Friday’s Fave Five #62

FFF daisies

It’s Friday, time to look back over the blessings of the week with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story and other friends.

1. Trip to Saskatchewan We have been in Saskatchewan, travelling for the college. Canadians tease that Saskatchewan is so flat, you can set your cruise control, take a nap, and wake up an hour later still in your lane.  Saskatchewan certainly does have its vast expanses of beautiful, flat farm and ranch land, however, it also has scenic hills, expansive valleys and peaceful lakes. In between our obligations we stayed at a cottage at Last Mountain Lake. Driving into Regina from the cottage we had to pass through the long and hilly Qu’appelle Valley. Driving into town we also stopped at the reconstructed Last Mountain House, a Hudson’s Bay outpost for a few years in the late 1800’s, until fire burned the original post to the ground. Yes, we found Saskatchewan peaceful, interesting, and certainly not all flat.

2. Field of flax In Saskatchewan we noticed field after field of a crop with periwinkle-blue flowers. They were lovely! After asking around we discovered this pale blue crop is flax. Flax is harvested to produce flax seed, flax seed oil, linen and paper. I’ve not seen any flax growing around us in Alberta, but was told it’s a big crop in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

Flax field

Flax field

Flax flowers

Flax flowers

3. New lawn We’ve had a new front lawn put it. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? We first had to have some trees removed. The one pine tree was so large, and the gnarly roots rippled out of the ground in so many places, that nothing else could grow on one entire side of the front yard. Once that tree and those roots were taken out, it looked like a bomb crater! The landscapers dug out the rest of the lawn, graded both sides, added fresh topsoil, and laid sod. They did a great job and now we have a yard that looks nice and is much easier to keep up with.

4. Out to eat again! Daughter number two took me to lunch yesterday at Celebrate! A gluten free bakery and café in Edmonton. Though their café menu is quite small, they make up for it with a nice variety of breads, buns, cookies, pastries and squares. We each enjoyed a delicious sandwich and some amazing sweet treats. Then we popped over to an antique store across the street and leisurely wandered around. I was bemused to see a number of familiar items from my childhood in an antique store. My daughter patiently reminded me that stuff from the 50’s and 60’s qualifies as antiques.

5. Community A sense of community is important to me. I always appreciate interacting with friends or children of friends at church, at home or as I come across them in their workplace. Out shopping the other day, I ran into children of friends in two different places and also had a visit from some adopted grandchildren. I enjoyed a lengthy conversation with a young man, an employee at Michaels, about the pros and cons of Copic markers and Prismacolor markers, and discussed herbs with Sylvia, owner of our new local restaurant, Chartier. Community is important for every believer. It is our opportunity to live out Christ in the nuances of everyday life.

Hope you have a blessed week. Here are a few pictures from our Saskatchewan trip.

Saskatchewan barn

Saskatchewan barn

Canola field

Canola field

Windmill and hay bales

Windmill and hay bales

Anyone know the name of this?

Anyone know the name of this?

Saskatchewan grain elevator

Saskatchewan grain elevator

Fence with bird house

Fence with bird house

Prairie grasses and wildflowers

Prairie grasses and wildflowers

Down the fenceline

Down the fence line

More wildflowers and grasses

More wildflowers and grasses

Purple wildflowers

Purple wildflowers

Church building

Church building

Slipping away

Slipping away

 

Friday’s Fave Five #47

FFF daisies

It’s Friday, time to look back over the blessings of the week with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story and other friends.

I stepped away from writing for several months for personal reasons. Today I want to resume the FFF and share some blessings from the past few weeks.

1. One of our daughters was married on February 27. It was a beautiful wedding with a peacock colours theme. We love our new son-in-law and are enjoying getting to better know his wonderful family. (Thanks, Nicole VandeKamp for this picture of the entire wedding party!)

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2. Our son, who lives and teaches in China, was able to come for the month of February (during the Chinese New Year break) and stay with us to help prepare for the wedding. His wife stayed behind for some intensive language study, but the kids got to come with their dad. Normally the whole family stays with us for a few weeks every summer so it was a special treat to have them with us in winter. Though we had unusually warm weather this entire winter, there was still some snow for the kids to enjoy. They loved playing in the snow!

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3. As wonderful and joyous as weddings are, wedding planning, preparation, and participation are exhausting! This past week we were able to get away for a few days to our friend’s cabin a couple of hours south of us. It’s in the middle of a large farming area where just about all that’s available nearby is peace and quiet. Exactly what we needed! My dear husband sacrificed some of his time to drive me around so I could get some photos of rural Alberta.

01 Mountain view near Sundre - Copy

02 Mountain view near Sundre 3-16

05 Torrington area fence 2

06 Torrington area fence line

10 Torrington 3-16

09 Torrington abandon

12 Near Three Hills

08 Near Olds 2 (2)

07 Torrington community hall

11 West of Torrington

04 Torrington ice fog 3-1603 Near Olds 2

14 Torrington sunset 3-7-16 2

13 Torrington sunset 3-7-16

15 Torrington sunset 3-8-16

4. Because of my arthritis and fibromyalgia, ice is my enemy. Winters in central Alberta tend to be very icy. We have thoroughly enjoyed extraordinarily warm weather this winter, reminiscent of the welcomed Chinooks we so appreciated while living in Calgary. Today it’s 10 C (about 50 F) and ice everywhere is melting furiously. Yay to banished ice!

5. Our youngest daughter has completed her current phase of education and returned to us last month after her studies in China. It’s fun to have her home for a while. We are looking forward to seeing how God leads and provides for her and for each of our other children in future days.

It seems too early, but I have been reminded that we need to turn our clocks ahead this Saturday night. I don’t want to be late for church!!