Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Alberta Gothic

This past weekend My Rare One and I went on a road trip to the beautiful Rocky Mountain foothills of southern Alberta -- cowboy country -- ranches, cattle, horses, oil wells! We were headed to Cochrane, a town of 25,000 just north of Calgary that is nestled in a valley overlooked by a huge statue of a cowboy up high in the hills.

Now, Cochrane is a pretty kickass, happenin' kind of place but more about that later this week. Our road trip's immediate purpose was to go to Water Valley, which is very near Cochrane. We were going to visit Lynne of Insomniac's Attic blog at her new store!

If you read her blog, you know that Lynne The Insomniac is an extremely creative devotée of all things dark, mysterious and gothic! Her blog is always a delightful read. And you know what? She is even more delightful in person! My Rare One and I had an absolute blast meeting and spending time with her!

Lynne's new store is a gothic treasure house of the most unique items, decor and clothing! Here's a few photos I took which hopefully give you the feel of it --

I could not resist buying this reproduction antler horn frame with a Victorian-era photo of Odin and his ravens! Isn't it awesome? It's gracing my den/library/computer room now.

And then, when Lynne had closed her store for the day, she did us the great honour of giving us a tour of her acreage home. With characteristic humour and understatement on her blog, Lynne refers to her home as "The Little Gothic Cottage in The Spooky Forest in The Wilds of Alberta, Canada." It is all that and so much more! However, her storybook house is considerably larger than a cottage, thank goodness, because she needs the space to display all the gorgeous gothic furniture, decor and objets d'art that she has collected over the years from all corners of the world.

My Rare One and I were amazed and charmed by both The Insomniac and her home. Thanks so much, Lynne, for a wonderful time!

[First two photos from the internet; all other photos by Debra She Who Seeks, May 2017]

Friday, 19 May 2017

The Tragedy of a Nation Divided

NOOOOOOOOO, I don't mean Trump supporters vs Trump resisters! I mean something much, much more serious!

Are you on Team Waffle or Team Pancake?

Is this your attitude to the whole issue?

Or this?

What, exactly, is your position on syrup? Does it reveal where your true sympathies lie?

Okay, here's the real test of loyalty. Cue the pancake porn!

Or maybe hardcore waffle porn is more your style?

Are you a pushover for waffles?

Or do you hold out for the good stuff?

Oh yeah, baby, yeah!

Don't be fooled, my friends. There is a powerful secret organization pushing the Waffle Agenda!

They want you to believe all their waffle propaganda!

But don't be taken in! I'm here to tell you the truth! THE TRUTH!

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

On a Scale of . . . .

Sorry if you've seen many/most/all of these memes before around teh interwebs, but I'm clearing out my stash o' stuff so thought I'd just make a quick 'n easy post of them!

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Happy Mother's Day!

Special wishes being sent today to all you Moms out there! You're in an exclusive club!

Here's the fairytale every Mom wants to read . . . .

Remember the days when you had privacy and time to yourself?

Kids can be, well, a little demanding sometimes . . . .

But you know what Hillary Clinton said! "It takes a village . . . ."

I hope you all get lovely gifts for Mother's Day! Especially from your adult children!

And just remember . . .  despite everything, YOU DONE GOOD, MOM!

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Those Effen Ducks Beat Us!

Well, Game 7 didn't go QUITE as planned . . . . Now the Oilers are eliminated from the Stanley Cup playoffs. Edmonton is a gloomy and morose place today. But still, the Oilers had a good run and it was pretty sweet to be in the playoffs after an 11 year drought.

So the only Canadian team still left in the playoffs is the Ottawa Senators. We are going to cheer for them now as they play for the Eastern Conference championship against the Pittsburgh Penguins. It's hard to do because I do lurves me some Sidney Crosby, Captain of the Penguins and Canadian hockey superstar, but it's the principle of the thing, y'know?


Monday, 8 May 2017

Charles Walker

There is only one Canadian soldier from World War I to whom my family has a personal connection -- Charles Walker, who was mortally wounded at the battle of Vimy Ridge and died a month later on May 8, 1917, a hundred years ago today.

Charlie Walker was born in Scotland in 1891 and emigrated to Canada as a child. He came to our country as a "Barnardo Boy" -- one of a vast legion of destitute and/or abandoned Victorian-era British children who were shipped to the colonies by a British charity called Dr. Barnardo's Homes. Designed to serve as an abundant pool of cheap labour, the boys were trained to be farm workers and the girls to be domestic help. These unfortunate "home children" (as they were also called) were often overworked, underpaid and maltreated in their new lives.

Charlie Walker spent his teenage years working as a farm labourer in southwestern Manitoba. Apparently he was not treated well by his various employers until he started working for my grandfather. He became very close with my grandparents and worked for them for several years until World War I broke out.

In the winter of 1916 when he was 25, Charlie Walker volunteered for the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force. He was sent to France with the 44th Battalion of the Canadian Infantry (Manitoba Regiment).

My grandparents sent him off to war with the gift of a pinky ring to remind him of home and those who loved him.

Before he died of his wounds received at Vimy Ridge, Charlie Walker arranged for the ring to be returned to my grandparents as a keepsake. He died unmarried, with no children. The ring has come down through my family and is today in my care, along with his enlistment and military unit photos.

As with all families whose loved ones were killed in the war, my grandparents were devastated by the news of his death. When their only son (my father) was born in 1924, they named him Charles Walker in tribute to their lost young man. My father also did his best during his life to keep Charlie Walker's memory alive. And now that responsibility is mine.

                               They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
                               Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
                               At the going down of the sun and in the morning
                               We will remember them.

                                           --From "For the Fallen" by Laurence Binyon

Friday, 5 May 2017

Bad Parenting Advice -- FREE!

These tips work just as well for grandparents too! Have fun with those little kiddos!