Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Omens of Fall

My friends, with it raining steadily these past few days I feel like it is time to put the denial away; summer is on the way out and fall is headed in. No need to fear, and please do not panic, we have faced this season before and I am here to remind you of a few of the best parts of the fall season...

The colours... can you recall the beauty of this season in its prime? Giving death such wonderful flare making it difficult to remember any other season being as alluring?

The preparation for winter... gathering the products from summer and preserving their memory of sun for the dark and cold days ahead.

The routine... something still embedded from elementary days. Falling back into a normalcy that was lost during the previous months.

The warmth... Yes! Even this. Home becomes a place of rich warmth filled with the smell of bread and soup mingled together.

All of these things mixing together to remind us, life is good... no matter the weather.

So my friends, there is no need to fear, and please do not panic, we have faced this season before and I for one, am glad of its return.

Today's post brought to you through many vessels, Jordan, Ailen, and mom are to credit for the photos, Emma is the thought process behind canning, and jamming being a method of bringing summer into winter... a wondrous and very true notion. Finally Kirstie is unknowingly the inspiration for today's post, as she sent me an ominous text earlier declaring "The end is near". I still haven't sorted what she was talking about, but I took the idea and ran with it!

Monday, August 29, 2011

You Gotta See This - Part 5

This final installment of the "You Gotta See This" series is thanks to Shannon.

Shannon is an amazing and brave friend. We've only been friends for a short while, not nearly long enough, but I look forward to now having her as a lifelong kind of friend.

She'll be moving away this week, which makes me sad. But I am so excited for her - for all the gumption it takes to move to a new city, and for all the adventures she is going to have.

Shannon, you are awesome. I'm impressed that you figured out my taste in music so quickly.

Now, dear readers, enjoy Shannon's recommendation
Mission Bells by Armistice

Again, I'm amazed at all my awesome friends who all felt the urge to send me their recommendations and take me to places that they felt I had to see.

My dear friends, you have made this summer unforgettable.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

In Remembrance

My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world.

All my very best,
Jack Layton

photo from here

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

You Gotta See This - Part 4

This maybe sounds like the most wonderful way to spend 44 days.

I know these links are hot right now, and most people have already seen them, but when my friend Regan recommended that I take a look, I couldn't help but feel inspired.

Thanks, Regan, for sending these little clips that, yes, I had to see.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Music Monday: Bored Yet?

The Avett Brothers are winning. I have trouble turning off my car because their album - which has been the only source of musical entertainment in my car for the last few weeks - is right in the middle of a song. I ask if you are bored yet, because I am not. These brothers are great, talented, giving, and have a vast collection of songs, most of which I haven't even heard.

Here they are with The Perfect Space. Pay attention to the lyrics, look them up if you have to.

Friday, August 19, 2011

You Gotta See This - Part 3

It's been discussed before, but so that everyone is aware, the purpose of our
Sisters & Such blog is to add


to the world.

We want to make you, dear readers, smile.

We hope that you relax a little as you read our entries.

Perhaps for just a moment forget your worries and dwell on something awesome.

Since writing this blog, I've developed a new appreciation for other people who (maybe unbeknown to them) are also adding to world-Awesome.

So when my friend Laura sent me the link for

We Like Nice BoysI let out a mini squeal of joy for how amazing these girls are for starting such a cute blog.

The staff at We Like Nice Boys are
"two single girl friends currently living, working, playing and creating in Calgary who want to feature one high quality single boy in Calgary, Alberta with photos and hilarious Q&A once a week, every week of the summer."

How cute is that??

Just take a look at these nice boys...

Jonathan Williams

Dan O'Byrne

Christofer Schroeder

To me, the best part is that this is a local blog. I haven't always loved Calgary (aka. the city where I've lived for the past six years), and finding a gem like this makes me think....

.... okay, maybe it's not so bad.

Thank you, Laura, for sharing this little bit of AWESOME.

And happy 30th!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Alberta Skies

I was doing a lot of driving this weekend. I don't mind that at all, it's relaxing, and there is time to think... the best part though, is driving familiar roads. Knowing exactly where you're going, which way you'll take, and how long the drive will be. There is something comforting about driving a well traveled road, what it means, the memories it holds... and of course there is always the sky, that vast endless Alberta sky...

Monday, August 15, 2011

You Gotta See This - Part 2, Music Monday

Today's Music Monday found it's way to me from my new friend, Denise, who sent me this song saying "You gotta see this!"
okay, well she didn't actually say "you gotta see this" but that was the sentiment behind her recommendation

The song is lovely, but coupled with the images in the video it's like being transported to place like home places of dreams.

oh ya, and there's naked people in it.... you've been warned.

And her actual words were "I love it. I think you will too"
I spent a whole day listening to this one song.
I do love it too.

Thank you, Denise, for sharing this beautiful song!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Letters From Afar

In the first month of my travels in India I was very diligent about sending letters back home to my friends and family. I would often include drawings, little tid-bits of how my time was spent. At any rate, yesterday I got this picture from my friend Kirstie...
Apparently someone wanted the other three stamps that were originally on this envelope. I suppose that added to how many days, weeks, months it took to get to the intended destination.

WOW! Is about all I can say. I'd completely forgotten about this letter, and its contents. I'm very glad that it was finally received, almost a year later!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

You Gotta See This - Part 1

Last week I was amazed at all the things my friends kept showing me.
Every day someone would come to me and say
"Ailen! You gotta see this!"

I feel very privileged to have such awesome friends.
Ones who know my taste in wine, music and blogs.

The first "You Gotta See This" moment was when our friend, Brent, took a few of us on a excursion through a vineyard.

We ended up on the edge of the cliffs, over looking Lake Okanagan,
sipping wine, smelling sage, and smiling.

It was a beautiful place to spend a few moments with my beautiful friends.
Thanks, Brent, for taking us to this place that you've gotta see!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Music Mondays: Hope With Tears

This song...
this song,
makes me weep.

I cannot think of a song more powerful. In melody. In lyric.
If you listen, really listen... if you listen with your soul. You will know, and you will weep at the truth, and the beauty.
Seth Avett
of the Avett Brothers
with The Ballad of Love & Hate

I gave you one of the live versions, I encourage you to listen to many other versions of this song, because there are beautiful little differences in each of them.

"patient and kind - as always-"

...because we are all 'Hate' sometimes, we are all 'Love' sometimes, and we need to help each other out.

"I'm your's and that's it... whatever.

...I'm your's and that's it, forever

See you're mine and that's it, forever."

Friday, August 5, 2011

ya..... about that....

Two Fridays ago, I posted about the strangest thing:
the mysterious postcard that showed up in my car.

Thanks to some creative and very clear thinking on behalf of my colleague, we were able to place the origin of the postcard, and I am quite pleased (or very sad) to report that: No, we have not discovered time travel.

Instead, in the Fall of 2009 I was a part of Calgary's Corporate Challenge scavenger hunt team.
The theme that year was Games.... any kind of games.
Board Games, Olympic Games, Mind Games...

We were awarded 10 points for every postcard we had that was
mailed from an Olympic city.

To secure 10 points for my team, I purchased the card and mailed it to myself.

I'm sure the people at the post office thought I was a nut.
I kinda think I'm a nut.

And no, we didn't win the scavenger hunt.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Snakes in The Water Day

Well there actually have been snakes in Calgary's water today. To find out more about that go here, to find out the Sister's definition of a "Snakes in the water day" go here... as in right here. Where you are now.

Over a year ago, both my sister and I, and our friends, and it seemed like everyone, was having a horrible day. That very day, two snakes escaped from their confines in the Calgary Zoo. The zoo was working with the city to check the water pipes for these snakes, one being the Malagasy Giant Hognosed snake. We then decided that the reason for the massively horrible day, is the fact that these snakes were in the water, and that any day henceforth that is the same, must be so because there are snakes in the water. They eventually found the snakes, and they were not that far from home. You can see these snakes at the Calgary Zoo anytime.

Anyways, anytime there are snakes in the water everyone needs a bit more beauty, and wonder. Here's a video of a a very talented craftsman creating a bench out of one piece of wood... amazing.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Music Monday - Vinyl

Moments make up a lifetime

I like the reliable, steady, daily moments (like 12:34 or 11:11)
I particularly like moments of unexpected surprises (these ones are sneaky)
I think the FIRST time anything happens is an unforgettable moment.

First step, first grade, first kiss...

and in my first vinyl purchase

Coeur De Pirate is a tiny, talented French Canadian
and her raspy antique accented voice is perfect for the texture of sound on vinyl.

I'll always remember the first time I heard her play
I'll always remember my first vinyl purchase.
And thanks to her*, I have another moment to make wishes on..... 12:59

*12:59 Lullaby is a Bedouin Soundclash cover...
...but her version was the first time I'd heard this song