Springtime in Alberta

It has felt like springtime in other parts of Alberta - Edmonton, Innisfail and Calgary - but yesterday was the first day it felt like springtime in Fort McMurray.  The air was warm, the studio door was propped open all afternoon, and the temperature in the house climbed to 24-degrees.  I even had a little bird come into my creative space for a fleeting few seconds.  Nothing fills me with joy more than a visit from one of our feathered friends.

Last night, Heather, Chris and I walked down to Snye Park.  We were following the sounds of seagulls.  There were thousands of them hanging out on the remaining ice in the middle of the Clearwater River along with one lone crow.  Perhaps he was having an identity crisis.

I love the spring and our first chance to be working outside in the yard.  Chris didn't know what I meant by "working outside in the yard".  He was picturing me digging in the dirt and planting things.

"That's entirely Heather," I said.  "I just like to putter around the yard cleaning up."

Projects are already stacking up in my mind for the weeks to come.  The eavestroughing needs to be replaced, the deck stripped, and some steps fixed.  The entire yard needs a good raking and clean from the detritus that gathers through the winter.

I'm also going to find time to paint a new mural in the coming month or so, of the late Jim Dorie.  Jim passed away a few months ago; he was the singer/songwriter/motorcycle enthusiast who build Birdsong Studio.

It was a beautiful day for a workshop, and we had almost a full studio with 5 participants.  We were out back taking our traditional photo in front of the murals of Elsie Yanik, Tom Morimoto and Dorothy McDonald when two other ladies wandered by.  They were on a mission to find the murals, so I had them join the group for the picture.

Next, the leaves will begin to grow, and the hills on the other side of the Clearwater will turn from a muted brown to a brilliant green.  There is nothing more beautiful that summer in McMurray.  For now, I will embrace the spring, and enjoy every ounce of fresh air that I can breathe in.


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