NOTE: IN ORDER TO BETTER SEE PHOTOS IN THEIR FULL 1600 PX. RESOLUTION, VIEW THEM IN THE ALBUM FORMAT BY CLICKING ON THE LEAD PHOTO OR ANY PHOTO IN THE POST. This is especially true for landscape shots. Thanks to Mark for the idea of adding this alert so the photos can be seen at their best!

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Love Peace Justice Equality

A lot has been happening in the United States these days.  I've always felt a bit helpless in putting my thoughts into words when it comes to I can paint.

My daughter who lives in Wisconsin left her job as management at the YMCA.  She wasn't there long, but she was there long enough to discover that not all non-profit organizations have the good of the community as their primary concern.  Her timing worked out great because she got offered a job she applied for back in January that they didn't fill until now.  She is going to be working at a group home for teenage girls in two weeks and in the meantime has a lot of training to be ready for all the situations that will come with that huge responsibility.

When I was younger I spoke out, not as loudly as Katrina does, but my world is smaller and my ways of raising awareness are more measured.  My heart breaks for those who suffer and I hope that change is on its way.

More posts to come, 13 of them!

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Just Short of the Top on My Birthday

Somebody had a birthday, and that somebody was me!  So I stopped at the store for a birthday treat and to say hello to a few familiar faces.

Then I hid a rock for a special little cousin based on her favorite pal Pepsi.

Pepsi the skunk in her pink tutu

And finally I was off to the small town of Sunnyside to do a bit of hiking!  The sun was shining and I was not about to let a beautiful June day go to waste.

I had stopped in Sunnyside last fall for a quick look at the Centre Hill Trail, but now it was time to tackle the 10 km roundtrip hike.

Within 15 minutes I was crossing the bridge where I had stopped previously and filling my bottle with water.

For two and a half hours I plowed uphill, some spots loaded with blueberry bushes...

...some spots level but rocky...

...and one spot destined to be a tripping hazard.  I took one look and said to myself, that looks like a lovely place to have a fall.  Five seconds later I was on the ground with a bruised hip and a throbbing knee.  Who knew I was psychic?

I saw the big hill in the distance, legs starting to tremble, and hoped that the final destination was a little short of the peak.

No worries about being confused in the wilds of Newfoundland if you come for a visit, the names on the signs will say it all.

 A gal came up behind me RUNNING and informed me I was at about 3.7 km and she breezed past me to the peak.  What??

Okay, okay, the throbbing knee had returned to normal so I told myself to take my time and see how far I could make it.

Was I still on the trail??  It seemed more like a hillside runoff and in spots I had to grab onto trees and haul myself up, hoping I didn't stumble with my muscles running on empty.

Up above Bert's Pond but with probably another half a kilometer to go I decided I was far enough.  I was tired, I was alone, and as it was my birthday I was pretty aware that I wasn't young anymore and should know my limits.

So I only did 9 km instead of 10 km, so what if that girl at least 20 years my junior sped past me with her dog again on the way back like it was a jog around the block?  I was happy to have gotten out for my first big hike of the season at last and to make it home with only a few bruises.

See her there, she ran so fast I couldn't barely get my camera up for a photo in time!

Back at the car I had to rest before struggling out of my sweat drenched clothes, and then made another delivery to a little Harry Potter fan in Sunnyside.  I have a soft spot for kids who read and when I heard she was a Hufflepuff fan I had to reward her with a custom rock.

My goal is to get out for a big hike at least once a week, and probably stay out overnight for the rest of the summer.  I'm giving up on promising to post in a timely manner, obviously I just have too many hobbies but I'll do my best!

Saturday, May 16, 2020

When is a Door Not a Door

Spring is flying by, and before you know it summer will be here.

When I took my first walk up the very steep hill just 5 minutes from my house a while back I saw that one of my neighbors kept busy during the winter cutting lots of wood.

Less trees meant more views, and I was quite happy to see the new view of the Southeast Arm. 

Spring melting means lots of water on the trails.  When is a door not a door?  When it has become a bridge!  I wish I had magic pockets to keep a few old doors in so I could have laid them down in some other spots.

I wasn't wearing my rubber roots so I clung onto the spruce and made my way past.  Turn around?  Not this girl!

Warmer days, longer days, and soon everything will be green, not just the lichen on the trees.  Here in Placentia it's still down to freezing most nights, but I'm counting down the days until I can get my garden going at last.

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Mama Hen

We used to have a small hobby farm with chickens, sheep and even the odd attempt at a cow in Wisconsin.  It's hard to believe that it's 17 years since we sold the farm and moved to a "neighborhood". ..and then another neighborhood, and now hopefully our last neighborhood.

A chicken rock for my Uncle in exchange for some birds?

The good news is that the folks here are just country enough to not care if we have a few chickens, as long as we keep it clean and quiet.  Sorry, roosters, no spot at the newly built chicken palace for you.

Wayne 's in the chicken house, not the dog house

The pandemic has provided the reason to keep Wayne home enough hours to finally get a home built for some chickens.  We could probably house up to a dozen layers if we needed to, but good grief, what would we do with all the eggs?!

I was pretty excited when it left the garage and made it's way outside, but then it had to be raised off the ground and fenced in as well.

 Spring is a bit slow to get really warm here with temps still just above freezing overnight.  But with the chicken house completed Wayne needed a new project so he built some raised beds for my vegetable and herb gardening.

And today the chickens came home!  My uncle loaned me Mama for a few weeks, but she can't get too comfortable Chez Leonard because it's back to her other fowl friends she must go.  Hopefully I can pick up another 2 or 3 ladies somewhere else, and most importantly I hope these are not roosters.

Best of all our next door neighbor does woodworking so I can have all the shavings I want for bedding in exchange for a few eggs.  Here's a little video of their first try at the ramp.  Happy Mother's Day, Everybody!

Monday, April 27, 2020

Artsy Antigonish

The small village of Antigonish in Nova Scotia is home to a small college and had a few murals here and there to brighten up their winter days.

In March I stayed at the Antigonish Evergreen Inn and will definitely return to visit with the Newfie-born proprietor.  We had a lovely chat over a scrumptious homemade breakfast and I hope all is well in their little corner of Nova Scotia during these times.

Newfoundland "ugly stick" on display at the Inn

When will travel for pleasure be on again?  Even if folks don't leave their province I am sure that everyone will be itching to get out and explore.  Take a cruise?  Fly to Europe?  Maybe not for awhile, but if Canadians are traveling within their own country as much or more than before that is only a good thing for small local businesses.

Linking up to Monday Mural.

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Spring is Here

I've been holed up with a new pastime since hiding painted rocks is a no-no these days, but a few weeks ago I was getting out for a few walks a week even if there was still snow on the ground.

I believe I took these on the official first day of spring, but I hardly know what day of the week it is on any given day much less a thing like that.

Castle Hill can't be beat for views of the lift bridge, as long as it isn't too windy!  Say what you will about winter, but in the summer it isn't uncommon to come up just to find the views obscured by fog.

Any birders out there who want to chime in on identifying this bird?  Wayne took a look on the internet and guesssed some kind of finch but I forget now what he said.  Getting a few posts written up today, I promise they won't be as dull as this one!

Friday, April 3, 2020

Oh Those Winter Nights

Spring has come to Newfoundland! Before we jump into what that looks like let's take a moment to say farewell (we fervently hope) to winter.

I took a walk once or twice a week during the winter, which is more than I was able to force myself to do in Wisconsin.  We got more snow than normal in the province this year so finding a place to walk off the road that wasn't thigh deep in snowdrifts was often the challenge.

Argentia during some snow flurries

One of the advantages to late afternoon walks in the winter is that before you know it the sun is setting and the sky comes alive with color to contrast with the white landscape.

The rule is that the best photographic opportunities are the ones you don't have a camera with you, but I managed to capture a few sunsets.

Since daylight savings time went into effect it's almost alarming how late the sun sets.  But before you know it as the days get warmer they won't seem long enough to enjoy all that living on the coast has to offer!