Friday, July 31, 2009

Summertime ...

My husband is fanatical about his grass ... it is the envy of all the guys in the neighbourhood ... plush, velvety, soft and lush ... sigh! And for the last 2 weeks, it has been devoid of humans, due to an unbelievable heatwave -- upwards of 40+C -- I saw 104F and 111F on our old thermometer -- ghastly. The fans are on overtime and we are lusting after A/C -- grocery shopping has taken on a new appeal.

I entered my scrapbooking, photography, knitting and dill pickles into our local country fair last weekend and came out with 6-1st place ribbons, 3-2nd place ribbons and one third, resulting in $35 prize money. Before you become unduly impressed, read on!

This is going to sound like sour grapes, but you're not going to believe this -- my gorgeous 'Alhambra' scarf came in 3rd to ... wait for it ... an eyelash yarn scarf!!! Yep, you read that correctly! Apparently my 16 row, lace pattern on both sides, stick a needle in your eye took me three months to knit scarf just didn't cut it. The judge preferred the garter stitch, red eyelash yarn scarf, instead. First place was given to a shawl, which was somehow entered in the 'scarf' category (go figure!) and then 2nd went to the eyelash scarf. I was scratching my head for a moment, until one of my knitting pals who volunteered at the fair whispered to me that the judge was actually a 'non-knitter' -- can you believe it???

My February Baby Sweater came in 2nd to a 'swallowtail shawl' which must have literally been cast off in the car, on the way to drop it off, because it hadn't even been blocked out! It was still in the 'before its glory, lace blob stage'.

Needless to say, it was a learning experience ... I was wise enough to keep my mouth shut while I was there, for fear that I'd get roped into judging next year's competition, which would really mess me up, because then I wouldn't be able to participate :)

The kids were away for the weekend, so we had the 'granddog' for a few days. He's very sweet and a joy to have around. My garden took a beating, but I was prepared for that. His only other foible is that he loves to chew on tennis balls. I went to the dollar store and bought 3 sleeves of balls because he can chew through one in only 10 minutes. Once he's popped it, he proceeds to shred and spit out the pieces. Once he's done that, he gets up and walks away, as if to say 'that job's done'!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Vulcan, Alberta

WARNING: Picture heavy!!!

We flew to Vulcan, Alberta at the end of June for 10 days, to visit hubby's sister. The Starship Enterprise, is the town monument and its claim-to-fame! When the recent StarTrek movie premiered, the residents of Vulcan were given 300 tickets to auction off among the inhabitants and those who won, were treated to a buffet dinner and then bussed to Calgary (an hour away) for a special viewing.

We timed our visit so hubby could go to an airshow in Nanton, about 30 minutes from Vulcan. (That's my b-i-l on the right) They were going to start up an old WW 2 bomber plane, and being an airforce brat, he couldn't resist. Also, two of his uncles were bomber flyers in WW 2 and were killed within a couple of months of each other - both were in their late teens/early 20's. They had a huge memorial wall of all the Canadians who had served and both of their names were listed.

This is the actual bomber. I have a video feature on my camera and promised to get the whole thing on tape for hubby and his one surviving uncle. My arms nearly fell off holding the camera high and for at least 5 minutes, but I got it all!

I won't bore you with further pics, but I got inside and photographed from every angle possible! It was actually quite interesting.

We noticed that there was a farmer's market happening, so we walked over to check it out. We discovered hubby's cousin (on the right) with all of her handmade jewelry for sale. She makes beautiful stuff -- I bought 3 pieces!

This is a town lost in time. It hasn't been created to look this way, it IS this way. The fenced building has a real, honest to goodness saloon on the main floor. Gotta be at least 200 years old!

I love the colourful grain elevators! They're almost becoming extinct.

Me and one of my nieces. On Canada Day, we got up early and drove to Rosemary, Alberta about 1 1/2 hours away. This is a tiny town, population 300, that for one day is at least 10x that! They have a big celebration, parade and all, and people come for miles to participate.

Here's another niece, flying the flag!

The whole gang, on the sidelines, watching the parade ... it circled the town twice, so you didn't miss anything! Volumes of candy was tossed out, so the kids had a blast scrambling to retrieve it.

Hubby, who climbed out of his comfort zone and dressed for the occasion, tattoo and all! Yeah!

Mud bog truck races ... notice the flying mud, which sprayed up and landed on those of us standing at the fence line, taking pictures :P*****
On-land, ski do races -- can you believe it?? I was down in the pit, taking photos, before someone noticed me and told me to get lost :)

And a very fun time was had by all!