I came home Saturday afternoon to my very own signs of Spring! I had two hares eating their fill on the exposed grass outside my apartment window. They still have a lot of white in their coats though, so I hope that doesn't mean we will be getting more snow.

I am going to try to put the few pictures I took into a slide show. Everyone pray with me now!

Well, I think I did it. sorry they are not great pictures, but I didn't want to open the patio door and scare off the hare.

Have a good day all!


Popcorn Dreams

I must warn you that this is weird! Very, very weird! I seldom remember my dreams and if this is an example of what they are like, it is probably a good thing.

I am a little vague about how it starts, but, I was part of a research team and we were hooking up wires to various things and then to microwave popcorn to see what could make the popcorn pop. It was determined that a menopausal woman having a hot flash could produce enough heat to pop microwave popcorn! Then the scene changed and I was about to have a hot flash and said to someone, get the popcorn and I'll prove it!

Needless to say, that is when I woke up, as I was too hot to sleep anymore and had to throw off the covers.

I don't eat microwave popcorn, it is vile stuff and as I live alone, I have no idea whom I would be trying to prove this to.

I don't know what a dream interpreter would make of this, as far as I am concerned, I was just having a hot flash! It was so funny though, I had to review it so I could remember to post it for the rest of you to enjoy.

So, how about the rest of you, any strange or weird dreams you would like to share?

Have a good day all!

P.S. My English sucks today, I think "whom" is correct, feel free to tell me I am wrong.



This is my fourth entry to the Weekly word challenge. Tink over at Pickled Beef can give you the details on joining in the fun. This weeks words are Treasure and Junk.

I had so many ideas for both, unfortunately I couldn't manage to get shots all everything. Not to mention the post would be fourteen miles long if I included all the shots I did get. (I still haven't figured out the slide show) So here are some of the shots I got (and some old ones).


Granaries in spring.
(Taken from a vehicle at hwy speeds.)

Oil tanks - also from moving vehicle

Two old photos from my point & shoot film camera
of Alberta's Rocky Mountains

Old costume jewellery of Mom's.

I don't know much about this tiny doll except it belonged to Mom.
She kept it wrapped up and hidden in a drawer.

Some of my photo albums

Found this in a store on our day trip over the weekend.


This is in the workshop at the apartment complex. The barrel
is filled with broken parts and no-one knows when it was last emptied!
(It probably weighs a ton by now)

Broken parts in a box

This used to be a sauna, is now a place to store junk.

This was probably a change room outside the sauna - junk now.
I have no idea how I got the colour, but really bad lighting there
and no flash on the phone camera.

I am hoping that if I can ever afford to get a stand alone digital camera, the quality will improve. I did discover that I can get pretty darn good quality with the phone - if I want really small pictures.

Have a good day all.


Camping with Cats!

My very good friends love to go camping in the summer with their tent trailer. Growing up, our family also camped with a trailer and I quite enjoy the whole camping experience. Now, I can't keep calling them "my friends" so I will call them Tom & Sally and their son Pete (lets hope I don't get confused!). Sally reminded me over Easter, after I told her I had blogged about the "Unfortunate Incident", about the first time Sibu had experienced camping and I thought I should share the story with all of you.

He was not quite one year old when Tom & Sally invited me to go camping with them & Pete to Jasper National Park. Now Sibu is a scaredy cat as I have mentioned before, but he has met Tom & Sally & Pete several times and we have stayed together in Motels and at their house and they at my house etc. Sibu was also quite adjusted to walking on leash and liked to be outside. I traveled to Jasper in my vehicle (from different cities) and met them at the park entrance and we headed off to the camp ground.

Sibu was not about to stay in the car until things were set up, after all Kalon was out and around, he should be too! Fine, so I put him on leash and tied him to a tree that I thought was far enough away from the bustle of setting up camp. Kalon was tied to the tree next to him, but being an old hand at this, he was ignoring the people & trying to catch sight of his first bird or squirrel or elk.

This was later in the evening, but the same tree.

Not my Sibu, he wanted to be wherever I was. Well, I was running back and forth from the truck to the trailer, helping to set things up. We were just about done, the trailer was up and we were looking forward to sitting down & having a drink before starting to make dinner. Pete discovered that Sibu had wound himself up around the tires of the truck and in trying to free him (by coaxing him to reverse his path) bumped the truck. The truck has an alarm on it. My cat was right under the truck. Pete's keys were on the table 20 feet away.

My poor little cat almost hung himself trying to get away from the noise. Once the alarm was stopped and he was untangled he was so scared he was shaking and just couldn't calm down at all. We wound up putting him in the trailer alone for awhile so he could collect himself.

This is after the alarming incident.

Once he showed his face at the door and started to take an interest in things outside, we decided that maybe he should come out and check things out properly. Within about an hour he was as far as his leash would let him go and we had to keep pulling him back to where we could see him. He was chasing night bugs and stalking things in the long grass, listening to the elk calling and then looking for them. He did not want to go to bed when it was time!

Kalon, helping to wash the scare off.

He shied away from Pete the rest of the trip and gave him dirty looks if he came too close, but he didn't object to riding in the offending truck, or getting out and walking the trails with us. Of course, the hair between the pads of his feet collected all the pitch and needles they could and I had to clean them out every time we went into the trailer, or whenever he started to shake his feet as he walked. Which by the way is one of the funniest things to see a cat do!

Since that first time, we have been camping again, but we always keep an eye out for where Sibu is in relation to the truck. He still dashes under vehicles if he is startled, you would think that would be the last place he would dash. Maybe it is just a good thing they have short memories.

I know I shouldn't laugh at the misfortunes of my cat, but sometimes, you just can't help it!

Good Evening all.


So many books to choose from!

Avatar Lore tagged my cousin Leah over at The Goat's Lunch Pail for a meme. She in turn left it open, so I thought I would throw in my offering. The object is to turn to page 123 of the nearest book and write down the first five complete sentences.

From page 123 of The Patriot by Nigel Tranter

Those were the most grievously unhappy months of Andrew's life. Having a man's death on his conscience was like a leaden weight all his waking hours. He belaboured himself for letting his temper take control of him and for having failed Monmouth, set his hand to a task, however reluctantly and then had to throw it up and flee ignominiously, leaving others to the test. All savour was gone from living, the future not only uncertain and dark but pointless.

His outlook was by no means lightened when, about a month after his arrival, a ship from Bristol brought news from England, desperate news.

Well, there you have it, five sentences from very good book. I now have to re-read it, before I re-shelve it again, it has simple been too long since the last time. I hope you enjoyed. I too will leave it open for any who would like to play.

Good evening.


The things we do for our pets - or - EWWW!

You can blame this on Crabby over at Cranky Fitness. She is the one that reminded me of this episode, in fact this is the second time. I have to blog it just to get it over with.

My avatar is in fact my very beautiful Himalayan cat Sibu and he is called a Lynx Seal Point. He is more correctly an "it" and is also the biggest scaredy-cat in the world!

When he was a kitten, I trained him to harness and to walk on a leash because I knew that I would be taking him in the vehicle with me and camping with friends. I even made him a seat belt like the one I had for my dog, because I didn't want a 10 lb projectile if I had to stop suddenly, or a cat in my lap helping me to steer. My friends also have a cat, he is a Siamese and travels & camps very well. Now normally they are both on the same cat food, but Kalon being a bit older than Sibu, his human changed him over to adult blend a few years ago and forgot to mention it to me before we went away together on one of our weekend trips.

That's Kalon about to get his tail whacked.

Sibu doesn't like to eat when we travel, he will wait until we get where we are going, then chow down. He also won't drink water and so his poor little nose drys out. Aside from this after the truck hits the hwy he will usually settle down and stop howling. Travel rules are: the cats must be sitting in laps or on the blanket on the seat of the truck, they are not allowed to wander as they will. There are enough of us that the seat belt is not necessary. Especially Sibu, he would get himself stuck under one of the rows of seats and we would never get him out! I hate to admit it by he is not a very bright boy sometimes, his fear overrides his tiny little brain. He once slipped his harness and crawled under my feet as I was driving - alone - on the hwy! Not a good place for a cat.

Needless to say, after a long day in the truck (when I say truck I mean Chev Suburban) he was pretty hungry, or at least you would think so. I think he knew the food was different and didn't want to eat, he also didn't want to drink, but that is because he is spoiled. Well, I figured, he'll get over it and sure enough, sometime in the middle of the night he snuck out & scattered food all over the floor. He does this just to let me know he has been at the bowl I think. The next day, we do some touring around and by the time we got back to the motel, he was resigned to being with my friends and started to behave himself. The next day we headed back home.

We never get home until about 10.00 p.m. with these friends, so it is dark, we are about two hours away from home and he wants to go to the back and use the litter box. He knows better than to do this while the truck is moving, but he was really very determined that he had to go and go now. Off he goes and eventually he comes back to sit on my lap. Thanks very much! He has a very delicate stomach, did I mention this? No? Well, it is a good thing that I happened to have some baby wipe type things in my purse, because damn I needed them. Of course I couldn't see what I was doing, but I could sure smell it.

I would just about have him clean when off to the back he goes again! Poor little guy! Eventually we found a gas station and pulled in so the light was on my side of the truck and I could see what I was doing. My friend found some nail scissors in her kit bag which helped a great deal and we were able to get rid of most of the mess in the back.

Right now I can't think of anything worse than trying to trim a cat's butt & leg hair in the back seat of a truck, in the dark, with nail scissors - curved nail scissors!

Well, I have to go trim butt now, we are going on a day trip tomorrow bright and early. Yes, amazingly the same friends, they still let me tag along.

Happy Easter all!


WWC # 27

Weekly Word Challenge is hosted by the very funny Tink over at Pickled Beef - check out her site for photos and details on how to join in the fun. This weeks challenge words are Domestic & Foreign, I had loads of fun gathering these photos.

My Mom was a rather talented artist and so, I chose one of her paintings for domestic. Sadly she was called away to paint sunsets in 1993.

My parents were fortunate enough to be able to do a fair amount of traveling in their lives. This next piece is artwork from Russia from before the Iron Curtain rusted. The photo following is the back label of this work. Too bad it didn't come out very well, it is inlaid woods and really very intricate.

This covers both categories, it is my domestic (at least I think so) table, sporting a runner that the folks picked up in Sweden. As a bonus, it shows my lack of domestic skills!



These next shots, I, um, ahem... "borrowed".


We can't give her away!

Foreign & Domestic

I think I might be getting better with this camera phone! I think my next challenge is to see if I can't get them into a slide show like some of the other bloggers use. I will update later on next weeks words.


P.S. Just had a look and I think I spoke to soon, they are still kind of blurry. More practice I guess.


So close, then this!

As I was headed out to catch the bus on Wednesday, I noticed how much snow had gone, so thought I would snap a picture. This is one of the South facing yards in the complex, starting to show grass. What a sight for snow blind eyes!

Then I noticed the forlorn remains of this snowman.

I was out today after three days of snow and grey, ucky weather. It was -17c with a windchill of -25c (-15f windchill). I was almost immediately blinded by the sun reflecting off of the snow, but thought I had to take a comparison shot. This is the same lawn area as the first shot.

And I found some other snowmen that had fared a bit better.

I thought the shadows looked kind of pretty.

These last three were taken without the benefit of actually seeing the screen on my phone, it was that bright. I think they turned out alright.

It will be just above freezing for the rest of the week, then calling for more snow on the weekend again - sigh! It will be warm thought so it won't stick around. I really shouldn't complain, at least I am not in the East with Hilary of The Smitten Image! She gets much better pictures though.

Goodnight all.


WWC #26

Finally, I am getting around to putting up my poor examples of Paper and Ceramic for this weeks WWC. This is hosted by Tink of Pickled Beef, so you should drop by and have a look at much better photos than I can get. Next weeks words are Domestic & Foreign, so that could prove interesting.

Here we have two papier-mache Christmas ornaments (no, I didn't make them - no talent that way)

A paper angel (again, no)

My baby book from the Uni Hospital. Sister just sent it to me & now I finally know what time of day I was born!

Very old papers - Dad's service papers from WWII

Ceramic statue made in Dartmouth, N.S. to commemorate the Volunteers that served in Canada's Navy during WW's I & II

Ceramic Jewelery

That is it. Whew, I didn't think I would make it this week, it has been a bit hectic, what with falling and filling in for the boss.

You would think I would learn!

There are four buildings in the apartment complex where I live (and work part time) and I walk between the buildings on a regular basis. Working at the office part time gives me access to all the buildings and round about June last year, I tripped on the speed bump between two of the buildings. I tripped lengthwise to the speed bump, so landed straddling it and smacked myself in the face. I dented my forehead, skewed my glasses and had wonderful bruises all over and tore the glove that I wear on my right hand because of the lymphoedema.

The boss is off enjoying her head cold in the Baja (which she passed on before she left) and as a result I am left in charge which means I am working full time hours. Well on Sunday, I was taking a prospective tenant to view a suite and damned if I didn't do it again, crosswise. This time it was a different bump, one that I have to walk over to go to the bus, the office, um, pretty much anywhere AND I WALK OVER IT EVERY DAY! Oh and I have lived here for four or so years!

The direction we were headed was also slightly uphill, so I had no hope in hell of not falling. I carry most of my weight in my belly, so am front heavy anyway. I can't even blame it on snow as it has mostly melted on the roadways, in fact the bump is dry, of course, I landed in the melt coming off of the grass. Drove gravel and tiny bits of glass into one hand and skinned the elbow and baby finger on the arm that I am not supposed to get a needle stick in, or a hang nail because of the potential for infection. Not to mention knocked a few vertebra out of place.

The poor girls I was taking to show the suite to. They were all "OMG, is there someone we can call?" "Are you going to be alright?" and so on. They were very kind not to laugh and I am sure it was funny as hell to watch. Once I got my breath back, I told them I was fine, just a fat klutz and then we went and looked at the suite.

That night, I decided that I had better do at least one set of the exercises I had been doing and see if I could do some stretching for my back. This went well, I actually felt pretty good by the time I went to bed and much better when I got up. Well, as yesterday progressed and I started to cough, all of the muscles I have been working in my belly decided that coughing on top of the abuse they had gotten Sunday was just too much. By the time I went to bed last night, if I didn't know better, I would have said that I had dislocated my uterus! OMG I was sore. All I can think of is that all of my fat being thrown forward against muscles that really haven't had a lot asked of them in such a long time was just too much. They were just getting accustomed to me trying to suck them back in where they belong and here I go throwing all this weight at them from the other side.

I discovered today though, that I can still walk, smoke, read and suck on a throat lozenge all at the same time - I just can't walk and talk! Hmm, seems to me that is what I was doing the first time too.

Can anyone walk & talk?


Pregnancy Hormones

I was just speaking with a friend and she told me of a woman that she knows that is on a diet using pregnancy hormones. WTF? Well, apparently she injects herself daily for three weeks and eats a 500 calorie/day diet. Then for three weeks she eats a normal diet, then goes back to the 500 calorie pregnancy hormone routine for another three weeks.

So far she has lost 25 pounds in just the first three week cycle. It is supposed to reset your metabolism. The hormones have to be imported from India and men can do this as well although 1 in 20 could develop breasts.

Does this strike anyone else as a bit nuts? Injecting yourself with someone else's pregnancy hormones? 500 calories a day?

This woman is not overweight by more than 10 or 15 pounds and plays squash on a regular basis. She is also a NURSE.

Well, now I have to see if I can find any information on-line, 'cause this is too weird, the number of bad things that could happen from this. Just the gross factor itself, how well screened is this, what about hormone positive cancers, if you are not menopausal, what does it do to your cycle, if you are what does it do to that? I could go on, but I am pretty sure you can all come up with your own questions.

I googled "pregnancy hormone diet" and was led to this page.

It seems this Dr. Simeons discovered that "a very tiny amount of the human pregnancy hormone hCG 'disconnects' the mobile fat and assists to burning it and discharging it through the kidneys." The 'mobile' fat is the stuff that keeps us from starving when food runs out. It goes on to say "the placenta-hormone hCG Human Chorionic Gonadotropin should act through the hypothalamus on mobile fat stored as spare fuel in still active adipose-cells under the skin."

In a nutshell then, you tell your body it is preggers and you are living through a famine. It opens the fat vaults so you can produce a child and not starve. The website does admit that this method failed double blind studies, but they have continued to do it anyway, they started in the 50's or so. They also claim that you must be supervised by trained personnel and the diet is very specific. Very long FAQ page on the site which I was glad to see. Still, not something I am going to run off to have done to me though. Just because a Dr discovered this doesn't make it a good idea. Although it sounds better than what I was imagining from what I was told by my friend.

While searching though, I did find here that there might be hope for MS sufferers by using pregnancy hormones. If I had to give money to one or the other, my money would be on improving quality of life rather than losing weight.

Thoughts anyone? Am I out to lunch or is losing weight really worth all that?

Good night.

Seat belts & slow chases

I just did a quick calculation in my head and damn I'm old! However, that was not the calculation that I was performing. It seems that the wearing of seat belts has been a law in AB for about 25 years now. No I didn't look it up, I was working for the RCMP when it became law and I think it was in the second year that I was stationed in Peace River. Therefore about 25 years - hence, OMG I'm old!

The reason I bring this up is there is a funny story related to the enforcement of this law. Now, the members all had to radio in from their cars when they were pulling over a vehicle for any reason and give me license tags and vehicle description as well as where they were located. So, I am dutifully writing all of this down as the female Constable relates it to me when I suddenly hear this gagging noise over the radio, then silence. She comes back on a couple of seconds later and finishes telling me where she is, but I can hear her laughing.

She does her check, I do my computer check, she lets me know she is clear and proceeding in whatever direction. An hour or so later she saunters into the comcentre where I am working away (or reading a book) and tells me that she was pulling this vehicle over for not wearing a seat belt, but she forgot to take hers off when she was getting out of the car. She damned near hung herself and had a very interesting bruise for a few days. The fellow she had pulled over, did very well in not laughing at her, so she let him go with a warning, she was laughing too hard to write a ticket anyway.


One of the things I had to do in that job was to monitor high speed chases. I had to keep the radio repeaters open, tell the detachments that they were heading to that a chase was coming their way and write down everything that was said. This could be almost impossible depending on the circumstances of the chase and the number of vehicles involved.

I had one chase however that I couldn't help but keep up with. First a bit of geography, Peace River is located at the joining of two major rivers and the town is down in the valley. It gets pea soup fog on a regular basis there. Winter fog is especially heavy.

Some silly woman had gassed up her van, then leaving her kid in the baby seat and the vehicle running, had gone in to pay for the gas. This was in the '80's and we didn't have the remotes to lock and unlock doors like we do now, so she had left it unlocked, after all she was only going to be a minute. Well, a minute is all it takes.

I get the phone call and before I can make a radio call, I get a radio call, one of the members had pulled in to gas up so he also got the complaint. The van was heading up the south hill out of town, in pea soup fog, dispatch one of the other cars and he will stay with the mother to keep her apprised. Two cars see the van, pull in behind him and turn on their lights. No response, this guy isn't stopping for anyone.

Most of my transcript from the night was: Yes, we are still behind him, we are doing about 45 kph (28 mph for those readers from the USA), oh now, we are up to 50 kph. He just won't pull over! I can't see to get in front of him. Control, radio McLennan and have them start towards us. Tell them to be careful the hwy is covered in black ice. So I did, then I had to keep track of McLennan detachment too. About 30 minutes into this, I hear: McLennan is that you coming towards us? Yes, I think so. Turn on your over head lights. They are on! Well, I guess that's not you then. About 5 minutes or so after this, the same thing: Is that you? I can see three cars heading toward me. Yes, we see your lights now. So, McLennan pulled in front of the van forcing him to stop and they arrested the guy. The kid? Well, he slept through the whole thing.

Of course after all this time, I can't remember the call numbers of the cars that were involved, but that wouldn't make the tale any better.

For those that have never experienced it, black ice is not visible on the hwys, it just looks like a wet spot so takes you unawares. Here is the wiki description. It is very treacherous.


Weekly Word Challenge #25

I thought it only fitting, after my last post, to try my hand at the WWC that Tink at Pickled Beef hosts. After all, if I intend someday to fork over money for a digital camera, I had better get back into the practice of taking pictures. So with out further ado, I give you this weeks photos. The words were Stone & Glass.


Sorry, colour needs work as does getting close ups. The top right is a Tanzenite and the bottom right is a Sapphire, can't remember the other two, I think they are both Pink Tourmaline.

Jade, Labradorite and Fire Opals


This is a very cool glass paperweight that was gifted to me by one of my brothers. It is Kosta Boda and has the artists name etched on the bottom.

These too are Kosta Boda, hand made glass eggs that Mom & Dad picked up in Sweden.

These are three of the remaining seven (Sis at Bag Lady's Blather has the other four) salt bowls that belonged to our paternal grandmother. It is a mystery what happened to the eighth. I didn't put the other spoons in as they are silver and very tarnished.

This last is '70's (maybe '60's) and looks like carnival glass, but I am not sure. I don't know enough about glass to say and there are no markings on the bottom.
I really like the way the light and shadows picked up on this shot though. I had to smudge out the base of my monitor though.

So, there you have it, my very first entry into WWC. I hope they shots are not too disappointing.