Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Get Out of Your Own Way and Live a Richer, Fuller, More Abundant Life

Here is an interesting read. Definitely a self-help book. The author has moved from doing private counselling, to doing group counselling. Originally imagined as a letter and words of advice to her daughter, Frederickson has taken the lessons she has learned as a successful businesswoman to shaping her life and her career. This is her way of keeping a hand in helping individuals.

She has words of wisdom for us, in terms of listening to that inner voice, taking responsibility for our lives, growing from our experiences,  and moving from mistakes to life lessons, self- healing and self-love. I can certainly identify with her. In my young adulthood I had a deadly fear of failure and a low sense of self-esteem. I made many mistakes, based in those fears.
In the waiting room!

I, as much as the author, had to gradually move from these fears into taking risks. She does compel us to identify and confirm our goals, and while it was a good read for those entering adulthood, or those seeking a career change, I felt as if my small goals, hopes and life path might be underwhelming. I am content in my early retirement, and learning not to suffer from a whole day in which to putter on small tasks, gardening, photography, following flora and fauna. I did feel as if I was underachieving, yet one has to realize that in our middle years our life's purpose may be small and mighty, and perfect for us. I seek to do a small, manageable amount of hospice volunteering, while managing my husband's healthcare, our home and our 16 acres. This contents me, as much as the author is happier achieving much business success. It is an interesting book.

Best-selling author, mentor, international speaker and founder of the world-renowned Client Attraction Business School, Fabienne Fredrickson has helped thousands upon thousands of women to transform their lives. In this extremely brave and revealing book, Fabienne takes us on a personal journey from the depths of feeling “less than” and “not good enough” to the highs of living and sustaining a magnificent life. What began as a love letter to her daughter Claire has become Fabienne Fredrickson’s message of courage and love to women everywhere that “you are a magnificent being, truly deserving of a rich and abundant life.”

Embrace Your Magnificence will empower you to get out of your own way, move beyond fear and resistance, embrace your magnificence and begin living a richer, fuller, more abundant life.

Muskrat Love in the frog pond

View from the other side of the pond
-the pathway is across the way where I usually sit.
Yes, down in the frog pond, beside the meadow, I noticed that the reeds and grasses were all bent and most were gone. I didn't think anything of it. I know Bambi ambles through there, and other critters.

I was hoping to clear away a path with my
reciprocating saw, but I don't want to bother them!
I went for walkies with Dorah and spotted this when walking on the far side of the pond. You cannot see it from our usual pathway.

This is called an 'eat-out', where all the plants in an area are eaten, or moved, which opens up the frogpond to many critters. If you recall, I installed a Wood duck box, and we had 4 babies successfully fledged down at the frog pond. The ducks visit our pond, but don't spend much time here as it is pretty shallow, and they are susceptible to predators. The momma and babies took off 24 hours after they hatched, the video and report is on this page.

The action on the pond is much fun to watch. My research tells me that muskrats need a metre or two, but the pond isn't that deep. In the drought of 2012 it all evaporated, with small fish and tadpoles dying on the dried up mud. it was so sad. But life returns. We had 3 bullfrogs singing for love in the spring and early summer. Geraldine and Jerry are still ensconced in the goldfish pond beside the house. I expect they will hunker down there over the winter, leaving two male bullfrogs down below.

My eagle eye spotted it right away! Just as I was mourning the end of our summer population (the animals, birds, and insects), we have a new critter to watch in winter.

Muskrat information (Hinterland Who's Who)

It is a large field mouse, sort of a water rat, unlike the squirrels who are our tree rats!
Its tracks look like long, skinny racoon tracks, 4 toes in front, 5 in back.

It has specially evolved teeth that protrude ahead of their cheeks and lips. They can close behind them, allowing it to chew on stems and roots under water with its mouth closed.

Their large hind feet can paddle quite quickly.
While the babies are born blind and hairless, they are able to swim at 3 weeks of age. They write that they live to only 3 or 4 years of age, falling as prey to other animals. Fortunately, they are quite prolific in years of abundant food.

It has adapted to water life, and can find food under a metre of ice and snow, in the cold and almost total darkness. They smash out push-ups, like seal breathing holes, and I will look for those in the winter. Their dens are similar to beaver dens, with an underwater entryway.

Here is our Bala Muskrat from 2010
It was talking to our pigeon statue,
with a Mourning dove in the foreground!
We had muskrats in Bala, when we lived there beside the lake. One day, sitting quietly beside the shore, in the early spring sunshine, with maybe 2' of open water on the immediate shore, ice farther out, a muskrat popped up from under the ice and scared the pants off of us, as well as itself!

Food sources

 Muskrats are omnivorous: vegetable and animal foods, including: cattails, sedges, rushes, water lilies, pondweeds, wild rice, pickerelweed, clover, willow, acorns, maple samaras (maple keys), arrowhead, sweet flag, switchgrass, mussels, crayfish, frogs, snails, and fish.

They live in large families, I spotted 3 muskrats, and the females can brood 5 times in a summer, with up to 10 young per litter.
This I spotted on a drive on a backroad.


 Raccoon, Red Fox, owls, hawks, American Bald Eagles, Common Snapping Turtle, Bullfrog, snakes, and Largemouth Bass; as well as cats, dogs, and people.
Cats - worries me some...

Of course, no bass or human predators here, as this is a small private pond, about 100' x 50'. In spring it can be 4' deep. The raptors might have a hard time, as it is pretty much surrounded by a tree canopy, although open in the middle.
He hisses at the Muskrat just beside him

On another drive out and about, on Code Rd., I spotted some geese, the one hissed at the muskrat who swam too closely to momma and babes. The muskrat appeared unfazed!

Here is a video I took of the three eating away in the pond yesterday. It was a welcome diversion after a difficult beginning to the week. I'm glad they are opening up the frog pond, as it was growing over with pond grasses. I find it a peaceful place to sit and watch the frogs, tadpoles, Phoebes, and dragonflies. In winter the deer walk across, as well as the wild turkeys, leaving tracks in the snow.

Muskrat Love from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.
Not one, not two, but three muskrats love the frog pond.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Trip to Ottawa Hospital

Back we went for follow-up tests. As we waited, our urologist/surgeon was delayed an hour and a half due to an emergency surgery, I wandered to the window. You can see someone standing on a bench, in the rain. It was a bit weird.

The doctor believes we need to have another CT Scan and another Bone Scan done this fall.
 It was quite the drive.

As we left the hospital, there was a major driving incident between two cars: one with the back smunched in, the other with the front smunched in, neither driveable. Good thing they were near Ottawa Hospital!

While preparing for a photo, hubby managed to grab photos of the black swans. On the way home I made hubby grab a photo of the ghost bike at the Bank St. Bridge. There are flower pots around it, too. A bit ghastly for me. I think we should remember the days they lived, and where they lived well, not where they died. In addition, it's a major in-your-face confrontation with our own grief and bereavement issues, while driving to and from appointments for cancer treatments, which isn't the best place for this.

My readers are right:

The dangers of cycling on Bronson Ave ... - CitizenCycle › News

Oct 22, 2012 - By Matthew Pearson And David Reevely, Ottawa Citizen ... Police sayKrista Johnson, 27, died Thursday night when the bicycle she was riding ... In her honour, there is now a ghost bike locked to a light standard near the .
A ghost bike roadside memorial sits at the corner of Bank Street and Riverside Drive, where a 56-year-old cyclist was killed on July 30 in a collision with a cement truck.

Kingston Fair – a chilly day