Wednesday, May 23, 2007


I can admit to being a dork, I read the owners manual for our van from start to finish. I may have quickly scanned a few areas, but in general I read every word. And to be honest I think it was time well spent, I would recommend it has a good read for everybody who has a relatively new vehicle. I found out some really interesting things about our van that I never would have known otherwise. For example

- you can roll all 4 windows down/up using the key and the drivers door lock.

- you can also roll all four window down using the remote

- you can program the auto lock/unlock

- if you hold down the eject button for a couple of seconds you can eject all six cds automatically

- the same applies to loading

- the auto defogger uses A/C - even if your using the heat

- so yes you can have both the A/C and heat going at the same time

- Our window wipers are speed sensing

- The auto scan button 0n the radio remembers your hometown stations so you can autoscan when your away from home to set you preset stations, and then go back to your original settings when you get home.

- The passenger airbag turns off if somebody who weighs less then 60 lbs is sitting there. - and there is a light that tells you it is off.

- Our seatbelt indicator is really annoying, if either you or your passenger doesn't put on their seatbelt it beeps every 15 seconds until you do it up

And that is just some of the things I found out from reading the owners manual. I'm sure some of those features would have taken me years to figure out, if I ever did. The only problem I have now is that my head is full of so much information about the million buttons in my van that half the time I don't use them because I can't remember what does what. But I'll get there eventually. For now I'm enjoying playing with the auto open doors. I get great fun in opening the doors to the van from inside the house.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

"NO, me do it"

If you come visit me, I'm sure you will hear that screeched at you at least a dozen times. I am not liking this new phase. While I'm glad Hannah wants to be independent, she is trying my patience. And I think I have pretty good patience, so if I'm starting to lose it, you know it's bad. The simplest thing takes forever as I first have to convince her she wants to do it, then I have to wait while she does it herself. And yes watching her try to put on her own diaper for 20 minutes before bedtime is really frustrating. But god forbid if you should attempt to help, as this will bring on instant meltdown. The type of meltdown that takes 5 minutes of hugging to recover from, then another five to convince her to put her diaper on, and then your back to 20 minutes of watching her try to put it on. and that is just the start, she has to do everything from getting dressed, to climbing into her carseat, turning off the tv, to putting her own diaper on all by herself.

If anybody has some spare patience lying around they should send it his way because I am very much in need of it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A fond farewell

As many of you know, we have been nursing our `95 Ford Windstar along since shortly after we moved to Calgary. No really serious problems, just a frustrating string of small problem after small problem. The most disturbing of which has been an intermittent stalling problem that has come and gone with the summer heat. The most likely culprit is a slowly failing fuel pump. Last Saturday it had a really bad stalling episode on the first really hot day of the year. This after we had just had it serviced a week or so ago... With both kids in tow, we made the decision that perhaps it was time to let go. So on that note, it with a heavy heart that I must announce that, with 239237 Kilometers on the odometer, our first baby has been retired...

Now for the exciting news, photos of our new baby:

Here you can see a couple of our favorite features:

  • Dual power sliding doors
  • Sliding door windows that roll down
  • Onboard DVD
  • Power moon roof

Here's a head on view of the new addition to our family (Please pardon the bugs, we've already taken it for a highway joyride).

And yes, it is a Honda:


We looked at the different North American models, I really tried to convince myself that they were just as good.... But the GM vans (Montana/Uplander) didn't have the towing capacity that we were looking for, the Grand Caravan interior just didn't line up with the price tag and while we really liked the Ford Freestar (no surprises there), Ford's announcement that they are dropping out of the minivan market after the 2007 model year does not bode well for long term maintenance...

So at that point we started looking at the big players in the import market: Toyota and Honda. The Toyota Sienna offered the option of all-wheel-drive for a steep price and I wasn't terribly fond of the body styling, which left us with the beautiful machine that eventually selected...