.

Spider-Man makes a rare appearance with her handy drill!

Rumour has it that Sierra was not too impressed with the splash pad with Jenna and Jan.

I’m coming across a bunch of pictures that I haven’t seen before and I am now remembering that Vero stopped working at the beginning of July and decided to take Sierra out of daycare for that week.  Here she is having some fun next to the pool.

Sierra looks so tall next to this giant toothbrush!  Supposedly the first visit to the dentist went ok.  I don’t think she held her mouth open long.


Petrie Island was calling our name!  Vero had a great idea to head to the beach.  It was quite hot for the past few weeks.  Sierra was quite excited to play with her new sand bucket.    

This photo, along with some back pain after throwing Sierra up and down in the air a dozen times is what prompted me to start getting into some strength training shortly after this!  We’ll see how long that lasts!

It took awhile for Sierra to get used to the waves but she needed water for her sand castle so she asked me to come along for the walk.

The morning at Petrie Island was a success other than a sunburn in the middle of our backs where we missed the suntan lotion!  Also, I love how the apple shows up in this picture because Sierra passed it over to me afterwards wanting me to eat it but it was full of sand.  Not a fun experience but you can’t say no!

Water gun fun!

We haven’t gone out for a bike ride yet this month so we decided to go out on one of the hottest days! 

We are pretty impressed that Sierra somehow learned how to swing by herself.  There’s some eight year olds out there in the world that haven’t even learned this skill yet!

What better place to do artwork at daycare than outside in the sand area?


I feel this scene is out of a mobster movie.  “Let me show you my collection.”

We sent a bunch of photos to Nanny and Sierra personalized each one.  Here’s a sample.

We had the neighbours over for a bbq and the swing set was a hit for all ages!

A giant t-boomer of a storm rolled in and all our guests left around 8pm.  Sierra and I sat on the front porch watching it all come down.

Sierra finally got her new tricycle!  By new, I mean one that has been handed down the generations.  This was Vero’s tricycle back in Hearst!

We went to the Limoges water park one morning.  I have to admit that I had visions of it being as warm as it was the week before but it wasn’t really.  The water was really cold as well!  So…we played a game of avoiding the water.

I’m not sure if I made a posting about this already but if not, here it is!  Vero went out to see Backstreet Boys at Bluesfest.  I was quite surprised to find out that it was the largest crowd of the festival…I guess people really love the Backstreet Boys!

Mike and Melanie picked up this for Sierra’s birthday.  Yoda lives!

It was pretty neat to see an artist at work.

A few weeks later he is still at it!

So the ongoing joke at work is that I was receiving a certificate for 15 years of service and that I wanted the name Guy Terrifico to appear on it.  After months of waiting, I never saw it.  Not a big deal, it’s just a piece of paper.  But my bud Matt made me a certificate signed by the Prime Minister himself (that’s the PM passing me the certificate in the photo above!).

This is my view from my daily walk.  Beautiful!

Enjoying a smoked meat sandwich.  That’s a new choice from P’tit Epicerie!

What kid doesn’t love trying to go up a slide this way?

Sierra and I were lucky to be invited over to Max’s house for some pizza supper on a Friday night.  We even got strawberries and whipped cream!

Another visit to Petrie Island!  We found a spot under a tree so we could get some shade. 

While watching another t-boomer on the front porch, I taught Sierra how to take a selfie.  There are a hundred pictures like this.

Hey, she managed to frame her face pretty well in this shot!

I didn’t realize we had a vampire in the house!

Sierra showing Oncle Claude and Aunt Mary how to take a selfie.

Etienne’s 40th birthday party after work!  It was hooooottttttt out.

I went up to the ninth floor to take a shot of the Cirque du Soleil setting up shop across the road.

When it’s a sweltering day and you get home, what better way to cool down than with the sprinkler?!  

Seriously, we need to get her eating different coloured popsicles!  She looks like Gene Simmons!

Rob and Jan invited us out to their campsite at Cedar Shades.  We went swimming in a quarry and had a good lunch.  It was a really neat spot for kids!



Love of a good theme song

Sierra gets really excited when she sees this comet.

Anyone can hum you the theme of all the great television shows…Star Trek, Cheers, The Simpsons.  They are ingrained into our brains after watching it over and over and over and over again.

However, if we aren’t careful, our kids won’t have any theme songs to whistle to.

In the era of streaming media, an interesting feature has popped up: ‘skip intro’.

I, like you, use this feature a lot.  Why would I waste my time watching the same intro over and over and over again when I can shave off a minute and get right back into the action I want to watch?

The answer to that question is…because the theme song is meant to be watched over and over and over again.

You know who taught me that?  Sierra.

I’ve been watching Star Trek Deep Space Nine and I would generally skip over the intro but it wasn’t until Sierra was sitting with me that I noticed she got SUPER EXCITED when the comet starts flying across the screen and the theme music comes in.  I skipped it one morning and she was really upset.  I didn’t understand what was going on until I rewinded it and she sat there comfortable in watching something she loved.  I’m not sure if it was the imagery, or the music, or the combination of both.

While watching the intro with her I thought about all the theme songs I grew up with and love and how new shows just don’t have that anymore because people just skip to the action.  Yet another piece of our collective culture being whittled away.

We can’t even chat at the office about the show we all watched yesterday because we all watched different things…now we can’t even remember the theme song to the show we watched?  What has happened?!

I’m glad it was Sierra that showed me how to love a theme song again.

Review: Bluesfest – Alexisonfire, Blakdenim, Busty and the Bass, Guided by Voices, Loon Choir, The Offspring

Mike and I had a pint of Nord-Est at Le Troquet before walking over to Bluesfest.  It was looking to be a perfect night weather wise!

Mel recommended the Bluefest special slice of pizza from Gabriel’s – bbq sauce and chicken with some onions.  Tasty!

I had forgot that KISS was in town for Bluesfest this year!

This was my first time in the Barney Danson Theatre.  I expected an actual theatre with theatre style seating but it was not as expected.  While I appreciate some air conditioning and a spot to sit so close to the band, I find this isn’t conducive to good interaction from the crowd.  Even the band commented on how nicely we were sitting in our spots.  🙂  But we were pretty enthusiastic for my favourite band from Ottawa…Loon Choir!  They played a bunch of songs from their new album and they still got the magic that hooked me when I first saw them at CityFolk years ago.  Do not pass this band up!

Sidenote about their new LP: I picked up their vinyl album and it came with a digital download.  First off, I don’t really agree with bands not putting CDs out because I’m an old dinosaur.  But I’m alright with it if they provide high quality audio to download and this is exactly what Loon Choir.  PLUS they snuck in a bonus track which wasn’t on streaming media or on the vinyl record either…a song called Heartache.  Sneaky!

We also checked out Busty and the Bass which seemed entertaining with their horn section and Blakdenim who were all kinds of awesome and they are from Ottawa so I will have to definitely check them out again.  I did not manage to snap photos of them.

We stumbled into old volleyball mates…Wes and Amanda!  Screaming Banshees reunite!

The Offspring still got it!  I was surprised at how good the show was.  Noodles (guitarist) made me realize how good we have it with Bluesfest when he said he had never seen a 10 day festival before in his life!  I also love how he referred to Ottawa as Awfuckyeahttawa.

Here’s the deal with Alexisonfire.  I only know a couple of tunes.  They are just a band that escaped me in the 2000s when I was focussed more on learning about classic rock.  But they were all kinds of awesome and the crowd was loving them.  They broke up a few years ago but they are back at playing a few concerts here and there through the year.  I’ll have to dive into their discography.

I didn’t realize a picture was being taken.

I snuck over to see Guided by Voices during the Alexisonfire set.  I’m not entirely sure what I witnessed.  It was weird…it was like they had a medley of 12 songs and the lead singer escaped from a nursing home.  I was glad when it was over and I went back to Alexisonfire.

While it wasn’t the gauntlet of 10 days in a row like years before, it was nice to get out for a few days, see some friends, have some beers and enjoy the music.  We are lucky here in Ottawa to have festivals like this.  Here’s to another 25 years of Bluesfest!



The Sequel’s (minus) one month

Well at this point, even if I might not feel ready, there’s nothing much else I can do!  The baby is coming quickly and life will never be the same.

Let’s be honest…it’s the lack of sleep that is the ultimate fear followed by the question of how Sierra will be around the Sequel.  Sierra is quite hard headed like someone else in our family and I can only imagine how her tantrums will be when she starts realizing she can’t get her way anymore.  Ah well, every other family lives through this and it will be an adventure!

The Sequel’s room is nearly set up.  We can hold off on the crib for awhile since the baby will sleep in a bassinet.

I’m very interested to see if our tricks with Sierra work with a second baby.  For example, other than Sierra’s allergies keeping her up, I feel we didn’t have a whole lot of trouble on the sleeping front.  Now…was this nature vs. nurture?  My theory is that a baby doesn’t know what a world outside their mother is so nurture can help the baby adapt.  Let the kid sleep in a noisy living room with the TV on.  Much like me moving to Bayshore in 1998 and I couldn’t sleep with the OC Transpo buses driving by all night long….I got used to it.  Humans can adapt so I theorize that babies can too.  But who knows…maybe I’m off my rocker and this kid will be completely different.

I believe having another kid is exciting because you get to see if the experience is different.  It’s like playing a familiar video game but some game mechanics change slightly.

We are both pretty excited that we installed air conditioning this summer.  It’s helped out Vero quite a bit.  I noted that Vero seemed to grow larger a lot quicker this time around but at the same time I was looking at her face and it didn’t seem to really change this time around compared to last time.  Let’s do a comparison shot!

Here was Vero around April 2016, a month before giving birth.

Here she is in 2019.  Hmm…quite a bit larger actually!

Just kidding of course!  Here is Vero on Canada Day which is about six weeks before the due date.  This was the only full body shot I had.  Most other pictures are of her on the couch!  🙂

Here’s the sequel around the end of June.

Here we are listening for signs of life.  Sierra said she was humming Star Trek!

The Sequel and Sierra hanging out at the beach.

I’m not sure why Vero took this photo.  It was either a shot of her swollen foot or a picture to send to the pedicure…office?  Centre?  Pedicurist? to see if she was eligible or if she was too far gone.

The Sequel went to see the Backstreet Boys when they came to Bluesfest.  I had about a dozen people lined up to help out Vero if she went into labour!