Monday, April 30, 2007

cluck, cluck, cluck.....SOLD!

If you've been to Art's blog today, you're probably dying to know what the heck us kids have been up to now. Well......

....there was an Auction Sale here in Endako on Saturday. We volunteered to work in the concession and while I was running the cash register Art was scoping out what was for sale. He got himself one of these ...... which allowed him to bid. He bought these .....

10 pullets and 1 cockerel. All we had to take them home in was Xena's kennel (we'll have to hose that out for sure!).I think some of our neighbours (and maybe even Art) were surprised to see me catch them and put them in the kennel. I'm not quite the city slicker they thought I might be. Little do they know I spent my youth in the Luxton 4H Poultry club and raised many a chicken.

In the meantime, while we build a proper coop for them, the harem are living in this former horse barn.They seem very happy and I'm tickled to have them.In the first 24 hours they gave us 6 eggs. This morning's breakfast was particulary yummy! Now, it's off to town to buy them some food and feeders. They probably think they've died and gone to heaven because all I've had to give them for 2 days is wildbird seed. Woohoo!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Happy Birthday, Grant

Grant is outstanding in his field....well, ok, sitting...He can be pensive........but mostly he's just a fun guy (and not the kind that grows on trees....maybe swings from trees, but I digress). We love you big bunches, Grant!

snow in particular - snow in general

This is the view out our bedroom window at 6:00 this morning.Yup, more snow. Keeps taking me by surprise. It reminds me of when I was a kid growing up in Victoria, BC. It almost never snows there, so it was a huge thrill to wake up and see a white dusting outside. But it always felt like a ripoff when it was melted by lunchtime. There was one year, though ..... I think it was 1965 (or thereabouts). I was just a kid and there must have been 3 feet of snow (or it seemed like it anyways). And it stayed for days. I remember my Dad made a snow sculpture of our dog, Duke, in the front yard. Good times.

So now we live in Endako, where snow is not such a rare thing. I wonder if the kids here are thrilled by it or jaded.

another arrival

Yesterday afternoon the Sandhill Cranes arrived. Well, one. I'm not sure if it was Mister or Missus. I hope the other was just out of sight. They always come and go from the exact same field. I wonder what there is about that field. Maybe they nest by the pond just up the hill. One day last year they were out there at the same time as a few deer. Neither cared about the other's presence, but the thing is, at a quick glance I couldn't tell which was which. The cranes are about the same size as the deer and from the rear-end angle the deer looks just like the crane. I've taken many pictures and much video, but they are just that little bit too far away (so, once again, this picture was not taken by me).

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

birds aplenty

Woke up to a couple of inches of fresh snow this morning, but it didn't last long. I went outside to toss some seed on the ground for the birds and could hear what I'm pretty sure was a woodpecker on the roof of the barn. He was squawking away and then banging on the metal of the roof. He was too far away to see very well, even with binoculars, but I could tell he had a red head.

A little while later in the morning, Xena suddenly started barking her head off. I stepped out and found what her problem was. There was a big bald eagle in a tree near the house. I took a lot of video from a bunch of different angles and this was the best I could get. I'm sorry the camera is wiggling around so much. When it is zoomed out as far as it will go I just can't hold it very still. I desperately need a tripod (or one of those single legged things) .... and a better zoom.
He did not care at all that I (and Xena) was moving around just beneath him. A short time later I noticed something in the tree where he had been. Thinking maybe it was his lunch he left behind, I got the binoculars. It was another bird .... a Northern Harrier (I took video of him, too, but he's about 1/2 the size of the eagle and my zoom just wasn't good enough). I remember him from last year. He's cool to watch hunt. He flies low over the ground like a harrier jet.This afternoon we took a drive to Burns Lake to pick up cat food. As we were going down the driveway I wondered to myself when the Mountain Bluebirds would be back. Just then ..... I'm not kidding .... a flock of about 10 flew right across our path and landed in the field. They are so BEAUTIFUL!!! I just LOVE them.It was my first sight of them last year that got this interest in birds started for me. Up until then I never noticed birds. But the exotic blue of these little guys captured my attention. I think they are my favourite. And then there's the Juncos. They're tiny and non-descrip, but there are plenty of them hanging around the feeders right now.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


I filled the birdfeeders last night. Lotsa birds around this morning. Blackie and Chickie are mesmerized.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

buy some bird seed

(please note: I did not take these pictures. I stole them off the internet.)

Yup, it's definitely time to fill the feeders. First there were the robins. Yesterday, killdeers ..... Last night, around suppertime, the trees were filled with purple finches .... So far today, the redwinged blackbird .... There is no mistaking when this guy is around. He has 2 very distinctive sounds. A loud clicking which seems to be when he is griping about the feeder being empty and one is a piercing beautiful song. He lives at our pond, up the hill by Gramma's and comes down for snacks. He must be the same guy as last year because he seemed to know right where the feeder was.

Last year we had a lot of birds, but this year I hope to attract tons more. And in the coming weeks I will be going with Audrey to the local nursery to make up flower planters and hanging baskets. Wee, this is fun!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

toque #1 - check

I don't know....looks too big to me. But Art likes it. Reminds me of that character from the Fat Albert cartoons.This is much better.Now I'm working on the one for Kevin. I'm using the next size up loom, upon request, but it seems way too wide. I'll see how it goes. Making a toque this way is WAY faster than on regular knitting needles, so it feels like I'm cheating or something. Kinda fun, though.

Monday, April 09, 2007

no such thing as too much fun

I know that Art has some video on his blog of he and Xena riding the ATV, but I couldn't resist showing you some more. I believe she spotted her beloved "blue ball" while they were turning around at the house, so she had that on her mind. And she can't resist those darned birds, either (near the end).


Here is the latest on the Knifty Knitter project. A few more rounds to go and it will be done.It turns out that the one skein of yarn was enough, using 2 strands at a time. There'll be a little bit left over, but Art opted out of the pom-pom, so I'll save it for something else. It is very nice yarn....VERY soft. I think it will be a toasty warm hat. I'll show you how it looks when I'm done. Maybe Art will even model it for me.

waiting for a delivery

Loom knitting is fun....knitting on needles is fun....crocheting sweaters is fun....even cross stitch is fun....but what I like to do favourite thing is filet crochet. Working with cotton thread and a small steel hook. So, I've had a project in the back of my brain for awhile now, to make these tie-backs for the living room curtains.The curtains are a dark taupe coloured faux suede and the tie-backs will be dark and light green. I ordered the supplies online and am now awaiting their arrival.

too mucky to even walk

Yesterday I woke up feeling very energetic. I was longing for an enthusiastic walk up the hill to Gramma's, so got my hiking boots on. When I stepped outside, it was raining .... so I put on my cowboy hat. I could always dry off later. Then I put my feet on the ground and they sank into the slimy, gooey mud. Yuck! So, I slowly and carefully walked over to Art's workshop and it was just not fun. I decided to abandon that idea and get my cardio workout another way, so waddled my way back to the house. Along the way I noticed some interesting things. There are patches of green grass coming up. The snow's only been gone for like 36 hours and already there's green grass growing?!?! I guess Mother Nature compensates for the shorter growing season by "making hay while the sun shines" as it were.

The other thing I noticed were these little tunnelways all over the ground. They are raceways made by mice tunneling under the snow and in the unfrozen earth. Very, very weird to see.So, until it's safe to walk out there, I'll spend a few minutes each day and go up and down the stairs. And at the moment it really is only for a few minutes because that's all I can do, but a few years ago (OK, more like 6 years) when I was a much smaller person and running 10K, my whole fitness regime was started by walking up and down the stairs for "just a few minutes" each day. That and not putting butter on my food. If I start off with the small steps the big ones will follow. I've done it before....I can do it again.

red, red robin

(I did not take this picture.....)

It rained all night so an incredible amount of snow has melted since yesterday. Equally as suddenly, we have been inundated with flocks of robins. They are everywhere. The sound of their chirping across the fields is something to hear as there must be a hundred or more. Of course, Xena thinks it's a real hoot to chase them. Maybe it's time to load up the birdfeeders.

Back in November, at the big Loonie Auction here in Endako, I won a fantastic bird feeder. Several of our neighbours have them and I think they are just the greatest. A local girl makes them and she will be constructing mine any time now. I have a picture somewhere. I'll try to post it later. I also got some very good books for Christmas on building bird houses and feeders. I might need to get started on those pretty soon, too.

I'm also very excited for the return of the hummingbirds, but they didn't arrive last year until early May.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Knifty Knitter

Well, I've been practicing with my new Knifty Knitter. My first project is a toque for Art. I started off using only one strand of yarn, but the outcome was too open-weave and "lacy" looking, which I didn't think was quite right for a man. Besides, it might not be very warm.So, just to experiment, I bought another skein of a complimentary colour and added it so that I was using 2 strands at a time. It looked OK, but seemed to tighten up the weave.Here is what it looks like on the "purl" sideIt looks nice, and that is what I may end up doing, but in the meantime I've ripped it all back and have started again, but using the original yarn....2 strands at a time. I only have one skein, so am pulling the strands from opposite ends. I hope there'll be enough. If not, then I'll rip it back again and use the 2 different colours together throughout.


When I went to my Mom's memorial service back in early February, there were some beautiful yellow roses. I took some away with me, along with a single red rose. I had no way, at the time, to bring them home without mangling them, so Sara kept them for me and Kevin dried them. When we were down in Vancouver this last time, I found a way to package them and get them home to Endako.Now I just need to figure out what to do with them. I've heard of spraying them with a hardener to keep them from crumbling, but I also want to display them somehow. Maybe Art would make a shadowbox out of barn boards. That would be pretty, I think.


We finally got our microwave back from the shop. I'm not sure I remember how to use the darned thing, it's been so long. The guy fixed it OK, but I'm not impressed with his attention to the finer returning it CLEAN. Not only was it filthy on the outside, which I guess I can forgive because he did have to lift it in and out of the truck, etc, but it had spilled coffee inside. I suppose I could even forgive that, because he probably had to test that it worked, so heated a cup of coffee. But then he should have wiped it up. Hmmmmm.

spring thaw

Suddenly it is warm out. The snow is melting like crazy and our driveway is a sea of mud. Art has been out on the ATV, monitoring the ditches to make sure the melting water runs off properly. Check out his blog for pictures and a little video. Because we are up on a hill, the driveway can easily wash out. Currently, you need 4X4 to get up here.

Keeping Xena clean is proving to be a challenge. The mud puddles are just too much fun! The cats are curious to get outside. I think they know there are little mousies out there. Here's Blackie daring to take a look (they're strictly indoor cats, so this doesn't happen often).As the snow is melting, Xena is rediscovering lost toys. Her favourite of all is the "blue ball" (which I've told you about before). It's been missing all winter. Yesterday Xena found it. She was digging all around it, but it wouldn't come unstuck. Here is a video of Art helping her and then her jubilation with finding her long lost friend.
Tomorrow is Tom's birthday, so we had a little get-together last night at his place. Just some supper and birthday cake. Tom on the left, his wife Sue and their son Conrad.

Tiny's Log Homes

I have been working on a blog for Art's brother, Tom (aka Tiny). He builds log homes here in Endako. A website would be ideal, but we'll just try the blog out for awhile first. I've also added a link in my "links" section to the right. Check it out.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

another stinker movie

We rented "Children of Men" last night. It's an extremely dark movie and equally as tedious. But that's just my opinion.


It's snowing like hell here right now. Has been for a couple of hours. I was a little worried because Sara & Kevin are driving to Kelowna today, so went onto the DriveBC website to check the highway cams. It's not doing anything anywhere but here. Not even raining. All the roads are clear, including the closest towns on either side of us. But at our house there is a blizzard going on. Weird.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Endako History

The older I get the more interested in history I varying degrees. World history is good to know, Canadian history much better, BC - fascinating. But the local stuff is what really gets me. Local to wherever I happen to be (or have been). I imagine the people that walked here before me. Who they were, what their lives were like, what they did. This little town of Endako has quite a history of it's own and now that we are calling it home I'm thirsty for the "scoop". I bought this book which is a very good publication about this area.There are still some original old-timers living here and although our neighbour, Audrey Read, is far from an old-timer, she is very active and well-known in the local communities. So if she can't answer a question, she knows who to ask.

How I got on this topic is, yesterday I received a phone call from a man in Ontario. He found my blog as he was searching for info about Endako. His mother was born here (and is even mentioned in that book), but moved away at some point. She passed away recently and now he is seeking out her roots. He is hoping to make a trip this summer so was just looking for any info he could find. The internet sure can be magical, can't it?

northern lights

As we were driving home from Vancouver on Sunday night, we were passing through Vanderhoof around 10:15pm. The sky was clear and there was a bright full moon, but even with that and all the city lights, we could see a ribbon of green across the sky. It wasn't really anything to get excited about. About 40 minutes later, though, as we were at Fraser Lake, there was suddenly a gorgeous display in the northern sky. There were green waves moving rather quickly, coming right down to the horizon and then to make it even more spectacular, some red streaks swirling through. I've never seen the red before. Too bad I can't get pictures of this stuff.

Monday, April 02, 2007

culinary melting pot

We have returned home from our trip to the coast. It is nice to be home. Xena seems pretty darned happy to be here, too. She hasn't stopped running and running, saying "hi" to all her favourite spots in the yard and various toys. The cats weren't thrilled to see Xena, but they seemed to really miss US. Blackie did not stop purring for 12 hours.

One great thing about Vancouver is the plethora of things there are to eat. From all corners of the globe. Art and Sara went shopping and came home with a few new things to try. Unfortunately, they're not always very tasty......despite the name of this item. It apparantly tastes like gasoline and the only one who would eat it was Xena, after she played a little floor hockey with it first.This wasn't bad....steak and corn on the cob flavoured chips. Never got stale , though, even after leaving the bag open for a couple of days. That's gotta make ya wonder.
Then there's always the plums that "taste like ass". I'll just take Sara's word on that one. Never did give it a try.Here is a picture of Art with his daughters Sara & Treena, and Sara's husband Kevin outside of a sushi place.What is Kevin pointing at on that sign?
Make ya hungry? Perhaps it lost something in the translation. I hope so, anyway.