October Afternoon, Gaetz Lakes Sanctuary, En Plein Air Watercolour

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Yesterday it felt like fall, which was a good thing taking into account the two weeks of snow we had earlier in the month. With the sun shining the weather just begged for me to put work aside for an hour and get outside.

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As Gaetz Lakes Sanctuary is close to home, it seemed like the natural choice for a place to go. I had been thinking about doing another en plein air watercolour painting for a while, so this seemed the perfect opportunity.

I had remembered a bench along one of the trails, so I chose that as the destination.

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Twenty minutes later a loose and colorful watercolour was complete. 5″x7″ in size. A great afternoon break.

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White

An unseasonably early snowfall has left us seeing white over the last few days in Alberta. Driving on the highway felt more like a trip in January or February, rather than just a few weeks into fall. The following are a few iPhone shots taken while driving down the Q.E.II highway. Not the best day for a drive.

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The Living Room – before, after, and all dressed up

Recently we have been doing a bit of work on our home, with one of the biggest changes being made to our living room. 

(Furniture. pulled out getting ready to paint.)


We were needing to repaint the room, and though we liked the bold color we had before, we decided that maybe it would be fun to try something different. We went to the paint store with some colors in mind, but while there we also chose a few random swatches. The color we ended up choosing was not at all a color I ever would have dreamed of painting a living room, but we did as we wanted a complete change.

The first few hours, I have to admit, I wondered “what have I done?”. By the next morning the choice seemed better. A few days in, I loved the color.

(living room after)


Our living room had gone from bright to grown up. We still needed to add pillows, a carpet and art work, but the room was coming together.

With Thankgiving this weekend, we decided to dress up the room in the festive spirit. A few decorations, and the room was dressed for the holiday.


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“Winter” Gardening

Today, shortly after noon, flakes of snow started falling from the sky. At first it was intermittent, but within a half hour it was pretty clear that the snow was increasing and beginning to lay. 

I had held off as long as possible with harvesting the garden. The weather had been fairly nice, and I like the convenience of just popping out to the yard to get the vegetables for supper. By 12:30 pm it was clear that I needed to go out and dig up the garden.


Sometimes “not” getting around to doing something works in your favour. This is exactly what had happened in the potato patch. At some point during our very wet summer I had laid down boards to be able to walk in the garden, and for some reason I had never removed them. Luckily under the boards the ground was still soft and completely unfrozen making for easy digging of the potatoes.


The next bed was a little frostier, frozen about an inch or two deep. With snow laying it was a guessing game as to what was left in the bed.


The garlic had been harvested weeks ago from this bed, and the sunflowers at the end were “volunteers”, however I still managed to dig up several onions and carrots from this spot.


As I dug up this bed and the potato patch I realized that it might be a good idea to change the vegetable garden location next year. The question is whether to garden in the ground or garden in raised troughs. Our raised troughs have been amazing this year for growing, so it may be the way to go. 

The troughs also had to be harvested. Beets and carrots were still waiting to be picked. The chard and cabbage have been left, with hopes that the chard may survive a few days of cold. The cabbage has been feasted upon by cabbage worms in the last couple of days so it wasn’t in the best shape.


The final task was to plant the garlic for next year. This time trying a new spot at the front of the house. Again this bed was frozen a few inches deep. After working the soil I managed to plant a small area of garlic. If the weather warms up next week ( as the forecast says it will), I will plant more garlic, but at least I have a bit in the ground just in case winter is here to stay.


Two and a half hours later, soaking wet, frozen, and covered with mud, the veggies were all safe inside. Where the veggies were grown is now completely covered in snow. Gardening season has come to an abrupt end. Hard to believe this is the beginning of October.

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