I know, first hand, how wonderful it can be to receive a Birthday parade during Covid times because my friends did exactly that for my birthday. Well, this year is pretty important because our ‘fearless leader’ turned 91 yesterday. My treasured friends in fine arts education came together to create a drive-by parade and then a Happy Birthday circle yesterday.
Joan has been one of the most inspiring people to serve as Supervisor of Fine Arts for the Calgary Catholic School District in the days when fine arts were understood to be essential to the development of learning within a child. We were a part of a period in education when Fine Arts advocacy was well and growing in schools. Teachers received regular support, exemplary modeling and resources in terms of professional development, in order that they could deliver solid programs. So, Joan was all that.
But, at the core of ‘who’ Joan is….she is a treasured friend. She has a brilliant mind. She is a superb artist, one who has looked at her world and nature with precision. Her observation skills can be surpassed by very few. Joan is an empathetic listener. Joan has an appreciation for song and celebration. She is playful and fun to be around. Little sayings filter in to every conversation. I love Joan with my whole heart and she has been a blessing in my life. Happy Birthday, Joan!
My grandson, Steven, helped me get ready for the parade by painting two banners. Unfortunately, when I hopped out of the car, I forgot that I had this taped up, post parade. It looked better during the drive by.
Joan, sharing words of appreciation. Always self-effacing, she made certain she drew attention to the strength of our team, pointing to each one, “You, you, you and you”…pointing to each one and making eye contact.
Before the fall…
Thank you to the organizers. These events are so important for these times. Each person has to determine what proximity they can have in every situation as we enter into stage 2 with the opening up of our economy. However, it is always important to keep in mind the safety of our senior citizens and those who are vulnerable due to various medical conditions. Thanks to this residence that provided us with a safe circumstance in order to celebrate our forever-friend.
“It took ages to coordinate our schedules but we finally all made it to the very inviting and interesting home of Kath for a delicious clam chowder feast, visit with Max, studio tour, and big catch up!
Along with the chowder, Kath treated us to Rappie, a traditional Acadian dish she recalled from her childhood. It’s made with shredded potatoes and fatty pork – yum! Tammy and Jas brought homemade pickles, spring flowers and a canned treat. Karen brought Red River bread she’d made, and we enjoyed Christmas baking brought all the way from Nova Scotia by Stephen made by his mom, Betty. Oh, and I didn’t get the memo about drinking at noon being OK but Lauraine brought vino from the Rockyridge growing region in Calgary’s NW. Steven made the very same selection!
What a tasty and heartfelt meal. My only quibble with our gathering was there just wasn’t enough time to visit thoroughly with every one of these wonderful people ❤️”
I’m posting Karen’s bread recipe here. It’s amazing! Red River Bread Photo Credit: Wendy Lees.
Red River Bread
2 cups water
3/4 cup red river cereal
1 tablespoon butter
1/3 cup molasses
2 teaspoon salt
1 Teaspoon Sugar
1/2 cup lukewarm water
1 package dry yeast (fast rising works great)
4 1/2 cups flour
Combine 2 cups water in pan with cereal. Boil then simmer 5 mins or until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and add butter, molasses and salt. Cool completely.
Dissolve sugar in lukewarm water. Sprinkle yeast and proof for 10 minutes.
Combine yeast with cooled cereal mixture.
Using a wooden spoon mix in all of the flour to make a stiff dough.
Turn dough onto floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Form a ball and place in a lightly greased bowl, covering the whole ball with grease. Cover with wrap and let rise (can use oven to proof) for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until ball doubles in size.
Punch down dough. Turn onto floured surface and knead until smooth. Divide dough in half and shape into loaf pans. 8×4
Cover and let rise for about and hour. Then bake at 375 F. 30-35 mins.
Loaves will be golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom of the pan.
Remove from pan and let cool. Enjoy!
Tammy and Wendy, Stephen and Steven and Lauraine, brought yummy things. I wasn’t archiving at the time, but, my buddies were. The following two photographs, though, were mine taken this morning. The next time you pickle, Tammy, I want to be there. They got eaten tooo fast for a photograph!
Photo display I made, in order to acknowledge my family.
Thank you, Jas and Tammy for the springtime flowers! So beautiful when it’s -40 outdoors.
Check out the jar of pickles in the photograph, below. This one must be Tammy’s shot. I’m sorry I didn’t get an image of the plate of baked goodies Stephen and Steven shared. Oh man! So good!
The photo journal above is a collection of photographs taken by Wendy and Tammy. We always have so many laughs when we gather. I’m grateful for all of you! Being with friends and sharing conversation/food/beverages and/or live music/dancing is so life-giving.
Please take note of Max (I snapped that one), only an hour after the lunch…completely played out!
I don’t know how I can ever acknowledge what a joy it has been to have Nigel and Angela in my life. I feel so very blessed. My son and I drove up to Tuscany on Thursday night to enjoy the fruits that came of Nigel’s new pizza stone and his own creativity. As I reflect on my previous posting about ‘good grief’, I have to add to the litany of helpful steps I have taken to journey grief, that the sharing of food and sitting down to the feast table with family and friends, has been invaluable.
Nigel’s close friend, Bassam, was in the circle, as was Angela’s mother, Michele. And let us not forget the most beautiful, Mr. Jones, the cat with the amazing eyes! Conversation and laughter are two very important components to healing. It’s really easy for me to disconnect and more often than not, it takes other people to organize ‘outings’. Just for now, I’m guessing.
I’m including, here, a photo journal of Nigel’s pizza and Angela’s cherry pie…the culinary experience was exceedingly scrumptious. The sharing of time, was so much more.
I’ve put in a request for the dough recipe…apparently, this one has been perfected.
Olive Oil, Romano Cheese and Ground Pepper
Next…Mozzarella Cheese, Home Made Tomato Sauce, Blue Cheese and Pear
At this point, the lattice was being constructed for the cherry pie…nummy!
A moment for a selfie…
Prosciutto, Homemade Tomato sauce, Mozzarella and Olives.
Such a great send off…a filling made from B.C. cherries and a lovely rich pastry! Thank you, Angela!
Just sipping an early coffee. James and I arrived home from Lethbridge at midnight last night and had it not been for Max and his request at the back door at six this morning, I would still be sleeping.
Yesterday was an exquisite day. I liked the surprises of it and the colour of it. In its own way, yesterday was a rare bird.
But first, there were the ordinary rituals. First, the update from the red couch.
I got Max down to the Bow River early and discovered how powerful and fast-moving it was, after all of our rain these past days. Experts assure Calgarians that these continue to be usual run off levels and that we needn’t be anxious about the swelling river, but given the floods of other years, the changes at the river can feel unnerving.
Some one doesn’t care. He always smiles on these walks.
Something to identify.
Another something to identify.
Birds were very busy and there was a cacophony of sound as it seemed they were all rebuilding, particularly the Red Winged Black Birds. At the eagle nest, I’m pretty certain that we’ve had one of the eaglets ‘fludge’ (accidentally fledge) as I’ve only been able to pick up the profile of one of the siblings these past four days. One adult continues to stand watch in neighbouring trees, but I’ve seen only one this week. We’ll see how that all plays out over the coming days. With full foliage in the trees now, perhaps I am missing things. The adults raised up only one of two last year and this may end up being a similar season. I’ve been documenting daily what I see at the nest, but am not publishing these, as a way of protecting the location of the nest.
Once arriving home, James and I loaded up and headed out on the highway, after gassing up the vehicle and buying our road trip treats. It was sad to leave Max behind, but I was super happy that my nephew, John, agreed to come and take care of Max’s needs late in the afternoon. This was a great relief and I am very grateful to John.
We got as far as Nanton before we began our exploring. There was a vintage car show going on, as well as a Barbecue cook-off and parade of garage sales. The sights and smells were wonderful. Good job, Nanton!
In Claresholm, there was a stop for lunch. The most wonderful thing about lunch was spending time with my son. I was already thinking about how wonderful it was that he wished to spend the day with me and celebrate my art. He has been very encouraging since I have begun painting again. He is a great support.
We hit Lethbridge in the midst of Pride festivities and it seemed that the core was alive with activity and fun. GO PRIDE! Karen and Mel had already visited Casa and so we hooked up at the Tim Horton’s where I enjoyed an ice lemonade and the four of us had a lovely chat. It was good to reconnect and to give ourselves the time to share. I so appreciated that Karen made this visit happen and that we were able to celebrate my art and one another. My heart was spilling over the entire day.
I tried to locate my friend, Michael, with no success and so James and I steered the boat toward Larry and Nina’s. Along the way, I shared stories about my memories of the years 1973 to 1977. I’m sure at times he was overwhelmed with the name dropping, but I love that I was able to bring him into the circle of love that I experienced through those years. Gratefully, Larry and Nina were home and we managed to really shake up their afternoon! But, oh my, it was so much fun! Talks of single-engine Cessna flights, books, family, Herb, renovations, Kaslo…it was rich and filled with belly laughs. Thank you, Larry and Nina, for letting us crash into a quiet afternoon of watching baseball. I love you.
I changed my clothes and off James and I headed to Casa for the celebration of a group exhibit as well as two other exhibits that were going on at the time. Casa is a beautiful facility and Darcy is a hard working curator! The following words shared by Lorraine Lee, the writer of the poem, Child’s Rara Avis.
The Gallery at Casa Presents:
CHILD’S RARA AVIS
work by A Cluster of Rare Birds
June 22 – August 24, 2019
Hugh Prather wrote in Notes to Myself:
“There were seventy-five people in the lobby and only a seven year old girl was finding out what it felt like to sit on a marble floor.”
Or, in this case on a rock.
The exhibition is based on a verse written by one of the artists at the age of 17 – about sitting on a rock and looking at her world through a child’s eyes but now, on the cusp of adulthood, thinking she would no longer be able to do so. This exhibition says we absolutely can, and SHOULD, still ‘sit on that rock’ no matter how grown up we are.
Each woman in this group has used the verse as their “guide”. Some have used direct imagery from the verse, some used the idea of the verse.
– the adventuresome spirit of her grandchildren
– her own childhood memories of walking in nature with her grandmother and seeing the magic there
– believing the world to be filled with colourful, impossible creatures
– familiar landscapes but with a child’s touch of fantasy and painting style
– childhood images of magical worlds she could only dream about
– the freedom and innocence of childhood
– seeing everyday beauty, that as adults, we often pass by
– an archive of treasures suspended through her experience of her own child like sensibilities
All of us have been able, through our creativity, to reach to our child self and in the process, make some discoveries about who we are and what we believe. And, essentially to discover, or rediscover, the spirit of fun and wonder that children naturally gravitate to. To look again through the eyes of the child we used to be.
Come join us on the rock.
A Cluster of Rare Birds:
We met one another (this was my first time meeting the other artists) and celebrated with wine and cake. Thank you for your hospitality, Lorraine.
I will also include here, my own artist’s statement regarding the work that I am presently producing. With over 220 Instagram images archiving the life and times of a bush at the edge of a pond, I have many references for a vast exploration of time, atmosphere and presence. I am very excited about it.
My Rara Avis: Instagram Bush
A person aligns with certain values throughout the course of living a sometimes-joyful, sometimes-challenging life. My way of being is strongly influenced by literature and most specifically, by two books; Le Petit Prince par Antoine de Saint-Exupery and Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury. Both writings include lessons on noticing, presence and place. The protagonist of Dandelion Wine, Douglas Spaulding, keeps a diary throughout the summer of 1928, in the front, collecting a record of ‘usual’ things about summer and in the back, a record of the revelations about those ordinary things. My life, thus, is marked by a huge history of seeing the spectacular embedded in the ordinary.
The poem, a Child’s Rara Avis written by Lorraine Lee, aged 17, invited me to share my rara avis, my incredibly beautiful and evolving experience of a single landmark along a circular pond walk with my dog, Max, daily, in 2015. I took pause in front of this bush and observed the changing aspects of its structure and surrounding environment through the course of our walks, snapping one Instagram photo and capturing the moment as a matter of preservation. I logged the time of day, the weather and the date at each visit. Through the course of this presence, I collected samples of vegetation and other organic materials found beneath the branches of this same bush and bottled them up as an approach to archiving the moment. Douglas Spaulding, similarly, observed his grandmother bottle the ‘Summer of 1928’ in the cool basement of his home, in the form of Dandelion Wine, a tincture to be brought out in the wintertime to combat aches and colds.
In the studio, I am pouring over the references and field notes, enjoying the sensual memories and the experience of walking. I am intimately recreating these experiences by transitioning the Instagram photographs into paintings. This process contributes a seeming permanence to something that is very ephemeral. (see Chapter 15 in Le Petit Prince) It elevates my rara avis.
It is the child’s heart within me that discovered the wonder of this location. It is here that I ‘sat on a rock and watched the world’.
During the process of walking, I realized that while incubating the idea of these works, all square formats and all acrylic paintings, I wanted to also capture the act of walking. Videographer, Liam Hawryluk, of Beam Media, generously joined me on the circle and collected footage across the seasons, capturing the reality that within a very huge narrative, there is a rara avis available for personal engagement, if one chooses to take notice.
This is the video created by Liam Hawryluk.
Liam’s company, Beam Media, produces amazing videos and I am so grateful that he took this project on. This archive means the world to me. Thanks, Liam.
I think that the first surprise, and a glorious one, was to see Kasia. It was such a quick embrace and I wish we had shared more time, but so quickly, a big chunk of my amazing family including my Auntie Eleanor, descended into the space. Thanks also to Tim and Tamaki. And, thank you, Larry and Nina. And most importantly, thank you, James. What a wonderful and surprising night. We all live such busy lives and I’m grateful for those of you who were able to find the time to give me this support. Now, please readers, forgive my blast of photographs.
Martine, Kath, Danielle
Nina, Kath, Larry
Kath and son, James
Kath and Auntie Eleanor She described my art as having a lot of movement.
Tamaki and Tim
Tristan, Robert John de Gruchy, cousin Deanna and beautiful daughter, cousin Barb, cousin Martine and daughter, Danielle and cousin Margy. In front, Kath and Auntie Eleanor
We just hosted Christmas dinner and Nigel and Angela were with us. I have to write this down because, given the experience of being swept up in gravy and my grandson, there wasn’t a single photograph archived of my dinner guests. You know the one…the one where everyone is gathered into a collective and asked to say CHEESE! There is always only one person left out of that photograph. Well, this year…well…no need to get redundant.
12/6/17, 4:11 PM I received this message.
Dear Kathleen, I will always remember you as “Mrs Hanrahan”. I don’t know if you remember me, but you taught me grade 7 art some years ago. I have been searching for you for some time, but it is only appropriate that I should find you now, as I am about to embark on a new adventure; teaching art. Would you be interested in a get together and perhaps imparting some of your wisdom to me?
NIGEL???? Remember you???
Of course, I remember you!
Following our reconnect were stories of remembrance of the Junior High variety…students working things out in my storage cupboard…stuff like that. As I revisit those years, Robbie Fernuk isn’t far away. He was a big part of the creative energy that lived in that particular art class. So was Nigel. Oh, how the years have sped by…
Photos from our first get together, when I got to meet Angela. Oh my goodness! It was as though we had never been apart.
I treasure our friendship. Nigel is life-giving. He is kind and smart and funny. Angela has become a new friend and I hope that we have the years to build memories and share experiences. Both Angela and Nigel are animal whisperers, brilliant, well-read and artistic. I love them!
(looking for Angela’s birthday photograph, but can’t find them in my archives…sheesh)
I continue to be blessed by individuals who somehow land upon a post of mine now-and- again, (quite often, recently), as it relates to family. I have often come across old photographs, military medals and treasures in second-hand shops and thought to myself, “I hope that our family treasures are always cherished and remain with our families, somehow.” Well, in this world of digital imaging, more and more, photographs of our loved ones surface and just as I have shared with others…others share with me.
I am hoping that in the morning, my family members are surprised by these recent gifts from a man who I will simply refer to as Phil.
Yesterday’s e mail, in my inbox, began like this…
“I’ve known for years that your grandparents John & Florence were friends with my grandparents, Percy Hayes (1899-1979) and Mary Hayes (nee Severs, 1909-1996) of Oshawa, Ont. I’m afraid I don’t know the nature of their friendship. Percy worked most of his life at GM. I grew up just up the road from them, my Dad being their oldest son Cliff Hayes (b.1929). I recall being told that your grandpa had moved to Magrath to run the woolen mill, being a strategic industry during WWII.
I know Mom & Dad (can’t recall if ‘Granny’ was with them) stopped in Magrath years ago on a trip. I can’t recall if they connected with anyone though. I seem to recall Dad saying there weren’t any/many Moors left there…”
Phil began by sharing two photographs, along with their annotations. I immediately forwarded the e mail to my father and he very shortly responded via Skype, sharing stories about his three oldest sisters and the three gents that they dated…all horse-riding cowboys. Off they would go for their rides together, evenings, in the herd pastures of McIntyre Ranch. *OOPS! A mistake…Dad has sent me corrections, here.
“It was not Mcintyre ranch herd pasture. It was the Magrath herd pasture where all our cows were pastured every day !!! Rob worked at the ranch as I recall ‘but even that may be wrong cause we all owned horses in Magrath and Raymond in those days even me . Love you big good work.”
It is an amazing thing, this lovely collection featuring my aunties. Beautiful Margaret is now passed on, but Auntie Eleanor just enjoyed her 90th birthday…as did Auntie Ruth, a couple of years ago. Auntie Mary, the youngest, was not to be excluded from this set. Also featured, my Gramma Florence Moors, my Great Auntie Caroline; her son, Orval who flew with the Canadian Navy and would not have lived much beyond these two photographs, having served on the battleship, HMCS Magnificent, (was a Majestic-class light aircraft carrier that served the Royal Canadian Navy from 1948–1957.) meeting an early demise when the plane he was flying, crashed. His little sister, Joan, is also present in one of the photographs.
Based on the annotations, it seems likely that Auntie Ruth sent some of these archives…some might have been mailed, along with letters, by my Gramma Moors to these friends in the east.
I am amazed by the generous hearts of people who take the time to scan and forward such treasures on to me. I do not take any of this for granted.
Family, do enjoy and copy and save these to your own archives. I love you all. Thank you, Phil, for taking this time.
Auntie Ruth with Rob Gorman
Eleanor and Bob
Margaret and Jay Passey
Front: Joan Gamelin Back Left to Right: Auntie Caroline, her son, Stanley Orval Gamelin and Gramma Florence Moors
Dolly, Orval and Auntie Ruth
And, here’s dear little Mary Jane.
Mary Jane Moors
Today, I enjoyed a yummy lunch at the Blackfoot Diner with Phil and his wife, Cindy, and they generously gave me the original photographs that you see above. I am blessed.
We never stopped gabbing the entire time! I got a little emotional when I gave them my good-bye hug. Can you imagine what our grandparents might have thought?
Alright…so, I threw my meatballs together and when they were piping hot, packed up my wine glass and my bottle and my meatballs and headed for Custom Woolen Mills. There was a big accident south bound on highway 2…I did a bit of a rubber neck there, but once that was long gone, I couldn’t believe it when I kept driving north on the highway, past the Carstairs turn off. For a moment, there was panic…I didn’t want to really drive so far as the Didsbury exchange, but, finally resigned myself to going north for a bit and finding my way back to the mills on country roads. When I go on a road trip, I find it so relaxing. There is nothing better than enjoying the landscape and the wide open sky of Alberta.
Light was fading, but still there, as I headed east on whatever-its-called. I knew that I needed to find the 791 to go south. Hmmm…overshot that by a good 20 kms…but, not before my Spidey senses told me to go south anyway, on some range road or other…I asked myself, “How bad can it get?” These range roads are all numbered…I’m sure I’ll zig zag my way there, eventually. In the meantime, I enjoyed viewing a beautiful owl and many grazing deer, some with very large racks…I even considered pulling off for photo-moments, but thought, “No, you really have to get there…” I spotted a sign for Linden somewhere on the way. “Now, that sounds like some place I’ve heard about before…” And on and on I went, feeling like Milo in his little car, lifted right out of the pages of The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster.
Never mind…dangit…the sun was slipping down fast. It might be that I have to do that thing I don’t like doing. “I need to back track.” Heading west, the sun was blinding, as it peeked out at eye level from behind the pink clouds. I thought to myself, “Now, don’t race…watch your way…you can find that 791…just notice.” And I did…some miles later, I turned east again and then just needed to hook up with 272. That, too, was a little shaky….the cattle, munching away to the north of me seemed to be snickering. But that was likely all in my imagination. From a distance, on the narrow (soft) dirt road, I saw the familiar silhouette of the mill on the horizon…I saw the warm lights…and said out loud, “I’m home.”
Entering in to the mill, Ruth’s voice was reaching above everything. The audience was spell bound. Displays of woolen things were to the left. Lots of people were knitting. “I love this place. I love the smell.” At the edge of the display created with works by Artist-in-residence, Sylvia Olsen, sat a Golden Fleece wool blanket, brought as a gift to Fenn by my new friend, Leah. I felt nothing but happiness about being at the mill, bathed in love.
I poured myself a glass of wine…rustled up a plate of pot luck food (nothing better) and snapped a few photographs. This morning, as I think back, I’m grateful for life and love and friendship. Thanks to all of the folks at the mill for hosting such a wonderful event.
Recently, like everyone else, I’ve been swept up in more fear and anger than usual because of the shifting tides of political, economic and philosophical posturing the world over. We try, surrounded by the bombardment of ideas, reactions and media, to sort and sift things out, but sometimes, regardless of our efforts, cave to the tumult.
I was feeling the darkness of our times.
It seemed that last evening, there was a shift of this dark into light, as my dear cousin living in Utah, sent me a message to give him a call. He’s known for a long time that I have a big heart for family research, and a desire to find the pieces of our history, however narrative in nature and lacking in the documentation required to make real sense. He and I, both, have worked on our paternal side for a very long time, in our own ways, if you count up all of the years between us.
I weep this morning, as I type here, about the lovely conversation shared between Dr. Ted (our name of affection for him) and myself. Ted lead me through some of his research on our family. It was like bags of sweets laid out before me. (Remember that feeling as a child?) He guided me patiently, while the both of us logged on to a family ancestral site…this is a fan chart…click on person…click on tree…this is who this person was…and this one…here is the document…And so it went! Any of you who do this sort of work know how generous this gesture of love is. My grandfather, John Moors, would be so pleased. My father, John Moors, will be, when he reads this. Blessed! I love you, Ted! And I will pour over every detail bit by bit and so much will be revealed to me!
This morning, I decided to continue to focus on the unbelievable possibility of the positive. Rolling out of bed, I stepped into my slippers and shuffled upstairs to go through my morning rituals. As a single woman, I typically do a day’s dishes in the evening, later than you choose, I’m sure, but, just the way I do things. Last evening, I didn’t. I expected to bury my hands and arms into warm sudsy water while the coffee maker burbled. I like doing these things, although when I had a partner, I was over the moon about having a cup of coffee prepared for me and delivered to the sofa, while I either read the paper or eased into the day. Rituals change and I have become very happy about treating myself to those tender gestures of support and kindness.
I woke to a note on my kitchen counter.
do when I come
My adult daughter and a gesture of love…makes everything feel different, doesn’t it? When someone does you a kindness? Little effort, but a whole spin that takes you to a place of reassurance and gratitude. Thank you, Cayley.
I opened up Twitter while I sipped on this first hot cup of coffee. This, after turning on the Tallest Man on Earth. (My cousin Peter finally showed me how to connect to those lovely speakers over there, with Bluetooth).
My friend, Wendy, had posted this…and I felt so grateful. Something about me? Really? The artist? And the title of the piece, STABILITY! Thank you, Wendy!
I’m feeling that these three gestures of love are a small smattering that represent the possibilities that are available to me today, these and the warm nuzzle of my Max Man pushing up against my thigh, here at the computer desk. “Let’s go, Mom! Let’s walk!” Today, let’s all look for the gestures of love in our lives and look away from the natural draw to worry and sadness that pull at our heart strings these days, often issues that we have no control over. Let’s simply do what we can, with a real focus of what are the blessings of our lives. Create!
Monday morning saw the accumulation of a whole lot of snow overnight. The sun was shining and I was grateful for that, as I picked up the shovel and cleared the sidewalk, yet again. I was excited to be heading for sister-friend time, a hearty soup and warm-biscuit lunch prepared by my Ya-Ya, Wendy Lees, and the experience of felting with a woman who knows wool, so well. In fact, like me, wool is her history…her story. Ruth Purves-Smith, oh, how I grow to love you! Now, you have been my teacher and I treasure that!
Gathering together means the sharing of stories, the week’s events, creative projects, vision, frustration, hard work and yes, edits on cover letters, even dog tales/tails!
Meeting Booster for the first time was more than fun! This sweetie really wasn’t ever supposed to have a chance at life, but because of her willingness to negotiate around Booster’s many special needs, Ruth gave her that! Apart from very unique dietary concerns and the fact that she has to consistently wear a little diaper, Booster seems to lead a very happy and contented life. As Max’s best friend, I can tell you that this gives me great respect for Ruth.
Settling in, I loved the colours and textures that began to spill out into Wendy’s living room!
I’ve had opportunity before to watch a remarkable lesson on felting delivered by Leah C. Donald to my grade three students. However, I didn’t have the opportunity to share in the experience because it was necessary to supervise the students’ use of the felting needles and to be a part of their process. So, I was excited to actually manipulate the media and to enjoy the hands-on practice.
Ruth brought some of her creations and I was at once, in awe. Hmmm…no pictures of lunch, likely because I was enthusiastically ‘putting it down’.
I decided that I would like to create a hot pad for the table and to focus on technique. I was definitely the slowest person in the room! It took quite some time before I sorted out the use of the felting needle. Thanks for your patience, ladies!
Yesterday afternoon was just one of those magical times that created memories, both in my heart and head, but also in my body. The warm smell of wool, the texture and the concentration…all so wonderful! The next time you feel really cold, I highly recommend wrapping yourselves up in wool, good food and friendship.
Support the Custom Woolen Mills, when you can. Buy your gifts from artists and artisans. Buy music from local artists. Support the creation of treasures that come out of your local community.
I’ve wanted to take my daughter and son-in-law up to the Cirque for a few years and it finally happened. I also wanted to be with my hiking friend, Cathy, who has such a natural and beautiful connection with the mountains. And gratefully, friend, Michael, could also join us. So, we took our pot luck and headed up Longview direction. A bit of a late start, we got on the trail just after the first explosion of hail in the parking lot.
The hike held some really fantastic moments. I was in bliss at the beautiful showing of wild flowers. Everything seemed more lush because of the moisture. Forget-me-nots blooming, electric blue, next to yellow flowers, made me think of Mom. Pink paintbrush, wild asters, Queen Anne lace…what a show!
The smell of the air…glorious!
The company…the people I was with…fun and patient and willing.
Weather…dramatic…frightening at times, but contributed to a different experience of these towering mountains! Thunder booms in a bowl of tall mountains are just somehow, different!
Apart from two Instagram shots, I didn’t archive any of this, but will post the collected photos here.
To begin…images from my first hike up Ptarmigan in 2010.
Yesterday’s Archives, beginning with our drive to Longview. Canola field…candy purchase at the corner gas station in Black Diamond…the chat that goes on between friends, heading for the mountains. Michael Collett…the artist snapping the shot.
Also, Michael’s photograph…an opening view from the trees…stops and starts of rain by this point.
My two little Instagram shots…Cathy ahead of me on the shale traverse.
The meadow…rich green always awes me.
Cathy’s phone…she captures…or attempts to capture the flowers in the meadows. We both agreed we have never seen them like this. Spectacle!
As per usual, I am the least attractive woman at the trail! Yesterday, wearing a Pitch-In bag. lol
This photograph speaks for itself. We’re in mountain bliss at this point.
But, what of the others? Here are Doug’s photos…Michael seems to not be represented well in this set of photographs. He is an intense explorer…likely observing light and colour!
I love the artistry in Doug’s photos…the image below, I guess, shows scale. lol Erin and Michael coming down from a wee jaunt they did on a higher trail.
This one shows the glory of it all.
Proud of my son-in-law, Douglas…a great way to celebrate Canada Day weekend!
Awe! There’s Mike!
We made it to the parking lot…a tad wet, but very satisfied!
And then…the tailgate party.
And the drive home…no less magical! We stopped at that canola field. The drama of the evening’s sky evolved as we headed toward the city. This is Michael’s photograph.
I’m a single woman in the world. If I think too much about it, I can get sad about that…the fact that I don’t have a life partner, helping me reach the things high in my cupboards or rubbing my back when I get the pukes. Truth is, I realize how grateful I am for my children, my son-in-law, his family, my family near and far and my dear friends who are always there with their thoughts, ideas, tremendous support. I don’t know what I’d be without them! Thank you.