Friday 31 December 2021

2021 Retrospective

Random photos that I picked from over the year. Every year I think I will run out of interesting things and every year I manage to find something interesting or an image.

In no particular order.

The Past Year . . . Snow and Sky

A chronological collection of favorites from the past year . . . snow and sky. 

January 15, 2021

Saint Volodymyr Ukrainian Catholic Memorial Church near Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

The church was built in 1979 and is part of the larger Saint Volodymyr's Ukrainian Park near Saskatoon.

January 19, 2021

Saint Michael's Ukrainian Catholic Church near Fosston, Saskatchewan. 

Seeing this tiny church with the turquoise trim always brightens up my day.

January 19, 2021

Transfiguration of Jesus Ukrainian Orthodox Church near Fosston, Saskatchewan. 

A stately abandoned church that evokes the wishes, hopes and dreams of the Ukrainian settlers.  

January 21, 2021

Saint Mary's Ukrainian Orthodox Church near Punnichy, Saskatchewan.

Blue church in the snow.

February 17, 2021

Saint George's Ukrainian Catholic Church near Manly, Alberta.

An unusual design for a Ukrainian church.

February 17, 2021

Sion United Church at Sion, Alberta.

It's rare to see an old church structure in such an undisturbed state.

February 17, 2021

Epiphany Lutheran Church near Sion, Alberta.

I love being able to catch the failing light through the trees just to see those long blue shadows on the sparkling snow . . . it's one of those things that just never gets old.

February 18, 2021

Saint Charles Catholic Church in Tawatinaw, Alberta.

The church was moved from its original site in the country into town where it still stands. 

February 18, 2021

Anglican Church near Colinton, Alberta.

A long abandoned log and mud church in a wooded area.

February 19, 2021

Saint Elias Ukrainian Orthodox Church near Wandering River, Alberta.

Little country church in the snow.

December 13, 2021

Saint Anne's Anglican Church in Bresaylor, Saskatchewan.

Hard to tell where the snow ends and the sky begins.

December 13, 2021

Saint Paul's Anglican Church near Forest Bank, Saskatchewan.

A foggy and frosty day in the country. 

All the best in the new year!

- Michael Truman

The last day of the year

In addition to having his own blog Michael Truman also posts here. I am fortunate enough to have him do a year end post on this blog in addition to the same on his blog. His post will publish later this morning and I invite you to check out his site.

Thursday 30 December 2021

The current cold snap is wearing thin

High today of -27C. It will be about a little colder tomorrow. The weekend is threatening to warm up by twenty degrees. I will believe it when I feel it. Right after the weekend temperatures plunge again. The joys of winter in Alberta.

On the bright side I am saving money since it is too damn cold to do much. Wherever you are I hope you are nice and warm.

Wednesday 29 December 2021

Big cat

A client of mine has a farm near Genesee, Alberta. A little over a week ago this was taken on his land by a local outfitter. The cat weighed 185lbs. I wish I could have seen it in person.

He has spotted one of these just outside his house in the past. 

Sunday 26 December 2021

Cold snap

It is -30C at the moment and it is going to get a little colder overnight. Christmas Day was spent at mom's place and it went reasonably well.

Christmas Day was about as cold as it is now. The drive from my home to hers is just under an hour. Roads were fine with a touch of frost from the cold. You can drive the speed limit, a bit faster and you it feels a little less secure.

Desperately wanted to go out today and do . . . anything. There are days when it makes more sense to stay in and stay warm. Today was spent on the usual household chores,  cleaning up photo files, and planning future trips.

Saturday 25 December 2021

Christmas Day

We all know what this season is really about.

Merry Christmas.

Friday 24 December 2021

Christmas Eve

Many years ago it was Christmas Eve and before going to bed I mentioned to my dad that we should put milk out for Santa. Dad said beer was a better idea. He told me that he was sure Santa preferred beer.

I told him that you were supposed to put milk and cookies out for Santa. Dad informed me that everyone put out milk. Santa would appreciate beer because it was something different.

I hope Santa liked the beer.

Merry Christmas.

Wednesday 22 December 2021

A Christmas note

A few people may think I am down on Christmas. Not quite true.

When I was in my grade school days I was fortunate to spend Christmas a few times at my aunt and uncle's farm north of Drayton Valley, Alberta. The food was always awesome. My aunt was a very good cook and we played card games during the day. I have fond memories of those times. My own family was never really that big on Christmas but I enjoyed getting together with relatives when we were able. Christmas with just the immediate family in those days were good. My father loved to play cards and any card game with him was entertaining.

These days nothing really goes according to plan for Christmas. I like to have things set a few weeks ahead of time. No matter how the plans are set a certain unnamed family member likes to ruin them at the last moment either by changing things or not cooperating. This has been going on for years and I have learned to live with it. Ideally I would like to have the remaining immediate family get together without any hitches in a nice setting and have a good time.

About a week before Christmas I go down my list and send an email or text to a number of people I know, and a number I barely know, and make a point to wish them a Merry Christmas. I have been doing this for years and I do this because I like to do it and I sincerely want everyone to have a memorable holiday.

Sleeping train

Took a rural road and there was a train parked just off the crossing. Twilight and snow makes the light seem a bit blue at this time of year. This was a couple of days ago. It is snowing fluffy flakes today.

Monday 20 December 2021

Abandoned Lutheran Church

This is my favourite abandoned church. It is a Lutheran Church in Thorhild County, Alberta. This was a November visit, when I was here previously there as a lot of brush around the church. Someone has removed the brush, cleaned up the grounds, and has put a new roof on it. They may be restoring the rest of the church.

Sunday 19 December 2021

Winding down the year

Some people I know and follow are posting a year in review and year end posts. Mine is set up to publish on December 31. 

Tim and Krista are trying their hand at blogging. I have recently met Tim. They have their own look back at 2021 on a blog they recently created.

Saturday 18 December 2021

Not a fan of this time of year

I have not enjoyed the Christmas season in years. Too much running around. Rushed making sure the work deadlines are met. Squeezing in visits to family and friends. We are in a cold snap with the usual cold weather warnings. This weekend is a good opportunity to hunker down for a movie marathon and enjoy doing nothing.

Friday 17 December 2021

Brush Hill Church

Near Vegreville, Alberta and still holding on.

Thursday 16 December 2021

Random barn post

Near Hanna, Alberta.


Wednesday 15 December 2021

Still hanging on

Ozark School a little east of Big Valley, Alberta. I am surprised it has held on this long. Not many of these left. Every year it looks a little worse for wear.

Tuesday 14 December 2021

Porcupine post

Out with a friend on the weekend who spotted a porcupine about fifteen feet up a tree. Too much snow and the brush was too thick to get close. Tried to get it with the telephoto lens and this the best of many attempts.

Monday 13 December 2021

Monday the 13th

As unlucky as Friday the 13th? Not that I am superstitious.

Had a post publish when I thought I scheduled it for another day. Dumb mistake on my part. Pulled the post and rescheduled it for the 20th. Prior versions of Blogger were more user friendly and I found it easier to avoid dumb posting errors.

I have also been having some issues commenting on other blogs. One blog I tried three times and eventually gave up. I have had to make a few attempts answering comments on this blogs before I am successful.

I took last Friday off to study course material as I was writing the final on Saturday morning. It is the last course I need for a program and I took it by correspondence. I prefer the pre-COVID way of writing a test. You go to an exam centre at write the test. This was done at home and I had to be sign in and have the webcam set up for the exam proctor. There were some multiple choice and typed answers. I prefer having to write answers in an exam book. I am the type that scribbles notes to organize my thoughts before writing an answer. I am more of a paper and pen type of person. I wrote the test, then I was informed Sunday night by email of my grade. I passed well enough. I would have done better however with all of the stuff I have been dealing with lately my mind really was not on studying. One more thing off my list. Hopefully I do not add anything to the list.

Scapa Lutheran Church

North of Hanna, Alberta on December 12, 2021.

Friday 10 December 2021

Spotted near Olds, Alberta

I like this one. It sticks in my mind that there was a different one a few years back advertising his business.

Thursday 9 December 2021

It is a damn good cup of coffee

About a week ago, maybe a little longer since it was a weekend, I was craving a really good cup of coffee. I drink two or three cups of coffee a day but that is maintenance coffee. Stuff you drink out of habit to kickstart your day. I wanted actual coffee.

I live just a bit south of Edmonton, Alberta. I got up and drove to Calgary to a little hole in the wall coffee place that roasts their own beans. The decor has not changed in over twenty years. It still looks a little rundown and beat up inside for being in a trendy part of the city.

I go there for the coffee. It has been a few years since I was last there. The coffee was just as I remembered it: Excellent. They are doing the cute sign thing which I do not remember them doing it in the past but whatever brings in business.

I had one there and grabbed one for the road to make it worthwhile. Sometimes you have to do stuff like this.

Wednesday 8 December 2021

Luke Weiser

Luke Weiser is a friend of mine and I have known him for about thirty years. Luke is one of those types that always seems to be doing something different and always seems to be good at whatever he tries. I wish I had his talent. These days he is making his own jewelry. He lives in Calgary and is starting to make some inroads with his work.