Home safe

I haven't seen you since last year...

We had six stops tonight and travelled 150 kms, and our new year was brought in in fine form. But it's 2:22 am and it's good to be home and in bed.

It was good to connect with lots of people tonight, and be in their homes.

But for now a few hours sleep.

Hope your 2009 is full and good and safe and better than 2008.


Night.

New Years

New Year's Eve and I believe we have been invited to 6 parties. Very popular indeed.

:)

We'll probably try to do as many of those as time allows, untill we are exhausted or the new year arrives. With all the driving involved, it proabably means no "Egg Nog" for us.

Anyway, looks like its going to be a big night at Trafalgar Square. People are milling about already and it looks to be a big deal there.

Hope yours is safe and quiet, or noisy, whichever you perfer.

Better make some room, the relatives are coming to stay

"MOSCOW -- For a decade, Russian academic Igor Panarin has been predicting the U.S. will fall apart in 2010. For most of that time, he admits, few took his argument -- that an economic and moral collapse will trigger a civil war and the eventual breakup of the U.S. -- very seriously. Now he's found an eager audience: Russian state media."

read more.



So, we get the cold, quiet, simpler places from America.
No sea ports or sandy beaches. No orange or lemon trees. No Broadway or Wall Street or Beverly Hills.
Just people who say, "You Betcha" a lot.
Not that there's anything wrong with that. Or them. We'll just have to help them with their "Aboot's."

And we'll get lots of potatoes I see. Oh and the manufacturing and automotive industry, that's a keeper in this information age.

Colorado has the headquarters for Focus on the Family and a multitude of other para-church organizations. So a secularized Canada will have to step up a bit to help them feel welcomed.

Montana has what, a big sky? Got that already. And Wyoming has... horses? Just my stereotyping at work here in the Great White North.

Kansas will finally be appreciated, at least by Saskatchewanites. And there is good Chicago jazz to be listened to. Oh and pizza, good pizza.

We'll try to make room for you all, just don't be too pushy. We don't like that too much up here. But on the upside, you'll have free health care. You may notice a small raise in your taxes, but that will help with expenses. You can chip in a bit to help pay for the extra expenses, can't you?

 

It'll be ok, we'll work it out. We may have to have a little chat when you arrive, but we can make this work I'm sure of it.

Just take your shoes off when you come inside, ok? ok.

 

via Brad.

At west Ed Mall for the day. H...

At west Ed Mall for the day. Hillary & Micah got passes for the rides all day, Thomas called a friend, and L & I are lunching at a pub. Nice

Whistling Jonas

Turns out my eleven month old nephew is a child prodigy.
Christmas day, while we were linked by webcam, my brother caught Jonas whistling, again.


Whistling Jonas from Randall Friesen on Vimeo.

 

Can you say Carnegie Hall anyone??

Detroit Lions. 0 and 16. That'...

Detroit Lions. 0 and 16. That's not a dressing room I'd want to be in now.

I feel gross today, don't want...

I feel gross today, don't want to go to work really. Too bad you can't call in "gross" to work, and have a gross day.

Our first new table ever.

It is somewhat embarrassing that we have never seen fit to spend our money on new furniture and so we've been married 23 and a half years using donated tables or like the last one, a sweet deal we picked up at Sally Ann for 30 bucks.

Well, all that stopped last night and we bought one of the lesser priced (That will help us sleep tonight, honest) dinning tables from Ikea.

And today we read the Swedish pictures on the instructions and managed to create something useable. It took four of us but we made it eventually.

 Table is Up
 

Our first meal on it?
Two pizzas from Pizza Hut, picked up hot and driven like a bat out of sheol for the 20 minutes home.

:)

Our last meal on the last table, the cheap, solid, mismatched one we loved?
Christmas Dinner.

Together one last time around it.
Sans two.

Being called to play Monopoly....

Being called to play Monopoly. Nothing puts the Fun back in disfunction like Family Monopoly.

Christmas One Liners...

This year christmas was about

Cooking the 29 pound bird sideways so it would fit in the pan.
Cut hands on the pickle jar with lots and lots of blood.
Being in my brothers living room and they in ours via video messaging.
Sleeping till around 9:30 am.
A general feeling of "This isn't really Christmas."
Game of pool with the kids.
Watched movie "The Fifth Element"
Tried on new shirt Lauralea made me.

It was a really tough day out here I suppose, if I were to tell the truth. But even though it was hard and different and lonely, the people in the house stepped up and tried, at least, to not let that mood dominate the day. I really respect that.

And I got lots of candy that I liked, Lauralea found a source I guess.
:)

Yesterday, Boxing day, some of the kids, well ok, ONE of the kids wanted to go shopping, so in the name of Boxing day we hit some big box stores on the south end of Edmonton and I parked in one place and everyone scattered with their gift cards. Then we hit Montana's for supper, Ikea for a dining room table, then back home by 9:30 last night.

So you know what we were doing today after the kids got up. Yep, building a table.

And now I am at the office a while, getting things ready for tomorrow.

Hope your Christmas was red and green and not so blue.

The good news is that we are g...

The good news is that we are going on a long walk today. The bad news is that we are walking at the West Edmonton Mall. The things we do.

Watching The Fifth Element ton...

Watching The Fifth Element tonight. A movie that speaks on so many levels. Makes me laugh too. That kind of day I guess.

Set up a video link with my br...

Set up a video link with my brother. Family is all there eating and opening gifts. It was suppose to be a good idea. Maybe too good I think.

The Quality of Stillness

Tonight was our Christmas Eve service with lots of singing and we revisited the story of Christs birth with different readers leading us through the scriptures.

The front table was filled with candles and each of the tall arching windows had a set of thee candles lighting up the darkened old sanctuary. It was quite beautiful.

There was a good turnout and the people were in a mood to sing. So it was a good hour.

After it was over and the hugs were given and Merry Christmas was wished upon everyone, I was left alone in the empty dark church.

It doesn't really feel like Christmas I suppose. Or I should say it doesn't feel like our Christmases in the past have been. Which is natural I guess seeing as how we've never had Christmas here. But I digress.

I left the building, locking it behind me, and imediately looked up into the starlit night. It wasn't that cold out so I wondered around to the front of the church, beside the quiet highway, and I just stood there.

There was no breeze, nothing was moving. The darkness was deep except for the bright stars of the Milky Way, which were clearly visible this night.

And I stood there soaking in the renewing stillness of the night. The only sound I could hear was the ringing in my ears. I just kind of stood there in the quiet darkness with the starlit canopy, and my soul was restored.

It is a wonder, this place, and those quiet healing moments were a gift of Christmas to me. I don't remember a quality of stillness so similar. It wasn't a lack of anything, but a gift of everything. At least everything I needed.

As the ringing in my ears subsided and the stillness had it's healing effect, in the far distance I began to hear the coyotes. I decided it was time to get home.

So a blessed Christmas to you and yours from this healing field.
A merry Christmas to you all, and to all a good night.

I think everything is ready

In two hours will be our Malmo Mission Covenant Church Candles and Carols Christmas Eve Service, or MMCCCCCES for the newbies out there who need a program to follow along.

I've been here most of the day and I do believe things are ready. Candles set up, readers contacted and service printed, projector working, sanctuary cleaned up a bit, it all good.

And I think Lauralea is ready too, sooner than we have been in previous years it feels like. Probably because we are not going anywhere tomorrow, and we have had less social events to attend this year. Being new does have it's advantages it seems.

:)

At last word Johanna and Nate made it to the Seattle airport for a flight out late this afternoon to his home in Wisconsin. I'm a bit worried with all the flight cancellations and weather trouble, not to mention that its been snowing again there all day, that they may not make it home for Christmas. Then I saw there was an incident at that airport with a plane and some de-icing fluid making a planeload of people quite sick. Hope they make it.


And you, may the joy of Mary upon seeing her new born son be in your hearts. May God fill you with his Spirit and speak to your innermost being, guiding you in the way you should go. And may the love of Christ surround you and shine forth from you; both now and forevermore.


I hope you have a great week.

Hope in a dark place

I don't know where you live, but where I live we presently find ourselves in the darkest parts of winter. Sunrise this morning will be at 8:38 am and the sun will disappear again at 4:17 pm.  The cold seeps through everything, and the snow that falls makes even the simple things more difficult. However, I am told by those who know such things that the shortest day of the year, the day with the least light, happened on Sunday, the first official day of winter. So from that day onward now into summer, the days grow longer with more and more light. It doesn't matter how cold it gets or how much more snow is headed our way, the truth is that the sun is giving us more and more daylight.

SunriseThe growing daylight is like hope to me. It's like a promise that spring is coming. Long warm days and short nights are on the way. In fact it really doesn't matter what winter has to throw at us any more, the truth is that the days grow longer and spring and summer are on the way, really.

These quiet mornings of prayer are like that for me too, in a spiritual sense.

It might be dark in my soul, and I may be as lonely as ever. I might be physically or emotionally sick with things coming at me from all sides, but these mornings with God in prayer are a subtle reminder that summer's coming to my spirit as well. Forgive the cliche but as the Son rises in my spirit, there is hope that I can make it through because the truth is that The Day of light and life is coming.

So I am in the office early today, praying.
And today my prayers include you. So remember, today someone prayed for you.

And as I look up from typing this I look out the window and on the eastern horizon the sky is just beginning to lighten and I am reminded of the Hope that is mine.

May He be your hope today as well.


The weather is stressing peopl...

The weather is stressing people stuck in Airports across the country. Someone's gonna break.

Getting BBC Radio on the iPhone or iPod Touch

Finally, finally finally, IT'S HERE.

The one feature I have missed and looked for for my iPod Touch is the ability to play streaming audio from the BBC.

Yes I can play other streams, especially windows media format, but not Real Audio format which is what the BBC is mostly about, especially outside the borders of the UK.

Anyway last night the latest update of the Wunder Radio app made my life complete. They now run a simple version of Real Audio codec in their radio app that does bring in the various BBC options.

So this morning I lay in bed listening to the weather from Radio Cumbria (Sorry, no snow for Christmas) and a program on BBC 4 discussing Christian vs. Pagan Christmas. Good stuff.

Ever since I got the iPod I've searched for this ability every few weeks, and now it's here. My Christmas Miracle.

If you've been looking too, here it is.

http://www.wunderground.com/download/index.asp

Enjoy.

A good afternoon

A bit of lunch then some NFL Football, interspursed with moments of sleep and a family that kept the party noise to a minimum equals a great day.

It says something about our busy social schedule that this is the first Sunday I've been able to do this since we arrived on The Field.

Sweet.

Tonight I think it's a family movie night.

2008 Christmas Program Malmo Mission Covenant Church


2008 Christmas Program from Randall Friesen on Vimeo.


The Christmas Program was this morning, which meant that 1.) I didn't have to preach and 2.) the kids did a whole lot better preaching than I ever could.

It was a great morning, as you can tell by these images.

The kids did well and the church created space for them to succeed. Thank you to all who worked so hard to make it happen. Well done.

You can see the set of images, here.

IMG_0022

.

Well the boy made it home. Now...

Well the boy made it home. Now we're all here, at least those who will be here. Christmas can come now.

Argh

Smack smack, wipe.

I've got open house hang over this morning. Fuzzy mouth, fuzzy head, verge of headache.

You know, the classic signs that you know you had a great time the night before.

Or so I'm told.

It was a good time yesterday, and the party rolled on from 2pm till about 9 pm with one lull of about 20 minutes. It was good to get the people into this house too, many of them had never been in here and they were curious. It was also good for helping to get to know them better.

So I'm getting some work done on the Christmas Eve service now, then we are off to get Thomas who arrives by bus later this afternoon.

Thanks again to all who came, and all who watched online. You helped make the party a real party.

 

:)

Welcome to our open house

that is, if the Internet is working and the neighbours are not doing a lot of downloading...

If you don't get a live picture, hit reload and see if that helps. Failing that it could be a problem on our end.

But drop in if you are near, from 2pm till 9 tonight. All are welcome.

If you want to talk back, leave a comment, or better yet, send a txt to my mobile phone on the lower right there.

 



Merry Christmas

Hearing better. Less blockage.

Well I think I'm done for the day, and I'm heading home. Good thing I live 100 feet from my office.

Today was one of those weird days. Didn't feel like I got much done, and then someone comes along and just affirms what I have been able to do, and its good. A little affirmation goes a long way.

This afternoon Micah and I (He was home because of a water main break at their school. Woo Hoo) trekked into Edmonton to A. Find a hair cutting place for both of us, and B. To pick up Hillary from the Bus Depot. We succeeded on both accounts and we look presentable again. 

But dang if there shouldn't be a few more people on the show "Canada's Worst Driver!!"

Four lanes of traffic heading out of Edmonton south and the yahoo's who tootled along doing 70 kms in the far left, fast passing lane. I mean yeah it had snowed and you had to be careful, but glory I couldn't believe some of the things I saw there.

Then further south on a slippery patch, cars in the ditch, trucks flipped and so on, so it took about 2 hours to get home, but we did. Ears lowered and Hillary home.

Tonight I was back in the office getting caught up, and now I'm done.

 

You take care out there in the cold.
Oh and maybe take a drivers training course or two eh?

Nite.

Long day done

I'm typing this from bed just before I roll over and sleep.
Just to tell you the day picked up nicely thanks.

Early morning prayer with some guys around my age, lunch with a new friend, supplies purchased for the Friday party, evening attendance at the local rural grade school where Micah attends, for their awesome Christmas concert program, and my brother called to let me know he has been released from the hospital, three days early. He still has a long way to go, but he's progressing and his wife is home too after emerg surgery.

All in all a good day.

Thanks for your kind thoughts and prayers.

Night.

The world is a lesser place wi...

The world is a lesser place without Bernie Mac.

Hometime for a bit. Out again ...

Hometime for a bit. Out again tonight. Trying to stay awake...

This ain't your momma's world any more

Think the Internet is irrelevant?



via Brad.

This day just gets better and better

After a total of two and a half hours sleep last night, mainly because businesses were trying to send faxes to our phone line, today finds me trying desperately to quickly respond to emails before the net goes away again.

A few moments on and then off again sure makes me appreciate when it works. And makes me crazy when I'm trying to have an online meeting or respond to emails.

I am going to quit trying for a bit and go have a meatspace meeting with someone during lunch hour. Hopefully it comes back so I can get some work done yet today.

Kinda starts making an argument for a good smartphone, so at least some of the email work can get done when it needs to. But the data costs here in Canada can get ridiculous. 

 

Oh well, at least I can commiserate with Brad who seems to have the same struggle.
Course, he lives on Guam...

Dang phone keeps ringing from ...

Dang phone keeps ringing from a fax machine someplace. Now 2 hours before my alarm goes off.

I gotta be up in five hours an...

I gotta be up in five hours and I'm listening to the news from lake Wobegon. Sheesh.

I don't think there is anythin...

I don't think there is anything as lame as watching The Grinch by yourself. Sigh.

oh, this is fun

randallfriesen.com in German.

 

or, should I say:

oh das ist Spaß, randallfriesen.com in deutscher Sprache.

"Haben Sie ein Bier?"

:)

Christmas Open House - this Friday

Well the time has come again dear children to swing open the doors and welcome the masses to come and hang out and eat copious amounts of sweets and drink that hot cidery punch Lauralea is locally famous for.

This Friday, December 19th from 2 till 9ish you are welcome to drop by for a bit. I understand the menu will be a little more low key than it has been in the past, but that's cool. We'll still be having the Hot Cider and Sweets and I think Lauralea is doing the nachos too. So come if you can.

We live here:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=&ie=UTF8&ll=52.784694,-113.172934&spn=0.004399,0.014666&z=17

And if the distance keeps you away, you can try to check here and I will try to have the webcam up and running. Although with the intermittent signal, it might be a long day for the camera.


Party at the pastors, this Friday.
Don't miss it.

Tap tap tap, is this thing on?

Looks like the net is back, that's the good news.
The bad news is that it's -35 C out there this morning.

Good grief it's hard on the system when it's like this.

Stay warm and safe.

No Internet?

I'm at safeway getting a few things so I'm on their wifi.

1. No Internet really cramps my style, from getting the weather forcast (reeealy cold) to my communications for Sunday morning worship. It's become important.

2. Keep praying for my brother, Jeff & Heidi. It's really tough there now.

3. Thomas & Hillary are in Prince Albert for a week. Thank you to those of you who have given them shelter and food and such.

4. Gotta get home now. The temp continues to drop.

5. If you don't hear from me for a while, carry on.

6. Night. Wherever you are.

Internet is gone at the field....

Internet is gone at the field. No net or email if you're waiting for me.

jeepers, the Internet just Goe...

jeepers, the Internet just Goes Away tonight. What's next a river of blood? Locusts?

Today

Has been about letting my spirit catch up to the rest of me.

The week has been full, good full, of opportunities to care and serve and carry the burdens of others to God in places of prayer.

The pain out there is so intense sometimes, I can't believe what people walk through in seasons of darkness and deep loss. The ability of the human being to inflict pain just astounds me some days. As does the ability of the healthy soul to be resilient.

So today I've been carrying some of those stories to God, hoping for some healing and peace for those who need it most.

And I've been preparing for Sunday. I want to talk about the coming of Joy and about what it even means to "Fear Not" in this day and age. God is still God and Christ is still His son, still on the throne, still acting, still loving, caring, weeping, grieving. All in the name and cost of love.

So tonight I'm just trying to carry to him what I need to carry out of this week, and to leave what I cannot change, into his care.

I am praying for a number of you out there this night too, that the God of peace might visit your homes and hearts.

And as you think of it, word just came in that Heidi, my brother Jeff's wife has been rushed to the hospital. That's all that needs saying for now, that and can you pray too.

Thanks.

Be careful out there doing your semi-final shopping this weekend ok?


Blessings.

me tv test

December 12, 2008 The Field


December 12, 2008 The Field from Randall Friesen on Vimeo.

Happy Birthday



 

 

 

To my little sister Gaylene, who isn't exactly this little any longer, thankfully.

:)

Happy Birthday Gaylene. I hope you do something fun for your day.

mmmm meatloaf is always good. ...

mmmm meatloaf is always good. Well, unless you were like drowning I suppose. Then you'd want a life preserver.

I think there's a farmer living inside me trying to get out

I think the more I live out here in The Field the more I am getting in touch with my inner farmer. I mean, I'm not that far removed from the generations of grandparents who farmed and worked hard to make a living from the land. But these days I am learning lots about crops and cattle and turkeys. I am surprised that I kinda like it.

Dad & Siblings going to school

So today I went with a friend to check on his cattle which are being cared for at a feed lot, which is kind of like daycare for cows, but lasts for months.

The cow daycare is run by a mennonite couple and their 20 something son, and just meeting them started to awaken memories in me.

Friesen Farm. Chortitz Sk.Their large linoleum covered dining area held the center of their home, a long plastic covered table. Most of the kitchen chairs were stacked in the corner, beside the low wide bookcase holding a well worn book collection. The cuckoo clock tick tocking away, and the westminster clock chiming the quarter hour. A german calendar hanging on the wall with the Dezember page up, and some butcher wrapped meat thawing in a bowl on the counter. All amazingly similar to my memories at my grandparents place.

Grandma & Grandpa GerbrandtThe thing that caught me the most was the smell. It was a mix of fresh baked bread and wood polish and farm smell. Not a bad smell, but a wonderfully graceful odor, if a smell can be graceful. It was just like I had experienced so many times before, at my grandparents and great-grandparents farm houses. It was mesmerizing in a way that took my breath away. I had been there a thousand times before, even though it was my first time. 

The spirit of these people was comforting and gracious, same spirit as those who made up my childhood farm experiences, my grandparents. People of faith who knew how to pray and work hard and trust God to provide for them. 

 
H. Thiessens and the kidsMy trip to the cattle daycare was like a trip down memory lane, with a reminder of where I came from. There are qualities of their lives that I want in my life too, and that spirit is the quality I want the most. Thankfully I don't need to become a farmer to have it, because the spirit of graciousness and love is the spirit of Jesus. 

It's quite simple really. I just need to remember where I came from, and where I'm going.

Playing an old driving game on...

Playing an old driving game on xbox is like going back to an old neighbourhood you used to live in. Feels really great without the travel.

What a Crowd

So I just did a short devotional with the Jr. High kids at their Christmas party.

What a bunch. They are so full of living.

I know that that age can be a most difficult, insecure and lost time of life.
May they enjoy a great deal of time in which to explore all the facets of life.

And may Jr. High be to them, short and sweet.

Morning Snow in The Field

I think I have discovered the larger problem of having the church phone ring at home.

Normally a good idea that allows me to use and answer the church phone, at home.

However,

Last night I learned the larger problem of this. Businesses who try to send faxes in the night.

Last night around 1 am the phone started ringing, and there was a fax machine on the other end.

Gross.

I need to think this out a bit, see if there is a way around this. Otherwise getting the phone ringing all night with incoming faxes will make me loose my religion.

Especially the spam faxes. I HATE those.

That is all,
for now.

Illinois Governor Rod R. Blago...

Illinois Governor Rod R. Blagojevich arrested. Listening to Chicago radio this morning. This is like the second Ill. Gov. in a row arrested

Be-uty

Sunset

The field has a level of stunning beauty that can be breathtaking at times. Like this sunset shows.

Tonight finally, its snowing out there, and it looks like it is significant enough to stay around for the winter. Do I need to remind you that it's only weeks till the big "C" day arrives? I thought not.

Anyway, the week begins to intensify now as we move into Tuesday, and for reasons I won't go into, it's going to be a really tough week.

An occasional prayer or stunning natural beauty will fit nicely this week.


Night.

The telescope is being put tog...

The telescope is being put together now. And it's been cloudy for days.

At Nutters store and there are...

At Nutters store and there are is Sisu, health meds Johanna sells. Cool.

"All is well" is playing on th...

"All is well" is playing on the Christmas channel. I haven't heard that wonderful song since my sisters & mom sang it at a Friesen Christmas

Comfort

Lauralea between hacking coughs asks if I am depressed. I don't think I am, I think I am only a bit sad today.

She of the Cough of Death that she's had for too too long already and which comes back for a second run at her. She grows so tired of it, and so do I, as we wait for her health to improve so we can get on with life.

But many things are going on, and it just results in a bit of melancholy for me.

Got word that a 92 year old from our last place of ministry has died. She would have appreciated my being there to walk her through this change in address for her, but I cannot, I have work here this week.

Talked with my brother for a while tonight, and he's trying to keep a good mind about things. He's been moved to a rehab hospital and he will be there until he gets feeling and control of his body again - or learns how to live with the brokenness of it all. Makes me get all wet in the eyes when my little brother has to deal with this crap. His wife and baby are at home, exhausted, and sick and teething without him near. That's tough.

Someone was in church this morning whose family had been impacted by my Grandfathers ministry in the past. They had heard I was in the area and they wanted to find out if I was John D. Friesen's grandson. It makes me pleased to hear stories like that, and I hope my kids and grandkids get those opportunities down the road. But today in this mood, it made me miss him, and grandma, and a chance to sit down with him again and trade war stories. It's a good legacy I have. It makes me smile.

A son txt's me and tells me his friend has been in a bad accident, but hopefully he's ok. I am shocked and surprised. A daughter emails me a great note and I know she'll be ok. And another daughter just phoned and I talked her down a little bit, hopefully so she could sleep a bit tonight yet.

All such emotional things, and my emotions are so near the surface these days.

The people here, the people of the field, are good people. Caring, concerned and checking up on us. Its good. But as good as they are, they, as yet, are not our ten year old friends, or our family. And its those things, or people I am missing these last few days. Family and friends with shared experiences. I miss my friends.

It's the first time in ten years we will be on our own again at Christmas. Maybe that's all this is about, this melancholy.

So in the name of finding some comfort where I can, I hauled out this old template and pulled out the banners from a year ago and put it up for a bit. It kind of reminds me of a different time and place, and that is comforting.

I know I know, weird. But I'm now living in a field. I'm allowed to be a bit eccentric aren't I?



Night.

Or maybe I should say, Good morning.

1 am and a daughter calls. I t...

1 am and a daughter calls. I talk, half dazed. She seems better and able to sleep. I am tired.

Malmo Covenant new worship team




Yeah.
The youth led worship today.

Youth + Pizza

I tried to sleep in a bit this morning, and when I came out from the bedroom this was what was facing me.

Youth making pizzas

The youth are making pizza's for a fundraiser.
And cutting cheese in my kitchen.

(Insert your own jokes here.)

Grace & Beauty

Tonight we went to another families home for supper. They are located only 5 miles from us, but it's through twists and turns and hills and valleys. Mostly through trees and the gravel road cuts nicely through them.

We had a lovely time with them, discovering things we have in common then talking on and on about those things. As I said, it was really quite lovely. A good night.

Then as we made our way back home late tonight, the snow was just lightly falling down. We retraced our tracks through the hills and trees and came up overlooking our home, with the one evergreen lit up to the max, compliments of Micah and I.

It looked breathtaking. Beautiful falling snow, the tree lit up against the dark night, it was magical. Then as I slowed to turn in and take in all the snow-globed beauty, my headlights caught one, then two then seven deer on the drive in front of the garage. They too seemed enraptured by the coloured lights. I slowed even more as they moved out of the way, into the evergreens in front of the yard. Silently and gracefully.

A perfect end to a grace filled day.
A day I really needed.

I wish us peace

It's turning cold out there this afternoon and the blue/grey clouds hang so low it's almost as if you can touch them.

And this moment I am thinking of all those I love who are out there, scattered near and far, family and friends, and I am momentarily so far away from them all.

So I light a candle and place it on the windowsill above my desk, as a reminder of hope. To those who drive past, that there is warmth and welcome here, and to me that those I love and miss really are a light and warmth to me even though they are far away.

 

Peace to your soul this afternoon.
And peace to mine as well.

Well

It looks like its finally, really snowing out there tonight. I should try to find my boots before the morning. Classic me, it's December and the snow is delayed and I haven't even used the extra time to find my boots. Classic.

----

Which makes me wonder, next week is the last week at the kids college, so there will be exams and deadlines for papers. I wonder if Thomas is doing his homework in a frantic manner tonight. About an hour ago I got a txt message from him urgently asking what Benediction I use at the end of a service. I wonder...

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I hope some of the politicians in Ottawa learned a few things this week. Good grief what a gong show, from many sides.

Anyway the PM has bought some time and it sounds like the liberals didn't need that much time. By this afternoon they were abandoning the ship their leader was sailing. It will be interesting to see where this next month leads us, politics wise. Yeah it's disruptive, but I kinda like hearing "We've never seen this before" over and over again. Makes me feel like I am a part of history in a front row seat kind of way.

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Oh and the bells. Today I was stationed at the Salvation Army kettle in the Canadian Tire store in town and it was a marked improvement over last year.

First off, the bells were not there. I suppose the store didn't want all the bell action, which was good with me. I can't hear the Christmas muzak over the bells. And to start when I got there first thing there was already like $25 in the thing, about $22 more than I raised all of last year.

And the people were in a mood to give. I tried to stand a little further back than last year and people walked right up and dropped cash into the pot. Fives and twenties and on and on. Not bad at all, given my rugged good looks.

Oh and the last hour I had a competitor. A guy at a tall table was pushing a fundraiser for medical helicopters in Alberta. I guess here its all fund raised and run on a donation basis. Weird. Back in the Rectangle Province the government would cover those kinds of costs. Then I remembered that I don't think Sask has health helicopters.

But a good day, fundraising wise.

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That's all for tonight. from the snowy field.
night.

Another statement on our lack of real community in this world

Living a life alone.

From the CBC this morning.
The body of a 44-year-old woman believed to have been dead for more than a year has been found in her home in a village north of Prince Albert, Sask.
The RCMP discovered the body of Margaret Moyer in Christopher Lake last week.
Police were called after the town administrator noticed her mail had been returned to the town office for a number of weeks.
People who live in the town say Moyer was very quiet and kept to herself.
However, she was known in the arts community as a wildlife painter, according to artist George Glenn who once lived across the street from her in Prince Albert.
Four years ago, Glenn brought his studio to Christopher Lake, but it came to him as a complete surprise that Moyer was even in the town.
The entire incident has upset the village, Glenn said.
"Well, I think it must be shocking. It's a dreadful kind of thing for someone to be found dead after such a period of time, and I think for the immediate neighbours particularly."
Police believe foul play wasn't a factor in her death.
Christopher Lake, a village of about 215 people, is about 40 kilometres north of Prince Albert.

 

 

Bell ringing eejit

The regular reader will remember my experience last year in ringing the Salvation Army Christmas Kettle bells to try to raise some extra funds for those who have need at this time of year.

Well in an hour I am up again. I'm at the Wetaskiwin Canadian Tire store so if you have some cents, stop by and make a donation.

Anyway, this year I'm not wearing all black, so that should help. And I shall try to smile less maniacally, and think "Shorter" so that I'm not the dark brooding guy in the corner who wants your cash.

Actually, our church is up for the whole day, till 7pm tonight. So if you can't make it there for me, you should recognize whoever is there.

In spite of my inability to fundraise, I still believe in this opportunity. We do have so much, and this is one way to share what we have.

Wherein I state my present frustration with those who call themselves leaders in our National Capital

I have kept it silent to date mostly because to unravel my frustrations at all the parties in Ottawa who are our "Leaders" would keep me writing till it was too late in the night. Besides I'm tired.

Then the other night I watched as Rex Murphy gave words to my exact frustrations. And thanks to the internets, we have a record of his Point Of View.



To that I'll simply add, ditto.

I NOW KNOW WHAT I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS



These little Lindt White Chocolate balls of TOTAL JOY ARE AMAZING.

You need to try one and you will be hooked. I can't believe you can buy such luxurious, mouth watering, smooth treats.

Ahhhhhhh.

I think I need another one. But I only have 5 left.

.... patience. Delay gratification.......

mmmmmm.

Middle of the night mumblings

Too early this morning I found myself awake, for no good reason that I could discern. So after fighting with my inability to rest any longer, I got up.

I have cleaned up my Inbox.

I have watched the morning news.

I have prayed for some of you.

I have discovered that the temperature outside is -16C.

So it's not been a bad day so far.

In a little while Ill get dressed and head to Edmonton to check on someone who had surgery yesterday. Which is just a simple reminder to myself that though I cannot sleep, there are people out there who are dealing with much tougher things in life than I am.

The eastern sky should be lightening up in an hour or so. Maybe Ill go have a shower.

Have a good day out there.

Speaking of dead vermin

I have killed over 15 flies in my office today.

The blighters

Advent 2



We are reminded that Christ came, and is coming again.
Compliments of Steve Harvey

On how to get the adrenalin running, part 2

The animals out here continue to take their lives in their hands, or paws, at least with me on the road.

Sunday night on our way home to The Field, a porcupine chose to cross the road at precisely the time I wanted to use it. I swerved to miss it, and gladly I did because I really don't know what I'd do if I hit one and bits of him were still laying in the middle of the road. 

Then early yesterday evening on the way home, suddenly and I mean suddenly, there was a rather large Buck who had made it through hunting season, who decided to cross the road, again, while I was on it. Thankfully I caught sight of it at the last minute and was able to swerve behind it, praying that there would be none others following too closely behind. 

I had wrongly thought they had slowed down their movements a bit, but I was wrong.

 

On the up side, the van load of us really enjoyed the rush of adrenalin. Always a nice pick me up at the end of a long day.

today we went to the big city...

Whyte Avenue to be exact.
We hit some used book stores and magazine shops and music and chocolate shops and Ten thousand Villages shop. We were on the hunt for some cool places and great Christmas gifts.

We partly succeeded.

Whyte Ave.

Of course, a photo op is a photo op, and we took want we could.

It is what it is...

A good day, done in time, because tomorrow it gets cold and snow is in the forecast, finally.