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Posts Tagged ‘rural photography’

On Fridays I post FFF to be intentional about recounting blessings of the previous week. Suzanne sponsors this exercise at Living to Tell the Story and invites you to participate too!

I’ve missed several weeks due to a busy schedule and ongoing fatigue and issues with my fibromyalgia. Thanks for sticking with me.

1. Family – Our family from China surprised us by arriving a week early for their annual time with us. We had no inkling this was the plan thanks to some sneaky familial assistants on this side of the world. It is an incredible blessing to be able to spend time each year with family who lives and works so far from us.

2. Health update – Last year at this time I had just gotten home from hospital after emergency hip replacement revision surgery. Though I have had quite a few setbacks over this past year, I am doing far better than I was a year ago. I am still dealing with some fatigue and low stamina and have been surprised to realize that social interaction absolutely wears me out. My doctor is working with me to try and eliminate any obvious reasons for this tiredness. I’m not quite three months past my iron transfusion treatments so perhaps I just need a little more time for that to fully take effect.

My one-year post-surgical checkup went well. The bone grafts and range of motion look good. I still need to do physio and was warned that a revision surgery means the joint will never be as stable as the original so lifelong strengthening and caution are both necessary to help avoid another revision.

There are several other health issues that cropped up during this past year and one may require surgery. After this long year of many health issues I am willing to try almost anything to avoid surgery again. We’ll see how the surgical consult goes first. Sometimes it’s hard to tell which health issues are simply age related. A friend recently mentioned she was having age-related health problems. She told me that aging isn’t for sissies. Yep. We’re a brave lot, and not always because we want to be.

3. Infused water – While attending a conference last month I was introduced to infused water served in those lovely glass dispensers. The fruit and herbs look so pretty in the dispenser and the water is flavorful and refreshing. For my birthday my husband got me a double dispenser with a nice wrought iron looking stand. My herb garden provides the perfect source for delicious and interesting ingredients for a variety of fruit and herb infused water combos. I’m having fun with both the experimenting and the delicious water.

4. Rural living – Though we live in a small town just outside a major city, we have to drive past fields of crops regardless of what direction we go when we head out of town. I love observing the various stages involved in planting and harvesting each year. Currently the canola fields are that trademark cheerful sunny yellow. Pretty soon the flowers will disappear, and the stinky sock stage will be upon us. Don’t you love my technical terms? Canola has a stage in the growing cycle when the plants indeed smell like dirty gym socks. Don’t you wonder who ever had the idea of using the seeds from this stinky plant to produce an oil you cook with?

5. New restaurant – This week we tried a delicious meal at a Brazilian steak restaurant. The salad bar had little placards above each item listing all the ingredients and indicating whether the food was nut, dairy, or gluten free. At lunchtime there are six meats offered and special servers move from table to table providing portions of meat cut from a long skewer. Each place setting includes a small set of tongs which diners use to hold the serving of meat while the server cuts it off the skewer. The meat servers brought by three kinds of beef, one of chicken and two of pork. Our server urged us to try the Brazilian cheese buns, a Yorkshire pudding style popover made with cheese instead of pan drippings. I told her I could not have any since I had to eat gluten free. She broke into a big grin and told me the cheese buns were gluten free and eating them would “change your life!” While they did not change my life in any significant way, they certainly were absolutely delicious!

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On Fridays I post FFF to stop and recall blessings of the previous week. Suzanne sponsors this exercise at Living to Tell the Story and invites you to participate too!

1. Dinner out. We had a week-long guest who treated us to dinner last Saturday. It was delicious, and my petite steak was cooked to perfection. I’ve had to learn which restaurants take my food sensitivities seriously and which don’t. This place did, which made dining out a happy experience for me.

2. Shopping. Yesterday my daughter took me grocery shopping. I pushed a cart and selected my own items, something I have not been able to do for the past 4 months. I also graduated to changing a laundry load on my own, and knocked off a bunch of ironing this week. I still need help with many things, but it is wonderful to add to the list of things I can now do.

3. Unexpected generosity. Someone anonymously paid for two weeks of my cleaning helper’s wages. This young lady has been a cheerful and exceedingly capable helper to me as I continue to heal. When she told me of the gift I burst into tears of joy and gratitude. Benefactor, if you read this blog, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

4. Lunch out. After grocery shopping yesterday, my daughter suggested we get lunch out at our favorite restaurant in town. I was feeling quite tired from shopping, and I’m not a spontaneous person, but it sounded like a nice idea, so we went for it. My meal was excellent as usual, and I had plenty for both lunch and supper from that one meal. It was extra-special to spend some ‘girl time’ with one of my lovely daughters!

5. Evaluating I see the surgeon again on Wednesday. I feel my leg is strengthening, but I am still struggling with lack of stamina and overall strength. It will be interesting to see if one leg is longer than the other after this surgery, but it’s hard to tell that until I am walking on it normally. I’m also looking forward to adding more physio to gain strength and balance. Dealing with my fibromyalgia in addition provides an interesting challenge. If I push too hard my muscles are in agony and I am unable to do my physio for several days. If I don’t push enough, my strengthening will be delayed. I need a great deal of wisdom as I go forward, as well as listening carefully to the way my body responds to the exercise.

Photos from the past few weeks:

Vibrant colours

Balcony view

Cattail convention

Mountain corona

Prairie standard

Magnificent mountains

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My goal is to post FFF each week to make myself intentionally stop and recall blessings of the previous week. It’s amazing to me how often I have to rack my brain to think of five I want to write about when each week is full of God’s grace as well as many blessings Suzanne sponsors this exercise at Living to Tell the Story and invites you to participate too!

1.Warm weather October weather in Alberta can be really cold or it can be very pleasant. Though we’ve had snow a couple of times this fall, we’ve also enjoyed some beautiful warm days. With my current limited mobility I am grateful for every day without ice and snow so I can enjoy the sunshine and take my short daily walks unhindered.

2. Phone visit with a friend A dear friend lives thousands of miles away and recently suggested a phone chat to catch up. We thoroughly enjoyed talking together and plan to continue these visits on a regular basis.

3. Ride in the country I was feeling under the weather on a particularly warm and beautiful day. Since my husband has a lighter schedule this week he willingly took me for a drive in the country so I could enjoy the warm day. Though I will be so very glad to be cleared to drive again, I am thankful for my husband’s kindness in driving me around during my convalescence.

4. Healing My hip continues to heal and strengthen. I am now able to do more physio, walk around more, and put more weight on the leg. I am hoping to receive the green light for full weight bearing at my November 1 appointment. I am also extremely grateful for continually increasing mental acuity now that I am completely off the pain meds.

5. Handicap helps A century ago my hip condition would have meant I was relegated to the rocking chair by the pot-bellied stove and labeled as a cripple. I am so thankful that we live at a time when my hip replacement revision surgery was possible and for the many handicap-friendly aids loaned to me to help me have a safe and successful recovery.

Photos from this week – from the mountains….to the prairies….

Mountain view

Dusting of snow

Valley view

Larch branches

Sunlight and shadow

Autumn abates

Fence line fluff

Nature’s cotton candy

Pastoral peacefulness

 

 

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Susanne hosts Living to Tell the Story and encourages others to share blessings of thee week on Fridays. Here are a few of mine from this week.

1. Beautiful ice fog We had three full days in a row that were foggy so that many surfaces had layers of ice fog (hoar frost) on them. It made everything picture postcard beautiful.

January ice fog

January ice fog

2. Family night Our daughters and son-in-law joined us on Monday to celebrate my husband’s birthday. I tried out a couple recipes to cook both grouse and venison. Both meats were tasty and the time together as family was a blessing.

3. Borrowed grandchildren I always enjoy visiting with my surrogate grandchildren. This week these precious ones came over with their mom for a lunch visit. I hope they have as much fun visiting Purple Grandma as she has hosting them!

Borrowed grandchildren

Borrowed grandchildren

4. Church growth Our church continues to grow, both organically and from new folks joining with us. We have two baby showers for church ladies over the next couple of weeks. When these little ones are born, we will have added 10 new babies to the church family over the last year and a half or so. We’ve also been blessed over the past few months with a number of new individuals and families choosing to worship with us and attend membership classes in preparation for joining the church.

5. Photography The beautiful ice fog days inspired some interesting photos. I played with different filters this week. Here are a few of my favorites.

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Ice fog acreage

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Cottony cold

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Ice fog branches

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Directional ice fog

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Looks like fake spray-on snow!

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Shivering sunflower

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Frosty splendor

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Frosty raspberry

I began working on some Valentine cards this week. Here are the latest cards from Purple Grandma Designs.

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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 didn’t get many guesses on my new word last week. The word new to me was frore which means frozen or frosty. Cool word, eh? I used in in of my photo titles. I’ll let you know when I use another new word in future posts.

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Warm homes It’s been in the minus 20’s C this week – brrrr! I am grateful for our warm homes on these bitterly cold days. Some of the missionary stories I’ve read speak of the winter weather conditions in Canada in the 1800’s. These dedicated pioneers often had only open fireplaces in log cabins to keep warm inside, and buffalo robes to bundle up in when braving the elements. Their lives depended on them making proper preparations just to live. Central heat is truly a blessing.

Time with my daughters Saturday we visited Greenland Garden Center and enjoyed looking at all the beautifully decorated Christmas trees. It was a fun outing with the girls.

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My wonderful daughters

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Love the colours of this tree!

Tea Those who know me well know that I love tea. My food sensitivities prevent me from enjoying black tea very often, but I really like green tea, and am learning to enjoy rooibos teas. This week I received some new flavors of green tea, rooibos tea, and fruit infused tisanes. They’ve been especially enjoyable on these cold days.

Those senior discounts When do senior discounts kick in? I’ve found out it depends on the organization offering the discount. Thus far I have encountered discounts for those over 50, 55, 60, 62, or 65, depending on the place. Also, you must ask for the discount in most places now since some people were offended if the cashier asked if they qualified for the senior discount, and they were, say, only 45. I mean, honestly, if an 18-year-old is serving you and you have greying hair, to them you must be a senior, right? Anyway, I got some great deals this week due to coupons and that senior discount.

Answers to prayer I was looking for some particular items for my grandchildren and was having a hard time finding them. After praying about them, the Lord directed me to just the right thing at a wonderful price.

Cards and Photos Here are some Purple Grandma Designs cards I made this week and a few photos from over the past month. This is my last post for a few weeks. I hope you all have a Blessed Christmas!

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More beautiful Banff

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Ice fog everywhere

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Stunning drive

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Old and new

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Shadows on the pond

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Frigid temperatures arrived Sunday night and we are in the minus 20’s C (below zero F for all my American friends,)  These pictures were taken before the deep freeze hit, but most are still pretty wintery.

I am blessed that God has allowed us to live in such a beautiful part of the world. As you look at these photos, perhaps you’ll take a moment to reflect on Psalm 8 where the psalmist praises God for His majesty, glory, and creative artistry.

O LORD, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.
Out of the mouth of babies and infants,
you have established strength because of your foes,
to still the enemy and the avenger.

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
and the son of man that you care for him?

Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him dominion over the works of your hands;
you have put all things under his feet,
all sheep and oxen,
and also the beasts of the field,
the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea,
whatever passes along the paths of the seas.

O LORD, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!

http://biblehub.com/esv/psalms/8.htm

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Majestic views

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Lake Minnewanka

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Canmore

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Sun and snow fence

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Breathtaking beauty

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The mundane sparkles

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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 used a word in this post that is new to me. Can you find it?)

Gluten-free waffles When you buy or order gluten-free foods you are always taking a chance that the item is truly gluten-free and that it tastes good. Often it not only does not taste good, the flavor is minimal or weird, and the texture is sandy. This week I discovered Nature’s Path Organic Gluten-free Pumpkin Spice Waffles. Good flavour! No weird textures! Yum!!

Combined church service Last Sunday night we had a combined church service with five area churches that are like-minded in the essentials of the faith. Meadowlands Baptist Church is the host church for Foundation Baptist College where my husband works. That church has been instrumental in starting or providing pulpit supply for many churches over the past 15 or so years. It was a blessed evening of fellowship, testimonies, singing, and a message from Ephesians. Ephesians 4:3 reminds us to “Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” We were blessed by that unity last Sunday.

Beautiful scenery We’ve had quite a few foggy days over the month. When the weather is colder and foggy, the trees and bushes are covered with ice fog, what we used to call hoar frost. This morning we had a layer of snow on top of a layer of hoar frost. It made the trees and bushes look like they had been sprayed with that flocking you used to find at Christmastime. This morning the fog lifted for a while and we had blue skies. The clean, white branches against the brilliant blue skies were beautiful!

Sparkling grasses

Sparkling grasses

Clean, soft sheets There is nothing quite like sleeping on freshly laundered soft sheets. Ahhh!

A deal on something needed Today I picked up a supplement I needed. When I got to the store, they were having a 25% off sale!

Cards and Photos Here are some Purple Grandma Designs cards I made this week. There is a Christmas-themed Bible verse on the front or inside each Christmas card.

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Here are a few more photos from today.

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Flocked tree

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Beautiful contrast

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Glimpsing the pond

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Frore and sharp

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Cold and old

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Forlorn in the fog

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Frosted cerulean

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