Saturday, June 22, 2024



The stunning male Mountain Bluebird
It's hard for me to believe that what I am about to blog about happened almost a year ago. I took an extended blogging break, but am feeling the need to catch up with them, though it may take a while. 

In early 2023 I had booked a vacation and purchased plane tickets for Rob and I to go to Alberta in June. Our youngest niece, Tayler, was graduating from high school and it had been five years since I had been to visit. I was medically cleared to take the trip, as I was still recovering from my surgery. My caseworker said, "what's the difference if you are resting at your home, or your brothers?" She also felt the trip would be good for my mental health. I had planned to stay a few days longer than Rob, but as I couldn't fly alone due to not being able to carry anything, I flew back with Rob. I had found out that the mass I had removed from my chest area on May 25 was not cancer, which was a huge relief. 

I watched Tayler's graduation via Zoom in their kitchen, but I was there for the big day, and that felt great. It was spirit lifting to spend a few days with them. 

Alberta 2023

Rob didn't know it, but I had planned a special surprise for him for this trip. I had hired a bird guide to take us out one day. I ended up telling him before we left, as I didn't think I'd be able to go. It was a surprise to me when the bird guide informed me that most of our day would be driving from spot to spot, and it shouldn't be a problem for me to go too! 

We had a great outing with her and saw lots of western bird species and a few mammals. We both added some bird species to our life list. We went out again the next day on our own for a little while and had another great day, and our mammal highlight of the year, if not our life, a big ole black bear! 

Mammal sighting of the year!
I spotted a Three-toed Woodpecker from the car, though we weren't sure what it was when I first saw it, but I knew it was something different. He was easily found, as he was very busy working on his nest.  

Another shot of the Mountain Bluebird, as it was our most desired bird to see while there.
Isn't he handsome?!

It was a short but meaningful trip, and I'm happy we made it.

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