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Friday, June 29, 2012

A bittersweet day

Today would have been Dave's mom's 91st birthday.  We were so happy to be in Penticton last year to celebrate her 90th and we all expected that she would celebrate lots more birthdays.  Little did we know that in a little over a month she would be gone.

Four years ago we went to Davenloch Collies to pick up Duffy, and it was an extra special day, as it was Mom's birthday too! It's still a very special day, but this year it's tinged with sadness.

This doesn't take away from the joy and love that I feel today and everyday when I look at our Duffy.  He has changed my life in extraordinary ways and he continues to change my life. I might just write a post about that this long weekend.

                                             Happy Birthday Mom-I love you. XOXO

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

More garden scenes...

A clump of irises.

The dark yellow iris--they hide under the peonies and the delphiniums.

Speaking of delphiniums--they are starting to open.

Peonies are opening up too--I adore them and always have a vase full on the kitchen table while they are in season.

Mmmmm--cherries!! Won't these be wonderful when they ripen!!

Mmmmm tomatoes!! These are Tiny Tims in a pot.

My garden ♥ Notice the 2 sizes of corn--that's because I had to re-seed as so much of the corn didn't come up, and I found the kernels just lying there in the ground.  Don't know why they didn't germinate.

My latest find at my favorite store--Canadian Tire. I needed a good spot for Ewey and her pot, plus now I have a place for the 2 Impatience plants that I wintered over in the house.  I never tried that before and was very happy that they survived!

Love the irises--wish they lasted longer!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

And the winner is....

Jolene!! Even though she cheated by taking 2 guesses!! Hahahahaha!! But seeing as no one else got it right, she gets the prize. The answer was wolf, by the way. Thank you to those who gave  an answer.  The most creative answer was definitely from Key West Collies!!

Did you know that typically you won't see 4 foot prints for a wolf?  You'll only see 2, as wolves place their hind paws into the front paw print!! And Jolene, you can have Dr. Jean Dodd's The Canine Thyroid Epidemic, if you would prefer.

Happy Summer Solstice!! We are actually having a lovely day!! Most years the first day of summer is marked with rain and clouds. Here are a few pictures from my yard. I went with an orange, yellow, and purple color scheme for flowers this year.
I always treat myself to one special flower purchase every year--this year, a hanging basket full of petunias.

Two different shades of purple petunias in pots.

My favorite--the begonias.
Enjoy the summer!!! It's all downhill from today!! LOL!!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Whose footprint?

I had this photo on the previous post, but took it out for a separate one. I had only one guess--from Jolene--so I'm hoping more will take a stab at it.  The first person to guess correctly the animal that made that print,  will get a copy of the wonderful book The Rescue of Belle and Sundance-A Miracle on Mount Renshaw. It's a true story and takes place right here in Canada! To give you a hint, the print is almost 4 inches across!

Good luck!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Family Excursion to Ya Ha Tinda!

Monday morning we set off for Ya Ha Tinda--it's a 2 hour drive there. This is Highway 27, coming into Sundre.
The Red Deer River at Sundre.  All the rain has pushed the rivers and creeks into flood conditions and this coupled with the spring melt from the mountains has a lot of people worried.

Lots of logging west of Sundre.

A pretty big forest fire went through the area--it was on both sides of the road.

Here we are!! It's a gravel road for part of the trip--there had been washouts from flooding creeks, so we had to be very careful and go slow.  Lots of twists and turns and ups and downs too.  Duffy was whining in the back and when we let him out, he promptly threw up his breakfast!! I don't think he cared for the twisty roads!!
More snow because of the wet weather.  Ignore the bug splats!
Bighorn Creek--had even been a lot higher a day or so before this.
Dave and Duffy on the trail by the creek.  We didn't go all the way, as the trail had been flooded and was pretty muddy and unsafe.

On the bridge over Bighorn Creek.

The campground.  There were only a couple of people camped there and the campsite that Dave and his friends had been at 2 weeks ago had been surrounded by water over the weekend.

Some of the government horses used for park patrol duties.

If you want to camp at Ya Ha Tinda, leave the motor home at home--absolutely no way one of them can go up those roads.  Truck with a camper van, or a tent, and a small horse trailer--that's it. No fresh water at the campground, but there is a spring a little ways back down the road--they have a pipe stuck into the hill--it's great water!!  And BYOTP (bring your own toilet paper)!!  They have panels for a horse paddock. It's beautiful up there and if you don't mind roughing it when you camp, it's a perfect spot.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Davenloch's MacDuff HIC!!!!!

We got back yesterday afternoon from a whirlwind, activity-filled 4 days down south.  Lots of driving, thankfully I didn't have to do it!! Thanks Dave ♥!! Lots of rain on Saturday and Sunday, but Monday and Tuesday were nice.  The biggest and most exciting event was taking Duffy to the No Chicken Ranch near Okotoks, for his Herding Instinct Certification test on Sunday.  The wind was blowing fiercely, the rain fell off and on.  Duffy was over the top excited--all the different smells, what was going on!!!??? The tester, Jerry, first told me to stay out of the pen and he would see how Duffy would do.  Duffy stayed by the gate, trying to get back to Dave and I!! Okay, I had to go into the pen.  Duffy sniffed around the fence, Jerry told me to call him.  I did and then Duffy saw the sheep!! Whoo Hoo!! Then he got down to business!! I am so proud of him!!! He'd cut out a sheep and then regroup them, he changed directions really well,  and he has great speed.  He slipped in the mud once--poor guy, but got up and carried on. He was marked as 'a little distracted' and 'lacks power'. In herding terminology 'power' refers to the dog's self-confidence, the influence the dog's presence has on the stock. Those are things that will change with more experience. But I think he would like to run around with sheep everyday!!

Get her Duffy!!

The official certificate!! Hooray for the Duffster!!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Ya Ha Tinda

The weekend before last, Dave went camping with a couple of his buddies out to Ya Ha Tinda. This the only federally operated working horse ranch in Canada and there is also the Bighorn Campground. The ranch was established by the Brewster Brothers--a guiding, outfitting and touring company-- in 1908 as a place to breed and train the horses for the tours.  The Canadian government took it over in 1917 and since then it is where all the horses that are used for patrolling and protecting Western Canada's national parks, are wintered and trained. Ya Ha Tinda means 'Mountain Prairie" in the Stoney language--Nakoda.  The Stoneys are part of the Lakota First Nations people.  I first became aware of Ya Ha Tinda when I worked for the Alberta Forest Service in the 1970's. Sonya and I loved the name---it sounded so romantic--we were both avid readers of Zane Grey westerns!!

The ranch covers 3,945 hectares, or about 9,850 acres, and runs 27 km. along the north bank of the Red Deer River. There are lots of trails for riding and hiking, and wonderful scenery.
The guys at the campsite.
Bighorn Creek
Creek canyon wall
Bighorn Falls
Some ambitious person created a chair out of the shale slabs
And here's the king sitting on his throne!!
Nice horse riding trail--Diana????
Still lots of snow on the Rockies
Ranch buildings
An elk (wapiti) heading up the slope.

We are hoping to go to Ya Ha Tinda after the weekend. It's supposed to rain the whole weekend, but clear up by Monday, so I hope we can take Duffy and have a picnic!  Fingers crossed!!!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Almost a full moon

The moon came up in the SE last night and was huge. I love the moon, always have--but then given my name, that's only right!