Monday, October 30, 2006

This just in...

Weather Report for Trevor and Rachel (because I love you). It's COLD and snowy hereabouts. I ran this morning in about minus ten or more and when I got home my legs were frost-bitten (that's what I get for just wearing thin running tights). Thought I would take some pictures so you could see what you're missing out on (and decide if you're glad to be elsewhere or not...)

Friday, October 27, 2006


Last night's concert

Last night Brent and I went to the Jack Singer concert hall and heard Harry Manx and Michael Kaeshammer. For those of you who don't know, Harry Manx plays what he calls "mysticsippi" kind of a cross between Indian and blues. He has a hoarse but very lovely voice and also plays about four different styles of guitar, mostly with them face up on his lap while he picks and slides up and down the strings (hard to explain, you have to listen). I recommend particularly "Wise and Otherwise" although I hear good things about "Mantras for Madmen" too. His website, has some examples of his music that you can listen to. Michael Kaeshammer is a piano player/singer about our age. He does a lot of boppy jazz and sings in a hoarse voice like a younger Harry Manx. At the same time as playing the piano, he also played a set of high hat cymbals or a bass drum or a second electronic piano or plucked the piano strings. Very talented individual. His website is The concert was awesome. In the first half, Harry and Michael each did a set of songs. Then in the second half, they pretty much just jammed. Played some Indian/blues, played some jazz. Someone in the audience yelled out "We love you Michael" and Michael said "that's my mom". The audience loved them both. They did not one but TWO encores. It was great. If you ever get a chance to see either of them in concert, I highly recommend it. I haven't heard Kaeshammer's albums but we're going to buy one sometime soon, so if you're interested in how he sounds, just ask!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The hazards of giving blood...

So Monday (snowy day!) I had an appointment to give blood at the university. Funny that the University has scheduled blood clinics...I would have thought that the crowd around there wouldn't be very conducive to getting good blood. Anyway, I went in, having drank a liter and a half of water, thinking I was good and full of excess blood. BUT, after going through all the steps for screening (regarding drugs and being Africa and...stuff) I finally got in a chair. I always ask for an experienced nurse because I have SMALL veins and have had bad experiences with nurses digging around in my arms trying to hit the vein. So this I did, but she STILL couldn't find the vein in my right arm, even the one closest to the inside of my arm. So...they bandaged my arm up with NEON PINK tape and put me in a chair for the opposite arm where they managed to find a vein with relatively little digging. For an idea of comparison, my brother takes about five minutes to donate a pint. I, on the other hand, took a whopping eighteen minutes...after which they bandaged my left arm up with NEON PINK tape. Good thing I had a long sleeved shirt to wear or I would have looked pretty humorous to my classmates... ah well, it was worth it. :) I got strawberry kiwi juice. :)

Monday, October 16, 2006

A Trip to Canmore

Last Friday we took a trip out to Canmore to go to a lecture put on by one of our favorite authors, Charlie Russell. Charlie has spent the last 45 years working with bears in Canada and has had a project in Russia trying to learn if humans and bears can co-exist in the same space and not come to harm each other. His website shows some of his work. His lecture was extremely interesting to me and Kirstin, as it falls in line with our own ecological mindset.

On the way out we were driving into the sunset, it was beautiful!

Male 1/2

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Thanksgiving Weekend trip#2

So...after getting from our trip to Lethbridge (around two) we went to bed and got up in time to be out the door again at nine thirty Sunday morning.

Drove down to K's parents' for Thanksgiving dinner with family and long, long time family friends.

Sunday night celebrated B's grandmother's 85th birthday with almost the whole Nelson family (eleven grandkids between the ages of twelve and two weeks).

Monday we helped work on the train station--or B productively helped and K was a go-fer. Monday night was second Thanksgiving dinner with some new friends at Gull Lake. Then home again so K could study for midterm Tuesday morning.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Thanksgiving Weekend Trip #1

We had a well-traveled weekend over Thanksgiving. First, Saturday we drove down to Lethbridge for a wedding. This took two and a half hours on the way there....and because of an unplanned and most definitely accidental detour, it took over three hours on the way back. (Note to us: watch for turn-off onto Hwy 2 shortly after Fort McLeod, otherwise, turn onto Hwy 22 past Pincher Creek...). Even for over five hours of driving, it was worth going to the wedding. We were able to support a friend of Brent's and see and visit with some other good friends. Southern Alberta is majestic. The flat prairie is not my primal landscape--my home--but I am nevertheless awed by it. Prairie up until tall snow-covered mountains. Rolling hills and coulees and wind. And--important to me--so much visible Albertan history. RCMP barracks, old worn out homesteader houses, irrigation ditches. The striving of humans to overcome nature through the massive windmills, the train, again, the irrigation equipment. The desires of humans to recreate old world culture in a cultural vaccum through brick-clad churches and houses, hotels and a university. If anyone tries to say that Alberta has no history, come and talk to me and I will show you otherwise.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Portraiture of a leaf

Have I told you lately how much I like fall? Van Morrison, one of my FAVORITE musical artists, sings a song about fall: It's a marvelous night for a moondance with the stars up above in your eyes A fantabulous night to make romance 'Neath the cover of October skies All the leaves on the trees are falling To the sound of the breezes that blow And I'm trying to please to the calling Of your heart-strings that play soft and low And all the night's magic seems to whisper and hush And all the soft moonlight seems to shine in your blush. Trust me, it's a great song. The people upstairs have never experienced fall before. Can you imagine not knowing fall? I can't. What do non-fall people do for crafts in elementary school in September and October? What about finding different leaves? What would happen to all the orange, red and brown construction paper?