Not My Favorite Season

I’m not going to be too popular with a number of my friends and relatives with this post….those who happily anticipate the arrival of November 1 and the return to hunting season. Not my favourite season at all. I grew up with a dad and brothers who hunted every year and brought home deer, moose and elk for the freezer.  I even enjoy the taste of wild meat on the supper plate. Admittedly, that makes me a classic hypocrite….I confess.

I do regret though, that such beautiful and majestic animals must be brought down in the prime of their lives to satisfy the hunter. These beings have become my photographic passion….I absolutely come alive when a deer, elk, moose, bear, bird or coyote comes to me  through my viewfinder.

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Subsequently, I joyfully took on the task this week of posting “No Hunting” signs along our property fence lines. I know – I know….this is not going to stop the sport but at least I feel like I am doing my part to perhaps save the life or lives of some of my favorite photographic subjects.

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Isn’t it so much nicer to see a healthy, handsome and alive animal?

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Photo Challenge – Seasons

We are just about at spring and yet, in Alberta one can blink and a snowstorm will come out of nowhere on an otherwise warm and sunny day. This little blizzard picked a good week to show up as the current Photo Challenge is to depict something that reflects the season we are experiencing.

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I had gone into town for a few errands – I even washed and waxed my truck and THIS happens! Actually the best part of these late winter – early spring snow squalls is the fantastic moisture that comes out of these big fat flakes!
Seasons

Vibrant – Photo Challenge

Sneaking in my interpretation of last Friday’s photo challenge. I see there isn’t a new one posted yet for today so may be getting in under the wire!

Vibrant

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During the winter months,the last thing I want to prepare is a cold salad even though I do enjoy them as a vibrant and healthy food source. What a treat then, yesterday, to be invited out to lunch and my hostess had prepared such a warm and inviting and yes, vibrant salad! She didn’t even mind me pulling out my phone right away to snag this pic! Somewhat of a rude gesture for a dinner guest, mayhaps??

Quilting and Feeding Chop

Whatever would there be in common between quilting and feeding chop? Lots, when one does chores the way I do chores when I have the whole day to do them by myself, that is.

It’s all about patterns. I got to feed all our pens on my own yesterday as the hubby had a task off the farm. Otherwise he’s here every day and I have to follow his routines and…well…there is just no “pattern” to the way he does things [even though he does get stuff done faster than me!]

So back to the patterns. My task was to feed 5 different pens of varying numbers of animals plus the big herd of cows. The total number of pails of chop that we feed every day totals 110….yup, hand-scooped and hand-delivered.

I like to scoop sets of 4 or sets of 6 or sets of 10 and deliver each set to the trough and then return to scooping the grain into another set. This way I break up the task and I stick to an organized formulation of tasks ever so much like quilting. When I put together a quilt I also work in sets of tasks very much like the pattern I set out in feeding chop.

It’s the only way to get through an extremely mundane and labor intensive repeatable chore and make it almost mathematical and organized and almost interesting?

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Lucky Sevens

Forgive me….but I just can’t get enough of my goose family. Yesterday, I had to check on them to ensure that they made it through their first night off the bale-their birthplace.
Of course, they fooled me again and were not to be found….so I started for home only to be be pleasantly surprised to find them in a smaller slough just a little closer now to our house! I’m hoping they will finally rest those goslings and make their permanent home in the big slough in view of our front room window!
On my next visit, this time with camera, they tried to elude me yet again. Found’em in the grass….mom and dad crouching down but the little ones looking around every which way. And yes, still the Lucky SEVENS.

Goose Sequel

It’s probably time to record a goose update. Between the gander and hubby and myself, we’ve been babysitting “our” nesting momma goose vigilantly throughout her 28+ days incubating her eggs.

Yesterday she hatched!!!! I couldn’t wait to get home from the office and check her out with her goslings. There was only one little fella that would give me the pleasure of popping his little head up …. The rest she kept closely concealed.

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The following day, after hatching, is when she should coax them from the bale and take them to the closest water source. This crazy goose has me so mesmerized that I set the alarm for 4:30 this morning to be the first to witness this amazing event. But there she sat, snuggled down with her goslings … not looking like she meant to go anywhere.

Chores got underway and a couple hours passed. I went to check again, camera and binoculars strung about my shoulders and my worst nightmare….nobody was on the bale! I was feeling pretty disappointed that I had missed this “little show from nature” and then as I started heading back to the yard I saw a sight that completely devastated me….a pair of adult Canada Geese in the slough and no babies. Not again you two….why can you never succeed at this family-making thing? Why does that coyote or that hawk always win…year after year? We tried so hard to make conditions perfect for you and here we go again!

I decided I better get a picture of the empty bale so I could illustrate this sadness, but this time I walked instead of taking the quad. I walked dejectedly along too, when all of sudden, right there in front of me was the sweetest sight to behold….our goose pair with their entire family of seven goslings being guided to the southern most slough in the other direction! They, happily, had me fooled.

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I continued to follow them right to the water and witnessed the first swim of the little ones. One tiny gaffer couldn’t quite keep up so it was comforting to watch the gander – his daddy – patiently wait for him, all the time ruffling his rear feathers as if to tell him…”hurry up!”

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Finally, after five years of trying, trying, trying….our faithful pair of Canada Geese has their first family. The Lucky Sevens I call them. They are now as safe as they can be in their water-sourced home in our south field. We can count on them to continue to return here annually. You can bet we will have the bale condos set up and ready for them smack in the middle of this pond so the dangerous waddle in the field can be eliminated altogether.
Oh, and that pair I saw earlier? We figure they are a newly-matched Mr and Mrs who we anticipate will occupy the second bale which we will also set up in this pond. The more the merrier!!!