Monday, June 27, 2011

Hannah & Denise's Manitoba Adventures - Finale

I have been home since last Thursday and the trip back was good as I had great help from West Jet and First Air employees.  I couldn't of done it without them as they not only looked after me but Hannah and our luggage as well.  It's amazing what kind of help you get when you are not as mobile as the average person.  I had a RCMP officer push me to the First Air counter in Edmonton while the attendant wheeled the dog crate and two action packers.  I was also escorted by head of security and another RCMP officer through the back entrances of the Edmonton International Airport when the only elevator to gate 7D was out of service.  When I arrived in Cambridge Bay the guys were fantastic as they carried me off the plane, I do not have enough Thank Yous to all who helped.

The last few days in Manitoba were spent with friends and my mom.  Oh yeah and trying to get all of the stuff that I purchased into the action packers.  I did have to leave 3 boxes of goodies with our friends Sandy & Keith to ship once the mail strike is over.  I brought back some house plants as you can't find any up here so now the house has some much needed green in it.  I would of had more room in the action packers but I also had to bring home 4 plant pots to transplant the new comers.  Craig got some much needed jeans and shirts for work and I a few more shirts.

I have been playing it a bit low key since I have been back.  We did head over to Jim and Sheila's for dinner on Saturday night and yesterday afternoon I got the itch to head out onto the land.  Due to my circumstances Craig drove the truck while I kept my eyes open for any photo opportunities.  Not really what I had in mind when I mentioned heading out onto the land but I had to take what I could get.  So with Craig's help I did manage to get on my knees to take some pictures and some were taken from the truck.  We came across a Greater White-fronted Goose nesting by the side of the road.  At first we thought she was dead as she was not moving or blinking her eyes, Craig got out of the truck to see if she was.  He got a few feet from her before she got up and flew away.  I was feeling guilty about disturbing her but was pleased to see her back on her nest when we back tracked home.  We also seen a dead muskox and I am hoping it was old age and not any disease.  It was too far from the road for me to get out and hobble onto the wet tundra to have a closer look.

Speaking of muskox I was told today at work by my boss in Rankin Inlet that the future King and Queen will be feasting on our muskox while they are in Ottawa.  I find it kinda cool that William and Kate will be eating muskox that I handled.  I hope they like it as much as we do.  

I am just working 1/2 days right now due to the swelling of my leg and the pain that it causes.  I headed over to the Health Centre today as the swelling was not going down and it was really painful.  After Bertha (one of the nurses) saw me  the doctor ordered the cast to come off and more x-rays to be done.  So Bertha and Darlene sawed the cast off, then it was x-rays time.  Much to my surprise the ankle is not broken, just a small chip off the bone.  I could of kissed everyone there when I was told the news.  Don't get me wrong the swelling, bruising and pain is still there but now the ankle is wrapped in a tensor bandage and I still have to use the crutches but I can start putting a bit of pressure on my foot.  I am hoping to be back in full swing in about 10 days, if it gets worse I was told to go back.  I will take the days instead of the weeks and I can't wait until tomorrow morning to shower full body and to shave that leg and scrub the dead skin off my heal.  YUCK!  I was getting a bit depressed as I thought I was going to be in a cast for 8 weeks and around here that is summer time and I just couldn't bare the thought of not be able to head out onto the land with my camera. 

Since my return the weather had been cold and raining but if the weather man is correct July 1st long weekend will be sunny.  There is not much snow left on the land and the ice is melting.  The bridge to Mt. Pelly is closed as some of the earth has been washed away this spring.  Craig mentioned that an engineer will be coming in  to look at it.   I hope that they get it fixed soon as this is the only road to Mt. Pelly.

My new friend Sarah who I met through the German Shorthair Pointer group on Facebook asked me if I wanted to share some of my pictures of Molly and Blitz for a GSP 2011 Calendar.  Can you guess what my answer was?  YES!  Sarah and her husband is putting together this calendar to help raise funds for GSP rescue groups and will be available online through and I will let you know when they are available. I sent her 7 pictures of the kids and she loved them all, can't wait to see which ones make the cut.  Guess what you are getting for Christmas this year! 

I took some pictures from the plane, friends and of our little adventure Sunday afternoon.

Talk soon!
Three great friends enjoying lunch at The Star Grill - Judy, Sandy and me
Two of my closest friends Trish and Sandy - we are enjoying the great view from Trish's deck.
River view
Aerial view of the land
Bay from the plane
Ovayok (Mt. Pelly) from the plane
An aerial view of Cambridge Bay and the ice road
My first Arctic flower, Purple Mountain Saxifrage
Lots of run off from the land
Still a bit of ice/snow left on the tundra
Can you see the ice road to West Arm?  And yes the ice is that blue.
Female Greater White-fronted Goose nesting.
I hope this muskox died of old age and not disease

Friday, June 17, 2011

Hannah & Denise's Manitoba Adventures - Part 2

Well part 2 of our Manitoba adventure was quite an adventure.  I arrived at mom's in Carman on Monday and on Tuesday we headed over to Lockport Manitoba for lunch with Craig's parents and the ROMEO group.  ROMEO stands for 'retired old men eating out' a fun loving group which meets once a month for lunch at various locations. 

After lunch the ladies did some shopping while the men had a round of golf.  We all met at Lorraine's new condo for dessert and coffee.   Mom and I headed over our friends Trish and Rod's home in East Selkirk.  Sandy was also there and the girls went over to Selkirk to do a little shopping and then Rod met us at Boston Pizza for dinner. 

The following day mom and I were on the road again, this time we headed into Winnipeg for lunch with Jillian, CJ and Brandi some of the girls that I used to work with at Birchwood Animal Hospital.  After that mom and I did more shopping until 5pm when Hannah had an appointment to donate blood.  Hannah has been donating blood through Canadian Animal Blood Bank since she was 2 years old and this was her last as she is now retired after 25 donations.  They usually retire them at 8 years old but since Hannah is in good shape they extended her time until 10 years old.  She will now pass on the torch to her baby brother Blitz.

Thursday we took a drove to Trehrene Manitoba to see the glass bottle structures there.   Unfortunately the fence was locked so I had to take some pictures through the fence.  From there we headed north to Portage la Prairie to surprise my auntie Lorraine and uncle Al.  I haven't seen them for over a year and it was a really nice visit.

Today went off with a bang.  If anyone knows me they know that I was born a klutz and today I proved it again.  I got up early to do laundry before I headed to Sandy and Keith's for the weekend. Before that  I headed out the backdoor onto the deck to clean up puppy poo.  Mom's deck and stairs are....well you could say old and rotten.  My left leg went through the second last stair, twisted and I fell onto the deck with my left leg still in the stair.  I ended up at the Carman Hospital and after a round of x-rays, vitals and some good pain drugs I broke my ankle.  I have a great looking cast on that I have to wear for 8 weeks...YIPPEE! 

Pics today are of our adventures this past week.

Talk soon!
The ROMEO group out for lunch
Assiniboine River overflowing
Water water everywhere
Another farmers field
Farmer's field - very sad
The story of the glass bottle structures in Trehrene, Manitoba
Bob & Dora's house made of glass bottles
The glass church from the front
The glass church side view
Hannah and my mom's cat Smokey - they tolerate each other
My mom, her sister Lorraine and husband Al
My Auntie Lorraine, me and my Uncle Al
Our friends Sandy & Keith
Me and my friend Sandy
Rock On! 

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Hannah & Denise`s Manitoba Adventures - Part 1

Our flight to Manitoba didn`t go without a hitch unfortunately.  We were stuck on the tarmac in Yellowknife for an hour and half because the pilot was over his quota for his flight time and we had to wait for a new crew.  I guess poor Hannah was feeling stress as that night in Edmonton she had diarrhea which lasted until she got off the plane in Manitoba.  I was wondering why the cargo guy looked at me strange.   Thank goodness our friend Keith met me at the airport and that they live very close.  After some time at the car rental place Keith, Hannah and I headed over to the house to wash Hannah, her bed and her kennel.  Thank you Keith!

My second stop was very important as I didn`t bring the Nikon Beast with me.  I really wanted a Leica camera but I couldn`t hide that bill from my husband so with Craig`s dad`s help I bought the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5.  It has a Leica lens but is half the price of a Leica camera.  So my friend at Don`s Photo in downtown Winnipeg was happy to see me as I am one of those people that do their research first, go into a store and know exactly what they want.  It feels a little weird not having the huge camera to lug around with me and I am always trying to look through the viewfinder.  So far I really like the little camera, it`s a little power horse.  All the pictures in today`s post are taken with it.

Next Hannah and I headed over to our long time friends place Mike and Donna to get a much needed haircut.  I really enjoy the visits with them.  A little history....I used to get my haircut from Everybody`s Talkin` ( a place they owned) and when I needed a job Mike and Donna hired me.  I was with them for a few years and when I decided to move on they remained good friends to Craig & I.  We probably been friends close to 20 years!

After that we headed northeast to Lac du Bonnet, Craig`s parents place.  They live about 20 minutes northeast of Lac du Bonnet on Pinawa Bay.  I love staying here as it is so relaxing and we never have any plans except playing Scrabble in the evening.  The following day after mom`s golf game we drove to Lac du Bonnet to do some much needed grocery shopping.  I could of spent all day in the produce department smelling the fresh fruit and veggies.  Like the old saying goes, you don`t know what you got until it`s gone.

On Friday the three of us headed over to Pinawa.  We drove around town to see the sights and the many deer that have called Pinawa their home.   From there we headed over to Alice Chambers Trail to the suspension bridge and trails.  Manitoba has received alot of rain this season and some of the trails were too mucky to walk on, especially with sandals on.  After taking pictures I dropped mom and dad off at Black Bear Golf Club as they were meeting Auntie Margaret there, mom`s sister, for a round of golf.  I do not golf so I headed to Old Pinawa Dam.  It brings back memories of when Craig and I first started to go out.  His friend Craig and my hubby Craig used to swim down the rapids at the dam. Note the word swim and not the word raft.  Crazy you say?  The answer is yes. There are some cool photo opportunities there and I took advantage of them.  I had to cut my visit short as I was meeting everyone back at the golf course for a Bud, Spud and Steak dinner at 6pm.  It was just before 5:30 and I still had to go back to the house to feed and let Hannah out.  I arrived in time and spent the time waiting smelling the lilacs on the grounds, god I love that smell!

Saturday was a chick day.  For anyone that knows me I am not much of a girly girl so going to a Fashion Show was well....interesting.  It was actually great to spend some quality time with mom and Auntie Margaret.  We arrived at the venue about 11am and it finished about 3pm, we didn`t purchase anything but bought alot of raffle tickets as the proceeds were going to the Lac du Bonnet Food Bank.  We didn`t win any of the raffle prices but I came up a winner with one of the door prizes, a great bag that I can use when traveling. 

We had to head home as we were preparing a muskox and Arctic char dinner for family and neighbours, 11 of us in total.  Funny story about the cooler that I used to bring down the goodies.  It plugs in to keep things cold and what we found out the hard way it also keeps things warm.  Needless to say we had to cook the muskox on Thursday, we moved the char into the freezer when I arrived but left the muskox in the cooler.  Everything turned out great and dad set up the screen tent and a large table so that we could enjoy our dinner outside.

Craig`s sister Laura and family came out for dinner and spent the night.  They had to head back to Winnipeg around noon today as Spencer, their eldest son, had a piano recital in the afternoon.  Spencer and Reece had a good ball play with Hannah before they left and she is so tired tonight.  After a lunch of char sandwiches (yummy) today, Hannah was left looking after the house while mom, dad and I headed to Tulabi Falls.  I have been there before but it is such a nice place to revisit and take more pictures.

Tomorrow I head to Carman to see my mom.  Not sure when my next post will be as mom doesn`t have internet, I may have to drive around town to try to connect to someone`s wireless....shhhhhh.  This week I will plan to see friends and shop until I drop.

Enjoy all of the pictures tonight, there is a whack of them.

Talk soon!
Our ride while in Manitoba - 2011 Ford Edge fully loaded
Craig`s mom and dad`s home in Lac du Bonnet, Manitoba
Facing west
Facing east
The view from the front window at Craig`s mom and dad's
The 'infamous' deer in Pinawa, loads of deer in the community
Beautiful Ladies Slippers that we seen on the Alice Chambers Trail
The source of the Lee River
Winnipeg River
Mom & Dad on the trail
The suspension bridge that we crossed at Alice Chambers Trail in Pinawa Manitoba
Pinawa Dam Entrance
Old Pinawa Dam, a place that has fond memories for Craig & Craig
View of Old Pinawa Dam from the upper deck
Just plain cool
If you look close you can see a waterfall in the waterfall
Lots of waterfalls along the dam
Yeah I went past this point
The centre of the dam
Part of the top of the dam
This is where Craig and Craig used to go down the rapids - without rafts!
Old Pinawa Dam ruins