Friday, September 29, 2023

FFF Nature Friday - Welcome Autumn

 Thank you to Aunty- Yam for hosting FFF and to Rosy and Sunny for hosting Nature Friday. 

We are living in the in between.

In between the long warm days of summer, and the cold dark days of winter.

In between lush green trees and bare forests. 

In between sitting in the sun and sitting by the fire.

In between easy drives for fun and slow snowy ones you dread.

Autumn is a transition, a time to prepare.

We winterize our yards and homes and cars. 

We use this in between to get ready for the hardest season. 

The beauty of this season can get lost in the preparation and dread of what is next.

We will find a way to make the in between the place to be. 

We will celebrate the season of stunning leaves, pumpkins and ghosts.

We will pause and marvel at nature. 

We will stop and make the in between the place to be. 

A before taken Saturday September 23, 2023 - We will watch it turn!

Taken September 23, 2023 - the first day of autumn so we can watch it turn

From the tree across from the end of the lane. A favourite spot for the deer.

Because they are just exploding - look 4 flowers out of this head! 

Thursday, September 28, 2023

Thursday - More Autumn Pictures


Given there are 2 pictures of Hailey and only one of Phod, can you guess who was far more motivated for the cookies?

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Travel Tuesday - North to Alaska - Skagway and the Yukon - Part One

While every day of this trip was wonderful, a lot happened on our full day bus trip from Skagway to the Yukon, so I have decided to break this into two posts. This was probably my favourite day. 

A little Canadian knowledge before we go on. Canada is made of 10 provinces and 3 territories. It is a bit complicated, but here are some differences between the two. Provinces come into existence under Constitutional law and territories by Federal law. Provinces and territories have different governmental structures and places in Canadian politics.  The territories are all in the northern part of the country. They make up 40% of Canada's land but only contain 3% of the population.  Fun fact, about 90% of Canadians live within 100 miles (160 km) from the US boarder. 

Now back to our travels.

The trip started with us boarding the White Pass and Yukon route train. Here we took the 27.7 miles/44.5 km from Skagway to Fraser B.C. 

Our starting part Skagway was the place were over 100 000 people set off for the gold rush. Many of the individuals who made it this far North, thought this was the gateway to gold, not realizing they have another 400+ miles to Dawson City and the Klondike river, where gold was found.

In the train

It is estimated of the 100 000 stampeders only 30 000 completed the journey. The rest turned back or died. It is also estimated that less than 200 of those who made it, struck it rich.  In todays dollars about one billion dollars worth of gold was found. Those who found gold were often victims of theft or just blew it! We heard a story that in one town, the barber would 'nick' those bragging about finding gold, as a mark to thugs to know who to rob later. 

I think history has shown us that many of the businesses that set up to provide supplies to the stampeders were the real winners. (Oh capitalism, how you always find a way to win!)

The Steel Bridge - built in 1901 and used until 1967 was the tallest cantilever bridge in the world.

With so many people pouring into the north, the Canadian government stated to enter Canada you needed to show you could support yourself for a year. You were required to procure 1 ton of goods.  As these goods were purchased in the United States and transported to Canada, they were subject to duty.  Between February and June 1898 the RCMP collected the equivalent of 4.9 million today US dollars  (6.6 million Canadian) in duty alone.

This diet does not seem healthy!

People had to make multiple trips to get their goods. It is estimated a stampeder could carry 50-80lb at a time.  This meant multiple trips, as well as the concerns about other steeling your goods.  It is no wonder so many people gave up. 

It is estimated 3000 animals lost their lives being used by the stampeders. One of the tricks was to sell sick or injured horses for top dollar to individuals looking to find their treasure. These animals had no hope of making it hundreds of miles and would die. 

Looking at the trail people walked

In Fraser BC, we rejoined our bus driver and headed further north. 

Me and our bus driver about to enter my first territory!

The little bit of the Yukon we say was stunning. I understand why it is one of my uncle's favourite places on earth, and why he named his dog Dawson.

The haze is smoke from the wild fires that were raging this summer

Our real stop in the Yukon was a Caribou Crossing, now known as Carcross. To demonstrate how big Canada is, Carcross is over 5400 km/3355 miles from Canada's capital Ottawa. It would take you 57 hours to drive there. Carcross is about 57 miles/91 km north of Skagway.
For over 4500 years this was home to the Tlingit and Tagnish peoples. During the gold rush it was a popular stopping place for prospectors. Now it is home to just over 300 people. Tourism is the major industry. 

What was really special to me is that Carcross had an Iditorod (and other sled dog race) training place, that is open to the public. I got to play with puppies!!!

The pups above were about 9 months old. Come back next week to join me on a true life highlight, going on an Iditarod training run! 

Monday, September 25, 2023

Mischief Monday - If You Give a Dog Some Steriods

In you give a dog a steroid, she is going to have a lot of energy.

If she has a lot of energy, she is going to hump your leg.

If she burns her energy humping your leg,  she is going to get hungry.

She is going to eat all her food and then she is going to want to go outside.

Once she is outside she is going to wander far to explore.

She is going to get hungry again while exploring.

She is going to find some yummy cat poop buried in the sand.

She is going to eat all the cat poop and who knows whatever gross things. 

If she ate the gross things and because she is on the steroid, she is going to have an upset stomach in the night. 

She is going to literally poop her bed in her sleep at 1:40 am.

If she poops her bed at 1:40 am, you will get to go outside. If you go outside once, you might as go outside three times.

And you are going to have to clean up a lot of very soft poop from the bedroom floor.

Once you all get settled in bed, she is going to throw up.

When dawn finally comes, you are going to have to give your dog a steroid. 

Then she is going to have a lot of energy . . . .

Friday, September 22, 2023

Nature Friday - Still Sunflowers

We thank Rosy and Sunny for giving us an event where we can bore people to death with more pictures of sunflowers. For those who are like us and don't completely get the obsession, know the sunflower season is  drawing to an end. Until then, enjoy!

Perhaps this one is at least interesting as it has Hailey in it. Phod refused to pose.

Bees love the sunflowers, so we guess that is good

Thursday, September 21, 2023

A Healthy Last Summer Hike

 Hi pals,

We haven't been into the sugar bush much this summer. We stopped going when the bugs were so bad, as it is rather swampy in places there and Lady didn't want to get totally eaten alive. Then Lady was away and the sickness came . . . . so on Sunday, we finally got back for a nice morning hike.

The path down to the big path really needs a good clearing but we made it down. 

Lady, who has been extremely stressed lately, has been doing a lot of diving into the wellness space. She tells us there is a lot of research on how being in nature reduces stress. She says doctors are actually prescribing time in nature to people now (which makes Lady sad that we have become so disconnected from the world at large as we have been come more connected in so many ways).  The best benefits are in person, away from traffic noise, but just looking at pictures can help reduce stress and increase health. So we present the following as ways to boost your health!

Well we know we felt better after our hike. We are hoping you all feel more relaxed and healthier. We will be sharing more in the bush as the leaves start to change (you may have noticed hits of yellow in some of the pictures). 

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Travel Tuesday - Talk Like a Pirate and North to Alaska - Day 7 - Juneau

 Before we begin today's post - we join our pals in celebrating Talk Like A Pirate Day.

Now on to our travels. Our next port of call was Juneau. Here we had decided we would get up close and personal with a glacier.  We took a bus tour to Mendenhall Glacier. Here, I went on a hike, while my mom enjoyed learning about the glacier in the visitor's centre.

Mendenhall is half a mile wide and 1800 feet deep. Unlike Hubbard, Mendenhall is retreating quickly and it is estimated by 2050 you won't be able to see it from the visitor's centre.  It lost 3 miles between August 2021 and August 2022.

Hiking a bit closer

A memorial to a wolf. It made me smile. 

Nugget Falls

The colour of the glacier water up close

Icebergs floating between the glacier and the falls

Proof I was there!

On the hike out I saw this memorial stone and took a moment to remember a stranger. It says "A life well lived, and a man well loved. He never stopped exploring."

Proof we were the together! 

In the visitor's centre - I got to interact with a bear!

After time at Mendenhall, we went to Glacier Gardens. This garden was started in 1984 by Steve Bowhay and his wife Cindy. They picked a spot that a landslide had wiped out for their nursery business and over time have created this amazing, rainforest surrounded gardens. We were whisked up the mountain in the same type of people carrier as they use at Disney. Here are just a few shots from our stop there.

The garden is famous for the upside down trees that  have been turned into planters.

The rain forest

Looking down on Juneau

It was a lovely day in nature and unlike the bear hunt, we saw what we set out to!

Come back next week, for my favourite adventure - a day trip into the Yukon! (There may have been dogs involved . . . .)