Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

When the Doge Does As Doges do..

Having a little too much fun.
And we’re just getting started!
First, Venice, Number one on my Bucket List!
From floating in the Grande Canal to exploring St. Mark’s Cathedral and the Doge’s Palace. Watching the glass blowers on Murano and sampling everything ‘Venetian’ we could find, It’s been a rare treat!

Through the wall of the Doge’s prison. Look closely....

Dream come true. I’m sitting in a gondola! Eeeeeeeee!!!

One Plus Twelve Twenties

From the time I was little, I’ve loved animals. Daddy was a veterinarian. It was a match made in Heaven.

I found a sick doggie. Daddy fixed him. At 50, I discovered that meant easing him across the Rainbow Bridge.

I wanted a bunny. I almost caught  jackrabbit. Who knew fully-grown bunnies could squeeze between two-inch cage bars?! Not me.

Daddy found a baby deer. We raised him on a bottle. For a little while, we had our own Bambi!

My first horse was a Shetland pony. Aptly named ‘Pinto’. Because he was one. He should have been named Ornery.

My family raised pigs. They were fun to play with. Smart. Resourceful. And when Daddy wasn’t watching, fun to ride.

I got my first puppy in grade five. Cheetah. She was a terrier. She was loud. I loved her anyway.

Cheetah once saved me from a mountain lion. It was just a bit scary. Sometime I’ll tell you about it.

Cheeko was my horse. I didn’t know till he piled my dad that only I could ride him. Big oops.

The first dog I bought for me was a sheepdog. Muffy. She protected me. I’ve loved the breed ever since.

My kids and I raised hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils and chinchillas. Furry and cute. Yep. I still like dogs best.

I directed a play that needed birds. I borrowed a finch. Oops. I’ve had finches now for over 20 years.

We raised Old English Sheepdogs for over thirty years. We really thought we were done. Turns out we are not.

Today’s post is a writing challenge. This is how it works: contributing bloggers each picked a number between 12 and 74. The submitted numbers were then assigned to other bloggers challenged with writing at least one piece using that exact number of words. 
I know it will come a surprise to know I was assigned the word count number: 20
It was submitted by: my BFF, Karen at Baking in a Tornado.
Thanks Karen! This was a blast!

Now, you’ll find links to the other blogs featuring this challenge. Check them all out, see what numbers they got and how they used them.  

Sarah Nolan    

Monday, October 14, 2019

Full Bucket

I don’t have money, I’m not rich,
But still, I have a bucket list.
There’s nothing daring, none risqué,
No scores to beat, no games to play,
I don’t need danger, cash rewards,
And only things I can afford,
So each takes time (to save some cash),
So nothing quick and nothing rash,
You’re won-der-ing what we could do,
With all those guidlines, plus a few,
Well, think no more how it could be,
We’re on a shoestring, him and me,
Yes, I tell you, it can be done,
And still will be a lot of fun.
We find the least expensive lair,
Clean and comfortable’s all I care,
The least of very costly meals,
We search the bargains and the deals,
And so we’ve managed, guy and girl
To see a lot of this old world.
This week, has been the very best,
I’ve crossed the top one off my list,
Yes, dear old Venice topped them all,
I got to see. I had a ball!
I floated in a gon-dol-a,
And climbed some church’s cup-o-la,
Saw famous art to drop the jaw,
With sculptures, hist’ry, opera,
And still our group was not done yet,
Just how much better could it get?
We watched them manufacture glass,
And tucked into some fine sea bass,
We’d navigate by public mode,
Got used to floating as we rode,
And watched gondolas slip on by
Like eels beneath Venetian skies,
(One thing to know, it’s hard to sleep,
With boats to count, instead of sheep,)
We spent each day from dawn to dark,
Explored from Roma to St. Mark’s...
Now as we leave, I’ve got regrets,
There’s nothing that beats this, I bet,
Somehow, I think I won’t quite leave,
Something will help me as I grieve,
Things aren’t bad as they might seem,
I’ll see the Grand Canal in dreams.

Mondays do get knocked a lot,
With POETRY we all besought
To try to make the week begin
With pleasant thoughts, perhaps a grin?
So all of us, my friends and me
Have written poems for you to see.
Please go see what my friends have done,
You’ll be so glad. It will be fun!
And now you’ve seen what we have brought...
Did we help? 
Or did we not?

Next week we’re back to Jenny’s bit,
We’ll talk of SOAP, my favourite!

Third in the series

Third in the series
Deborah. Fugitive of Faith

The Long-Awaited Sequel to Daughter of Ishmael

The Long-Awaited Sequel to Daughter of Ishmael
A House Divided is now available at all fine bookstores and on and .ca!

Daughter of Ishmael

Daughter of Ishmael
Now available at and .ca and and other fine bookstores.

Romance still wins!

Romance still wins!
First romance in a decade!

Hosts: Your Room's Ready

Hosts: Your Room's Ready
A fun romp through the world's most haunted hotel!

Follow by Email

Hugs, Delivered.

Compass Book Ratings

Compass Book Ratings

Ghost of the Overlook

Ghost of the Overlook
Need a fright?

My Granddaughter is Carrying on the Legacy!

My Granddaughter is Carrying on the Legacy!
New Tween Novel!

Gnome for Christmas

Gnome for Christmas
The newest in my Christmas Series


A heart warming story of love and sacrifice.


My novel, Carving Angels

My novel, Carving Angels
Read it! You know you want to!

My Second Novel: Kris Kringle's Magic

My Second Novel: Kris Kringle's Magic
What could be better than a second Christmas story?!

Join me on Maven

Connect with me on Maven


A scientist and his son struggle to keep their earth-shattering discovery out of the wrong hands.

Essence: A Second Dose

Essence: A Second Dose
Captured and imprisoned, a scientist and his son use their amazing discovery to foil evil plans.

Looking for a Great Read?

E-Books by Diane Stringam Tolley
Available from

The Babysitter

The Babysitter
A baby-kidnapping ring has its eye on J'Aime and her tiny niece.


Haunted by her past, Melissa must carve a future. Without Cain.


Following tragedy, Devon retreats to the solitude of the prairie. Until a girl is dropped in his lap.

Pearl, Why You Little...

Pearl, Why You Little...
Everyone should spend a little time with Pearl!

The Marketing Mentress

The Marketing Mentress
Building solid relationships with podcast and LinkedIn marketing

Coffee Row

Coffee Row
My Big Brother's Stories

Better Blogger Network

Semper Fidelis

Semper Fidelis
I've been given an award!!!

The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award
My good friend and Amazing Blogger, Marcia of Menopausal Mother awarded me . . .

Irresistibly Sweet Award

Irresistibly Sweet Award
Delores, my good friend from The Feathered Nest, has nominated me!

Sunshine Award!!!

Sunshine Award!!!
My good friend Red from Oz has nominated me!!!

My very own Humorous Blogger Award From Delores at The Feathered Nest!

Be Courageous!

Grab and Add!

Search This Blog

Ghost of the Overlook

Ghost of the Overlook
Need a fright?