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do you trust?

This is a trust post. Nature can be trusted. I know that.

It rejuvenates the soul.

It rejuvenates the spirit.

It is wild and unpredictable

It is calm

It has these colours to express it’s mood: green and blue and gold and yellow and brown and black and grey and white and orange and …and

It can call you to hug a tree? why not? feel the trunk’s vibe and strength. What is it telling you?

Water is a moving force even if it is calm. the underneath of water is the big story and the picture I see when the water is still is it is okay right now and it keeps being okay. The undercurrent is strong and it changes and …hey! A person’s spirit is the same. We have undercurrents that we do not show. We appear calm when we have things under control but the body is the telling story of how you have managed the undercurrents in life. Did you ignore?

Did you guffaw some subtle messages?

You and I are human.

I trust nature to help me listen and watch and learn and repeat. Who and what else can you and I trust to keep life making sense!

NATURE ROCKS!

Oh no..don’t get me started on rocks. That could be another post!

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Appreciating the Cow

A nice looking cow and the cow is looking at me. It appears to be a short-horn roan coloured cow.

I have never been comfortable around cattle. They stare at me and then run. I now have learned to stop and look at them slowly and not to move fast.

Cows are meant to be here to feed us. God gave us animals and plants for our survival. I have no “beef” about eating beef or being vegan. I need protein and cows eat grass from the natural pastures that grow with prairie grass so they can eat. It is such a revolving wheel, this food cycle.

I always pass cows on my way into town and I live across the highway from a community pasture where cows are brought to this pasture and then leave in the fall.

When I first moved here with my partner I was on my own for a few weeks and I was out on the acreage and these cows that were pasturing close by kept me company. The mooing was reassuring and then they would huddle in one corner to keep those nasty flies under control and swish their tails. I appreciated the large herd and seeing them out my living room window. I didn’t feel so alone.

This cow story came up driving home today and seeing them lying in the grass.

I think I might talk about that at my 5 minute StorySlam night.

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Artistic Expressions in the Southwest

I love this concept of art! a huge doll out in the field or on the roof top. It is so compelling. what do you think?

Heather Benning is the artist and she has done some cool perspectives. I mean huge cool perspectives.!

This is me/moi/selfie in front of the Swift Current Art Gallery with the field doll on the roof of the gallery.

Thirty professional Artists from Southwest Saskatchewan are on display at this gallery while the Western Canada Summer Games are on. My son is included amongst those 30. A little bragging here.!

Art is so open and brilliant and weird and fun and dark and creepy and can tell a story better than words!

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Are you grounded and present?

I just returned from 5 days of travel from a visit with family and driving to the lakes, (love it) and attending the Canada Summer Games in Saskatchewan.

I realized I was still not present this morning. I had boiled a pot dry because I turned on the stove and was going to put water and eggs in the pot. But I walked away and sat on the deck to load my new photos from my trip instead.

My husband came home from town and turned off the burner and used some comet to clean the pot. Oops!

I went for a 20 minute walk outside to ground myself and breaths to empty my brain of stuff from my trip.

Let’s get back to what my focus was at these last few days.

Alberta and Yukon Territories competing in Girls Beach Volleyball

Watching the athletes play their games and their focus is the key! I get distracted too and have to concentrate on what the key players are doing to achieve a goal. It is a great way to practice being in the present moment.

Nunavut and Alberta competing in Beach Volleyball
lining up for the Kayak finals at Western Canada Summer Games 2019

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are you doing what you love?

It is hard work to plan, and, sometimes it is the easy part for me, planning. It is the energy to get up and go and actually do it!

I wrote a free style poem below and it speaks to how following the simple enjoyment of water on a summer day is like for me.

my son on the dock with me

I grasp the energy

of water

anyway I can receive it

sitting on a dock

dangling my bare feet into the cool liquid

thank you say my feet

it is not about how far I travel

or how much I spend

or who I visit

it is about the presence of mind to

know I am here doing my spirit life

watercolour painting that was manifested and some cutting out to shape it to something that is a boat and periscope to see out and beyond.

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summer tourist perspectives

3 shadows in empty parking lot at the Assiniboia Downs and we are waiting to meet up with an owner of the OTTB.
Some things are just great! A loaner lifejacket program at Good Spirit Lake.
Getting into position to pose for a selfie photo with the bear sculpture at Clear Lake.

I bet you have some interesting perspectives tucked away in your mind or on your camera/cell phone too.

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long weekend quietness

We have a very small family. I always find these holiday weekends to be a long stretch with quiet times. We did go kill time in a lovely way this long weekend by hitting the lake close by. We sat in our lawn chairs and read and then I swam in the lake.

I took some photos of our perennials this weekend that are just finally really showing off.

dark burnt orange day lily
Mountain Cornflower
white cluster flower
white petunias

Hope you loved your long weekend this August.

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what works for my health

  • hydrate (6-9 glasses of water a day)
  • massage my feet every night and do yoga for foot health daily
  • dance to my music not just listen
  • calm breath (blowing out candles); then big sigh exhale like going down a slide; this gets rid of the noise in my brain/intellect/ego, whatever you want to call it.
  • I expect good things everyday
  • I am available to accept the good things and acknowledge them at the end of the day

I don’t always know what I want, so SURPRISE ME. I love this free spirit intention. Instead of always planning just expect a good surprise. (this is a different way of saying “be comfortable being uncomfortable”)

I wonder what tommorrow has in store. I am going swimming in the morning and I always do the breaststroke for most of my laps. I am going to do the backstroke for most of my laps. That’s a change for me.

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Our OTTB

We are at the Assinboia Downs in Winnipeg watching the horse races on a Saturday night. We are here because of my spouse’s search for an Off The Track Thoroughbred (OTTB). He connected with the owner of the thoroughbred named Roman Humor. This connection was made from the Final Furlong group. The Final Furlong is a facebook page community that shares the horses that are off the track and ready for new outside the track life. The end result was he wrote the cheque and we are now this thoroughbred’s new owners. My husband renamed this 7 year old OTTB ‘Norman’.

one of the races we watched on Saturday

This is where we got into the inside track of thoroughbreds and the owners who want to find a good home for their thoroughbred’s who no longer race on the track . My husband has been searching for a well rode horse who is past the colt stage and has some maturity and of course, smart and athletic!

  • He found one here at the Assinboia Downs racetrack and barns of the thoroughbreds and also the living quarters of the jockey. We stopped one of the jockeys’ walking by quickly and he gave us a minute of his time. This is what he said:
  • Where are you from? Barbados
  • Do you work here all year? no, I go back to Barbados for winter
  • How much do you weigh? 110 pounds
  • What do you actually do? I exercise and race horses

This was an exciting weekend and I, my husband and a couple of our friends, received some education and a totally different perspective of the world of the thoroughbreds; compared to the cowboys and equestrian competition riding.

Loved it! A new project at Kirkville.

There is something about the outside of the horse that is good for the inside of a man.

Winston Churchill
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How High Can We Go?

This trail ride, in the below photo, was a very exciting ride through the coulees of southwest Saskatchewan. I am the second rider in the blue shirt. I was on an extremely solid trail horse at the time. Riding on the very top ridges of these hills, or coulees they are called here in Saskatchewan, was the epitome of adventure!

Saskatchewan Landing Park in Southwest Saskatchewan


This last weekend was a blur of a very different horse journey and I thought we couldn’t go any higher than my partner and I already had with our equine experiences.
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We opened our minds and left our comfort zone behind and I took a 5 hour trip to Winnipeg with my spouse and a couple of good friends.

As you can see from the picture below, my partner got himself a wonderful new project with this beautiful Off The Track Thoroughbred (OTTB).

More posts coming of this journey and how this came to be.

Brian and Roman Humour (renamed NORMAN)

How high can we go with this new equine breed?

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the intensity of a photo

Photos that are bold without being offensive are tricky because it depends on the viewers reactions.

A country cemetery. (It is intense for me)

This green leaf plant is intense. It is not even very attractive and dark green leaves are reaching for something.

A common photo of the orange daylily which is very bold and dynamic.

A Yarrow…well it is attempting some colour. Leaves take over the yellow tiny flowers.

Off beat hanging characters that to the eye are weird and a bit creepy. The black wall is intense.

These puppets or characters hanging on the above black walls are my son’s artistic explosion of video game characters coming alive. These are Five Nights at Freddy’s game characters.


What is your reaction?

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my tie dye t-shirt

Here I am with Grace and my riding outfit this morning. I find Grace can spook a bit. As an 11 year old trained horse she needs a bit more practice at not being so untrusting of what I put on my head. She never looked twice at my shirt!

I have hat hair and my face has spf 60 sunshield lotion so it is kind of making me look pale.

Yup this is a pretty vulnerable photo for me.

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On The Ground Horse Play

Lately, my husband and I have been working on a playground for our riding horses. It’s fun and they do need to get used to different objects, sounds and anything they may come across when riding out of an arena.

our horse grooming brushes
6 sided log circle and a bridge behind

I thought Gracie would be okay with walking over the white side of the tarp.
She needed convincing and eventually she successfully walked on it!
The tarp is a big deal and horses need to be able to walk over it;
it can resemble water.
A bright coloured exercise bouncing ball that horses can get used to seeing roll around the arena and bumping into their legs. Some horses actually play with balls and chase after it and try to bump it. Our horses are not at that level yet!

Making our horses aware and less spooky is just making our rides on them more secure.

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Bison Burger for supper

We eat bison meat quite a bit and this is my recipe for bison burgers.

ground bison
ingredients
  • shredded carrot
  • 1/4 cup uncooked oatmeal
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup cut up onion
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsps Montreal Steak Spice

Mix all together and make into patties and BBQ!

It is a little heavier burger and one is enough for me. The meat is so very very lean.

Something different to keep the taste buds alive!

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I used to take Selfies

A selfie, if done right, is a wonderful way to share who you are. In my case, it shares who I am, what I like, and what I do and don’t want to do.

These are 2016 selfies.

My favourite of these is ALL OF THEM.

THE SHADOW OF ME TAKING THIS PHOTO AND THE SUN ON THE WILD GRASS AND THEN THE POND JUST PEEKING THROUGH, THE COLOUR OF THE GREEN PRAIRIE GRASS IS WORTH A EXPLANATORY CAPTION.
I WAS PREPARING FOR MY STORYSLAM SPEAKING ENGAGEMENT AND I CHOSE THIS TO WEAR. LOOK AT THAT DEEP RICH PURPLE BLOUSE.
I BOUGHT THIS T SHIRT ON LINE AND WHEN IT SHOWED UP I FELT SELF CONSCIOUS WEARING IT. IT SEEMED TOO MUCH OF A BIG FLOWER THING GOING ON. I LOVE TO WEAR IT NOW,.
ORANGE WITH METAL BUTTONS AND POCKETS IS SO COOL!
I’M EITHER WRITING OR ON MY IPHONE. THIS IS NOT A USUAL POSE SO I CANNOT REMEMBER WHEN AND WHERE AND WHO TOOK THIS.

Do you feel vulnerable when someone takes a photo of you?
I at first thought it was a very scary, put yourself out there, vain thing to do.


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Simple Fish grills on the BBQ

My mom’s recipe with canned salmon and mashed potatoes. I cooked these on the BBQ because it is summer time.

the recipe is:

2 cooked potatoes (mash them)

1 slightly beaten egg

1 can salmon

1 tbsp dill

4 green onions (i used 1/2 of a small regular onion)

S & P (salt and pepper to taste if you so desire)

mix together and form into patties!

And….

Fish and Chips from Captain Highliner himself:

I kept temperature at 425 degrees and read a book while this was on the grill and checked every 10 minutes.

This is a treat in my family and takes some pressure off of preparing a full meal. It is a time now, where living is easy here in July, on the prairies.

Do not forget your greens. I used Iceberg Lettuce and a few tomatoe slices and cut up celery. Add your favourite dressing.

Iceberg lettuce I used this time because it holds up nice and crisp. I am waiting for my garden lettuce soon.

Keeping summer simple is my mantra these days.

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making my blood sugar smile

I looked in the cupboards and fridge and found lots of good food to prep for my snacks and even to put in a green salad.

Prepping food, cutting up vegetables and placing them in a quick snack freezer bag, or put the cut veggies in a nice pretty bowl with a little bit of water and place in fridge. Every time I want to grab something to chew on the food is ready.

We have all heard this before, or maybe you have not. I know this sounds easy breezy to do but somehow I buy the groceries and put everything in the fridge and cupboard and wonder what I should make for side dishes or snacks.

I love popcorn! it is a good snack for blood sugar control as it is a lite carb and fun to snack on.

Rice Cakes, especially the caramel flavoured ones are actually very good. I don’t know if they fill me up but they can if I put cream cheese on it or peanut butter.

Apples, especially MacIntosh are our favourites. The rest is yellow and red peppers, celery and carrot.

The strawberries I hope you noticed in the fridge? … well, how can I stop eating them when I can just take a big red juicy one and pop it in my mouth. Yum!

The tomatoes, well they are store bought and we are waiting for the garden to produce on that vegetable or fruit. Is the tomato a vegetable or fruit? here is your answer. Do you agree?

tomatoes are fruits that are considered vegetables by nutritionists. Botanically, a fruit is a ripened flower ovary and contains seeds.

Did you find something in the images above that does not belong as a healthy snack.

(I’m human and it’s only one.)

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Beetniks For Sale

I live a few miles down the road from this place and every summer they have a sign up and I did not know what they were selling. I do now.

At first I thought it was a hat (like a beanie hat) or special stick or something. Well this is what they are selling:

IBeetniks (Beet Leaves and Dough) A favorite Ukrainian dish. You take fresh made bread, wrap it in beet leaves to make tiny dumplings and then soak them in a dill cream sauce.

I have never tasted a Beetnik but if you ask someone in the Ukrainian culture they will happily share what they are and how delicious a treat to enjoy.

I live in a very Ukrainian community and my mother is Ukrainian but she never raised us in Ukrainian traditions.

  • a loaf of bread dough (frozen or from bread maker)
  • 2 large bunches of beets with tops
  • some butter
  • some onion
  • some dill
  • 1 cup of cream

Here is the full recipe

  • Cut tops off beets. Remove stems and thick ridges. Save beetroot for another use.
  • Wash and dry leaves- If leaves are mature, wilt slightly for easier handling by scalding with hot water,Cool and dry.
  • Grease a round roaster or large casserole dish, or line with parchment paper.
  • Cut off small pieces of thawed bread dough (about the size of a walnut) and wrap each in a beet leaf, rolling loosely. If leaves are very small, use 2 or 3 per bun.
  • Place buns in layers, filling roaster half full. Sprinkle each layer with salt and drizzle with butter or oil.
  • Top with a layer of leaves, cover, and let rise in a warm place until double in bulk (1 – 1 1/2 hours).
  • Bake, uncovered, in pre-heated oven at 350F for one hour.

I am going to stop in and try some!

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bbq chef

Having our son come to visit us and BBQ a smoked salmon main course meal, is the most superb reward in raising him. He can cook. He is very creative. He loves the details and spends hours prepping this meal.

several hours tending to the salmon on low heat

corn cobs marinated with kosher salt and maple syrup
potatoes baked on bbq marinated with olive oil and rosemary
The salmon was on bbq for several hours and smoked with wood chips underneath the grills
these are the wood chips used for producing the wonderful smoke flavour on the salmon

You missed out on a delectable meal!

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How I am healing from Morton’s Neuroma

Oh my! my foot has pain between my 3rd and 4th toe. I went to the Doctor. Nothing on the X-ray that was done. I am waiting for an UltraSound. My doctor thinks it is a Morton’s Neuroma. What is that you ask?

My understanding of this diagnosis, is my foot has a nerve that is inflamed and it is almost always between the 3rd and 4th toes when it happens and henceforth it is a neuroma. I don’t know where the Morton comes from. Irrelevant! No pictures are needed. If I showed you my foot where the neuroma is you would see a normal foot. Nerve pain is internal. This is how I am healing this foot:

  • gel toe separators to be worn as much as is comfortable
  • foot movement to pickup a towel or pencil for 1 minute
  • heel walking for 30 seconds
  • walking on the ball of my feet for 30 seconds
  • extra strength Tylenol
  • peppermint essential oil on the ball of my foot

If you want to see how the foot exercises are to be practiced, clic on this link below for a very quick video on how to perform these simple foot exercises.

https://youtu.be/dCTDryWp_mI

This is a serious issue and I do not want surgery to remove whatever is in between my 3rd and 4th toes.

No more surgeries for me.

I have researched this diagnosis and the above foot therapy exercises must be done diligently and keeping toe separators in until that inflamed nerve is healed, will stop it from pain and a surgery.

That is going to be me! Here is a photo of my foot because I know you really want to see my invisible foot pain and I painted my toes to match my open toed support sandals. See you can’t tell if I have foot pain as there is no swelling or rash?

It is my left foot and I am no longer on any anti-inflammatory!
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Beginner Rider No More

It has been 17 years that I considered myself a beginner horse/equestrian rider.

I can honestly, being objective, state I am now a intermediate rider.

This is my horse, Grace. She is a 11 year old Buckskin Mare.

Maybe another post will show me riding her. It is difficult to get pictures of me riding. That will be another post. I need to find a camera person, that would be my husband.

Happy Riding!

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cards no longer in the mail

E-cards are fun! a birthday text is nice. A phone call is lovely. I need validation and the only time of year I want that is on my birthday. I love to receive a card in the mail. Come on, don’t you wish you could get birthday cards in the mail?

Mail postal service delivers parcels from on-line shopping. What has happened to the art or craft of purchasing a paper card?; handwriting a note inside it, then placing the card inside the envelope , locating the address to handprint on the outside of the envelope and then, I shan’t say it? buy a postage stamp to place on the right hand top corner of your envelope.

Mail it! and the receiver will love it. They will be so unexpectedly surprised and feel very validated.

I still get cards from our old realtor and from our financial planner. My husband even got a phone call wishing him a happy birthday from his car dealer. That was cool and very personal!

My birthday is the one day I like to think is a validation of another year of me surviving or enduring or let’s hope loving my life and knowing I am important to someone.

If it is your birthday today, you are worthwhile and

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

oh…and the card is in the mail

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I expect good things everyday

I acknowledge the good things and unexpected surprises that happen in each of my days.

For example, yesterday I got a call from the Fed Ex pick up centre that my shoes from the Netherlands arrived. The delivery date was stated for July 3rd (6 days from now) and it showed up June 28. Happy I was! I wanted to wear them for the July 1st long weekend festivities!

vivobarefoot.ca

I came home tired and grumpy after sitting in the doctors office for an hour and a half and then buying groceries just before the long weekend started. I sat down on the deck and peeked over to my little flower bed below and my peony bush had one bud that refused to bloom the last couple of weeks. I thought it was dying. It had bloomed.

Three days ago, I shared my biography/memoir that I had written, of my son, who passed away 15 years ago. I shared it with a good friend who also lost her son several years ago. The reward and surprise that I received from her was a good thing. She read the biography and responded with such understanding I was in tears with gratitude. I was not expecting this surprise.

Expect good surprises!

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too many photos

I have been searching for all my digital photos I have taken and stored on websites over the years. There were many on Flickr photography gallery and my other blogger.com blog. I even think Picasa has some too. I have switched laptops several times and tried to keep them all. It was too confusing with all the different places to store. iCloud is helpful at times.

I am still searching and Picasa is the next on-line search. My photos before 2016 are lost. Google photos has taken over the control on Picasa now. Taking snaps is a snap in this instantaneous world we are in. How to keep track? How many storage places? I miss the photo scrapbook when it comes to retrieving the pictures of long ago. I have a storage of many photo books in my wall unit as well.

Here is a photo I found in Picasa/Google photos. It’s me back in 2011 and here I am so wanting to publish a book that I picked up a self publishing guide. I wanted to be a writer. I still do. What a good surprise! I will publish my writings it is written in the stars now.

Finding photos is so wonderful and it can remind you of things or events you stopped doing or wanting but now you can get back to them. Life distracts! Can never have too many photos.

cannot get enough of our Orioles this year