Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Hello out there!

My computer is finally up and running!!  Many thanks to our very good friend and computer guru, Terry!! He is a genius with a computer!  I got an especially nasty virus that is striking a lot of computers - he said that he had done six others this week with exactly the same thing.  It has been a long haul because it started before the end of the A to Z blogging and he removed it after about a week or so.  Then another one or possibly the same one came back and crashed my computer and continued until he came over before the long weekend and took away my tower.  He came back two days ago and got me all set up again.  Thank you, thank you, thank you, Terry!!

I was surprised how much I missed all of you.  I missed checking your blogs and finding out what was new, whether it was a new story or a new post on the goat kids.  I think I went through withdrawal for at least a couple weeks, if not more.  Did you miss me?  

I am going to be doing a lot of reading - I have a good three weeks or more of all your posts to catch up on! Please bear with me until I can catch up - I will add comments and hellos along the way.

Good to be back!!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Water - Water Everywhere!!! Flooding in Southwestern Manitoba

Our beautiful little city is now under a state of emergency.  The Assiniboine River has spilled over its bank an unbelievable amount.  They have evacuated about 2000 people from the north and south sides of the river as of 8 pm this evening.  They are hoping for the best-case scenario but are more likely to see the worst-case scenario as the rain continues to fall and the watershed continues to feed into the river from all directions an rain is on the forecast for the rest of the week. 

They just announced a couple hours ago that they are going to make some breaks in the dikes before the town of Headlingly, which is just west of Winnipeg and just under a couple hours east of here, to allow some of the excess water to be released before it hits Winnipeg because the floodways are already at capacity and the water has nowhere to go.  They figure that about 150 homes will be lost...My heart goes out to all those families that will be impacted.

I admire all the city crews, volunteers and our mayor Shari Dector-Hirst for the courageous effort that they are putting forth to attempt to hold back a prodigious amount of water.  They all deserve major kudos for their very hard-working efforts.

Look at the height of the water in relation to the vehicles.
The super bags that have been put in place are currently keeping the river back but they did have to close 1st Street  because they couldn't keep up with their pumps despite all the bags.  These bags each sit about four feet high and are double stacked and are now double and triple layered as well.  The water levels are higher than the average vehicle on the other side of the dikes from the road.  Kind of scary when you realize that the water is higher than your vehicle and has the strength to simply crush it or wash it away...

Check out the photo from ebrandon (from 3 days ago - water levels are higher since) at the right - especially the vehicles to the right and the water on the other side of the super bags...

There are some more photos of the river going through Brandon and the surrounding area and the efforts that have been put in place.  Check out the photos on our local ebrandon site - especially the aerial ones on the second and third pages.  If you click on the photos - they will enlarge.  Keep in mind that the aerial photos were from May 6th and the river has risen and spread a great deal more since then.

I am not a religious person but hope that you will all send a heartfelt prayer or thought for all those affected by this flood.  So many towns, Hutterite colonies, homes, farms, animals and wildlife are being impacted and they need all the help they can get.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Z is for Zucchini

I am back -

I fully intended to finish my A to Z blogging and damn it I will despite having almost been without my computer for two weeks!!!!  First it was an incredibly nasty virus - the one you know is really bad when your IT god says OMG! every few minutes and then again six hours later announces that he will come back tomorrow to finish it...then the next day...and finally Sunday night.  Then I find out the internet is down because of the Assiniboine River flooding has damaged some fiber optic it is Thursday night and FINALLY it is back on line.  It has been a long haul and after the first signs of withdrawal I didn't think I would make it but I have and I'm back!!

Did you miss me?

Anyway, I am going to keep this one simple.   Zucchini is one of those wonderful, innocuous vegetables that you either love or hate.  I really love it.  I like it raw and chopped up into a salad or sliced lengthwise and on the grill.

Grilled Zucchini

Zucchini - any size but keep them all roughly the same size
Italian salad dressing
crushed garlic
grated ginger
wooden skewers

Cut zucchini into 3/4 inch thick rings and place in a non-metal bowl.

Pour some Italian salad dressing on top.

Add 1 or two cloves of crushed garlic, depending on how much zucchini you are preparing.

Add about 1 tsp grated ginger.

Mix and let sit overnight in fridge.

Thread onto skewers from skin to skin.  You need to make sure you go through the skins or they will fall off the skewers.

Cook on barbeque or under a broiler until tender for  about 10 - 15 minutes.

Shake some parmesan cheese lightly on top and serve.