It’s March and this is my first post of the year…

Well, I have not posted since New Years Eve.  I guess that I have not had a lot to say.  It’s been a pretty low-key winter.  January was actually quite nice, weather-wise, then February hit.

Most of Southern Alberta was under a cold weather alert for most of the month of February.  We saw a lot of nighttime lows in the -30 range.  It wasn’t very pleasant.

I have decided that I will be leaving this place at the end of my lease.  Although I am enjoying mountain living, this place isn’t ideal.  It is heated with propane and if you’ve ever bought propane, you might know how expensive it is to heat with.  My calculations put it at between 4 and 5 times the cost of natural gas.

I have looked, but there are very few rentals in this area unfortunately, so I think I will be returning to the Calgary area.  I am planning on doing that sometime in June or July.

I started a different job at work, still learning the ins and outs, but it isn’t bad at all and I still get to work from home which is great.

Winter is settling down now, I am hoping we’ve seen the last of the extreme cold alerts for the year and hopefully not too much more snow.  The time change is this weekend, which I always find annoying.  Instead of being light out at 7am, it will be light out at 7pm – sure, that’s saving daylight – whatever.

Perhaps I will post more often, perhaps not.  I am unsure.  I honestly haven’t had a lot to say, but, in general, all is well.  I hope things are good for my readers as well.  🙂

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Happy New Year

Well, another year has zoomed by.  All in all, for me personally, 2018 was a pretty good year.

I moved from Calgary to Crowsnest Pass and am loving mountain life.  It’s a slower pace, friendlier community, quiet, dark at night.  There are things I had to get used to, of course.  I had always lived in a city so being a city boy and moving to a rural community in the mountains was a big change.  I think I have gotten by most of the challenges and am looking forward to spring and a full summer here.

I umpired in the Cal Ripken 70/Major World Series back in August which was the highlight of my umpiring career, that’s for sure.  It was 10 days of amazing baseball, working with some of the best umpires that I have had the privilege to work with.  It was a great trip, going to Branson, Missouri with Team Canada.  I had the honour to umpire two of their games during the World Series as well.  I made some friends that I hope to have for a long time.  I have now, at least temporarily hung up my umpiring equipment.  I figured after umpiring the World Series, there was nowhere to go from there.  I may return to it someday, if my life brings me back to a bigger city.

No other real highlights this year, I continued working from home which I love.  No commute which is great.  I hope I can continue to work from home for some time to come.

I hope that 2019 is the best year and all the best to my readers.  Happy New Year !!!

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Christmas, come and gone…

Well, Christmas has come and gone.  It was a mostly relaxing affair here.  I had a friend stay over for a few days, good food were had and some catching up as well.  The dogs seemed to have a good time.  They got some very cute little stuffed woodland creatures for Christmas.  The packing claimed they were “durable”, yeah, sure they were.

Pretty quickly, the skunk was killed.  Face and part of the head were ripped off and presumably eaten.  The body and tail were de-stuffed.  The rabbit was deaf in one ear (well, he was missing one ear) and the raccoon had both ears and all 4 limbs removed.  Apparently, Blondie and Twix are vicious, violent dogs.  I will note though, that Hera did not contribute to any of the murderings of the stuffed toys.  But, all in all, the dogs looked like they had fun.

I made a turkey breast, purchased at Costco, it was huge, about 4.5 lbs in total, I can only imagine the size of the turkey it came from.  The food was delicious and there was lots of it.  Leftovers should be cleared up today.

Yesterday, I took another friend to Edmonton and back to pick up his daughter so he could spend time with her over the New Year.  We ate lunch at a great Indian place in Edmonton, fantastic food.  I will go again, that’s for sure.

Back to work today after 3 mostly relaxing days off.  Nothing planned for New Year’s Eve, I am sure I will watch Team Canada play the Russians, best of luck.  Team Canada is currently 2-0, they are off today after back-to-back games.  I am heading to Calgary on New Year’s Day, hitting up the Calgary Hitmen hockey game with a buddy, should be a good time.

Hope you had a good Christmas.

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First day of winter, or is that tomorrow?

I think today is the first day of winter or is that tomorrow?  I am unsure.  Today is the longest night of the year though, I am pretty sure…  Starting tomorrow, days will start to get longer.  It isn’t that bad in Crowsnest Pass, we have light until after 5pm which is about 30-45 minutes longer than what it was in Calgary.  The Fall has been pretty good actually, other than that dumping of snow we got at the beginning of October.  When that hit, I was thinking we’d have that all winter.  Thus far, not the case which I am happy about.

It’s windy here though, very windy almost all of the time.  Typically it’s mild winds,  A Chinook.  It keeps the temps generally decent, around the zero mark.  It is supposed to be a bit colder for the next week or so though.  We might even end up having a white Christmas, guess we will see.

Today is a normal work-day.  Monday, the offices close at noon and then I will have 3 days off which I am looking forward to.  I work Friday and Saturday and it should be quite dead at work, I am hoping anyway.  Some down time will be nice.

Well, it’s almost the weekend, enjoy yours.

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Snow and blowing snow…

Last Friday I had scheduled myself to go to Lethbridge to the BDO office, again.  The weather forecast wasn’t bad, although there were very strong winds.

As I was leaving the house, I didn’t realize that the drift of snow at the end of the driveway was as deep as it was.  Actually, it wasn’t that it was deep, but the winds had packed it down like concrete.  So, as I am attempting to plow through it, my car bottomed out and I was stuck, tight.  I spent 20 minutes or so trying to dig it out, I made little progress.

Luckily, I have AMA (part of CAA) and called then around 6:30 in the morning to winch me out.  They were there within 40 minutes and got me out pretty quickly.  Over the next bit, I spent some 10 minute shifts shoveling the end of the driveway.  The snow was packed in for sure, and very heavy.

So, needless to say, I canceled my trip to Lethbridge on Friday.

On Saturday morning, I had to zip into town to get some Tim Hortons gift cards.  I was smart this time though and I inspected the end of the driveway.  The snow was light and fluffy this time, but was about 8″ deep, at least.  I figured I’d be able to easily plow through it, but, why take the chance?  I cleared the end of the driveway.  This time, it only took a few minutes since it was light.  I got out without any issues at all.

On the way into town, the wind and blowing snow was so bad that I decided to postpone my trip to Lethbridge, again.  I’d rather not drive off the road, you know how it is I am sure.  Sunday’s forecast was for much better weather.

I did indeed make it into Lethbridge on Sunday and did my Costco run and what not.  I met a former co-worker for lunch, it was good catching up.

I think I am going to put up some snow fencing at the end of the driveway.  Most of the driveway blows clear, but at the end there are some trees, fencing and a gate that block the snow.  Snow fencing should do the trick and make the driveway a little more accessible.

New experiences living in the mountains, that’s for sure.

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My majestic Christmas Tree…

I guess I have not had much of the Blogging bug of late.  That’s OK, I guess I don’t have a lot to say.

We are in the second week of December, already.  I put up my majestic Christmas Tree last Saturday (Dec 1) to prepare for the festive season:

IMG_20181201_094707

Yes, a Charlie Brown Christmas Tree.  This is about as festive as I get.  🙂  Since I have a fireplace with a mantle now, I do want to get some stockings for the dogs and hang them on the mantle, I’ve always wanted to do that.

The weather has been pretty tame, thus far.  We aren’t in winter yet, but other than the snowstorm back at the beginning of October, it’s been pretty good weather.  Well, other than last Wednesday when I wanted to head to the Lethbridge office for work.

I checked the forecast starting a few days before Wednesday and it called for clear and dry, 20% chance of 1cm of snow.  I was up early (2am) on Wednesday and checked again, same forecast.  So, 6am arrives and I head out.  I made a pit-stop at the 7/11 in town.  About 10km or so out of town, I hit an absolute wall of snow.  It went from clear and dry conditions to at least 6″ of snow on the ground and snowing so heavily that I could not see where I was going.  The cruise was locked in at 106kph, I didn’t dare hit the brakes, I wasn’t sure what was under the snow, so I coasted down to a far safer 50kph.  I couldn’t tell where the car was on the road.  The rumble strips on the shoulder and center were covered in snow.  I continued on for a bit, up until highway 22 and decided to turn around and head home.  The route between there and Fort McCleod is hilly and if road conditions didn’t improve, well, there was no way I wanted to be driving in it.

All in all, from my place to highway 22 and back is about 60km.  It took me 1.5 hours to make that trip.  At home, in the mountains, we got a dusting of snow that the wind took care of.  Not worth getting into an accident to head to the office for the day.  The trip has been rescheduled for Friday.  Weather permitting, of course.

Christmas plans are set.  A friend of mine will be coming down and spending a few days with the dogs and I.  They love him so they’ll be happy to see him, I am sure.  My buddy who runs a restaurant in the Pass is closing and returning to the UK, so he’s having a closing down party on the 23rd, we will both go.  I will miss him and his excellent food and I wish him all the best for the future.

Only 2 more working weeks until the Christmas break.  I am working during the holidays, but it is pretty dead at work as most of the offices are closed.  It will be a nice break.

Well, it’s Monday.  Enjoy your week. 🙂

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Wow, it’s already December (well, almost)…

Another weekend is nearly here.  This week flew by at work, it was busy all week.  Well, it hasn’t been busy as yet today, I likely should not have written that since I am sure this will jinx it.  We will see.

This is one of the busier times of year for us.  It will remain busy for a few weeks until the Christmas break, then over the break, it’s dead and January hits us like a blizzard.  Something to look forward to.

Anyway, it is the end of November as well.  This year has zoomed by.  Lots of changes for me.  A new place to live in a new part of the province.  In general, I am loving it.  We did get that one whallop of snow back in early October and then not a lot since really.  Temperatures have generally been pretty good too.  The next week is supposed to be cold, highs around -10.  The house appears to be well insulated though, so I don’t think it’s going to be too bad.

I am planning on going to a Christmas Artisans show/sale tonight.  Now that I have a nice mantle, I would like to get some stockings for the dogs to hang on the mantle.  I have never had a mantle before.  So, I would rather pay someone locally who made them by hand and likely pay a bit more than paying Walmart for something made in China.

Nothing really planned for the weekend.  Just going to relax, I think.  I am heading to Lethbridge on Wednesday, my laptop needs some updates.

Enjoy your Friday and the weekend.

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A 10-day update…

Wow, I’ve gotten lazy and not made an entry in a while.

The last entry was after I worked a 2-day work-week, the week before last.  That was a nice short week, I wish we could regularly do that, well, you know, without a decrease in pay, of course.

That weekend was busy.  I made a road trip to Calgary on Saturday.  Stopped in High River to make a Facebook Marketplace sale.  Picked up a Babe Ruth Hoodie at Tuxedo Source for Sports in Calgary (Centre Street, if you’re looking for hockey, lacrosse, baseball stuff and are in Calgary or area, of course), went to Cross Iron Mills mall and despite being just a month or so away from Christmas, it wasn’t insane.  The new food court was done, likely has been for ages but I have not been there for a while.

On the way home, I stopped in Okotoks at Costco, the dogs want to continue eating.  The trip home was uneventful, the roads were clear and dry and I got home right about when it started getting dark.  Crowsnest Pet Care brought the dogs for a hike and, by the looks of the pictures that were posted on Facebook, they had a great time as they always do.  Now that I live somewhere where there aren’t formal dog parks, I think it’s great for the dogs to have interaction with other dogs.  They seem to have a fantastic time.

The 10 days since have been uneventful for the most part.  I finally had a cord of wood delivered to heat the house.  I am becoming an expert at getting fires going in the wood stove.  I will have more wood delivered in December, hopefully a cord will last me about 1.5-2 months, I don’t keep it overly warm in the house so I think I should be good.

It is almost the end of November, already, I don’t know where time has gone.  It’s been a pretty good Fall here, with the exception of that one winter storm.  We’ve had flurries here and there and some heavier snow, but not a lot of accumulation.  I can handle that.

 

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Two day work-weeks are tough…

I woke up this morning to a winter wonderland, again.  We got 15cm (6″) or so of snow last night and more this morning.  It is supposed to clear and just be cold for the weekend, I can handle that.

I am heading to Calgary tomorrow for the day.  Need to do some running around and since it’s the last weekend of endless shrimp at Red Lobster, I am meeting a friend for lunch.  Costco and Home Depot will get some of my money as well.

Hopefully, the roads will be good tomorrow, I am sure they will.  I will take highway 2 all the way north to Calgary, that will allow me to avoid highway 22 which can be bad this time of year.

Nothing else planned for the weekend, will be a relaxing end to a relaxing week.  I do like 2-day work-weeks though, can we make this the norm, please?

Enjoy your weekend.

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A good 5 days off…

Today is day five of my 5-day weekend. It has been a nice and relaxing weekend, I didn’t get as much done around the house as I planned to, but I suppose that’s to be expected, I do have a degree in Procrastination.

The last 36 hours have also been very windy, a Chinook has been blowing its way through. Temps have been mild, but when you have 60kph winds whipping through with gusts around 100kph, it makes it feel pretty damn cold. Most of the snow that fell last week has been blown away, I’m not sure to where exactly, but my driveway has been blown almost clean to the gravel.

Nothing really planned for today, hopefully get out with the dogs for a bit longer since the winds have finally died down.

Back to work tomorrow, a very short 2-day workweek. My Telus Hub will be in, so my insane internet bills will stop. I’ll be getting 500gb for $110 which is not too bad for where I am.

Tomorrow I also have a cord of firewood being delivered. A cord is 8′ x 4′ x 4′ or 128 cubic feet of wood. I’m hoping it’ll last about 2 months, I can handle paying $150 a month to heat the house, propane is insanely pricy.

Anyway, for those of you working, happy hump day. The wait to the weekend is half over. 🙂

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