Monday, October 31, 2011

Old Memories of China come rushing back

Misty Hollow Carving
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Today’s Blog Post

Old Memories of China come rushing back
It has now been 26 years since I returned from working in China – specifically Hong Kong. That was 1985.

There are so many wonderful memories from that time of my life. I wish I was young enough again to live that part all over again. Oh so many wonderful memories rush over me this morning.

Through a unique contact again, actually an email that was relegated to my Spam Email box, I opened it and read “Cherry’s” invitation.

Cherry’s email read as follows… quote…
Dear leader
This is Cherry from Wujiang Xuanzhiyao Silk Textile CO., LTD. We are pleased to know you and your esteemed company from internet.

We supply many kinds of fabric, such as taslan, nylon taffeta, and cotton nylon polyester pongee and so on. Our company has its own factory, we are the producer. The principle of our company is “Quality first, Customer foremost”. We will do our best to satisfy you!
More information can refer to our website:
Looking forward to your reply. Thank you!
Best regard,
Address: NO.1760, West road, East silk Market, Shengze Town, Wujiang City, Jiangsu Province, China.
Tel 86-512-60667977
Fax: 86-512-63576757
Mobile: 86-13338016810
Skype :xzytex
End email quote..

I responded with the following email to her…

Thank you for your email. It arrived to my Spam folder... and I unSpamed it. Although at this time I am not ready to purchase your products, I am in contact with others from time to time that might be. I will let them know of your business as well.

My personal company is primarily wood carving but it is diversifying in other areas now as well.

My interest is in China for sure. As a Canadian I know some of China well. I used to live in Hong Kong with my wife and two daughters. We had the opportunity to travel to parts of southern China often. My trips to China were primarily for leisure and personal interest but while there I built a number of business contacts through creative and artistic people that I had met.

That was between 1980 and 1985 when many people from North America had not been able to come into China very often. We as Canadians were rather odd as we walked through the streets of the cities!

As well I had learned to speak Cantonese and can read some of the Chinese language... adding a bit of Mandarin to my language ability as well(but not very good in this area). I was an oddity for sure in 1981 as I toured China for the first time.

China became a one of the "great loves" in our lives.

When we returned to Canada, our great joy has been to help University Students that have come from China to study in our different Universities. So far that has been in Toronto, Ontario; Regina, Saskatchewan; and now in Peterborough, Ontario. Because of our love for your country and our experience there... it was natural to come to know these students here.

A famous American business man names J. C. Penny - founder of the Department Store - "J. C. Penny" made a statement that has deeply affected my own perception and my own business. He said, "Every great business is built on Friendship".

I believe that and have endeavored to do that with my own business "Misty Hollow Carving".

By the way, while living in Hong Kong I worked as a teacher. I also worked with projects to help the Hong Kong youth find new meaning in their lives. Many of the students that we worked with had to leave school early so that a brother or sister could go to a better school. All of the family supported that selected child.

Many of the youth that couldn't continue in school worked in factories that were not offering any further training. The work place that they were relegated to was almost a "prison experience". By using the creative things that I do I developed new interesting classes for the young adults and adults to take part in. The many different factory workers attended these classes and developed new skills... plus they developed new skills with their English speaking. Both areas began to show in their daily work and some were promoted to new areas in their companies and life.

This project that we developed helped adults and young adults find a new life. For me personally it was very fulfilling to see the transformations in each life.

During this time of working in Hong Kong, I met with the Governor of Hainan Province in China. He had heard what we were doing with our special programs. He was very impressed to say the least. He asked if I would come to his Province and help with the workers in his communities that had been injured in their work place... so that they could continue to be productive members of the society and communities of Hainan again.

I was deeply moved by his invitation.

A very wealthy Hong Kong business man was involved with me and also knew the Governor. He brought the two of us together.

I could not go to Hainan Island Province at that time as I had to return to Canada with my family. But I encouraged the Governor that I would not forget him and his request. I would pass it on to other Canadians that I knew might be able to help Hainan and his people.

Through an amazing series of events other Canadians did go to Hainan Province in the very south of China. In unique ways they were and are helping the people of China.

Personally I felt a loss in that I couldn't stay and do what I was doing to help China. I had to return to Canada for my own daughters and their further education. I needed to support them personally.

When I lived in Regina - a city in Western Canada - a unique thing happened. A University Professor from Hainan University came to study in the University of Regina. Through one of the Canadians that was working in Hainan an introduction was made. This Professor and I became very close friends.

When his studies in English were being done in Regina, he was writing a book to help Chinese students in his University to learn English better. He asked me to do the art illustrations for this book. That was a great honor for me - to say the least. I was again helping students in China in a very unique way.

Today I am 67 years old. I an retired and have been building my own business of "Misty Hollow". It has been going well.

Your email is another unique contact to "my China" - the one that I love so much.

Finally... you may recognize my family name. One of my relatives was at one time very famous. His name was President Abraham Lincoln - the famous American President that was shot.

Cherry it is very good to meet you this way. I hope and trust that your day and week will go very well. I welcome your friendship.

Murray Lincoln
Misty Hollow Carving
Peterborough, Ontario, Canada

So today… again… I have been reliving my China experience from the past. I cannot really explain the deep love I have for this amazing country.

I wish that I was 26 years younger again. Then I could take up the new opportunity that is sitting right in front of me – all over again.

BUT – maybe – just maybe that through my new email contact.. something good will come of this.

Cherry and I will try to help where I can.

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Need for Respite Care – and finding it in Frankenmuth, Michigan

Misty Hollow Carving
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Today’s Blog Post

The Need for Respite Care – and finding it in Frankenmuth, Michigan

For the last two days we have been experiencing the gracious hosting of the people of Michigan… and in particular the people of Bridgeport and Frankenmuth. These folks are just plain fun to be with.

It has been an escape from our lives in Peterborough, Ontario. Just getting away to do something different and experience something new has been a breath of fresh air.

So why come here?

Well for one thing there is Bronners Christmas Store. There is no store quite like it. It is equivalent to the areas of one and a half football field’s space. And every single foot of Bronners is full of Christmas things.

I am married to a lady that loves Christmas! Plain and simple – Christmas is a big deal in our home… and yesterday we bought almost our limit of Christmas stuff. We would bring home the full sized Camels and the life sized Nativity Characters… but the van is too small!

But then there are the amazing stores of Frankenmuth that also draws shoppers like us. There were lots of people our age walking from shop to shop, enjoying the delights of this small Bavarian style community.

We are here with our “39 The Second Time” Group… people about our age that are aging gracefully but not old. Old cannot make a go of this many new things. Old has to be catered to for almost all that happens around them. Old moves too slowly and tires out too fast to keep up to the “39 TTST” folk.

The “39 TTST” folk that hang out with us and escape like this from time to time all have something in common… we have old people in our lives. Nothing wrong with these old people… but they are old and require more help. These old people are our parents that are in our lives for care giving. Some of the old people live on their own, some are in senior’s homes and some live with the “39 TTST” folk.

There is a unique need in our communities. The need is for the care givers to have care and get away. Some call it respite care. I never thought much about it in the past… until I needed it myself.

I love my mom and my mom loves me… but we need time away from each other.

So this weekend has been the most wonderful time away. We have been blessed.

With the other three couples that traveled her with us… we have loved and joked and carried on like were still young… and it has been good.

A special BIG Thanks to our daughter and her family that has taken on an extra load for the weekend. I will remember he in my will… and God willing not be a burden to her when I hit 80+. Thank Dana!

~ Murray Lincoln ~

Thursday, October 27, 2011

I think I have solved our Raccoon and Cat Problem getting into our Garbage

Misty Hollow Carving
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Today’s Blog Post

I think I have solved our Raccoon and Cat Problem getting into our Garbage
The raccoons in our area are cute. At least for about the few minutes that we are able to catch them crossing the yard, leaving a tree or coming from our neighbor’s attic. The ancient rascals with the cute masked face are just fun to watch as they do their stuff.

But cuteness and fun to watch quickly evaporates when you take a look the next morning at your garbage strewn all over the yard or walkway. If it was just strewn, like pulled out and spread around, it might not be that big a problem. But is usually pulled apart, evidently eaten and smeared from one side of the walkway to the other. On a warmer day it will be covered with flies buzzing around the open contents by the time I get up!

Mr. Raccoon or Mrs. Cat will not clean up after themselves. They leave the mess for me to scoop up. But picking up the mess is one thing, the juices of our food stuff and other things are also left on the walkway are another. Yuk!

Can I say it clearly and honestly, I hate critters that attack our garbage and leave the messes that they do! I hate the many cats in our neighborhood that are left out – or rather let out – to roam our yard and others. Stupid Neighbors are as much a problem as raccoons and cats.

One neighbor harbored the raccoons in her attic. She couldn’t remove them because they were cute. And the cats from her house were freely roaming the area… and at our garbage often.

But our garbage is good stuff – left over stuff that was good.

A roast chicken is amazing to eat for an evening meal. The bones are great to lick clean. But a roast chicken the next morning is less than appetizing on the walkway.

A wonderful bunch of plums were delicious all week long, except for the last six that rotted in the bowel when we hadn’t eaten them. They were tossed in the trash when they went really bad. And the next morning when I had to gather up what was left of the smeared and mushy plums from the ground – I laid off plums for a while.

Peaches and grapes and all kinds of fruits in our garbage seem to be a smorgasbord for raccoons.

Chicken and Beef left over with the bones still having some meat on them is a delicacy for the cat population in our area.

But keeping the garbage inside is not an option we have.

BUT one day, after a series of night raids the critters stopped opening the garbage can. It was as if they simply left. Yet across the street the other folk had experienced an attack again. Our garbage was in the can and not disturbed. Why?

I opened the can and the smell of Pain Thinner waft from the bags.

My wife had cleaned some labels off something that she had bought, using paper towels soaked with Paint Thinner. As she cleaned, the Paint Thinner removed the sticky glue from her purchase. Afterwards she had tossed the scraps of paper toweling in with the refuse. It had enough smell of Paint Thinner left on it that the normal stinky garbage smell was not so evident. It acted like a deodorizer of sorts.

During the night when the critter came and took one sniff… he departed for a better smelling garbage treat.

Now any time that we have the excess of chicken, beef, or fruit treats going out to the garbage can. I purposefully dribble a little bit of Paint Thinner on a paper towel and place it in with the “treats”.

Now I know about spontaneous combustion and soiled rags in a confined space. They will from time to time, if the conditions are right, start on fire. But to have that happen the space and the quantity of soiled rags are a must. A dribble of “Paint Thinner” or a sprinkle of “Varsol” is like a raccoon retardant for our family.

Doing this from time to time seems to make a huge difference.

I also have resorted to taking a small rag soaked in one of the chemicals and wipe out the inside the garbage can itself. However the sunshine of the day tends to evaporate that smell fairly fast… allowing it to last only a day or so.

The direct approach to the garbage bag has proven the best.

Raccoons and Cats have good taste. They only want the best garbage!

Sending a neighbor’s cat home with Paint Thinner on its breath is just plain fun. The cat knows he or she can’t eat that crap so they leave my garbage alone.

The only time it didn’t work was when I was too busy to put in my small dribble on the paper towel. The next morning the critter had left a mess for me to pick up.

I am not sure that it will help you in your area. But it works well in my yard.

Also - you may like to look at

Good luck.

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Patrice Servant needs to know I admire him

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Today’s Blog Post

Patrice Servant needs to know I admire him
I think you would appreciate “Patrice Servant”. I have never met him, but I read of what he did and I appreciate him very much. His one small action that turned the world around him upside down was reported, and my respect for him grew greatly – at least for a little while.

No one heard his name for a long time. He was hidden in all that he did. But in what did he was heard by millions. And now today you will not likely be hearing from him again but then again you might.

That kind of sounds like a riddle doesn’t it. I think I will keep that one for my grandkids.

His name is perfect for what he was known for doing. He was a servant for another famous person in Canada. That servant-hood didn’t take place in the 1700s or 1800s – but rather the years 2002 and 2011. And it was in 2011 that his one decision made headlines.

Patrice Servant lives in Quebec. His job was to write speeches for his very famous Boss, Jean Charest, the Premier of Quebec.

Whatever the Boss wanted he did. If the Boss was to make a speech in Montreal on next Wednesday, Patrice would have a speech ready for Mr. Charest to give. Mr. Charest is the top man in Quebec and a very important man in North America… but he has little time to write speeches… getting the information together and making it powerful and earth shaking. Patrice was very good at doing that for his Boss for the last 9 years.

But in the last while in Quebec there have been some major Construction problems revealed by reporters and citizens. It has become very evident that poorly built projects and buildings were done by not so good contractors and construction people. These not so good folk had apparently obtained important Government and Commercial Contracts by underhanded methods. The Government had also paid exorbitant dollars for all of this. With that happening it became more and more suspicion that an inquiry was needed to get to the bottom of what was going on. Regular Citizens were put in greater danger with some of these projects collapsing.

Not living in Quebec now(but once-upon-a-time having lived there) I follow the news reports that seep out over news service. And even being in the bordering province with Quebec – not much is coming our way about their problems… at least until Patrice did what he did.

Patrice quit his very important position of Mr. Charest’s speech writer.

As reporters tried to dig deeper they found that Patrice had left his post because of a matter of conscience. His Boss, Mr. Charest soundly refused to get into the matter of the province needing an inquiry into the construction world. In his speeches and material being put out from his office, Mr. Charest would have nothing to do with it. He would not hear of it.

And most all that Mr. Charest said were words that Patrice Servant prepared for him. Patrice took all that he was given and crafted great words to avoid any idea of an inquiry being launched.

BUT and it is a BIG BUT… Patrice had thought it through. He knew more than others perhaps. His own conscience was pricked by what had happened. Perhaps, (and that is my perhaps,) he knew people that were hurt or even killed by the poor construction methods and shoddy workmanship… or the over spending of the Government with the corruption that had taken place.

Patrice could no longer do the job. He could no longer “lie” to fellow Quebecers. His words were good and what he was required to say was not being honest. It was a matter of his conscience.

Now to have a guy like this quit such an important office was news making to say the least. To have him say very little about why… except the part about conscience… was even more revealing.

He could have said he was retiring… or moving to France to write speeches for the President there. But he didn’t.

I admire Patrice Servant for what he has done and how he has reacted.

Maybe I admire him more than others do. In my past working career I have had to not really tell the truth at times. I have been required to avoid the whole truth and nothing but the truth. I have had to craft words that skirted around the issues that should have been dealt with – but weren’t. I have sat in meetings where the leadership has been less than forthright. Now notice that I have avoided using the work “LIE” or “lying”.

Now to have a former Minister state these things out loud is downright dangerous to the image of the Church. To have me get close enough to telling the whole truth about what I know is a threat to people that know what happened – but don’t want it told.

Even dropping these hints that something was wrong way back when… is dangerous for my personal well being inside the ecclesiastical world. I do not dare say that folk in that world are less than perfect.

I hesitate to write certain chapters of my future book just because of the stuff that I know… and the fact that some of it cannot be told for fear of marring the memories of “great” people that I worked near or with. They were a bunch of clowns that needed to get out of their powerful positions and get rid of the lies that they lived… but didn’t and everyone still thinks they are saints (of sorts).

Recently my cousin visited me. She reminded me of a character that we both knew of in the old days. This guy was a “children’s evangelist”. He was thought of highly by his peers and many people in leadership. But he was a creep in my mind and gave me weird feelings when I was young.

This creep traveled far and wide over the prairies and different parts of Canada.

He would go to church to do “children’s ministry” for pastors that needed help. He was a great entertainer.

He would also molest little girls when he slept in the homes of pastors… that was true of my cousin. He messed with her… and she has terrible memories because of it.

She told me that there may be hundreds of kids that he had messed with.

Another, and still another, lady told me the same about two other “evangelists” in our church work that were well known and had raped each of them, threatened them and then they reacted by not telling anyone about these dear, talented “men of God”!

As a boy I thought they were weird and I avoided them.

Later as a fellow minister I tolerated them but I didn’t know… they were still weird. They were also criminals hiding behind “the cloth”, their clergy-privileged life.

Nope – not all ministers are pedophiles. Some are simple liars. Some have affairs with other women and sometimes men. Others are power hungry men and women that want to control other people’s lives. But it doesn’t stop with ministers – some of the Churches’ Lay Leadership have been worse than the main man or woman.

Have you ever wondered why so many people don’t attend church anymore? Yikes! I have and I have a suspicion as to why.

That sounds like a terrible indictment on my part I am sure. It also sounds like I know more that I should. If you feel like that you are right.

I worked for and with men that have done all these things. Worse yet in some cases I was very close and knew way too much – but wouldn’t believe what I knew.

Unlike Patrice I couldn’t or wouldn’t walk away from the “paying job”. I had kids to feed and I wasn’t responsible for these stupid actions of the ministers that were clowns. I had to stick with what I was doing. Conscience or no conscience I had to work close by.

But in all of situations I did resign and move to a “better” place where I was away from the stupidity that I had witnessed. Unfortunately I soon found more stupidity at a new place.

I better stop becoming so truthful – even here. Too much can be said by someone like me… to make it dangerous.

Patrice I admire you. You may never read these words. You stood up for what you believe and took action. Way to go!

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 


Friday, October 21, 2011

I have resolved I will age – yes… but I do not need to get old!

Misty Hollow Carving
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Today’s Blog Post

I have resolved I will age – yes… but I do not need to get old!
Beginning to work with a new computer program and new equipment/tools has been a great adventure for sure. I reported that yesterday. What an exciting time… all over again.

A few years ago I heard of the “Senior Hosteling” program. I looked to see if it was written about on the Internet anywhere. I haven’t found it so far – at least by that name.

The idea was so simple. Seniors loved to travel and they love to learn new things. In the program at that time folk would book a place in a tour that would take them to a new city, book them into a University or College Residence, and into a class being held at that school.

The classes varied in content and subject matter. Like as not, it would be something to do with the city or region that they were visiting. For example one course had the group situated in a college in Arizona where a course was given on the Aboriginal People of that area… plus the handcrafts and artifacts. Classes were also available for Seniors that wanted to try to make some of the handcrafts as well.

It was a great idea. At the time I was impressed with what I saw. I couldn’t wait to get to be a senior at which time I would have more time to do just as they were doing.

Program or not, there is nothing stopping us from taking part in what is happening around us where we are. I think we begin to get old when we no longer are interested in something new.

Yesterday I found again that feeling when I picked up something new and tried something unusual. It was good to go to bed with new thoughts and new things challenging my thinking. As I closed my eyes I was thinking of how I would solve the new problem that was in front of me tomorrow. I was also happier than a little kid when I thought back to what I had accomplished so far.

That deep stirring inside from something new is very special. I never want to lose that sense of awe!

My Dad used to remind my brother and myself, “Don’t be afraid to learn something new!”

But you know we all can have that all the time… if we look for it. If we take that next step to go further… just a little closer to the edge we can feel that stirring.

I went to visit a senior in the hospital yesterday. She was sitting in front of TV screen watching intently. On the TV was the Weather Channel with its constant reporting of weather. She told me that was all that was ever on this TV. That is all the staff offer the Seniors on that floor. Yikes!

Couldn’t they at least put on a Discovery Channel with something new to look at each hour?

I don’t mind the weather channel if I need to know what is happening outside… but when I am in my hospital gown and waiting to get better… nothing could be worse that slow moving weather reporting…!!! Becoming “Brain Dead” is the result for sure.

I have resolved I will age – yes… but I do not need to get old! There I said it out loud!!! My friends can now watch me closely as the aging happens. And when I start getting OLD they can remind me – over and over again… “You said you do not need to get old Murray!”

~ Murray Lincoln ~

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Back to School for the Old Guy

Misty Hollow Carving
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Today’s Blog Post

Back to School for the Old Guy
Back to school today for me… can you believe it?!? At 67 years old I am off with my pack to start my first classes in a computer program that I need to know.

Yep. I have decided that I really need more help with some of the work that I do with my computer. In the Graphic Work that I have been doing I have found one of the Programs that I have is amazing… now I need help to do the work.

Like any student I have searched for the best school and specially the best Instructor that I could find. In this kind of work you are looking for a depth of experience for sure. Likely with years of working experience and also examples of the work the person has created. That is exactly what I have gone through in my process of searching for the best.

And I have found such a person. His name is Joshua. I met him at the Crop Circles store in Peterborough Square. He has been there quietly working at his projects for Helen, the store manager.

I watched him closely as he takes a blank space and in a matter of moments he creates on his screen the most amazing images. One click here and another there… slide over this area… shift this and move that… click again and WOW! The image literally came to life.

This guy is good – very good and if I can pick up just a few hints of how to do this work… I can then launch a new aspect to Misty Hollow moving from a limited ability to an unbelievable possibility.

As I have watched what he does… I wish so much that I was 20 years younger… that way I would have another 20 years to do more of this work. But I can make the next few years the BEST YET… with a click here and slide over there… and another click…

And fun part of this is Joshua’s ability was developed in a mere few years. He graduated High School last season.

I am looking forward to this class today… and tomorrow and then in the future.

My old heart is again beating fast as I head out to school in a short while. Oh Boy! Talk about Déjà vu!

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

“Activia” – Dancing and Slow Intestinal Transit

Misty Hollow Carving
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Today’s Blog Post

“Activia” – Dancing and Slow Intestinal Transit
My friend Chad asked me what my favorite TV Program was since we now have Cable in our home. I don’t think I can say one program over the next yet. (It is definitely not the “Reality TV” that has nothing real about it, except that it is “on” when you hit one of the Channels.)

But maybe I do have a favorite part… it is all the new advertisements that flood most TV programs… specially the ones from the USA. Some of these are simply brilliant and it makes me want to go out to buy their product just because the designers of the ads are so sharp!

My wife and I were watching the old movie that included a lot of Dancing. In fact at our stage in life the moves portrayed on the screen were all done by very young people. Even when they shot this movie the youthful actors and actresses must have had to shoot and reshoot the scenes to get all the actions into the moves they made. It was spellbinding to watch the dances to the amazing music.

Notice I described an “old movie” that was popular a few years back… when we were younger. In all likelihood it was watched by many old people like ourselves – who once upon-a-time used to move a lot and maybe even do the dances that were in the movie. But we are not young anymore. We don’t move the same now… or maybe at all…

That is the setting for the brilliant “Activia”, a Danone Canada Product. The ads describe it a Probiotic Yogurt.

When going to their Web Site I caught the message again… “Feel rhythm everyday..” If I clicked on the link provided I could get a MP3 of Coeur de Pirate singing Buddy Holly’s hit “Everyday”. And clicking on the Link takes me to a Facebook Page for Danone Canada.

Now during the Dancing movie, at almost every ad spot, Danone brought the thought to my mind… that “Activia” will keep me moving like the young people on TV.

I will “Feel the rhythm” if I consume “Activia”.

On the “Activia” Web Site I read these words… quote…
“Activia® is a yogurt with a probiotic culture, now available for the first time in Canada from Danone. Activia® contains a exclusive strain of bifidobacteria, called Bifidobacterium (animalis) lactis, or BL RegularisTM.

All yogurts typically contain two bacterial cultures: Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilis. These friendly bacteria have been demonstrated to help digest lactose in lactose-intolerant people. In addition to these cultures, Activia® also contains Bifidobacterium (animalis) lactis - BL RegularisTM.

Danone's researchers added the BL RegularisTM strain to Activia® owing to its beneficial effects on colonic digestion.” End quote.

Now hold on here… I didn’t get the highest marks in my chemistry classes so long ago… and maybe the marks in Micro Biology were a little better… but some of this stuff listed sounds a little closer to dangerous for an old guy like me – than I want it to be.

I am old enough to remember the “Hippy Days” when all of us were creating Macramé and trying to make our own Yogurts. Yuk! It was the most awful tasting stuff ever. It was supposed to be good for you… but it was made from letting “culture stuff” cook slowly until it was ready. My image of bacteria slowly cooking in a dark place and then me having to eat was not so cool.

“Bifidobacterium (animalis)”? You’ve got to be kidding me! Doesn’t Bi – mean two… fido – now meaning dog… and bacterium… all in one word!!??? Then bracket in Animalis! Good Lord! This is not something that makes me want to open my mouth wide, swallow and then shake like I have a grass skirt on!

“Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilis”!!!! – the two ingredients that Yogurt typically contains they say. No wonder it used to taste like YUK!

Doesn’t Streptococcus kill people? And making it “thermophilis” sounds as if I could get real hot taking this stuff. BUT I would be able to Dance better! And every day I could “feel the Rhythm”!

And when they blast away at my mind for a dozen times over and over again during a show… I am almost ready to buy some. If it could help my wife to have that jiggling/wiggling mid-section again… wear a grass skirt and look like she is just about the most sexy thing on earth… maybe I would eat it too….?!

Now wait just a ding dong minute… I would be eating it. Will it affect my eyes too? It has my ears with the Rhythm… and my imagination… but will I see something differently if I eat it?

Now can you see the power of the “Activia” ads? That is amazing what they have done. They have actually got an Old Koot like me wondering if “Activia” could do me some good.

But I still was not sure at the end of the movie about Dancing.

Then yesterday “Activia” did it again! They truly tried to help an old guy really understand… but it was more riddle language… and ideas. But it was BRILLIANT – ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT just the same!!!

Here goes… are you ready?

If I eat “Activia” it will help me with my “slow intestinal transit”!

Now there is a brand new creation by Ad People. “Slow intestinal transit”!

In the good old days of the Hippy Life we simply called it for what it was, Constipation… or “all bunged up”… having a great need for laxative…

But to say one might have “slow intestinal transit” that is hilarious!

The people I know think of “Transit” as…
tran•sit (tr n s t, -z t)
1. The act of passing over, across, or through; passage.
a. Conveyance of people or goods from one place to another, especially on a local public transportation system.
b. The system or vehicles used for such conveyance.
3. A transition or change, as to a spiritual existence at death.
4. Astronomy
a. The passage of a celestial body across the observer's meridian.
b. The passage of a smaller celestial body or its shadow across the disk of a larger celestial body.
5. A surveying instrument similar to a theodolite that measures horizontal and vertical angles.

Nowhere have I ever heard a good bowel movement called a “transit”! Maybe it is a nice medical term for not being able to Poop. Maybe it is not nice for me to say to my doctor, “Hey Doc, I haven’t pooped in over a week.” It is better to say I haven’t “transited”.

He will look at me rather funny I am sure if I use either term. The term is bowel movement – I am sure.

But saying a “slow intestinal movement” is odd too. I slow down my bowels when I am reading a good book – or until my mother is knocking on the bathroom door – and I have been in there too long for her liking.

The generation that I live in… and the people that I am celebrating their age group with… maybe are all having a “Slow Intestinal Transit” I feel for them. It has not been my problem…dancing is… but not the other.

I have to end this. It is getting too silly. My mind rages with New Thoughts. And My Hat goes off to the “Activia” People. I need to try your stuff.

But before I end – I want to wish my friend Winston, a guy in my age group, a Happy Birthday and may you be able to deal with your “Slow Intestinal Transit” – if you have one! But come to think of it guys seldom speak of their “transit”.

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Celebrating Three Wonderful Years of being One in 1,116,423

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Today’s Blog Post
Celebrating Three Wonderful Years of being One in 1,116,423
I have always known I was different. I have been known as unique, creative, ‘has potential’, and ‘needs to apply himself’. Personally I could add complicated, strange, and a few other things that are maybe not something I would put in print if I was going to submit a resume for a job. But then at 67 years old and slipping closer to 68 each day – I don’t do resumes any more.

Resumes at my age are considered eulogies – which may include all kinds of exaggerations that go from comical to outright lies. But then anyone that could verify what was said or printed is likely without their short or long term memory… or already dead!

But is very comforting to know that in the present world I am one of a kind. I am One in 1,116,423 as of December 2010. Having launched a small business that is still alive and well keeps me in this category.

But this group of 1,116,423 represents 98% of all Employer Businesses in Canada.

It also hires 5,131,147 employees – which is 48.3% of Canada’s workforce!

But something that is even more unique about me is that I am One in 2.7 Million People in Canada that is self-employed. Not only do I have a small business but I am also self-employed.

But the stats that I was reading also shared a fact that is very true. I work more than 40 hours a week. In the CBC article that I was reading it stated the following… quote…
In 2010, 2.7 million Canadians were self-employed.
35 hours: Average work week for employees in 2010
40 hours: Average work week for the self-employed in 2010
31 per cent of self-employed Canadians reported working more than 50 hours per week in 2010, while 4 per cent of employees worked past that threshold in the same year.
(Source: Statistics Canada)
End quote.

I am working more than 50 hours per week – and love it! So not only am I One in 1,116,423 – I am in the 4% group as well!

Instead of working for someone else, I am the BOSS. I am also the Advertising Manager, Account Executive, Production Line Manager, Quality Control Manager, Research and Design Vice President, Artist and Craftsman producing everything, Shipping and Receiving, and the complete Janitorial staff.

Some businesses have an I.T. Department. My “Misty Hollow” also has the same. I AM IT!

And I am not complaining at all. This is the greatest adventure that I have ever taken on. Moving to Hong Kong and becoming part of China in 1980, learning to speak Cantonese, studying Spanish when we thought we would head to Argentina, of taking on the different leadership roles that I had in Canada… pale beside the adventure of today

40 years of all that I did in a “working world” are not anywhere near as great as the last three years of establishing “Misty Hollow Carving”.

In October 2008 Misty Hollow Carving became a reality. It had been a dream tucked away for “some day” – maybe when I retired at 65 years old. But instead it was strangely brought forward to be not only an idea but a real business – 10 months before the date that I had dreamed of for so long.

Unlike other businesses that struggle to get launched and start producing at the beginning… “Misty Hollow” started with a Big Bang and has been going that way ever since October 2008.

“Misty Hollow” limped a little through the 2009 and into 2010 “recession” shivers – but never stopped. But that pause was a great time to catch my breath and develop new ideas. My “R&D” department flourished during the slower period.

Last evening I spent an hour catching up with emails regarding new orders and new possibilities. Then I spent three more hours producing another potential $400 worth of business. That was after supper time. Before supper time there was more.

Nope I am not bragging about what has happened. I am just very grateful for what has happened. I am delighted to be so blessed. I know that the best has not yet happened. There is a deal coming down the Business Pipe that will blow my company away – soon. I was told recently by someone that knows, “You will never need to carve another piece of wood ever when this is launched!”

But I love taking an old stick that measures ¾” by ¾” by 12 inches long and turning it into $45 in one hour’s time. I like taking a wood chip and in fifteen minutes making it worth $5.

If you have followed this Blog posting over the past few months you will know that I pulled our old Garden Shed down. From just one 2 X 4 board of that old shed it was possible to make $200. I should have kept more boards!

The Best Things I make come from old broken down stuff. I recycle material. Am I trying to be very “Eco Friendly”? Nope – old wood produces great things and great things sell fast!

I am celebrating 3 Years in Business this month. And I am giving God all the credit. I am so thankful for what He has done for me. I am also thankful for a wife that keeps encouraging me with her words and guiding words.

If you have been a customer of “Misty Hollow” – Thank You so much for believing in what we have done! If you are not yet a customer – please contact me NOW – I have some wonderful gifts ready for your Christmas giving!

~ Murray Lincoln ~


Monday, October 17, 2011

Expressing the Long Time Love

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Today’s Blog Post

Expressing the Long Time Love
Yesterday afternoon I heard my Mom call me from her room. She asked me to come into her room. (I was thinking at that moment that it might be another “service call” for the TV or Cable Box.)

When I came into her room she was sitting in her rocking chair and I could see she had been writing quite a lengthy note.

She then said, “I want to read this to you, can you sit down?”

Mom’s hand writing has deteriorated in these past months. The script is very small and almost illegible. But she tries very hard. At 90 years and 9 months old the hand writing is not that good now.

She began to read from her notes… and faltered with her words. Then she said, “Today is our Anniversary. We were married 69 years ago.”

She looked back at her page of notes and continued to struggle with her words, continuing the story for me. Not a written story, but rather a loved story.

“We were so happy to be getting married. Cliff brought his parents with him. His best friend, Lorne Pritchard, came to perform the ceremony” Mom stated.

And here is the rest of the story in my words, after listening to her on her 69th Anniversary.

All of this took place on the family farm near Truax, Saskatchewan, in the old farm house.

Mom and Dad had been seeing each other for a year or so before that special day. From what I gathered my Dad wasn’t what my Grandparents approved of. In fact they made it down right miserable for my Dad as he continued to pursue their Nellie Kirkpatrick. (Many today know her as Marion – her full name is Marion Nellie (Kirkpatrick) Lincoln)

Marrying their oldest daughter and taking her away from the farm was not a good idea in their minds. Their young lady Nellie had looked after her younger siblings from the start of each of their lives. Losing her, placed the burden on the others. The work had been off loaded by my Grandma Emma. Emma at that stage was already moving through her own hot flashes and mood swings that would frighten even the hardiest man alive – let alone the young and lovely daughters that were looking forward to their own family and freedom.

Each time my Dad came to the farm over that previous year they treated him like dirt. That is my interpretation of what happened after listening to so many sides. They had the ability and used it. What a heritage! But my Dad stuck to it and went after what he desired so much – his new bride to be.

Dad had rented a three bedroom apartment in Regina. He had a good job. He had saved enough to go to the Eaton’s store to purchase their new furniture and get the apartment ready for his new bride.

This happened in 1942 with the World War II raging and the entire country of Canada was completely involved. Things were tight to say the least. Being able to rent the apartment and purchase the new bed and other pieces of needed furniture was no small thing. Doing all of the travel to and from the farm, 60 miles south of Regina, with the gasoline being rationed, was no small feat either!

At the time of the wedding my Dad had been living in a “Rooming House” with about 17 other guys. There had been only one bathroom between all the guys – so time to sit or get cleaned up was very little. Dad apologized to Mom when they were married for his lack of being completely clean. His feet and particularly his heals were black. There were too many guys living in the house to allow him anytime to scrub off the black.

On October 16, 1942 Rev. Lorne Pritchard arrived with his mother and sister in tow. His sister Elsie had brought along her portable pump organ which she played for the family.

Lorne was a very young and just recently been Ordained as a Minister. My Dad had pressured him to get his Ordination so he could perform Dad’s wedding. This wedding was to be his very first as a young preacher. Mom told me Lorne’s hands were shaking as he held his notes.

Elsie struck up the musical piece, “Here comes the Bride” and my Grandfather Charlie Kirkpatrick walked my Mom out of the one bedroom to the front room.

This was to be his second wedding he attended for his children… but it was his first daughter that he would give away. I can only imagine the feelings that he was experiencing at that moment. Here he was losing a daughter to a guy that his wife didn’t like and had treated with almost complete contempt… and yet he was getting his first son-in-law that was not even a farmer… nor had he any land of his own… and hadn’t even a house built yet!

That little farm house was filled with tension. No wonder Rev. Lorne’s hands shook.

To top it off, Charlie and Emma’s second son, Dale, had been married a year earlier to a local farm girl. Dale was in the Canadian army and was living in Victoria B.C. at that time. He was not granted any leave to be home for his sister’s wedding. There was a sadness about him and his new wife not being there added to all these events.

Rev. Lorne Pritchard said all the correct words. The Pump organ played well, and then following all that the family joined in a celebration of sorts around a large turkey dinner and a wedding cake. The young couple was sent off in their Model A Ford car to begin their new life together.

My aunt Peg had stood up with her sister as her Bride’s Maid. I can only imagine the loneliness that Peg and the other children felt that day as the Model A Ford took their special sister and friend away from the farm.

Each of the family returned to the tasks of farming and making a go of it… while their Nellie was gone with this Clifford Leslie Lincoln and the new apartment! At the table each time they ate there was now two places empty… where Nellie used to sit and where Dale used to sit as well. War was terrible but weddings were just as bad!

Mom’s scribbled notes stated something profound for me…
“…lots of gifts… all ready to go… we had a great life ahead… we were so happy… loved Regina… good job… new furniture… and each other…”

Dad died in 1987 – 45 years after that special day. Mom has lived with all these memories for past 24 years. And yesterday, 69 years after that very special day, Mom needed to tell me some of the story over again.

We celebrated yesterday by eating out at “Hot Belly Mama’s” a New Orleans styled restaurant. Along with us was a new friend that had not long ago had her love destroyed by silly actions on the part of her spouse… a long story that is too complicated to tell… he is jail now.

Mom misses Dad I know. I have tried to provide for her in the best way possible since her move to Ontario. At times I wish I could do more to make her last years more pleasant and easier to live out. The best I can do is listen… and then write it down…

Where her penmanship is faltering… mine has to be better.

Today I remember my Dad again. There are way too many parallels with my own life and his. He gave me much of what I would become and am today.

Oh boy… I have a big lump in my throat… I need to go for a long walk!

~ Murray Lincoln ~

Sunday, October 16, 2011

When a Senior Enters the Digital Age

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Today’s Blog Post

When a Senior Enters the Digital Age
Okay… Okay… I finally did it. I yielded to an old urge and finally did it! Thought about it a long time before doing it… but we finally did it. I knew there would be some potential problems… but we did it anyway. Finally!

Did what?

What problems?

Well that decision was to finally break down and get Cable for our TV viewing pleasure. We signed up for COGECO, the local and regional Cable company. We considered another satellite connection with the outside world but when the great deal came by our way it was time to do Cable.

Now we no longer rely on the faithful three channels that we had plus one French station. We now have 70 channels to select from!


Now our biggest reason for doing this was the fact that my 90 year old mother is spending more and more time watching TV. The quality of the faithful three had dropped with the movement to the Digital Age – where TV stations will have to get with the Government program and become linked to a new world.

Problems? Yep Problems! Big ones and little ones and many of them.

When I opened the new Cable Box that will link our TV to the outside signal coming into our home… I saw the horrific black thingie with all the buttons – and I GROANED OUTLOUD… “Alida we are going to have problems with this one! Lord deliver us!”

The new remote that comes with the Cable Box is twice the length of the old TV remote! It has about three times the number of buttons that my Mom’s old remote has on it.

It is definitely designed by the people that wrote the script for “Star Wars” or the more recent “Transformers” movies that my Grandkids love. I mean this thing can do almost everything possible in a room. Properly programmed it will be able to turn on and off anything in the room. All I will have to do is point and click – and Poof, Snap, Crackle and Pop something will happen at my command. Captain Kirk has nothing on me now!

BUT – It seems that after you successfully move past the 90th year marker in your life, technological things increase in their confusion department.

How in the dickens will I help my mom understand what has to be pushed or not pushed to get the program that she wants? But with a choice now of 67 more channels than last week – which one will be her favorite now?

This is the second day… somewhat easier than the first. As of Saturday there has only been two service calls to her bedroom so far. One because she had lost the reception again and the other because she didn’t know how to get what she might like to watch… but that was because she wasn’t sure what she wanted to watch… and what might be on at that time of the day.

On the first day there were about a service call to the bedroom every half hour at first.. then every hour toward the end of the day. Lost signal, lost picture, completely screwed up, and not the right channels. Okay! I knew that I would have some problems – but not how many problems that I might encounter!

The day before my mom was sure that she wanted me to purchase a Computer for Seniors that she found in a magazine she received. Oh Boy… I am not sure I have enough lifetime for a touchscreen, super whammo, extra easy computer? Hokey Mokey!

~ Murray Lincoln ~

Friday, October 14, 2011

Beginning my Tatted Christmas Tree – getting ready for the “City Sidewalks” Celebration

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Today’s Blog Post

Beginning my Tatted Christmas Tree – getting ready for the “City Sidewalks” Celebration

As I sat in the Peterborough Square Mall at my demonstration table last Wednesday, it was the beginning of my Christmas Push. I am beginning my next “Tatting Decorated Christmas Tree” for this year’s celebration downtown.

The “City Sidewalks” will take place from November 23 to 27, 2011. For the last years it has been entitled the “Festival of Trees” and always held in the Memorial Centre of Peterborough, our big hockey rink. It is now being transitioned to the downtown core and has been given a new name.

There have been a number of reasons given for the change, but the most evident one that I can attest to is the basic fact that the Volunteers needed to do it the “old way” are many… and they need to be younger than the ones that put all that work into setting up the Memorial Centre in the past. And that younger crowd is not there now. We as volunteers, are all older now and not quite a brisk as we used to be. Plain and simple the old way is not that good any more. Having a large group of Senior Citizens unload the 12 Semi-Trailers that stored the things was less and less appealing for the old guys like me.

Nope I never helped with that part. I don’t lift well anymore. I just watched other like me grunt and groan a lot. I sympathized with them.

Further, I have been told by organizers that the attendance had been dropping at the old venue as well. A lot of work was being done for fewer and fewer people attending. I don’t doubt that it happened as more and more faithful patrons simply couldn’t get out anymore. Age in Peterborough has affected many things besides church attendance.

This year it will all be happening in the City Core and featuring many different city businesses. As well there is to be a skating rink covering a whole city block – artificial ice I believe. That is definitely “younger thinking”!

For my small part I will make about 200 small lace pieces for a 4 Foot Tree. Others will join me in making some of these.

The Tree will be sponsored by the Crop Circles store in the lower level of the Peterborough Square.  Helen and Ted, owners of this business, are the great people that sponsor my Tatting and Wood Carving demonstrations each week. They are very excited about this happening!

BTW – Crop Circles is also a great place for Scrap Booking supplies, Knitting, Crochet and Tatting supplies, as well a great selection Art supplies of all kind. They have just recently added a full line of Custom Framing to their inventory… and one amazing machine – a gigantic HP Printer that will do blow ups of your Photos and your drawings/paintings.

The Link for the Crop Circles Web Page is
Please note that “Misty Hollow” is part of this Web Page with my Graphic Images appearing now.. soon there will be much more! The images are great for making Greeting Cards and also adorning Scrap Booking pages. (As of today there are only a few – but a whole new selection will be available in just a few days!!! Am I ever Excited!)
(Photo of last Years' Tree)
That is the setting for my new Christmas Tree. It will be raffled off as part of the fund raising effort for Health Care organizations our community. The “City Sidewalk” (Festival of Trees) has supported well over these past years with over $200,000 funds raised each year. Hopefully my little tree will be a big part of this effort to go over the top.

There is some humour in bringing out a Christmas Tree on October 12th.

One man walking by shook his head and said… “Can’t you wait until a day after Halloween!? Seeing that tree makes me shudder! I am not ready for Christmas now!” He of course was being funny as he acted out in a comical way.

A number of folk stopped to talk. Many were shocked to think that Christmas is just around the corner. One lady stated a shocking fact, “I haven’t paid for all of last year’s Christmas yet!!!”

Being in the Mall on Wednesday is simply fantastic. I caught the Christmas bug again. I am tatting steadily now. I have about 40 days to do 200 pieces. Hmmm that is 5 pieces a day. Oh boy… better get running. I have some work to do now!

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 

Peterborough Festival of Trees – City Sidewalks

Crop Circles

The Crop Circles Blog

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Courageous is a Movie to see - NOW

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Today’s Blog Post

Courageous is a Movie to see - NOW
“Courageous” – WOW! What a movie!

As I scanned the Movie Guide on the Internet I found that the Movie was rated 2 our of 6 by the “experts”.

Go figure – too much God Stuff for whacko guys that love the “F Bomb” language of normal movies. I mean without the “F Bombs” you can’t be real. Right? Wrong.

Why was the movie great for me?

Well sitting behind me in the Movie Theater were two guys that had come out of Federal Prison that past while. I know both of them because of the volunteer work that I do with the CAC (Part or CSC – our Prison system in Canada).

Both guys had no dad when they grew up and both are testaments to what “Courageous” is all about.

There was no one that was Resolved to do what is right Around them when they grew up. No Dad. Oh there was a guy that got their mom pregnant but no Dad to love them and show them what should be happening.

Yep – “Courageous” is very good. Go see it – now… or later buy the Video – which will likely be ready for Christmas!

~ Murray Lincoln ~

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Giving Thanks after Thanksgiving

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Today’s Blog Post

Giving Thanks after Thanksgiving
It hit me this weekend… our family is growing as they get bigger and more mature! It won’t be long until we cannot have everyone sit around the same table for a celebration over food.

As I sat watching our Grandkids at one meal I realized that in a short few years when the Grandsons and our Granddaughter start bringing their Girlfriends and Boyfriends along with them… we will need a table setting that has 18 places at it!!!

Now that is just the immediate family. But we have adopted four more from another family; Bob, Eunice, Juneau and Lina. That will make 6 more when these kids bring their friends as well. Then this weekend Alida and I added three more kids as our Grandkids plus their mom and dad. That makes a possible 8 more.

Within a short period of time we will be at 32 at our table. Yesterday we had 21 at the table!!!

We need another house for sure! And with that, a much larger dinning room table!

But that is what our family is all about. Lots of us together and more food than one can imagine.

Before beginning our meal yesterday Doug Lindsay, my fellow father-in-law, asked each person from young to old to give thanks for whatever they would like. Each person said something. Some of it was funny and others very serious.

My mom at 90 expressed her appreciation to still be alive and being able to enjoy all or her family! Mrs. Jung, Bob Seung Jung’s mom, also in her 80s said much the same thing in Korean.

It was family meeting each other again over food. The bond is greater than ever before. The kids have fun together and the adults laugh a lot.

For these reasons I think our Grandkids will bring their new Girlfriends and Boyfriends to our house.

Our Grandson Jonathan paid me one the greatest compliments ever when he said, “Grandpa is a 16 year old guy trapped in a 67 year body!” – then they all laughed loudly. He continued with, “Grandma is a 40 year old trapped in a 65 year old body! And Christopher said she is HOT!” Peals of laughter came with his declaration.

We are F-A-M-I-L-Y! And I am blessed in so many ways.

I give Thanks today that I am alive and so happy. I am so blessed in so many ways. I am healthy and ready for the next stages of retirement. I am busy and able to do whatever I hope or dream to do.

This has been a great, great weekend together – Thanksgiving 2011! Thanks F-A-M-I-L-Y!

~ Murray Lincoln ~

 Alida, Dana, Eunice and Rachel - our cooks and serevers

 Doug and Sandra Lindsay - fellow parents-in-law

 Above - Our Grand-dog... below Pies by Sandra Lindsay - mmmm - mmmm - MMH!

But what is a Canadian Thanksgiving without Tim Hortons joining us!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cooking the Big Bird for Thanksgiving Celebration

Misty Hollow Carving
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Today’s Blog Post

Cooking the Big Bird for Thanksgiving Celebration
Now for me to write these next words is almost hilarious. It is going to sound like I know something about what I am placing in the text. Oddly enough I do know something and maybe even could be considered a genuine expert… and yet I must confess I KNOW NOTHING! Really!

How can you be an expert and yet know nothing about what you write? Duh!

(Now with my Grandsons staying with us this really fits. They love Grandpa’s riddles. My riddles keep them going for a long, long time. In fact I can string them out for days on end. Every meal time they try to guess what Grandpa Lincoln has given them.

Like… What is more than you can count, grows by the second, and is sometimes considered “hot” or “sexy”?

Or… What is white and then turns red in six hours? It is not red in one hour nor two, nor three. But in six hours it is red. In one week it likely will be white again.

Both the above riddles had them going and guessing for a long time.)

So as I place these words together it may seem like a riddle.

You may already have guessed that I am writing about cooking the Turkey for Thanksgiving.

As to being a genuine expert, I have eaten or taken part in eating at least 67 Turkeys but more likely a 134 or more Turkeys in my life time. For most Christmas times and almost every Thanksgiving we have cooked a Turkey and then consumed it as a family.

This happened almost every year in our married life, except for the five Christmases and Thanksgivings in Hong Kong. If you wanted Turkey in Hong Kong you had to pay big bucks to have it flown in specially.

My Chinese friends never ate Turkey for two reasons. One it was not available. Two it was always too dry for their palette.

In our Canadian way it was a must. Turkey was associated with our Thanksgiving Celebrations where family came together and increased the number around the table. Cooking one BIG BIRD rather than four (or more)smaller chickens just made sense from oven space. There is way more meat on a Turkey than a chicken. And with 12 to 19 people around one table, you needed more meat along with the many side dishes.

As I stated earlier, I know nothing about how to cook a Turkey, except for the fact that I have watched all the ladies do this all these years. I have never baked a Turkey in the oven.

As of this past week something changed for our family. My wife baked the Turkey in a completely different way this time around. After 44 years of doing it one way, she completely changed her strategy.

She simply baked the Turley with the “Breast side” down, rather than up. Go figure. One simple way of change made a difference of day and night!

When she cut the Turkey and we tried the meat… MMMMmmm MMM MMMM! What a difference it had made! The Turkey was way more juicy! Especially the white meat, that is the Breast meat.

Traditionally the Turkey has more fat on its back than its breast. By cooking the Breast side down, that fat goes down and through the whole of the bird. That makes the whole bird more succulent than ever.

The dark meat is still moist… and the white meat is much better!

But my wife explained one problem that comes in doing this. The Big Bird doesn’t looks anything like the traditional Turkey splayed on its back, with two legs protruding up and a golden Breast shining up from the roasted bird.

Cooking it “Breast side” down kind of crunches one side into a weird shape. It is no longer “Turkey shaped”. She didn’t try to put any dressing into the bird either – you know – like stuffing the body cavity full of dry bread and spices. The dressing is made in a separate pan as a side dish… still moist and delicious.

Alida said to me, “Someone needs to invent a special holder for the Turkey to keep it straight in the roasting pan. That way it would not get that crunched look with one side more flat than the other.”

I suspect she might be thinking of how she could do that and get on to the Dragon’s Den TV Program. Oh Boy!

I can attest to the fact that the Turkey was much better. It was way more moist and far more savory than the other 40 plus time she has cooked one the years before. In fact it was simply amazing!

Now I still have not baked a Turkey. Today I will take part in eating a second one this weekend. We are joining friends around a huge table setting with a house full of adults and children. We are going to celebrate our Canadian Thanksgiving together. I think there may be more than 19 of us – maybe even up to 24 in one house together! It better be a really Big Bird!

As to the above Grandson Riddles… the first answer is “your hair”… the second is “your sunburn”.

~ Murray Lincoln ~

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Miracle of Completing the New Garden Shed

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Today’s Blog Post

The Miracle of Completing the New Garden Shed

I know now that I am older and also a lot wiser. Yesterday I proved that along with help of three of my grandsons, Clifford, Jonathan and Thomas. I learned that their young muscles were much better than my old ones. I learned that their agility and ability to stretch, climb ladders and with their height – they reached places that I can only look up at!

So what happened you ask?

Yesterday we assembled a “Life Long Garden Shed” in our backyard! All in a 6 hour period of time! But the remarkable thing wasn’t fact that we got the shed up – but rather that the Teenage Grandsons of mine never stopped. They worked like true full grown men. In fact few men I know would be able to do anything like these teens did – for that long – non stop!

The old shed that stood for about 25 years in our backyard was in terrible shape. Each winter it was sitting in about six inches of water and would slowly dry over the months into spring and summer. Each rain storm left it wet inside.

When I removed the shed in late August, the floor was rotting… and almost completely gone when I took it up. What a smell!

It was going to cost more than $350 to repair it – so for our Anniversary this year I invested in a new Garden Shed from Costco. Only $949 was a bargain.

More than that… this should be a snap. Tear down the old shed and get rid of it… build a better base… which would sit on a new gravel bed. Piece of cake! Right!?


After the first week of taking down the shed and the second one to remove it I realized this wasn’t going as fast as I planned!

Along came a dozen other things that needed to be done – or was that two dozen things. Things like the front tree had to be pruned. The arborist came the day after the shed went to the garbage dump. So we had to remove the tree parts before bringing in the 3 yards of gravel for the shed’s new base – 3 yards of heavy gravel is about three tons of material to move by wheel barrow one step at a time!

After a few weeks vacation and traveling around Ontario… and the job wasn’t done. Add a few days of rain storms and wind blowing and all round not so good weather… and the job wasn’t done starting month of October! Oh Boy!

The Long Weekend in October is a wonderful Canadian Thanksgiving Weekend – to finally get caught up! And when I found out that we were to have our Grandsons to stay with us this weekend… I had a Labour Force par none!

Teenagers love to work and also to goof around! Water guns on a hot day… water fights… and laughter all mix together to keep them there… and sometimes driving grandpa nuts! But it was fun beyond words watching my heirs be themselves and have so much fun doing work with me.

They love working and doing stuff.

I can’t tell them enough – how much I appreciate them. They are a joy to have close to Grandpa!

To finish this shed I had to keep reading the instructions and at the pace they were going I barely kept ahead of them. These guys are fast – very fast!

I offer these photos to the Blog today to let you see what happened.

Thanks to Clifford, Jonathan and Thomas… the work is done! You guys ROCK!

~ Murray Lincoln ~

 At Costco - it looks so easy!!

 Preparing the base with help from my Neighbor Stuart

The Hole that the Ground Hog left behind - before we moved him to Costco

Do you have any idea how heavy 3 yards of Stone is?
Alida and my Cousin Sharon Davis unloading the stones

Enter the Grandson Crew! Wow - can they work!