Sunday Evening Reflection – Canada in Winter

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Canadian winters are legendary.  Think Snowmageddon St. John’s Newfoundland this past weekend and Edmonton, Alberta’s coldest morning of this century: Wednesday morning (January 15, 2020) when the temperature set a record  of – 37.8 degrees Celsius.  I grew up in Northern Manitoba where the average temperature in January is considered “severely cold.”  So, when Vancouver had a winter storm warning this past week, it felt like we had joined the rest of Canada.

I love our winters – the snow, cold air, the fresh smell.  Yes, I can smell when snow is in the forecast.

Canadians know how to embrace the cold!

  • Buy boots with removable liners and be sure that your feet don’t feel cramped.
  • Wear a hat and cover your face. I learned firsthand what it felt like to have frozen cheeks.
  • Buy a thermos so that you can bring along a hot drink if you are walking. You will notice that I have a stash of regular and herbal tea on hand in winter months.
  • Protect your hands. While I love gloves, mittens are even better for keeping your fingers warm.
  • And if you are in cold, cold, cold weather, check out those fashionable fleeced-line leggings. Your legs will thank you.

Vancouver’s snow is disappearing with the rain, but I captured the moment.  Join me on my snow walk.

Celebrating Hat Day on A Snow Day

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“Some hats can only be worn if you’re willing to be jaunty, to set them at an angle and to walk beneath them with a spring in your stride as if you’re only a step away from dancing. They demand a lot of you.”

Neil Gaiman

January 15th is National Hat Day, an unofficial holiday that celebrates one of the most essential accessories invented centuries ago.  Even the Egyptians sported sassy headgear, along with the Ancient Greeks and Romans.

Think of Winston Churchill’s hat, the homburg, a felt hat with an elegant curved brim boasting a grosgrain ribbon.  And recall Napoleon’s bicorne, which he wore sideways to stamp his brand for all to see his courage on the battlefield. I remember Jackie Kennedy’s pillbox hat, classic and elegant.  Then there was the famous Panama Hat worn by President Theodore Roosevelt when he was visiting the Panama Canal excavation.  My most favourite “hat” fashionista is Queen Elizabeth II, long may she reign.  Her signature style of matching hat and gloves with a string pearls is timeless and graceful.

Vancouver was under snow today and there is more snow in the forecast.   Winter has arrived and I had the perfect hat to keep me warm on a snow day!

 

 

Sunday Evening Reflection: Klapa Music in Croatia

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The Vancouver winter storm was to be over in an afternoon.  And yet, here I am in the late evening looking out my window onto a street full of snow, with more coming overnight.  It is a lovely sight, especially from my warm perch with a cup of tea close by. Tomorrow, everyone (including me) will be out with their cameras determined to capture the layers of snow.

Tonight, I chose to leave Vancouver and head over to memories of Croatia, where I discovered Klapa music.  Well, to be honest, I did not know it was Klapa music until a few days ago when I met up with my Croatian neighbour.  When I showed her my video, tears came to her as she remembered her homeland. It is a magnificent blend of voices that resonate with exuberance and power.

Klapa is a form of traditional a cappella singing that comes from Dalmatia, Croatia. In 2012, Klapa was inscribed in UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Klapa speaks of love, life and home.

“Klapa singing is a multipart singing tradition of the southern Croatian regions of Dalmatia. Multipart singing, a capella homophonic singing, oral tradition and simple music making are its main features. The leader of each singing group is the first tenor, followed by several tenori, baritoni and basi voices. During performances, the singers stand in a tight semicircle. The first tenor starts the singing and is followed by the others. The main aim is to achieve the best possible blend of voices.”

UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity

Welcome to a new week.  May your days be filled with music of love, life and home.

 

 

 

All Aboard

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It’s January which means resolution time.

And of course, my exercise program is firmly in place, set to begin tomorrow, or the next day or the next.  You know how it is when the winter sets in and the tea, cozy chair and stack of books are in desperate need of our immediate attention.

But I was inspired by the “All Aboard” crowd at Granville Island.  Now this would be an amazing exercise program.

All Aboard, Mini-Ramp Pilot Project, Granville Island

I was even more impressed by the “All Aboard” pilot project that “demonstrates the need for a publicly accessible, dry, well lit, safe and fun skateboard facility in Vancouver during the winter months.

Happy exercising! (And reading, too!)

All Aboard from Rebecca Budd aka Clanmother on Vimeo.

Sunday Reflection: Walking the Red Willow Trail

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“There comes . . . a longing never to travel again except on foot.”

Wendell Berry, Remembering

Red Willow Trail, St. Albert, Alberta

I live in Vancouver.  It has been my home for many years, and it is highly likely that I will grow old in a city that has always been kind to me.

And yet, St. Albert, Alberta, the city that is known as The Botanical Arts City is an enticing possibility.

Founding in 1861, St. Albert is the oldest non-fortified community in Alberta and is now the sixth largest city in Alberta.  It is home to the International Children’s Festival, the Arden Theatre that hosts over 150 performances a year,  and The St. Albert Botanic Park, dedicated to the collection, cultivation and display of a wide range of plants labelled with their scientific names.  And have I mentioned that the Outdoor Farmers’ Market, held in downtown St. Albert, is Western Canada’s largest outdoor farmers’ market.

Now you see why I am tempted.

Red Willow Trail, St. Albert, Alberta

The Red Willow Trail system stretches down the river valley connecting to the City’s major parks and neighbourhoods. Join me as I walk the Red Willow Trail System heading down to the farmer’s market

Walking the Red Willow Trail from Rebecca Budd aka Clanmother on Vimeo.

Marina Kanavaki – As Above So Below

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“This series of watercolors
is inspired by the Oneness of
“As Above So Below”.
Trees, Duality Trees, Inverted Trees
reflections, dreamscapes, paths,
in search of their fulfillment.”
Marina Kanavaki

Marina Kanavaki – As Above, So Below

I  am delighted to welcome the Year 2020 with Marina Kanavaki, a dear blogger friend.   Over the years, Marina has inspired me to view art and creative endeavour via the lens of her mantra, “Art Toward a Happy Day.”

Marina showcased her watercolour paintings “As Above So Below” at the Art Estate Gallery March – April 2019 to great reviews.  When I heard that her 2020 Calendar reflected this amazing exhibition, I contacted Marina directly so that I would receive my As Above So Below calendar as a celebration of entering a fresh new year of exciting possibilities and opportunities.

Thank you, Marina, for your remarkable dedication to art, music, and building a vibrant community.

When you meet Marina, you will see for yourself that her artistic expression is “Art Toward a Happy Day.”

Marina’s Instagram Account

Marina’s YouTube Channel

THE MUSIC OF MARINA KANAVAKI & OANNES

Happy New Year to all as we welcome the coming of 2020, a new year and a new decade.

Special Note:  All images on this post are from photos of my calendar “As Above, So Below”  These images are copyright © of Marina Artemis Kanavaki’s artistic work and cannot be copied, downloaded or used in any way without her express written permission.

The Year 2020 Calendar “As Above So Below” by Marina Kanavaki from Rebecca Budd aka Clanmother on Vimeo.