MTM: A little history

I must apologize right off the top here, I am re-using most of a previous post. We didn't go anywhere this weekend and my planned post isn't going to materialize just yet. I confess that I am not a writer (as though you hadn't noticed), nor do I play one on TV.

I originally posted this in May of this year shortly after I got my new camera. I was so excited with it, I had to show off. I was not confident enough in my abilities to produce a MTM post though. For those of you that have already seen these photos, thank you for your patience.

For those that are interested my original posts can be seen here, here and here. I am going to try to make this a bit different, so I don't bore everyone to tears.

Alberta became a Province on September 1st, 1905, when we split from the Northwest Territories and became the 8th Province in Canada. Prior to being the Northwest Territories, we were part of Rupert's Land, which was then set up as a monopoly on the fur trade for Hudson's Bay Company making them the de facto owners from 1670 to 1869, when they sold the land to the newly formed Government of Canada. Due to setbacks, the Government didn't take control until July of 1870.

In total there have been five sites called Fort Edmonton (beginning in 1795) that were set up by the Hudson's Bay Company. The fifth and final Fort was set up where the Alberta Legislature now stands, having had to move uphill from the flats by the river due to flooding. From Wikipedia:

What remained of the fort was dismantled in 1915. It was seen as a crumbling eyesore next to the Alberta Legislature Building, which had been completed three years earlier.[19] The Government of Alberta indicated at the time that it would use the old fort's timbers to create a heritage site elsewhere in the city, but it never did.

It was in fact rebuilt, but not until 1969 and on the other side of the river. I will do an in depth MTM post on Fort Edmonton Park at a later date.

Construction began on our Legislature building in 1907 and by November 30th of 1911 was complete enough to have the first assembly held there. The official opening didn't take place until September 3rd of 1912.

For those interested, this link has all sorts of info and on the left of the page a link to a virtual tour of the Legislature. From a pamphlet for visitors:

Alberta’s Legislature Building was designed by provincial architect Allan
Merrick Jeffers, a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design in the
United States. Richard P. Blakey, Jeffers’ successor, also contributed to the
design of the rotunda and the main staircase leading up to the Chamber.
Jeffers was probably influenced in his design by the state capitol building in
Rhode Island, which was in the popular beaux arts style. This style is evident
in the main entrance, or portico, of Alberta’s Legislature Building, which is
characterized by massive columns and a dome rising above a spacious
rotunda. The symmetric design and layout are also elements of this style.

Click to enlarge

Above: North side of the Legislature at the Grand Entrance. The pools and fountains were added in the 1970's. Many Statues and Memorials adore the grounds around the building.

Above: The west entrance is often used by wedding parties for photographs.

Above: The South entrance, with the eternal flame that was placed for Canada's centennial.

Above: The West Entrance, also used for Wedding photographs.

Back to the North (front) as seen over the reflecting pool.

If you are still reading, thank you! If you would like to read about other places from the My Town Monday posts, visit Travis Erwin, the genius who started it all.

Have a good day all.


What day is it?

I have been trying to reset my internal clock, but people keep wanting me to be awake during the day and it is screwing with my sense of time! AAARrggh!

So, as I have nothing rattling around in my poor excuse for a brain, I give you this instead:

Your Lucky Underwear is Green

You're a total go getter who will scrape and crawl to get to the top. And your lucky green underwear will help you get there without a struggle.

A fast learner, you enjoy a good mental challenge - whether it's getting your law degree or running a successful business.

Sometimes you push too hard to succeed, alienating friends and wearing yourself out in the process.

If you want to reach your goals while still maintaining a full life, put on your green underpants. They'll help you slow down and enjoy life.

Have a good day all...I have to go buy green panties.


Recipe Sharing

You all seemed to want me to send you pretzels the other day, so I thought it would be easier to share the recipe I have. Now this is for a breadmaker, so if you don't have one, run out and get one! Otherwise you have to activate the yeast with warm water and the sugar. Once it is foamy add the flour and the the other liquid. (consult a real baker, or read the instructions on the yeast package -I dunno)

1 cup beer (or water)
1 tbsp butter
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
3 cups (U.S.) white flour* (Canada ) 2-3/4 cups
3/4 tsp yeast

Glaze: 1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 tbsp water.

Coarse salt or sesame seeds

* In U.S. use Bread Flour; in Canada use either Bread Flour or All-Purpose Flour.
U.S. flour is milled differently or something.

-measure first 6 ingredients into baking pan as listed
-insert into baking chamber and select "dough/pasta"
-when cycle complete, remove dough to a lightly floured surface. If necessary knead in enough flour to make dough easy to handle.
-roll into a 14" X 9" rectangle
-with sharp knife cut into approx 18 14" X 1/2" strips
-gently pull each each strip into rope 16" long
- shape into pretzel: lay middle of pretzel on greased baking sheet with ends in opposite hands; cross about 1/2 way up and lay it down with the ends overlapping the curved middle section at the bottom.


combine egg & water, brush on pretzels and sprinkle with course salt or sesame seeds.

Bake at 350 F for 18 to 20 minutes or until done. (if using two trays, switch positions half way)

Mix up some mustard and a bit of mayo to make a great dip for them and enjoy!

** if you want to let them rise, you will have to drop them in simmering water (for about a minute or so) with a bit of baking soda in it to stop the rising.

My personal observations...I have yet to find a way to keep them for more than one day if I salt them. I have tried a number of storage ideas and yet the salt melts and makes them a bit soggy.

You can freeze the dough before you glaze & salt it, if you are not serving a bunch of people. That way you can cook only a few at a time and they will always be fresh.


Well, I am only old enough to be a mother to a few of my readers :) That is good to know. I don't have anyone young enough to corrupt reading my blog either by the looks of things.

Have a good day all!


WWC: Sour & Salty

Wow, I really suck this week! I had such great ideas for this weeks words too! I was just lucky to have a few things around the house to be able to get something to show you all. As you have gathered the words are Sour & Salty.


I like sour candy, and these taste just like lemon meringue pie!

I wanted something sour one day and thought I would try these...yes, sour, not great though.

The Absolut best in Vodka - the lemon makes it a bit sour and you can make so many sour drinks with it.

The good old standbys of any kitchen, Lemon & Lime juice to sour up anything.


Back near the middle of last week, when it got rainy, I made these salty pretzels.

This is my salt supply for when I make pretzels.

This is a very old photo from one of our visits to Nova Scotia. This is the salty ocean near Peggy's Cove.

Same trip, this is the salty ocean on a beach in NS. (Dad, cousin & me, Sis coming out of the ocean on the far right.) Yes, the date on the edge says '75! Oh! and Dad was an old salt too!

So, how many of you were around in '75?

This has been The Weekly Word Challenge, brought to you by Tink of Pickled Beef! See her if you would like to join in the fun.

If you would like to see more photos, drop by our group Flickr site. You can also drop by my Flickr site here.

Have a good day all.


MTM: Parks & Dragons!

The Louise McKinney Riverfront Park, is named after the first woman to be elected to Alberta's Legislature, the first woman in any legislature in Canada or the British Empire. She was elected in 1917 and "believed in temperance education, stronger liquor control, women's property rights and the Dower Act".

As the name suggests, this park is on the banks of the North Saskatchewan River. It starts at the top of the bank however and that means stairs....lots and lots and lots of stairs. In spite of all this it is handicap accessible. If you are fortunate enough to see the parking lot on the way up the hill (or know that it is there), you are able to eliminate an entire series of stairs (the large & top right photos) and are then at the point that paved paths begin.

The city is also in the process of improving McKinney park, they have put in paved paths, more stairs to the river bank, a stage area and there will be room for permanent concessions. There are plans to put in a funicular lift as well. The park itself is home also to a Chinese garden with beautiful statuary that is dedicated to the Chinese immigrants that helped to build Edmonton. As you can see the lights have yet to be installed and a few other things are not quite completed.

The Dragon Boat Festival is one of the regular events held at this park and it was this weekend!

We attended the opening ceremonies and watched Lion Dances by the Borneo Lion Dancers and then we traipsed down three more set of stairs to the river to see the traditional Blessing of the boats.

We watched a few of the initial races before calling it a day and heading back up those ... stairs.


My Town Monday is the brainchild of Travis Erwin. To read other entries just visit click here.

To see more photos of the park and dragon boats, you can go to my Flickr site.

Have a good day all.


Hares to research!

I was asked by Gary of Potters Blog, if these were the same type of rabbit they see in NY state.
No, these are White-tailed Jackrabbits and according to this site, their habitat is usually Western Canada and the States although they do range as far east as South-western Ontario and Wisconsin. In winter these rabbits will turn white, ranging from pure white here in the North, to just a bit of white in places South that don't get much snow.

There are Black-tailed Jackrabbits, but their habitat seems to be mostly desert SW & Mexico. I couldn't find anything that said they ventured North and East.

What you probably have are European Hares. They were brought over as domesticated farm animals and have since made themselves at home in the wild.

Phew, enough research for one day! I can't remember if that photo above will be in focus if you enlarge it, but he is eating! You can clearly see the white tail though which is why I included it.

Have a good day all.

EDIT: Frank kindly pointed out in comments that they have cottontails in Ontario. I didn't even think of researching them. They could also be what Gary is seeing in NY. So, thanks Frank.


WWC: Sweet & Bitter

First off, let me say, it is 32 C with the humidex making it feel like 36 degrees C. That translates to a bit warm for those of you that live south of sanity, or 89 F/humidex 97 F. Interestingly enough, when I changed the website to imperial from metric, I got a weather warning, when I changed back, the warning went away. Does that mean that because I now think in metric, I know instinctively that there is going to be a storm? We had a great boomer last night, but alas, I was not very successful getting any photos of lightening, probably because it was mostly sheet lightening. We'll see what happens tonight.


On to the reason we are here today! It is Tuesday and that means Weekly Word Challenge! This is a fun time and can be had by all! All you have to do is drop by and see Tink of Pickled Beef - she is our wonderful host will let you in on the details.

Without further ado, I give you Sweet & Bitter. Click to enlarge any photo.


This is one of the two desserts my cousin & I indulged in when she came to visit. Not too sweet and a surprising blend of lemon and chocolate.

One of our resident sweet bunnies.

Sweet photo of a poppy.

Who could resist this sweet face?

Or resist this sweet chocolate?

Lemonade is a bit sweet, but not too much.


This chocolate is bitter, that is until you bake with it.

Some people think coffee is bitter, sprinkle a touch of salt over the grounds before brewing to get rid of the bitterness.

Lemon and Orange rinds are bitter but add lots of punch to some recipes.

I'm bitter at my empty parking stall. :(

Bitter pills to take.

Finally, I had to balance the sweet face of my kitty, with this bitter expression.

So there you have it ;)

Some of the participants in WWC have formed a group in Flickr, you are welcome to drop in and have a look around. You are also welcome just to drop over to my Flickr site.

Have a good day all.



To celebrate his 25th post of My Town Monday, the creator Travis Erwin came up with a meme.

Here it is:

Hometown: (current) Edmonton, AB (North Americas largest northern most city)

Population: 752,412 (metro 1,081,300)

You should think of my town when: You eat at Boston Pizza (in the U.S.:Boston's, The Gourmet Pizza)

You should curse my town when: our Oilers bring home the Stanley Cup! (for the 6th time)

One thing you must see if you visit: Our giant cowboy boot! (or West Edmonton Mall) Actually Old Strathcona is a wonderful place to go for shopping and historic buildings.

One place to avoid if you visit: 97 Street downtown. (or West Edmonton Mall)

Famous Resident: so many to choose from! Nathan Fillion (Firefly & Serenity); Tommy Chong (Cheech & Chong); Rae Dawn Chong (Tommy's daughter - Commando and so many more);Evangeline Lilly (Lost); Michael J Fox ( a few movies ;), maybe a bit of telly)

Renowned Athlete: Again many, but I will leave it at Mark Messier.

Without my town the world would not have: Bioware Corp. Gamers will know what that is.

I live here because: It doesn't feel like a large city, but I get the anonymity I crave.

I would leave because: It is easier to be homeless in a warm place - kidding, but it will be the cold that eventually drives me out.

To read more My Town Monday posts, stop over to Travis's bog for links.

Have a good day all.


Visitor! Decadence! Kitty!

I had a visit (in person) from my cousin Leah (of The Goat's Lunch Pail) on Wednesday! She had to come into the city for a few things and needed a native (well sort of) guide. We went for lunch when she got here which was quite an experience, one I am sure she is blogging about, if not today, then soon.

We then went and did the bit of running around she had to do and she was kind enough to drive me over to do some errands that I had to do. Then we came back to my place and ate two wonderfully decadent desserts! Each! By the mighty horns of Thor's helmet! They were good!

While we were having our lunch, we had brought my camera and it's manual along and Leah was helping me out with learning the manual features. She is a photographer and journalist for those of you not familiar with her blog. We took a few silly photos and got the manual settings explained in small words of two syllables or less so that I could understand them and maybe remember them.

I went out later Wednesday night, after she headed home and tried to get some shots of the almost full moon. Even with a tripod, they were shaky so I need to practice some more. When I came back in though, I tried out a few shots of the cat, here are the best. I photoshopped colour in & out of a couple.

The purrfect pose and I don't know how that colour came to be, but I liked it.

Rub my tummy! It was a bit blurry and I couldn't get the colour balanced so removed it.

This is kind of neat. Except he moved before the shutter closed.

He is getting bored and tired of me taking his picture.

And has now given up all hope of getting to go to bed anytime soon.

We had a wonderful day, got some shopping done, ate far too many sweets and played with the camera. There is more, but I think I will wait a day or to to get the final results before I confess all.

Have a good day all.


Labels - what do they mean?

We put labels on goods to identify them as to size, maker, contents, shipper, storage location, parts and so on - I think we are all familiar with that kind of label.

What about this - it is a press on tattoo that I have had for a long time. I have never been able to decide what occasion to apply it for, or where to apply it. But it is a label. Many people permanently label themselves.

I want a tattoo, but as I can never keep one hair colour for more than a few months, how do I decide what tattoo to have permanently marked on my skin?

However, those are not the type of labels I am here for today. Knight inadvertently started a meme, she didn't mean too. It is just that a few of us have decided that it was kind of cool what she did and ... well, we are all sheep I guess. (See, another label)

So, the labels we are talking about are the ones we use at the ends of our posts and how they break down and what are they telling us.

I have used 216 unique labels in 148 posts!

24 are WWC - obviously I am quite enamoured of taking pictures

12 are Photography - I am thinking for WWC

11 are for Flickr - again I am thinking WWC

6 are Flowers - well, finally something new, but we know they are pictures of flowers

5 about my bike

5 about art

The rest have been mostly single use, one of two have been used twice.

Considering that I started this blog talking (telling?) about my cancer and the treatments, my blog has certainly taken on a new direction. I see this as a good thing. No sense dwelling on the past. So you can all expect to see more photographs and WWC entries. I imagine over the next few weeks the number for MTM will rise as well as I have a few ideas along those lines too.

So, as this is an inadvertent meme do it or not, as you choose.

Have a good day all.


WWC - Scatter & Collect.

The ever delightful Tink of Pickled Beef once again brings us the Weekly Word Challenge. This week the words are Scatter & Collect, so I am just putting them up in random order.

My friends trimmed some branches and Collected them to use as firewood.

When playing with Jacks, you Scatter them then Collect them.

When playing dominoes, you usually Scatter first then Collect, I reversed this.

Dragons are know to Collect pretty things. I had to photoshop the background out, but I didn't do a very good job, sorry.

Clouds Collect moisture to Scatter it later.

I had some help Scattering the marbles.

Then no help when I was Collecting them.

Do you suppose he was trying to help me Collect them?

If you think you would like to play along, go and see Tink, she will set you on your path grasshopper! If you would like to see more WWC photos, some of us have a Flickr Group and to see more dominoes fall, see my Flickr site.

Have a good day all.


MTM: Whitemud Creek

I am going to apologize right off the bat. I have a migraine so this will mostly be a pictorial MTM post.

Saturday evening after a wonderful bbq steak dinner, my friends & I went for a walk down in Whitemud Creek. The city was under severe thunderstorm watches and we weren't sure how far we would be able to get before the skies opened up.

This is the first photo I took as we got out of the car. The moon was still visible and that portion of the sky was still blue, but you can see the beginnings of some clouds.

This is the the ravine itself, where the trail begins it southward journey. There is an area by the parking that is manicured and has picnic tables set up. The signs tell you what kind of animals you may see on your walk. No bikes allowed on this portion of the trail.

This is from the bridge (#250 - I don't know how they are numbering the bridges, but thought I would point it out ;)) The water is quite still here at this time of year and you can see the nasty clouds building in the reflection.

The other side of the bridge, you can see algae forming.

There are several old trees along the path that they have avoided removing. We also noticed they are protecting the trunks of several others with wire mesh to keep the wildlife from toppling them.

This is the second bridge (#251 - imagine that) and it gives you an idea of how high the ravine is in this area. You would never know you were in a city of about 1,000,000 people.

These stairs lead down to the third bridge, but as I wasn't aware we were going to be going walking (on gravel no less), I was not properly shod for the hike. We stopped here and made our way back.

This is at the top of the stairs.

I had to go down a few steps to get a good angle on this pretty rock.

Back near the trail head, the weeds are all in various states of bloom and seed and I thought they looked rather pretty.

There is a short little loop that you can make that will take you to the Hwy overpass and here is where I found evidence of Beavers at work. (sorry for the blur)

This is looking under the Hwy to the setting sun. The storm didn't roll through until about 23.00 hrs, so we would have had time to go elsewhere, but better safe than sorry.

It was a short walk of about 30 minutes, about a mile traversed, little hills and such to go up & down. Not many other people on the trails either which was nice. It was also the first time I have walked that trail.

I hope you enjoyed your hike in the woods.

Travis Erwin is the creator of My Town Monday and if you visit his site, he has links set up to all the others that post about their own towns.

Have a good day all.