Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Christmas Blessing

Don't forget that Christmas is just starting - twelve days, beginning now! And on the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me...tickets to the next Calgary Comic Expo. :)

This is my current favourite video. It's from a youth retreat in the States, and it made me think of something I've never really thought of before in my 31 years of going to church on Christmas and singing this carol.

When we do stop to remember that 'Jesus is the reason for the season', we generally think of a cute little baby in a manger, with a Renaissance-esque halo and shiny angels. At this time of year, I tend to forget that He came for a grittier, weightier, and eternal purpose, and this video vividly reminded me that: "Nails, spear shall pierce Him through / the cross be born for me, for you", and that was the whole point of His coming in the first place - to break the 'deep magic from the dawn of time' that demands a penalty for sin. That innocent baby in the manger came to earth, out of love, to suffer and die; to bridge the gap that Adam and Eve's sin wrought between humans and our creator. The vastness and enormity and sheer cosmic scope are very hard to wrap my tiny human brain around. C. S. Lewis, in the Chronicles of Narnia, describes this sacrifice on a level that I find a bit easier to begin to understand.

 If you haven't read The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, I highly recommend going and reading it RIGHT NOW. :)
"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope."
(Romans 15:13)
"...so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.  
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
(Ephesians 3:17-21)

May your Christmas be full of joy and love, and may your new year be blessed with good things! And if you are seeking, may you find. 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Hobbit

Perfect Hobbit is Perfect

Have you seen the Hobbit yet? We went on Friday, to a noon matinee in IMAX 3D. To be honest, I'm not sure what I loved most...the nine minute preview of Star Trek Into Darkness, or the Hobbit? I felt like I'd had my $20 worth after Into Darkness, and the Hobbit was just the icing on the cake.

I'm not usually a fan of 3D (the glasses over my glasses annoy me, and I don't find the 3D that exciting), but I'd heard something about some new technique they were using that was supposed to make it 'too real', which made me curious. And it was amazing! I lost count of how many times I jumped and ducked, and I definitely screamed twice. It was like riding a roller coaster - a roller coaster of beautiful New Zealand scenery and adorable Martin Freeman. I can't imagine anyone else playing that role - Freeman IS Bilbo - have you seen the photo of him with his Lego minifig?!

(I should point out that I'm not a Tolkien purist by any stretch of the imagination, so I'm not comparing the movie to the book at all.)

At the beginning, when Bilbo meets Gandalf, is invaded by dwarfs, and eventually decides that maybe he does want to go on an adventure after all - well, I could just live in that chunk of the movie and be content to just stay there forever. It's warm and vibrant and funny and just...perfect. And I totally empathize with Bilbo loving his peaceful life and orderly home. The scene where the group of adventurers encounters the trolls was very funny - not quite Monty Python funny, but definitely funny by Peter Jackson standards.

After that it departed a bit from the lighter side and got darker, like the Lord of the Rings movies, although the Goblin King provided a bit of comedic relief. There was maybe a wee bit too much of Thorin doing the smolder, but it was only minorly annoying. :) I won't say where it cut off, but it was a good ending, with not too much of a cliffhanger, which was nice.

We don't get to see much of Smaug this early, or the Necromancer, which was disappointing, because I'm really excited about seeing Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch together in something other than Sherlock. So I guess I'll just have to watch Sherlock again while I wait for next December!

Anyway, the short of it is that the Hobbit in IMAX 3D is definitely worth the price of admission, and you should go see it, like, right now! Go on!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The End Is Near

No, I'm not talking about the Mayan Apocalypse, I'm talking about this semester. :) I have my German final tomorrow morning (at 8 am...groan!) and then Canadian history on Monday, and linguistics on Tuesday. Then I'm free!

Hopefully Tuesday night I'll be back to my regularly scheduled massively long blog posts. I have several ideas I'm mulling over, but most of them are controversial, and I'm not sure if I want to go in any of those directions, but we shall see! :)

I am going to see the Hobbit on Friday...we already have our tickets for the noon matinee in Imax 3D. Yay!

I leave you with my favourite Kipling quote:


Thursday, December 06, 2012


Tomorrow morning is my German presentation. Insert ALL THE PANIC here. Thankfully, since it's such a small class, I don't have to worry about stage fright, just failing. :) Yay! I also have a German paper due, which I JUST printed. And as if that weren't enough, I have a paper on Richard II due (which is maybe half done at this point), along with an exam in that class.

The bright spot in my Tatooine of a day is that my very last class is Canadian history, and the prof has promised doughnuts. Then I get to go Christmas shopping because tomorrow is the domestic parcel mailing deadline. I just need to make it from 9 am to 2 pm, and then this semester too shall have passed. (I do have three finals over the next two weeks, but they're nicely spread out!)


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Final weeks of the semster!

I had a big post all queued up full of photos of Trevor and me - today is the 13th anniversary of when he asked me out - but Blogger seems to have eaten the photos, and I don't have time to re-sort and re-upload, because I have SO MUCH HOMEWORK.  So you probably won't see a blog post from me now until December 11th, unless something earth-shattering happens between now and then!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Favourite Food in Calgary

The are in no particular order - just food things I really like in Calgary!

Edelweiss Imports
This is a German import shop/bakery/deli/cafe. Schnitzel, spaetzle, gravy, potatoes and Black Forest cake, oh my! I especially love going there at Christmas - it's very festive!

Kingsland Farmer's Market
The Kingland Farmer's Market has two of my favourite vendors - the Jammery and Hoven Farms. I now only eat jam from the Jammery (except for imported British marmalade, because that makes me feel closer to my UK roots...) and whenever we want special occasion beef or steaks, I go to Hoven Farms. It's also usually the only place where I can find heirloom tomatoes in the summer.

This is a small western-Canadian chain of Italian restaurants. They have cheap pasta, bread with oil and vinegar, excellent cheesecake, and the one near our house has this waiter who sings incoherent snatches of songs that sound very Italian, which is always exciting. :)

Moroccan Castle
They do not have their own website, which is a shame. I've only been there twice, and not in years now, but I LOVE it. It's like eating in a tent with plushy pillows and ALL THE ATMOSPHERE. It's down in Kensington area, and it's amazing.

Myknonos Greek Restaurant
The owners of this place not only know how to serve food that feels homey, they also are big supporters of local charity, which is a great plus! It doesn't look like much from the outside, and the decor is a bit dated, but they have beautiful photos of Greece, and did I mention the food? It's amazing! I like it way better then the other popular major Greek restaurant in Calgary...

Fionn MacCool's pub
This gem of a place is on the main floor of the Sheraton Eau Claire, and I love it. It's very pub-y, and they have the best gravy ever. And excellent lamb. Sooo good. I used to work very near it, and Dad and I had lunch there often.

Kilkenny Irish Pub
The great thing about the Kilk (and the other pubs in this local chain) is cheap ribs Wednesday. Cheap ribs Wednesday. Check it out...and let us know if you're going so we can join you. :)

Joey's Seafood
This is a small Canadian chain that you could compare to Red Lobster, but I think it's better. It's got a bit more charm, and the prices are a bit lower. And they have great tartar sauce. When I crave a bit of Nova Scotia, this is where I go!

White Spot
Great milkshakes and burgers! A western-Canadian chain, there are a couple locations in Calgary. One of the things I like about it is that it reminds me of being a teenager in BC. They also have a summer blueberry pie special which blows my taste buds. But I'm all about their burgers...

Marble Slab
An ice cream place of deliciousness - their milkshakes are the best ever. It probably has something to do with the ice cream that goes into them...and I currently have a MS gift card burning a hole in my wallet...

Crave Cupcakes
Each Crave cupcake has enough calories in it to feed a small country for a week. But oh, you'll die happy! I love any of them with cream cheese icing, and also the chocolate one with peppermint icing. And the chocolate one with the pink icing. And the chocolate one with the chocolate icing. And...you get the idea. :)

Bakery at Heritage Park
Don't miss the bakery if you go to the park - it's perfect for a snack to perk you up! Tarts and buns and cookies...made all the more delicious by the appetite you work up from all the walking.

Simple Simon Pies
These cute little single-serve pies are available at a couple farmer's markets around town - they come frozen for a quick comfort food dinner. They have meat, fruit and quiche ones. I LOOOVE their cheddar bacon quiche, but since my egg allergy got worse I had to give quiche up, which makes me very sad!

Coco Brooks
A local chain with single serve pizzas - you can eat in or take out. Well, they say they're single servings, but with a salad I usually only eat half of one in a sitting... They're environmentally friendly and are involved in the community. And they make GREAT pizza!

Hopefully this gave you some ideas for different food to check out around Calgary! Let me know if you have any suggestions of places we should try!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

These are a Few of my Favourite Things about Calgary

I'm not really sure what inspired this...but I've come along way from loathing Calgary the way I did when I first moved here. I've come to find the prairies beautiful, and I've gotten used to sunny winters. I'm not quite used to the cold, but I'm dealing. :)

So, in not really any particular order, here are some of the things I love most about Calgary:
My church, Foothills Lutheran. I've been going here since November of 1999, a few months after I moved to Calgary, and a month after I met Trevor. And then we got married here in 2002. And I don't really mean I love the building (although after working there for four years, spending weekends sleeping on the floors with the youth, spending hours in the kitchen putting on meals, etc, I do feel a certain fondness for it...) it's the people who make up the church that I love! Whenever we talk about moving back to BC, the first 'con' I think of is that it would be so hard to leave our church family.

The view of snow-covered mountains never fails to make me 'awe', especially when the sun is setting behind them. Although I've yet to take a photo of a Rocky Mountain sunset that actually does it justice!
Heritage Park, from my trip this summer with Shelli.
Heritage Park, from my friend Teresa's wedding a few years ago. If Trevor and I ever get married again, we're doing it at Heritage Park. :) I'd spend way more time there if I could - I just love it. For a history geek like me, it's heavenly.
The Gibson Collection at the University of Calgary library is SUCH a gem. Bob Gibson was a Calgary man who spent his entire life collecting books. Most of them are of the speculative fiction variety, and if anyone thinks I have a lot of books...he had over 35,000 pieces that were donated to the UofC in 2002, after he died. That was 10 years ago, and they're still cataloguing! I had a tour of some of the stuff that's still not catalogued, and there are years and years more of work to do on the collection. The real crown jewel in the collection are Gibson's 500-ish hand-bound anthologies that he put together himself of stories from magazines. He bound each one in paper with a hand-written cover, and kept meticulous records in a card catalogue system. I wish I could have met him!

When Words Collide is a Calgary convention for people interested in reading, writing and publishing fiction. 2013 will be the third annual con, and I'm really looking forward to it. I'm always too busy to take pictures - this one is from 2011, with my friends Brittni and Anita at the EDGE party. It's small, and SO well run, and there are always too many interesting panels to see - I'd need a time-turner to do everything I'd like to. :)

Riker, Troi and Worf at the 2012 Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo.
A Darth Vader cosplayer at the 2011 Comic Expo.
Brent Spiner (Data) at the 2010 Calgary Comic Expo - this was my first con ever, and it was amazing. It opened my eyes to a strange new world of geekery and fandom! They've already announced Michael Shanks for 2013, and I SWEAR by my pretty floral bonnet that I will have my steampunk cosplay ready by then. :)

The Calgary Military Museum is fantastic. Again, as a history geek it's one of the best museums I've been to, but also for their annual Remembrance Day service. We decided to go to a different one this year because I wasn't feeling well and wasn't up for all the walking and standing involved, but I do regret it a bit. In a world that's increasingly secular, it's lovely to go to a service with all of the military pomp and circumstance, as well as prayers and hymns. If you've never been, I highly recommend it!

Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park is my newest favourite thing. It's only about 20 minutes from our house, but it's outside town enough that it makes me feel like I've been out to the country. The view of the mountains is beautiful, and the prairie scenery is unparalleled. It has lots of different walking paths, so you can go for a long walk, a short stroll, or just a picnic. Beautiful!

Heather and me at the Calgary Philharmonic's sci fi tribute, narrated by Robert Picardo (The Doctor) and John DiLancie (Q), a few years ago.
Me, Anne (with Bethany the baby bump) and Heather going to a Christmas performance of the Messiah at the CPO in 2007. I think if had to pick just one favourite thing about Calgary it might very well be the CPO. The most recent concert I've been to was last week - it was Songs of the War Years, with the orchestra and a singing group, and it was fabulous. I've only been to one concert that disappointed, and in that case it was the imported group rather than the orchestra who were disappointing. They are so amazing - as a non-musician, it's magical to hear the disparate parts of the orchestra warming up in controlled chaos, and then to hear the harmony when the maestro lifts her baton. Just...just...GO see them, ok?

Calgary is home to some fabulous heritage architecture. When I first moved here, while I was struggling with hating this cold, beige city, one of the things that distracted me was the heritage buildings everywhere downtown. I have a list of them saved, and it's still one of my goals to visit every one of them. Maybe there's some way to turn that into a history paper....

The red pandas at the zoo are the cutest things ever. I'm not really a fan of zoos, although I've been to it a few times. But the red pandas...they're worth the price of admission, right there! My little brother took this photo last Christmas when he was here. Lookit the cute little red panda TONGUE!

Something that I don't have a photo for is the Morpheus Theater Group. They do four shows a year, and I never miss their Gilbert & Sullivan one in the new year. They perform in the Pumphouse Theatre, which is one of those great pieces of Calgary heritage architecture. They are definitely worth supporting, and their ticket prices are really affordable.
So there you have it; some great things about Calgary. If you live here and haven't experienced some of these things, well, what are you waiting for?! Get off the computer and out there ASAP! And if you're travelling to Calgary, make a list of things you want to do, let me know when you're coming, and I'll try to show you around! :)
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Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Faith & Fangirling

(With credit to my friend Erin Erickson for somewhat inspiring the title of this post. :)
Well, this is coming a day late, which you may or may not have noticed. I did...but I had a German test this morning, so there wasn't much I could do about it. I tried to find a chart on line to show you how darn confusing possessive pronouns are, but I couldn't even! It's so confusing even Google can't help me. :P
So, last Sunday, October 28 (and that weekend we were in Red Deer at a conference, but that'll be its own post when I get organized!), was Reformation Sunday, the Sunday when we celebrate Martin Luther nailing the 95 Theses to the door of the church in Wittenberg. It's also Confirmation Sunday at our church, when the youth who are around 14 years old, and who've been taking confirmation classes for two years, publicly express their faith and what they've learned, by presenting papers and essentially making a vow.

I don't have any photos from this year, so here's one of Trevor getting confirmed. :)
I've seen a lot of confirmation classes come and go, and you can usually tell from their papers which of the kids actually 'get' it, and which of them are just jumping through the hoops so they can 'graduate'. There were 14 this year, and I only knew a couple of them well, but you can tell so much about them from their papers, and even the ones I don't really know I still care about whether or not they get it. I don't really know why - maybe it's just the burden/gift God has given me (?). Anyway, there may have been a few tears, and not because I was over-tired from being at a conference all weekend. :)
Then the first weekend in November was our annual fall youth retreat, which I seem to have somehow and totally accidentally ended up becoming chair of. I think it's because I'm kind of bossy and I just like organizing stuff and so I sort of took over organizing meetings, which then just evolved into 'chairing' them (which I use loosely because we've been doing this for so long that we all pretty much just know what to do and how to work together - it's a great team of people!), but I'm also the registrar, which is a TON of work. Add that to homework, two weeks of being sick, and an unusually tempestuous registration process, and by the time Thursday night rolled around I was seriously questioning why I was putting myself through the agony.
But by Friday morning, I was fatalistically calm. If anything else went wrong, there wasn't any way to prepare for it, so it would just have to happen as it happened. Then my friend Brittni arrived to help and the kids started coming, and I got excited again. It's so much fun having a church building filled with life and excitement. Things went really well - we had some scheduling issues Saturday night, but I kept calm and changed the schedule, and it worked out well. I was proud of myself for not freaking out...a couple of years ago I wouldn't have been able to function under my schedule not proceeding as planned, but I'm getting more flexible in my old age. :P Pretty sure it's a God Thing!
Some of the 75-ish people at the fall youth retreat
By the time everyone left on Sunday, I didn't want it to end, which is how I usually feel on the last day of a retreat. You get this sense of community in a small group, living in a building all together for a weekend like that, which you don't really find anywhere else. I always feel like it's a very imperfect but tantalizing glimpse of what heaven will be like - a giant youth retreat, only without all of the logistical work. :)
Then on Monday I had this parcel card, so I went to the post office to pick it up. I figured that I must have forgotten to decline last month's movie club offering, and I was still thinking about the youth retreat, so I wasn't really mentally present in the post office when the clerk handed me a large bubble envelope that didn't look anything like a DVD. I stepped away from the counter and looked at the return address, and got very intrigued when I saw that it was from Shelli.
I didn't waste any time ripping it open, and found a recycled inter-office mail envelope. Curiouser and curiouser...and then I opened that, and found THIS:
I definitely said "OH MY GOSH" out loud, because I'm pretty sure the lady standing nearby turned around to look at me, but I was to busy processing to care. (For the first time, I did wish I had a smartphone so I could take a photo and post it somewhere right then and there, because fangirling shared is definitely more fun!) When I got home I had to Google the indecipherable signatures to check whose they were, and it is signed by the entire main cast of Hell on Wheels. How awesome is that? It was totally the cherry on top of an already awesome day! Thanks Shelli! I'm definitely a receptive audience! :)

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Help me Mickey Mouse, you're my only hope!


FOUR BILLION DOLLARS. That's how much Disney paid George Lucas for Star Wars. I think three big things about this, and I've been thinking them ever since the news hit my Twitter feed at about 2:30 this afternoon.

1. Why are they announcing this the day the entire eastern seaboard is reeling from a major natural disaster? This must be a hoax...

2. A movie every 2-3 years seems like a lot. Will it turn into Aladdin III?

3. Four billion dollars could fix a lot of problems in the third world.

I was very much less than impressed about the whole thing until I read this post by John Scalzi, which made me feel a little better. And as a friend on Facebook pointed out earlier, a Star Wars movie directed by Joss Whedon would probably be pretty epic. I could live with that!

Some of my favourite tweets from today, in no particular order...

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Going Viral

The term viral has become increasingly more associated with social media phenomena, but I'm reminded this week of the more basic meaning of the word 'virus'. As in I have one, a nasty one that's giving me a wicked fever! I've already missed two German classes, a history class, an English class and a linguistics midterm. I've NEVER missed any classes before, ever, never mind a test, so I'm pretty cross about it!

The doctor I saw told me I should take a week off school...ha! He also said he was going to wash his hands extra carefully because he really did not want to catch it. I would have laughed at that, but he was serious...

I am very thankful for our Canadian medical system - it does have its flaws, but I got a bunch of tests and treatments and a doctor's note, and all it cost us was $15 for parking!

Now...to try to catch up on my German homework...

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Music - Jennifer Jade Kerr

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you may recall a brief mention from last summer about a little music project we were ever-so-slightly involved in. Our friend Jennifer Jade Kerr is a talented musician, singer, songwriter and generally wonderful person to hang around with. The CD we lent our voices to a track of came out earlier this year, and when we visited her quickly on our way to the States in August, we acquired a copy of said CD, which was very exciting. 


You can find the album, permission to be broken, here, and you can listen to the songs. The track we were 'alleluiaing' in is called Reflection, and the song was written by George and Michael of Lost And Found, a Lutheran duo I'm a fangirl of. I adore the song, and the writers, and the singer, so it's definitely one of my top favourite songs of all time. :)

Jennifer's heading out on tour in Ontario, and I HIGHLY recommend going to a concert if you can! The reason she's going to Ontario is for the Gospel Music Association of Canada week, and this album has been nominated for a Covenant Award for Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year. How cool is that?! So...please check out her album and buy AT LEAST just the Reflection track from iTunes! :)

Tuesday, October 09, 2012


This weekend was Thanksgiving here in Canada. I spent most of it doing lots of homework...and I have a history paper proposal due tomorrow, so I have nothing really exciting to blog about. :) I've got a lot going on - an editing contract, school, the fall youth retreat, allergy vaccinations, and the fall youth pizza fundraiser - but none of that is that exciting right now.

I did get this in the mail this week:

This is my 'thank you for making a donation to Sanctuary for Kids' gift. It's very exciting - it's a wine cork from the Sanctuary set. Gillian Horvath, a writer for Sanctuary, among other things, ran a 'Sanctuary Keepsake Campaign' and gave away Sanctuary set dec in exchange for donations to Sanctuary for Kids. I'm now the proud owner of a wine cork, which I have to now figure out a way to display so that it's also autographable by whichever of the cast I can catch... :)

I'm getting into Falling Skies and the BBC Sherlock - finally! And sadly, I was too busy with school to watch ANY of season two of Hell on Wheels, and now it's over, which has made me pretty cross! I'm doing everything I can to avoid spoilers until the season 2 DVD comes out...

Ok, now I really need to write my proposal and do my readings for tomorrow...I'll try to have something more exciting next week! I really am thankful that I get to go to school... :)

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Fall in Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park

With the weather being what it is today - e.g. snowy - I want to remember the happier, warmer, times of summer! You may remember that in late July I met up with my new friend Shelli and we went to Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park. Trevor and I had the change to get out there on September 22nd, which feels like YEARS ago already, and I took 100+ photos of the beautiful fall colours. It was about 28 degrees, and it was SO gorgeous.

Looking west!
The old post office on what was the townsite.
I call this one: "The cattle on a Thousand Hills".
Alberta at its best!
The Bow River - I kept looking around for scruffy surveyors from Hell on Wheels. :)
CP Rail
Our Canadian heritage in motion!
The old post office from the other side.
Fall grasses
The difference in the scenery from when I was there just two months before was incredible - it was like seeing a totally different park. We hiked the same loop that Shelli and I did, but when we go back in the spring we're going to try one of the other ones - because we'll definitely be going back there. I can't believe I've lived here for thirteen years and been half an hour away from this gem of a place and had no idea. Check it out, Calgarians! :)
Now, off to make myself a nice mug of Earl Grey, hot...
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Friday, September 28, 2012

Washington to Montana

Well, I'm quite pleased that my studying on Tuesday paid off and I managed to do quite well on my German test! Now, to keep it up for the rest of the year... :P
I'm just going to quickly wrap up the last few days of our road trip - we saw some pretty epic scenery coming through Washington State, Idaho, and Montana.
I don't remember where this was - about half-way between Seattle and Spokane. It was very arid and barren, and very beautiful.

We spent one night at a KOA in Spokane, which was my favourite of the three we stayed at. Partly because it was almost totally empty, mid-week after the long weekend. Also, it had VERY nice bathrooms. :) The only problem was the Union Pacific train line right across the edge of the property...but at least thanks to Hell on Wheels I knew to totally blame Thomas Durant for my lack of a decent sleep. :)
Our KOA in Whitefish was at least free of trains, planes, and automobiles, but the SPIDERS. Oh my, I do so hate spiders. The year that both Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets AND the Lord of the Rings with the giant spider was a traumatic year for me. Blech!
Anyway, Whitefish itself wasn't that exciting - we spent most of our time in Kalispell. The hike up the Whitefish ski hill was probably the highlight of our couple of days there - the weather was lovely the day we went (it rained the day before so we went shopping and to see the new Bourne movie...) and I took tons of pictures.
You know you're in a ski town when McDonald's feels like they need to put this sign on the door....
Using the timer setting on my camera...
I had a moment when I felt like we were on Endor...I'm not sure if you can see it in this little photo, but there's a moon in that sky. I'm pretty sure it was a moon and not a battle station, anyway...
View of the ski hill from the shore of the lake that was behind us in the photo above.
Fearless duck! There was a lady who kept trying to give me bread to feed the duck and lure it closer, but there were also about 40 seagulls lurking in the general vicinity. I was all like 'lady, you want to start a seagull feeding frenzy? Are you crazy?' Oy...
Llama at our campground. I think he was an actual llama and not a demon one....although I have this one photo of him where he's literally glowing, so I'm not toally sure...

 (And now I have the urge to watch the 'Llama Llama Duck' song, which I haven't watched in years and years, except I'm in the library at school and I don't have my earbuds. :(
Steampunk Buffalo. I have 'Guy on a Buffalo' stuck in my head everytime I see it, but it's more like 'guy on a steampunk buffalooooooooooo!'
We drove back on 'Going to the Sun Road' through Glacier National Park. I was pretty cheezed, because we found out after we were stuck in a huge morass of traffic with no signs whatsoever, that unlike Canada, you have to pay to even drive THROUGH a national park. So we had to pay $25 for the pleasure of driving at a snail's pace through a winding, white-knuckling, acrophobia-inducing, two-lane back road. Blergh! Still, it was some of the most impressive scenery I've ever seen in real life - it reminded me a lot of the New Zealand scenery you see in Lord of the Rings.
We made it home safely - they let us back in the country - and immediately got back into school. It was only yesterday when I actually finally moved the last of the camping stuff out of the dining room and down to the furnace room! Ooops...
Last weekend we went on a beautiful hike, so hopefully that'll be the topic of Tuesday's upcoming post!
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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

See school interfere with my online life!

See Michelle.
See Michelle study.
See Michelle study hard and avoid novels, tv shows, Facebook, fan sites and Twitter as much as possible.
See Michelle still struggle in German.
See Michelle write a super short blog and go back to studying for German.
(First quiz tomorrow. Ahhhhhh! See Michelle panic and freak out.)

Dammit Jim, I'm an English major, not a linguistics major!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Waterfront in the Seattle Area

School is in full swing! I have a heavy course load this semester; German, English grammar/linguistics, Canadian history of the arctic, English lit theory, and historical English lit. It's keeping me pretty busy...despite loving school, I think longingly of the few days I spent alternately reading novels and gazing at the ocean....
After escaping hilly downtown Seattle, we heading for Gas Works Park, which I'd read about in a guide book. It's a city park on a large body of water (I thought it was an inlet of the ocean, but it turns out it was just a large lake...), and it's main feature is an old gas plant. It's rusty urban decay at it's finest, and I enjoyed it thoroughly. We were there late on a Friday afternoon, and it was full of couples gazing at the water, families having picnic suppers, people flying kites, and even a wedding being photographed.

The blackberries are doing their darnedest to reclaim the structures for nature. This is behind a chain-link fence, and I nearly cried at all of the blackberry goodness going to waste...
Just a lake, not ocean - but a lovely view none the less!

We also visited Dash Point State Park. We had tried to go one day before, but I didn't realize you had to pay admission in the form of a day pass. We were only going to stay for an hour or so, so we went somewhere else and came back another day. It was a wee bit chilly, despite the sun, because of the wind off the water. Trevor went to read in the car because it was too cold for him, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. :) Then we went and got subs for lunch and came back for the afternoon, when it was finally warm enough for Trevor. Towards the late afternoon the beach got REALLY crowded, as the tide came in and more families arrived after the work day. There wasn't much sand to begin with, and quarters got very cosy. I'm not sure that I'd go there again - the next beach we went to was my favourite!
After we left the beach we had dinner at Salty's at Redondo Beach. It was a lovely seafood place on a pier - we had a corner table by the window, and we watched the sun set over the ocean, while I stuffed myself with some of the best clam chowder I've ever eaten, complete with little oyster crackers. I ADORE oyster crackers, and I can't seem to find any in Calgary. :(
Dash Point State Park - also known as 'the seaweedy beach'.
Caught a glimpse of Mt. Rainer on our way back. I'd forgotten the sheer immenseness of Baker and Rainer! Albertans like to think that we have 'real' mountains, but these are breathtaking.
Seahurst Park was beautiful. There was a river with a pond, lots of rainforest, lots of sand and not too crowded, and no admission fee! I loved it there. We met a random guy who came over to talk to us because he noticed Trevor reading Biblical Greek, and me reading a Star Wars novel. We'd actually noticed him earlier when he arrived at the beach, because he said to his toddler daughter that he didn't like water because he's a nerd. Which made me snort... :)
The river leads to the sea.
I'll have to go back and check my photos, but I think that's about it for the Seattle area - on to Whitefish, Montana, next!
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