Friday, August 29, 2008

Just the begining, I'm sure.

August 29, 2008

Shocking Choice by John McCain

WASHINGTON-- Senator John McCain just announced his choice for running mate: Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska. To follow is a statement by Rodger Schlickeisen, president of Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund.

Senator McCain’s choice for a running mate is beyond belief. By choosing Sarah Palin, McCain has clearly made a decision to continue the Bush legacy of destructive environmental policies.

“Sarah Palin, whose husband works for BP (formerly British Petroleum), has repeatedly put special interests first when it comes to the environment. In her scant two years as governor, she has lobbied aggressively to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, pushed for more drilling off of Alaska’s coasts, and put special interests above science. Ms. Palin has made it clear through her actions that she is unwilling to do even as much as the Bush administration to address the impacts of global warming. Her most recent effort has been to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the polar bear from the endangered species list, putting Big Oil before sound science. As unbelievable as this may sound, this actually puts her to the right of the Bush administration.

“This is Senator McCain’s first significant choice in building his executive team and it’s a bad one. It has to raise serious doubts in the minds of voters about John McCain’s commitment to conservation, to addressing the impacts of global warming and to ensuring our country ends its dependency on oil.”

Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund

Washington, DC

Monday, August 18, 2008

Farmers Doug and Dixon.

Once upon a time there were these two city boys who up and moved not only to the country, but to the country in another country! They planned the move for years and finally found their dream house. They were so excited to move to the country and wanted to get started SO bad in the greenhouse that came with the new dream house, growin' some of their own food because it was too dang far to the store, and most of that stuff tasted like crap anyways. They gathered up some plastic pots that the previous owners left behind, filled them up with some cheap dirt and planted tomato seeds. Lo and behold, in a few months those two city fellers were eatin' 'maters with dinner every night! They figured they must have done something right so they bought some more cheap dirt and planted up seven cucumber seeds. Not six, not eight, but seven. Don't know why, that's just the way it turned out. Well, those seeds sprouted and started growin' REAL fine in that greenhouse and one day Dixon came a runnin' into the house, asking Doug if'n he was BLIND because he just saw a real big cucumber out in the greenhouse! Well, ole Doug just couldn't believe he missed counting something as big as Dixon described so he had to run out to see for hisself. Sho 'nuf, there on the vine was the prettiest little cucmber about six inches long and lookin' as happy as could be! Next thing you know old Jed's a millionaire...oops...wrong story. So now those two city fellers are thinkin' they are doin' something right and are waitin' to plant up some Brocolli for the fall. Guess that means back to the store for some more cheap dirt.

Don't forget to click on Help the Animals to the left!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Life is good.

Well, it took a while, almost a year to be exact, but the pieces of my new life in Canada are coming together and my happiness quotient has taken a jump up. I just finished my second week at my new job in Circulation at a local small publishing company and it is proving to be very interesting. Publishing is a new world for me but I'm able to utilize my customer service skills that I have honed over the past couple of decades and I am finding publishing and circulation very interesting. The magazine I am involved with is Small Farm Canada - - and already I have picked up a few pointers that I can use at home, mainly in the greenhouse with growing veggies and things. Our offices are in a rural area about 20 minutes from home and situated on the ocean. Next door is a small farm, Wind Whipped Farm, that grows organically and has a small roadside self-serve stand. I stopped for some salad fixin's on the way home yesterday and thought how fortunate I am to be able to do that, work relatively close to home and drive though the forest and along the ocean to and from work. It certainly beats the heck out of the freeway that I had to traverse daily back in the States. There is nothing like a commute with spectacular scenery and fresh ocean breezes to get one energized for work, and then renew the soul on the way home later in the day. The scents that are on the air range from sea breezes to pine forest and I just can't get enough of it! Oh yeah, I received my first paycheck today, something I have not seen since the end of September last year, and it sure was nice!

This weekend we are off to the Dragonboat Festival in Victoria and then some time spent relaxing at home. Last weekend we had guests, Dixon's mother and her husband, and we took them whale watching. This time we used Prince of Whales, out of downtown Victoria, to spare his mother's hair from undue wind in an open boat by booking on one of their newer ships with an enclosed main deck cabin. She was quite pleased with that and looked fabulous as she stepped from the ship when the adventure was finished. We were on the water for about three hours and we saw LOADS of whales this time. There are three resident Orca pods, J, K and L pod, and this particular day they had all decided to be very social and come together, forming what is referred to as a Super Pod. Everywhere we looked we saw Orca: fins slicing the water, whales jumping out and coming down with a great splash, groups surfacing in unison and then diving again. It was truly a magnificent adventure and I am sure I will be going again, although at $95 it might be a while. If you ever find yourself in this area on holiday I would urge you to budget the funds to take one of these trips - it really is a lifetime memory.

That's about it for now. Thanks for tuning in, and remember to click on the left side to Help the Animals.

Friday, August 1, 2008


It's been a while since my last post so I figured I had better bring everyone up to date.

After many months of looking and applying, nine months to be exact, I have finally been hired by a local publishing company to work in their circulation department and I start Tuesday, August 5th. Initially I was hoping to be hired by the BC Government but the thought of commuting an hour into Victoria never really sat well with me. The job I secured is in the next town east of us, Metchosin, and it is only a twenty five minute drive from home. Ideally I would have liked to take the bus to work but we live past the end of the line for the East Sooke route and there is no connecting route to Metchosin, aside from a very long way around, so I'll have to drive in every day and we'll just have to budget for gas for my car also. Hopefully in time we can save up and purchase a more fuel efficient vehicle than the ones that we have but we will make do for now. At least they are paid off. Back to the job, the magazine is Small Farm Canada and I'm quite excited about the position. I may even pick up some tips for growing our own produce at home!

This weekend is a holiday weekend here in BC. The first Monday of August is a civic holiday in most Canadian provinces and it is commonly referred to as the August Long Weekend. The following provinces and territories have a holiday on the first Monday of August:
  • British Columbia,
  • Alberta,
  • Manitoba,
  • Saskatchewan,
  • Ontario,
  • Nova Scotia,
  • Prince Edward Island,
  • New Brunswick, and
  • the Northwest Territories.
Quebec, Newfoundland and Nunavut do not observe a holiday on this day and therefore conduct business as usual.

Monday also brings the arrival of Dixon's Mother and her husband, for a week visit, so I'm trying to find things for us to do when they are here, and clean house, and do laundry, etc. Even though I will be working (gee, that sounds so nice!) Dixon has off the week so he will be doing most of the entertaining during the day. We do want to take them out for dinner a few nights and probably lunches on the weekend. Although it is a lot of prep work it is very nice to get visitors from the States. This will make three months in a row that we have had company. Hmmm, who can we line up for September??? Actually, September might call for a weekend trip to Seattle to do some shopping. We DO miss Target so!

I haven't been too revved up for the Olympics this year, not sure why, but this guy is a Canadian kayaker and I may just have to tune in to see his performance. Adam van Koeverden is his name, and we might just have to go out and buy a kayak or two, he provides such inspiration! HA!

ON a side note the greenhouse is now producing a daily crop of tomatoes, which we enjoy at dinner, and the cucumbers are really growing quite well. I now have to figure out if they require any manual pollination to produce fruit. I still have the seed packet but, of course, when I tore it open to plant I ripped off the NAME of the cucumber cultivar so I have no idea how to home in on the info that I need. OY! The gardens are doing very well and we have finally had a few days of rain, after more than three weeks without, so things are looking pretty good. I have found a few items that are really in the wrong place and require moving to a better location. One of them is a sad looking palm tree, I think, that apparently does not like the cold damp weather we get here in the winter, so my plan is to pot it up and keep in the greenhouse during said winter months. We can move it in and out seasonally and hopefully it will prosper. Moving things around in large pots also allows me to slightly re-landscape, on a small scale, for a different look each year, just to keep things interesting and 'fresh'. Speaking of fresh, I have started painting the trim on the house in Classic Burgandy and it looks smashing! The first color we tried was too pinky, as in Tuscadero, so off I went to Rona to secure something a bit more classic. I must say there is nothing like the right color, looking absolutely fantastic on the house, to lift my spirits. Between that and the new job I am absolutely over the moon!

Please remember to click the link on the left to Help the Animals, and, as always...

...Thanks for tuning in!


Three killer whales just swam past the house - a huge male and two females. Never, in a million years, would I have thought I'd be living in a fantastic place like this! So, dream those dreams, they CAN come true!