Monday, May 23, 2016

Gratitude Monday -- Weather's Wet And Wild Edition

We've had rain. Not as much as we need, but we have still had rain and the rain barrels are full.
I am grateful.
We've had snow in the mix, too, and that's fine. It's a May long weekend tradition.
Plus it is moisture and we are in desperate need of it.
It's been windy as well. We could do with out it, but it is there, it exists, and it is what we deal with. If we have to have wind to bring wet, then so be it.
Plants will grow.
The world will be greener.
Wet has come from the sky and for it I am grateful.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Gratitude Monday -- License To Fish Edition

We had a great day yesterday. We took some backroads south and east of Rocky, did some fishing,  saw new places,  and generally wandered around.
It was a most excellent day.
At one point in the mid-morning we fished in the Red Deer River. Just as we had packed it in to do more exploring a Fish and Wildlife Officer drove up.
He didn't have to ask to see our licenses as we started digging them out as soon as he greeted us.
I thanked him for being on the job. I am grateful regulations are enforced. They keep everyone in line and ensure the fisheries continue.
This is good.
He was based out of Sundre, that's about 50 miles south of Rocky. There aren't many F&W Officers around, and they cover a huge area and often an officer from one area can be found working in another.
Much of their work is on weekends.
It takes dedication and love to do it, and I don't think they get the respect they deserve.
During the course of the conversation he suggested a spot along the Dickson Dam that we might like and gave good, solid directions how to get to it.
We ended up going there about mid-afternoon though we couldn't drive to the exact spot as the road was closed off. I expect it will open later in the season. But we walked in a bit and tried our luck.
The fish outsmarted us and that's okay. We can try another day.  It's the experience of it that matters and it was fun.
I am grateful for that, too.


Monday, May 9, 2016

Gratitude Monday -- What They Can Edition

Within hours of the Ft. McMurray wildfire evacuation last Tuesday people were offering their help.
And not just by asking what to do and waiting for the government to organize it.  They dropped everything, figured out what needed doing, and then did it.
People all over the province gave their time, energy, and money. Trucks filled with  food, clothing, personal hygiene gear, diapers, wipes, gasoline, and numerous other items were on their way in hours. They were volunteering at evacuation centres, driving up and down lines of stalled traffic handing out food and gasoline.
Businesses did their part, too. Restaurants offered free meals to evacuees, Labatt's (a brewery) turned the profit tap off and filled cans with drinking water that it gave to evacuees and emergency responders, WestJet flew people out for free.
Mortgage payments have been put on hold for the residents, rental rules have been altered, homes have been opened, and so much more. You get the idea. Ordinary citizens did what they can as soon as they could do it and neither expect nor want anything for it.
I am grateful I live in a world where people will drop everything to help out.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Gratitude Monday --Like A Waterfall Edition

Gratitude should flow freely like a fresh mountain stream, spill down in a thunderous cascade, and spread to all parts of your life.


Watching the waterfall. Photo by my husband, Mike Mayrl .
The above is Siffleur Falls in the West County of Clearwater County, Alberta, about 20 minutes from the Banff National Park boundary.
We did this hike yesterday and I am pleased to report I only had to stop to rest once. It's four km and mostly flat, but there's one steep pitch. I ploughed on to the top of it before resting, something I don't believe I have ever been able to do.
I am grateful for the day, the hike, for only having to rest once, and for everything in general.
The difference is, I am sure, not having colorectal cancer.  I am sure I had it for years, but didn't know. The reason I am sure is I have a great deal more energy now.  Years ago I thought I was doing okay,
Today, I know it wasn't so okay.
But those days are over and I am only getting stronger and healthier.
In short: Cancer, my ass!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Gratitude Monday - Locking Down Gratitude Edition

As noted last week, the power door locks on my Ford Focus failed. I am grateful for a variety of reasons including what I wrote about putting money--energy--out to be used.
How things work fascinates me in general, and locks in specific . I learned how power door locks work and got to see inside the door panel before the work to replace the latch and actuator started.
Rainbow Ford gave me a good price on the work of their own volition.  I didn't ask and I don't ask for deals.  Negotiations bother me in the sense that it puts people in opposition with each trying to get the better of the other.
It serves in the short term, but not in the long term. I play the long game myself. It is more satisfying.
But back to my point. When I came in to pay the service manager was on lunch. The other fellow in service wasn't happy with the price as it was considerably higher than he thought it ought to be. I mentioned the price I've been quoted. He worked a bit and got it down to near that price.
The service manager came back, discussed matters with his co-worker, and then left to attend to another customer. The second fellow worked a bit again and I paid less than the original quote.
Good as that is, it is not the main target of my gratitude,
From what I saw in the door panel I was able to determine how a Slim Jim works. I hope I never need to use one, but I can now see in my mind what it does.
But best of all, by extrapolation I figured out how an old style car door lock could get stuck in the unopenable position and be easily fixed.
I refer to the type of handle that opened by pressing down a button in the handle and then pulling the door open. When this style of door is locked one pushes down the the lock and pushes in the button and then closes the door,
If one doesn't hold down the door button the lock inside stays up and looks unlocked, but the door won't open.
If happened once to a car we had ( I am sure I did it)  and stayed that way for about a month. I am sure dad fixed it himself. I always wondered how, but never got around to asking.
While I don't know for a fact how it was done, I can see in my mind how car door locks work now and I can back draft a procedure. It's enough for me, and for it I am grateful


Monday, April 18, 2016

Gratitude Monday -- Spending Energy Edition

The  power locks on the driver's side of my car have messed up. They will not lock. Much as I would love to take a door apart and see if it is a simple fix, I don't have that skill so I will leave it to the professionals.
This means I get to spend money, and yes, I do mean it.
Money is energy. It only serves when it is being used.  While it is important to save money for the future, it is also important to use it.
Send it out to do what money does: pay for goods and services.  Those who are paid can use it to do the same, thus setting up an energy path where things get done.
I like money. Not in and of itself as it is an inert object, but for what it can do: feed me, clothe me, take me on trips.
It can't do any of that if it is hoarded.
It isn't money that makes the world go 'round, it is is energy.
Putting the energy out in money form makes things happen. That is important for a functioning society based on using energy in the form of money.
I will get my locks fixed. In doing so I inject energy into my local world and for it I am grateful.


Monday, April 11, 2016

Gratitude Monday -- I Include Me Edition

Yesterday I decided I wanted beanizza, that is, a bean pizza.  I make them fairly often because we both like them,
I am grateful for a variety of reasons with the biggest reason being I have the skills, materials, time, and ability to make the thing I want to eat.
I've adapted a regular dough recipe for gluten free and I use a commercial flour for it. Robin Hood Gluten Free Flour makes a wonderful dough. It takes a tad more liquid that called for in a regular recipe, but figuring it out is pretty easy.
I'm grateful I put the bean recipe together for the topping, and I am grateful we both like it.
I am grateful that there's a type of fake mozzarella that is awfully good. Yesterday's had really mozzarella, some cheddar, and the fake mozzarella.  They were tasty.
I've figured out how to turn tomato paste into a pretty good sauce, got the spicing sorted out, and learned that the dough can rise and then rest in the fridge until I need it.

While I am not trying to brag, the point must be made that whenever we do something that works out we should take a moment to let ourselves know we've done well.

Few people hesitate to say how badly they've screwed up. They'll go on and on about how awful they are. That's just as much bragging and saying how great you are.

I am not saying I am great or the best, I am saying I figured out a thing and it is a hit and for it I am grateful. And I include me in that expression.

The beanizza in question.
I challenge you to find something about yourself for which you are grateful.