Enjoy Life (PBC April 2022)

A few things came together this month to make it a bit challenging to enjoy life: income tax returns had to be filed, winter kept coming back with yet more snow, we got bogged down preparing for an upcoming development permit appeal. And most significantly, after all of us managing to elude COVID for more than 2 years, six close family members contracted COVID within a one week time span. They’re all now on the long, slow road to full recovery, but between a 3-night hospital stay for the family patriarch, a course of antivirals for another and concerns about possible long-COVID for them all, it’s been hard to remember to enjoy life!

One thing that really helped? We got some new camera gear for bird photography. And we made a point of getting outside most days, in search of birds to photograph. So most of April photos relate to birding! Here are five of my favourites:

1. Family Birding at Ralph Klein Park

Our youngest young adult continues online work towards a university degree, while living back in the nest thanks to COVID. You could have knocked me over with a feather when my invitation to join us on a birding walk was accepted – twice! Here’s our young adult and Mr. GeoK, on a trail at Ralph Klein Park in southeast Calgary. Between us we photographed 9 different kinds of water birds, a sparrow and a yellow-headed blackbird. We also saw 2 muskrats in one of the wetland ponds!

two photographers at Ralph Klein Park

2. No, You Listen to Me!

This was the funniest thing we saw at Ralph Klein Park: a pair of Canada geese, landing on the education centre and just squawking away at one another. I imagined it went something like, “I was choosing the course! Stop being a back wing navigator!” met with, “No, you listen to me! We should have turned west back at that big poplar and we’d be there by now!” Or some such thing. They mate for life, you know, so they must honk at one another like an long-time married couple. ๐Ÿ˜‰

angry geese

3. New Recipe

After something like 800 suppers in a row at home, we sometimes feel stuck in a rut. So when our young adult offered to bake focaccia bread if I’d make the pasta, I jumped at the chance. I turned the last of the focaccia bread into croutons for my lunch time salad. They were are crunchy and flavourful addition to my plat of greens, leftover simmered kabocha squash and Craisin/sunflower/pumpkin seed salad topper.

salad with homemade croutons

4. Birding in Banff National Park

The first of the month we bought an new annual pass to Canada’s national parks. I think we’re going to get good value from it, as we’ve already been birding three times in Banff NP: twice at Cave and Basin National Historic Site on the marsh boardwalk and surrounding trails and once at Johnson and Two Jack Lakes. This photo of Mr GeoK on the hoodoos bluff overlooking the TransCanada Highway and across the Bow Valley from the ribbon clouds over Mt Rundle was taken along one of the trails at Johnson Lake. Check out one of Mr GeoK’s Relive video recaps if you’d like more Banff scenery and birds. ๐Ÿ™‚

photographer and mt rundle

5. Mountain Bluebird

We know that beautiful Mountain Bluebirds spend time in Canmore every year. But in the twelve years since we started spending a lot of time in Canmore, we’ve only spotted them four or five times. The other day we were walking and talking along the Three Sisters Multi-Use Pathway and didn’t even notice this handsome bird until we were maybe 5 meters away. He posed for about 20 seconds and then took off. I feel lucky to have captured his good side. ๐Ÿ˜‰

mountain bluebird

Bonus Pictures

Yes, we’re supposed to use just 5 photos for each month’s photo blogging challenge post. But there are two mammal photos that I got this month that I just couldn’t leave out: a chipmunk (spotted along the trail to Sundance Canyon from Cave and Basin National Historic Site) and a coyote (spotted across the Bow River in the South Canmore habitat patch).

Those are my five seven for this month. Time to head on over to A ‘lil HooHaa to see how everyone else enjoyed life this month. Next monthโ€™s theme is One hour. Please consider joining our small, mighty, positive, friendly group of bloggers. All you need are five photos. The amount of accompanying text is up to you.

4 thoughts on “Enjoy Life (PBC April 2022)

  1. I’m sorry to hear your family contracted Covid. I believe, eventually, everyone will get it….just a matter of time. I love bird watching! And your header is adorable. Your mountain bluebird looks like our indigo bunting. I completely understand about circumstance sometimes doing its best to keep us from enjoying life. Being outside helps so much. ๐Ÿ’œ

  2. Always a post filled with views! I really want to go to Banff again. I wish we had been able to stay longer when we went through a few years ago. A shame our schedules didn’t match up! Though I like seeing quality photos of birds, and I’ll sometimes try and capture an eagle if I see one, I’ve never been super into birding, but there are so many great photos done! The bluebird picture is awesome!

  3. Denise, I am so sorry to hear that your family has been hit by COVID. Hope your loved ones are doing a little bit better every day.
    Congrats on finishing your taxes. No fun job, but once it’s done, it’s a good feeling, right?
    Love your animal and nature pictures. What kind of bird is the one on top of the page?

    1. Thanks for the well wishes for family, Tamara. Everyone is recuperating. The bird at the top of the page is a Song Sparrow and it has a lovely bird song. ๐Ÿ™‚

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