October 19th- Covid Care

My news story for today is a sad one for Saskatchewan. Some Covid patients requiring ICU care are now being transferred to Ontario, to take the pressure off of the Saskatchewan medical system. After all that could have been done, everything that should have been done, we have come to this.

You can see Premier Scott Moe’s official announcement on You Tube.

Thoughts and prayers going out to all who are currently being affected by Covid in Saskatchewan and elsewhere around the globe.

Thank you to Ontario for providing your assistance to Saskatchewan! ๐Ÿ’ž

Take care, stay safe and have a great day. ๐Ÿ’ž

October 18th – Smelly News

Today I went searching for a news story on a specific topic.ย  A smelly subject to be sure but one that deserved a bit of research – especially today.

Dan and I went shopping this morning.  We went to three stores and rounded off our shopping spree with store number four – a quick stop at a nearby Dollar Store to grab a few bags of peanuts for our neighbourhood squirrels  and Bluejays.

Entering and exiting the store, I did what I have always done since the beginning of the pandemic – I took a shot of hand sanitizer and applied it  thoroughly.   On the way out of the store, I touched my facemask to readjust it.   By the time I got into the Jeep, I was choking on the smell that had penetrated my mask.    Since misery loves company, I had Dan take a whiff.   By the time we got home, the entire Jeep reeked. The first thing I did was toss the mask in the outdoor garbage can.  The second thing was to thoroughly scrub my hands.

I cannot believe that this is the first time I have had such an issue and I cannot believe it was so bad.ย  It was as strong and as repugnant as bug spray.ย  And according to today’s very informative news story it was probably deliberate!

We are one of those many families who have issues with chemical scents.  We buy virtually everything unscented for a reason.  Many of us suffer from migraines, respiratory issues, and allergies.    It is a genuine health issue, as it is for many!

I cannot imagine why anyone would be allowed to create hand sanitizer that has been scented with noxious chemicals. I really cannot understand how anyone can be allowed to provide such hand sanitizer to an unsuspecting public as part of a health order to prevent the spread of a life/health threatening disease.

I have scrubbed my hands three times and changed all of my clothing since we got home and there is still a scent wafting around me. Not only is this smell brutal, but obviously it is not going away. ๐Ÿ˜’

That is my news for the day. Live and learn! I will not be venturing out without a container of unscented hand sanitizer any time soon.

Looks like a good day for a walk in the FRESH air.

Take care and have a great day! ๐Ÿ’ž (And don’t trust public hand sanitizer).

October 17th – Harvest Season

My choice for news story of the day comes from The Globe and Mail and it highlights the cranberry harvest in Quebec.

Living in Saskatchewan, I have grown up seeing fields of grain and the annual spectacle of massive combines harvesting the crops. Nowadays, thanks to the modern miracle of technology, I am finding it interesting to see how other crops are harvested across Canada and around the globe.

Long known for being the number one global supplier of Maple Syrup, Quebec is also a major supplier of cranberries – second only to Wisconsin.

Seasonal workers from Mexico and South America are instrumental in maintaining and harvesting the cranberry crop in Quebec. They come to Canada in April and remain until the harvest is completed at the end of October.

The harvesting is unique in that the cranberry fields are flooded, machines loosen the berries from their vines, and workers corral the floating berries so they can be pumped into waiting trucks.

The facts in this story are fairly basic and limited but there are a number of great photos that are definitely worth checking out. Here

As a matter of interest, I checked out an article on the cranberry harvest in Wisconsin – here. The overall method for harvesting the berries seems very similar but this article includes some mouthwatering ideas for serving up this fascinating crop. Their versatility obviously goes far beyond the cranberry sauce served at traditional turkey suppers.

That is my news for today. It has definitely sparked my interest into how other crops are harvested across Canada and around the globe. I might have to revisit this subject in a later post. I might even devote an entire month of posts to how food is grown and harvested around the globe! That would be fun to source out. ๐Ÿ˜Š

Not quite Quebec, but I love this French courtyard at Cafe Paris in Gravelbourg, Saskatchewan. ๐Ÿ‘

Thank you for dropping by! Take care and have a great rest of your day! ๐Ÿ’ž

October 16th – Wild Pigs ๐Ÿท

The most interesting news story that I found today is a real rip snorter! Apparently, we are on track to having more wild pigs than people in Saskatchewan – soon!

There were a few things noted in this story that I found particularly interesting.

  • Wild pigs were DELIBERATELY brought into Saskatchewan and Alberta in the 1990s to help farmers to diversify.
  • Some of the wild pigs brought to Saskatchewan escaped captivity and spread across our province which is rich with their natural habitat.
  • Saskatchewan has more than half of the 56,000 wild pigs in Canada
  • Wild pigs are prolific and destructive – rooting up crops, destroying the natural habitat of endangered species, and leaving a trail of pig ๐Ÿ’ฉ.
  • Wild pigs are highly intelligent.
  • Hunting wild pigs is ineffective at controlling them as they quickly learn how to evade their hunters.
  • The only way to control the wild pig population is by encouraging the reporting of sightings, trapping entire groups of wild pigs, and with natural predators such as wolves and coyotes.

I don’t know who these ‘people’ were that brought wild pigs into Saskatchewan. I assume it was our government’s Department of Agriculture. Bring a prolific, invasive, destructive species into a province which is one big natural habitat for such creatures. What could go wrong? I bet those ‘people’ thought they were the most intelligent creatures in our province until the wild pigs arrived and took over. ๐Ÿค”

That’s my News and Views of the day. I may be back soon to report on the importation of wolves and coyotes to our province. ๐Ÿ‘

Saskatchewan Wilderness

Take care and have a great day! ๐Ÿ’ž

October 15th – Two Williams

One news story that has caught my attention lately is the one regarding Prince William and the comments he made following William Shatner’s recent trip into space.

According to this story , Prince William has made public comments chastising private companies, operated by private individual for spending their money and using their resources, to advance space travel.ย ย ย 

In my view –ย 

  • Private individuals and private companies have every right to spend their money in any legal manner whichย  they see fit.ย ย  Personally,ย  I am always happy to see that they are SPENDING it and returning it to the overall economy rather than hoarding it. (Which would also be their right)
  • It is hardly fair or reasonable for any media outlet to pronounce Prince William a ‘keen environmentalist’ย  while suggesting that men like Jeff Bezos, William Shatner, Richard Branson, and Elon Musk are any less concerned about the environment.ย ย  All of them have invested time and money on environmental and other worthy causes – their own time and their own money.ย ย ย ย ย ย  What they are doing now may well help the environment and the overallย  future well-being of mankind.ย  I doubt if any of us, including Prince William, are in any position to judge at this point.
  • I have always had the utmost respect for Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles.ย  They have served England, and the world,ย  graciouslyย  through their many social and environmental endeavours withย  respect, humility, kindness, and compassion for others.ย  I hope that in time,ย  Charles’ sons and daughters-in-law will learn from their example and start following in their footsteps.ย ย 

That is it for today! The news and my views.

Kat, checking out the view through our livingroom window ๐Ÿ’—

Take care and have a great day! ๐Ÿ’ž

October 14th – Security

The news story for the day in Saskatchewan is the arrival of our first snow of the season. It is more of a preview than the BIG event, but it is definite sign that winter will not be passing us by.

First snow of the season ๐Ÿ˜ฒ

I also have a bit of family news to share today. With Dom’s regular grandparent sitters unavailable this week, I was called up for active duty. It is not that big of a deal. Dom gets out of school at 3:22 and his Dad (son Mark) is here to pick him up before 5:00. There is barely time for a snack and a cartoon.

The challenge of this arrangement is that Dom attends school across the city from where we live. That means driving some distance to pick him up, and obviously the same distance to get back here. And… Dan is working this week. The driving is on me.

I do not love driving. Typically, I will do anything to avoid getting behind the wheel. But… this is for Dom. So I have been driving across the city and back. There is construction and trains and rain, and today there is the added joy of snow. If Dan was available he would no doubt be driving me across the city and back every day and I would be relieved and grateful and stressed out thinking about ever having to do this if he were not available.

But… Dan is not available this week, so it is on me. The rediculous thing is – I can drive. I have driven thousands and thousands of miles, much of it in hideous weather, through and around construction, and in vehicles far less reliable than our Jeep. When I do get behind the wheel, it all comes back. It is like riding a bike. (If I could ride a bike.) The thing is, I can drive, and when forced to do it I manage it rather competently. Then I am super pumped that I did it and I feel secure knowing that I am capable of doing it.

When I avoid anything it makes me feel nervous and insecure. When I actually meet my fears head on I become FEARLESS! Life is so complicated. ๐Ÿ˜‚

Ready to roll with Dom!
Snack Time

Take care and have a great day. ๐Ÿ’ž

October 13th – Special ๐Ÿคจ

I am veering off the warm and fuzzy for today’s blog post. The news story that attracted my attention today is one that focuses on yet another Canadian ‘special interest’ group.

The group in the news today, are the “Conservatives of Chinese Descent”. They are pushing Erin O’Toole, the current leader of the Conservative Party, to resign after his loss in our recent federal election. They claim that his loss was at least partially due to O’Toole’s “tougher approach to China”.

There are more than twenty thousand special interest groups in Canada. A list of some of these groups in Canada can be found here. These special interest groups (listed or otherwise) typically have three things in common : a desire for government funding, a desire to influence government policy and legislation, and a total indifference to find workable solutions or to compromise with any other group of Canadians. Being special, it is all about them and their agenda.

In my view – Governments are formed to collect funds (taxes) to provide and maintain the services that individuals, individual communities, or individual provinces cannot manage on their own. Once elected, governments should do what they are elected to do without pressure from thousands of ‘special interest groups’ who feel that their rights and agendas outweigh that of society as a whole. During elections, politicians should be expected to release their platform and state their qualifications for ensuring that their platform can and will be implemented. Period.

People in Canada (and probably in every country in the free world) are forever complaining about the size of government, cost of government, corruption of government, and incompetence of government. Then, they run to government in little groups, hands out for money and fists pounding for action on their demands. How is any government supposed to operate efficiently under such conditions?

I have no idea how we reverse this trend of special interest groups and massive government, but this is not working and it is only getting worse.

Thanks for listening. ๐Ÿ™„ (For the record, I have nothing against Chinese Canadians, nor am I particularly for Erin O’Toole. I do not belong to the Conservative Party or any other political party.) As always, feel free to comment below. All I ask is that you keep it respectful. Thank you. ๐Ÿ’ž

Just a group of happy musical frogs ๐Ÿ˜

Take care and have a great day! ๐Ÿ’ž

October 12th – More Good News๐Ÿค—

Because we are celebrating our Thanksgiving today, I thought what could be better than a good news Thanksgiving news story!

The story I found highlights the generosity of farmers from Portage la Prairie, Manitoba. These kind people offer a share of their potato crop to others every year, days before Thanksgiving. This year they have joined forces with a local Hutterite Colony for an even greater impact. Many of the recipients of their largesse come prepared to share with neighbours and friends who are not able to attend this event for themselves. ๐Ÿ’ž

These good people, who gladly and willingly share with others, deserve recognition. As we are kicking off this season of sharing and caring, I thought this was a great story to share today, to give them just a bit more of the recognition they deserve. I hope you enjoyed it. ๐Ÿ’ž

Take care and have a great day! ๐Ÿ’ž

“Giving is not just about making a donation. It is about making a difference.”

– Kathy Calvin

October 11th – Happy Thanksgiving!

Today it is officially Thanksgiving in Canada. (In our house we are celebrating with our Thanksgiving supper tomorrow night – at 7 pm, to be specific ๐Ÿ˜).

I did not source out an actual news story about Thanksgiving in Canada but I have put together a few bits and pieces that I would consider newsworthy. Some were news to me. ๐Ÿ˜

Matin Frobisher and his crew celebrated the first Thanksgiving in Canada in 1578 in honor of their safe return from a dangerous exploration of the Northwest Passage.

Thanksgiving was formally recognized as a holiday in Canada in 1879. It is celebrated on the second Monday of October, in recognition of the successful end of our annual harvest season. Since our harvest ends a month sooner than that of our neighbours to the south, our Thanksgiving is celebrated a month earlier than their November celebration. That makes sense!

One of our neighbourhood Bluejays, harvesting peanuts.

Thanksgiving in Canada is not the huge holiday that it is in the States. Families gather. Some watch a bit of sports. Most eat a lot of turkey, ham, cabbage rolls, mashed potatoes, stuffing and all the other foods fit for a traditional feast – up to, and including, pumpkin or apple pie. Many Canadians rally to serve a hot meal to the less fortunate. There are small local events put on across Canada, but nothing national or over the top. It is typically a relatively quiet family centred holiday.

Unlike our American neighbours, we do not round off our Thanksgiving weekend with a pre-Christmas shopping spree. Our retail outlets hold their biggest sales of the year on Boxing Day (the day after Christmas) as a customer appreciation event. This is a throwback to a European tradition started by Lords and Ladies of great estates. On Boxing Day they would present gifts to their household staff to show appreciation for the extra services that they had provided over the Christmas season.

Let our lives be full of thanks & giving๐Ÿ’ž

Take care and have a great day! For all of those who are celebrating in Canada this weekend – Happy Thanksgiving! ๐Ÿฆƒ

October 10th – Heartfelt News

I am so enjoying finding news worth sharing this month.ย  Today, I found the best story yet, in my mind!ย 

The news story that I found comes from the South Centralย  Correctional Facility in Licking, Missouri.

The story is about a special rehabilitation program that has been operating for ten years. Prisoners housed at South Central are given the opportunity to spend much of their time sewing personalized quilts for children living in foster care. (Click on the link above and read the story! It is brief and well worth your time. ๐Ÿ’–)

Cherished handmade quilt that Dan’s Aunt Helen gave us for our wedding. ๐Ÿ’ž

I cannot find anything regarding the origins of this program but it is beautiful. It gives prisoners a sense of dignity, self-worth, and pride. All are traits that will serve them well in prison and on the outside following their release. The personalized quilts that they make give their recipients security and self-worth, knowing someone cared about them. Traits that will give them confidence as they grow out of foster care and into their adult lives.

Every life is precious. Every man, woman, and child needs and deserves the opportunity to feel valued, appreciated, and respected. Programs like this, that accomplish that goal, are amazing and seldom get the recognition they deserve. Which is a pity, because these programs need recognition to get the funding and support necessary to continue.

That is all I have for today. Sometime this month, I plan to touch on Correctional Facilities and Foster Care in Saskatchewan. But not today. Today is a day for a bit of good news. ๐Ÿค—

Take care and have a great day! ๐Ÿ’ž