Here Comes the Morning Light

Back to our roots, way into the past, a cabin in the woods, is the home all of us would seek.  A special place, small and cozy, wood burning stoves and privacy.  A retreat.  To live out on the land, to harvest crops, to drink from the river, to splash in the pool, counting the geese as they fly overhead, listening to the songs of the nesting birds.  Sharing the planet with nature.

The bright stars twinkle, the moon comes out, the flood of moonlight fills the path.  A heavenly band of celestial white, winds it’s way across the night.  Warm and gentle, the night breezes pass, bringing with them the scent of  fragrant lilac blossoms, close by.  Earth and night, warmth and fragrance, the delicate soothing quiet.  The songs of night are different to hear, the chirping chorus of frogs, toads and crickets.  Songs of the swamp, the marsh, the pond, all in their own beat and tune, all an orchestra of night song.

Oh sleepy dreams of castaways, aboard your own steered yacht.  The chorus of the lively night, to dream and dance upon.

Our own small world of escape to the land, to build that piece of a dream.  To dip your feet from the end of the dock, to splash and learn to swim.  The cottage on a lake of dreams, with fresh, clean water in which to swim.  Back to the land, from where we once were, with cabins in the forest, and the overpowering allure of fur.

Still the sounds of the city surround us in our sleep, while light is cast from lampposts and stars stay hidden in the dark.  The chorus of the evening is street traffic, the occasional voice or barking dog.  Far from the stillness and quiet of the evening chorus of frogs.

Leave your cozy nests of slumber, wander out into the light.  To capture that great moment, when the daylight enters the night.  A changing world in which to view, a captured moment of rest.  These are the times of the morning, when daybreak rises, that  the world is at it’s best.  So sleepy heads, don’t nod off, as day casts the night away.  Some of your finest adventures, start at the break of day.

The city still sleeps as the world renews itself, awakening with the morning sun.  Drinking tea in that splash of splendor, as color comes with the sun.  That moment, when the night fades and darkness becomes light, the world changes from the black and shade of night, to the brilliant colors of the pallet, with the dawn of new daylight.   Hearing the songs of rising songbirds, chirping and laughing together.  A fine new day of summertime, bring on the new adventure.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

June 26, 2018

Pemican

Hail Brave hearts.

The season’s change and so do I.  Cast off your winter garment, it is spring.  The receding snows and baking sun, take the blanket of white away, leaving behind the winter’s dead brown world.  A cool, late spring, with slow growth, keeps the winter hanging on.  It’s time for spring, the great wild calls, as the migrating birds arrive and the hibernating animals emerge.  It’s time for spring, call the adventurers as they pull out their bikes for a ride in the woods.  The ski hill closes, the equipment is stored, coats and boots hang in closets.  Birds gather in warm pools, waiting for the ice to melt.  Come on spring, it’s your show now!

Slowly the warming sun, encourages the grass to become green, tiny buds on trees begin to emerge and the promise of a new world becomes real.  Mating pairs can’t wait to start their families and the tiny offspring need to be warm.  Winter has withdrawn reluctantly this year.  An inspection of the garden reveals some winter kill.  Not all of the plants can survive the winter all of the time, but lets wait, it’s still early.  Don’t be discouraged yet.

Rhubarb has popped it’s head up out of the soil.   In a few weeks the harvest will start.  The berry patch is looking good and weeding is on the “to do” list.  Little sparrows look for good nesting sites and the chorus of their song, welcomes spring.  Finally!  The Earth awakens from her slumber and with this, the grey days pass.

“Come out!”  calls the brilliant sunshine. ” Come to play in the warm sunshine!  Come to see the beautiful new world.  Come to investigate the returning wild.  Come out!  Come out!  Don’t stay inside.  You’ll miss this glorious day!”

Spring brings with it a new array of activity.  The garden, with it’s earthly delights, fragrance, bird songs, color, delectable food.  This spells work in the garden, choose your seeds, get ready to plant.  The fruit trees are blooming, food is on its way.

After a long winter of rations, eating last years harvest, the fresh rhubarb looks so good.  A few more weeks and this can be eaten.  Perhaps a new recipe this year.  The dandelions are starting to flower and the fresh new shoots are a perfect salad.  I won’t weed these this year.  Instead, I’ll let the flowers grow and harvest them for my dinner.  Bread and muffins, salad and tea and survival.  This is the gift of the harvest, straight from the great planet.   Eat and enjoy, for this is sustenance and we gather it.

http://www.grouprecipes.com/68395/pemican.html  Pemican

In years gone by, when the country was new, survival was the key to colonialism.  Like hibernating wildlife, overwintering and surviving in the great white north, was the most imperative topic of the day.  How do we survive?  Adaptation and skills, training and education.  As humans, we can’t curl up in a warm, winters den and sleep the cold away.  Preparation and planning,  storage, cut wood.  A humble cabin, an oasis in the wilderness.  Warm, small,dry.  It’s yours!

Written by Dr. Louise Hayes

May 13, 2018

The Mighty River Flows

The Mighty River Flows

Hail Brave hearts

Yes, it’s here, the spring has arrived, in snowy, blustery style,  In like a lion, with  heavy snow falls, March has ended the winter with a cold snap, that keeps us bundled up and happy.  Of course, the summer will eventually come, but now the trails are white.  The forest floor is covered, a late spring, with no drought in sight.

The itch is on, to turn the seasons, pull out the canoe and test the current.  Ice flows passing with the water as the melting winter turns to spring.  Catch us in our history, as we wave farewell to winter, the icy highways turn to melt waters and the dangerous ice flows temp.  No  more the sleighs to speed us along the slippery, white rivers, now it’s canoes and boats and water craft, to take our time away.

Go back, fine fellows, to days gone by, to times of yesteryear.  To the fur trade and the brave at heart the times of the voyageur.  A dangerous time of year, this is, when winter turns to spring.  The trails are wet, the rivers are thin ice and the progress becomes slow.  Take a nap and wait a week, a well deserved holiday.  The harshness of this difficult time, will melt the winter away.  Soon the canoe will be laden, with supplies to take inland.  To visit with the natives and to find a brand new land.  Off come the winter fur coats, hats and mitts are stored.  Onto another adventure, to the watery highways of this world.

A well traveled route, the St. Lawrence, filled with Coureur de Bois.  One of the most dangerous occupations of that lifetime, to travel, explore and trade in the great unknown wild.

http://www.patrimoine-culturel.gouv.qc.ca/rpcq/detail.do?methode=consulter&id=25887&type=pge     Trois Riviers, Quebec

The canoes are large enough, they carry several men.  All trained and skilled in many ways, to tackle the obstacle at hand.  Come from far away, in European style, to make a living the hard way, adventure, in the Canadian wild.  A fearsome, mighty river, the St. Lawrence is cracking up.  Pretty soon, it will be show time, pack your bags and liven up.  No more naps or holidays, the spring torrents are flooding.  It’s an adventure too dangerous for us,  spring break up is not even for the daring.  Icy flows and chilly woes, we’ll wait for another day.  This is not the best of times, for watery, river play.

But if you were an itchy voyageur, with bills at home to pay, perhaps the tempting season, would  cast him adrift anyway.

A lovely camping trip, with lakes and rivers to follow, the Canadian rivers of highway, still bind us to our past.  Traditions of camping and canoeing, following well traveled routes.  Today, we love this great wild land and praise the nations splendor.  Our ancestors did a very fine job, of protecting and implementing the heritage that we covet today.  A land of unspoiled wonder, with historical routes to travel.  This is our fine country we still travel in style.  From winter sleigh to summer canoe, the adventure has never left us.

written by Dr.  Louise Hayes

April 18, 2018

Northern Ontario Canoe Trip,  The Nat River

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6ie5jptrgY
How The West Was Won – The Canadian Way

How The West Was Won – The Canadian Way

Hail Brave hearts

Come and explore with me.  Come  into the adventure of your lives.  There’s no time to waste, the days are passing.  Make a plan, make several plans.  Learn and strive, push your limits.  Take the time to prepare.  Healthy food, proper clothing, skills, companions, strong bodies and strong minds.  Into the unknown, you travel.

A sketchy route has been marked on a page. Lines and drawings, hopefully familiar.  A post is the site marker, a mountain range on the left, stay on the river and follow the trail.  Animal tracks cover the ground.  The new fallen snow is heavy and trail breaking is hard.  Persevere, for today’s travel distance is long.  Fortunately the terrain is gentle,  rolling uphill but not too difficult to climb.  Somewhere out here is a cabin for us.  We can rest in shelter and escape the wind and the cold, then push on.  It’s a better trip than it used to be, before the route through the country was found, before the explorers and before the map makers.  Now we have a plan to follow.  The bleak, cold winter closes in, but we chose this life.  We are  homesteaders, looking for our land.

Land!  There’s plenty of land!  But ours is still a long way off and we persist in our travel.  A trading post is lurking close by.  Stay on the trail and follow it closely.  We need supplies.  Supplies and a place to rest, some warmth and some shelter, food and a hot drink.  We chose this life.  Come on.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fort_Edmonton_Park

Come on, brave hearts, a new life is calling.  The freedom it brings will be worth all of the pain.  The hardship, the struggle, the will to survive.  Keep at it.  Don’t stop.  The winter is a good time for travel.  As cold as it is, the path is easier, travel along the rivers and frozen lakes.  It’s relatively flat and easier to see, it’s cold, but faster and we cover more land.

What is now just sport is survival to us.  The dogs must run and we are grateful.  Fast and steady they hurry along.  The dog team runs and they seem to know the way.  Skills and training, education, courses, work and labor to learn these skills.  All to become homesteaders in a land offering freedom, survival, a chance to choose for ourselves and a chance to be autonomous.  But it’s work and we have now traveled so far.  Out to the west to settle these lands.  Push on, push on, the day if fading.  Run you fabulous dogs!  Take us away to our world awaiting.  To trading posts and teepees, to waterways and farmland.  Take us to our destiny, our hearts are soaring.  The cold winters wind, howls beside us, but go on.  On to our home, to farming and prosperity.  Come on, you good dogs, run forever, transport us across Canada, open the way and save us again.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

March 19, 2018

dog sledding competition in Russia.  What was used hundreds of years ago to open up Canada is now international sport.

Winter Horse Races

Winter Horse Races

Hail Brave hearts

Enjoy the best, the wilds of winter put us to the test.  It’s dog sledding and snow shoes, skis and skates.  It’s winter camping and bonfires, with marshmallows and  hot chocolate.  It’s fireside in the cabin, cozy and warm, it’s darkness and quiet and wild winter storms.  The winter, at it’s best is the season of chill, with ice, frost, snow and wild winter storms to combat.  The fireside beckons, it calls us to be warm, come into this fine cabin to avoid the winter’s storm.  The cold winter’s icy blast, it makes our hearts sing, to have another snowfall, we’re blessed with these fun things.

Another invention, of horses and riders, take us back to our history of early colonial times.  A Quebec invention, horses, they say, becomes a competition of horse races in the winter.  Ride, you awesome champions, skilled and daring, mount your fine steeds for a flight along the icy river.  A unique experience in horsemanship and breeding, the new stock of racehorse was a special adaptation that kept it’s footing on the ice of the river.  A gaming day, to enjoy the sport, pull up your chair in minus temperatures and spend the day outside enjoying the show.

It’s early colonial times in Quebec, but this is Canada, after all.  Making the most of what life gives us, chilly cold, snow, ice and fun and the adventure of it all.

To be in a colony, so far away, from a homeland so remote, it lives in yesterday.  The future is dependent on the survival skills of all, fight off the loneliness, the questions, the gloom of despair.  Come out of your lodging, bring your chair.  Have fun in the winter, dress warmly and with layers.  Come out and enjoy this, we love it this way, with horses and snow and ice and sleigh.  Come sing, with high spirits, chase off the dark.  Enjoy this day of racing, gaming, and fun in the winter.

http://www.walkerswest.com/History/CanadianPacer.htm

The cold, the isolation, the small numbers of people, but tireless energy and determination to survive, to win at the odds of feeling cast aside.  Gather together, all you peoples, in community and spirit, chase away the dangers of illness and fear.  The numbers are still small, but we’re getting used to our lives, of hardship, deprivation, thrift and careful counting.  Make sure your larder will last until the next harvest.

Inventions are a must,  stretch your minds.  Think of something new, to make us better people.  We’re changing out here in a colony so rustic.  We’re becoming a people of our own.

Don’t look back, look forward, prepare and plan.  Become the genius we all know you can.  Invent the horse, play games anyway, invent your recipes, plan your stay.  The colony is forever, we can’t give it up, so make the most of it, live well, drink from this cup.  It’s a warm winter’s day, time for some fun, head off to the river to enjoy the race.

Written by Dr. Louise Hayes

February 21, 2018

Enjoy the Winter

Enjoy the Winter

Hail Brave hearts

Oh to the lucky ones, who walk these paths.  The great mighty river has presented it’s wonder.  The uproar of nature, a beautiful site, it catches us off guard.   It’s so impressive and different and interesting.  A phenomena of sorts, with it’s unusual beauty, we walk these paths often and have never seen this before.  The freeze, the thaw, the freeze, the thaw, the mighty river flows.  The enormous upheaval of ice and water, breaking up huge chunks of ice, as the river starts to flow.  This is January and a mild spell during the winter has created an unusual scene.  This area should be frozen solid and the thickness of the ice proves that it was, but the mighty river flows.  These ice pieces are about one foot thick and have been heaved all along the river bank.  It was a marvel to look at and to speculate the dramatic change that would have caused this.  For us, this powerful act of nature is new.  It’s exciting and beautiful and the power of the water is awesome to see.    This kind of ice break up is what happens in the spring, but this is the dead of winter, with temperatures hovering around zero.  Too warm to keep the river frozen and to keep the ice in place.  We should be able to walk along this river, but we can only walk along the ice shelf by the river bank.  Global warming and climate change are presenting winter to us in a dramatic new way.

It was only  a few weeks ago that we saw that the river was frozen and planned for a winter afternoon excursion. There’s value to seeing the park from the rivers.  It gives us new photographs and a new perspective of the mountains and the terrain.  Sometimes the walking is easier and with careful consideration of the dangers of ice travel, we stay near the shore, travel in groups and pay attention to the changing surface.

The river heaves and swells and the ice forms in dramatic flows like waves.  It’s dangerous and we stick to the shoreline.

We need the winter, with it’s cold and snow.  The fluffy white stuff is full of fun and winter is a favorite season.  The warmth has made it more fun, with less inside time drinking hot chocolate and  more outside time on the ski hill.  We play more with temperatures like this and it still snows!  The winter activity is good for our souls.  It pushes us to outside sports and to cautious winter travel.  It teaches us about nature in a different way, about weather and avalanche, snow travel and preparation.  It teaches us to be hardy and strong and to learn survival skills.  We love it this way!  The great white north, with all of it’s beauty, it’s back country cabins, pot belly stoves, tracked trails into the wilderness.  All of this presents it’s own dangers, thrills, unique experiences and exhilaration.  It’s magical and wonderful and full of winter fun.

https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/winter-camping.html  –  Winter Camping

But now, something unusual.  Travel cautiously, oh brave hearts and enjoy the great winter.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

January 30, 2018

 

Heavenly New Year

Heavenly New Year

Hail Brave hearts

Joy to you, in this awesome new year.  A year of hopes and dreams to fill.  Good luck to you with all of your plans, resolutions and pursuits.  The new year is upon us and it is with smiles that we carry on.  A warm winters day, a fun filled way to adventure.  Skating and skiing and joy in participation.  The easy relaxation of family and friends, social gatherings,  companionship and fellowship.  A new day, a new year, everything hopeful, bright with cheer.  In like a lamb, the new year is pleasing, warm and sunny, not bone chilling and freezing.  It’s wintertime, snowy and dark, but for us, this is outstanding.  Just cold enough to  keep the bears in hibernation, they sleep in their dens, and pass this season away.

The deep chill of Christmastime designed to keep you cooking, is now followed by the joy of the new year.  Smugly we skate, the ice is superb, tobogganing later is just what we need.  We fill our thermos with tea or soup and spend glorious hours in sun soaked snow pits.  A winter tan, sun screen is a must, the slopes call us to linger at the top of a mountain, enjoying a view that’s quite a climb in the summer.  We glide effortlessly out to the middle of a lake, to take the photos that we rarely see in the summer.  It’s a joy, this winter of blowing, biting snow.  We love it this way, winter wonderland don’t go.  Not yet.

https://theculturetrip.com/north-america/canada/articles/the-most-romantic-honeymoon-destinations-in-canada/

Not yet, in this dead time of winters darkest nights, with dazzling bright stars to guide us at night.  Don’t pass yet, as we wander with snowshoes in hand, to take on a river, impossible at other times.  The snow, the ice, the cold all help us, to explore the great wild at a time when the animals are less dangerous.  They lay and watch us, but no one is mating, the call of a championship duel is no longer heard.  Silenced are the males, their courtship has ended and now quiet in winter with snow softly falling, we strap on our snowshoes to tackle the trail.  The endless white beauty, of the soft winter snow, the clear, chilly air, that makes it all possible.  At the best of times it’s nothing but play and we know that when the storms come, they send snow our way.

It’s joy to us, we sing the praises of this season.  Smiles, hot chocolate, winter gear and cold.  It’s just what we wanted.  Go up to the skihill for a day of fresh air.  The northern lights are streaming, they fill up the sky, with a wonder so stunning, it captures our eyes.  Brilliant displays of colors in heaven, so fascinating and captivating.   The stars shine brightly, the moon is full, put on your headlamps and go out for an evening skate.  The temperatures are mild, only -10 and the hour of exercise is relaxing and pleasant.  Surprisingly, we had company that night, families with children in sleighs and on skates.  The fire was burning, a warm place to rest.  It’s wintertime and it’s warm out, this is the best.

written by Dr. Louse Hayes

January 3, 2018

A Man’s Best Friend

A Man’s Best Friend

Hail brave hearts.

Your company is here!  Fast and furry, friendly and happy, this is your very best friend.  Your dog is your companion for life.  Easy to care for, easy to please, all they want is a warm home, to be fed, and to be included in all of your life.  We have nurtured the companionship of dogs for a long, long time.

A trainable friend, a fiercely loyal companion, a lovable pet, your dog is a strongly supportive part of your life and your family.  Train him to do whatever he can, fetch a ball, play with sticks, swim in the lake, take a walk, guard the premises, guard you, pull your sleigh, be your business, own the  company, take him wherever you can.  This is not just a pet, this is a big part of the family.  This is the pet that can be your eyes, alert you to danger, pull you to safety.  This is the pet that can be trained to be a working dog, taking care of the disabled, protecting the property, protecting the people.  This is the pet that lives for you, you are all of his life and it can be a wonderfully fulfilling time of mutual companionship.  Take the dog for a walk, to play in the park, to stroll down the street, to meet your friends.  This is an important part of his day.  A little fresh air, some exercise, the walk will do  both of you some good.

Dogs are with us in history, helping us to build a nation.  Sled dogs carrying people and supplies, opening trade and transportation routes, bringing people together in a sparsely populated country, where no roads had gone before.  Great explorers like David Thompson, used the sled dog to carry him across the country,  adventuring and exploring along the way.

 

 

Train the dog to be a part of a team, pulling the sled, running for joy.  Most dogs welcome the activity of a good run and the dog team is a companion sport, dogs and humans in the cold winter time, speeding across the countryside together in a sleigh.  It’s an age old sport of Canadian history.  Run the dog team to an adventure, to exploration, to connect to one another.  It’s an unusual and clever idea, to hitch a dog to the sleigh, run him over to the neighbors farm, over hill and over dale, running through the snow.  The fast, light dogs enjoy this too.  They can run for hours through the snow.  Winter coats and hats, boots and pants, pull on your warm attire.  The season of winter fun is here.

This is a sport that you might want to try, just to experience the historical culture of the nation.  Imagine being the master of a dog team, sliding along in the wintry chill, sled piled high with trading goods, to sell at your next stop.  How far will it be today?  20 kilometers only, or maybe an all day stint, rushing through the forest, sliding across the lake, the trade routes are open, come out all of you, to experience the skills  that a life like this  would take.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

December 17, 2017

A Rose is a Rose

Hail Bravehearts

Ah, the goodness, the welcome delight, a fresh backyard garden to enjoy and delight.  Flowers with fragrance fill the air, with sweet summer scents, to draw you back there.  A rose is a dainty, admired for it’s beauty, but beneath that colorful coat, lies a secret kept neatly.  It’s worth in it’s petals fill the air, with  a scent so aromatic we gather it with care.  Brilliant on it’s stem, it holds it’s head brightly, filling it’s container with blossoms, so sprightly.  Gathering the petals, so soft to the touch, for a dainty delicacy, there’s not very much.

An added abundance to fill the larder, flowers are growing, but the work is much harder.  Smaller and precious, they fill their space, with fragrance, color, and beauty in their place.  Dainty and delightful, smelling so divine, I pluck the petals that grow on the vine.  The air in the house is sweet perfume, and extracting the essential oils clutters the room.

The recipes prove, there are plenty of us, gathering flowers, for their values is a must.  We eat the good ones, gathered with care, to try a dish of culinary rare.  Some salads, some biscuits, some chocolate too, a craving of harvesting a plant or two.  This sweet tart taste is the treat of the day, we sit and enjoy rose petal sorbet.

http://invitadoinviernoeng.blogspot.ca/2010/06/rose-petal-sorbet.html

The gathering of flowers, even the dead headed ones, is as fragrant and blissful as these moments become.  A headful of perfume, as the passing rose, still lingers its fragrance in my nose.  The smell lingers in the air, aromatherapy is here, I wake each morning to it’s presence so dear.  Lovely to look at, delightful to hold, there’s something special about the rose.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

August 18, 2017

Settlers in the West

Settlers in the West

Hail Bravehearts

Come out of your houses, come out to play, search for your destiny, fill it this way.  Joy for our lives, filled with our passions, educate yourself in many ways, don’t settle for small rations. Here in the mountains was a new way of life, carved from the environment, full of love  and strife.  Back in the day, when the nation was growing, came a homesteading family with a history, worth knowing.  Migrate to the mountains, fill up this land, settle this area, prosperity is at hand.  Work and strive, build your home, grow where the deer and the caribou roam.  Mighty are we,we own this land, wrought from the skills and tools of our hands.  Building a house and shed for our needs, makes us the Moberly’s and we are Metis.

Look at this beauty, this fabulous land, nature has given us her golden hand.  Flowers and scenery, game galore, all right outside our open front door.  A fabulous view, so much desired, we planned to pass this along to our descendants to admire.  In the heart of Jasper, a national park, lies the trail to our cabin, in a meadow that’s marked.  Come to our land, follow the trail, to a Canadian adventure in homesteading tale.  Brilliant flowers now nod their heads,where a family with children once softly tread.

Ancient are we, in a land we admire, full of perils and hardship and landscape that’s dire.  Mountains and crevices, rock falls and forest, fill our lives with the wild lands of birds chorus.  Settle these lands, farming, hunting and fishing, trading with explores is how we make our living. Earning our right to clear the land, is how we survived and thrived with our band.  A family are we, brothers and wives, making a living with strong family ties.

http://www.mountainmetis.com/pages/henry_john_moberly.html

The west was being opened with adventure and more as the trading posts flourished throughout our world.  Settle the nation, fill your hearts, with the bountiful prosperity that  trading starts.  A nation rich, with people so smart, that they discovered routes to join us together, not keep us apart.  From coast to coast a path was laid, and along the way, some homesteaders stayed.  Explore this world, discover this land, a nation is forming with peace at hand.

Markets and trade, influence our lives, building a homestead where families can thrive.  Open these routes, help find the path, the adventure is growing, it will stay and it lasts.  The west is fought for, it belongs to us, brilliant and daring, the exploration is a must.  Join the coasts, find a way, for this land to become a nation one day.

A place in history, is only a name, but cabins in the wilderness, is this families fame.  Interesting and ancient, when all went well, meeting travelers and explorers, is the story they tell.  Building connections, building ties, enter the landscape where this family once thrived.

Now a national park, intensely protected,whose worth to the world was UNESO`s projection. Visit us here in this world famous place, the mountains and wilderness of Canada`s grace.

Jasper National Park.

written by Dr. Louise Hayes

July 13, 2017