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Wannaskan Almanac for Saturday, October 6th

Good morning and welcome to another exciting post here on the Wannaskan Almanac. Today is Saturday, October 6th.

Super exciting update at our house!

Regular Saturday W.A. readers may recall reading this post in July about our first grader setting a financial goal to earn enough money to purchase an Elsa's Magical Palace Lego Set. We created a plan and a timeline. We derailed from the timeline. The plan got wobbly. ("I don't want to unload the dishwasher anymore. I'm going back to selling fruits and vegetables. Do we have any?" she asked as she opened the refrigerator.)

Yesterday, the 6-year-old finally got to make her much-anticipated purchase!

A big shout-out to Shelly at the Marvin Home Center for helping us orchestrate a local purchase so our daughter could experience the thrills of exchanging money for goods right in our little town. As Dave Ramsey says, "Feel the money!"

Shelly asked, "How can I help you today?" after successfully slipping the desired Lego set onto the shelf. Lucie described the set she was looking for in great detail. Shelly said, "Hmmm. Well, let's take a look." She slowly walked down the aisle with her serious customer, surveying the toys. When she spotted the Legos, she waited for Lucie to discover them first. Shelly lifted the box from the shelf and placed it in Lucie's open arms, like a doctor placing a newborn in the arms of a mother.

The professional retailer that she is, Shelly ushered her customer to the till where they got down to business. She showed Lucie how to swipe her MHC gift card through the card reader.

Then began the counting of money.

Lucie pulled out her folded wads of bills. Shelly waited patiently as Lucie counted out each dollar bill in groups of tens until she had $49. The she dumped the change out on the counter, that satisfying clatter taking me back to my own childhood purchases of candy from the nearest resort bait shop.

Such potential in that pile of coins. Lucie only needed to count out 29 cents and the Legos would be hers. She looked up at her mama. I slipped a quarter from the jumble and asked, "Do you know how much a quarter is?"


I pointed to a penny. "And how much is this one?"

"One." She placed her finger on a dime and slid it next to the quarter, then looked up again at me.

"That's thirty-five. Try again."

One by one, we slid out the pennies, counting together, "26, 27, 28, 29."


Shelly printed out the receipt and explained its purpose before placing all the contents in a large white heavy-duty plastic bag with the MHC logo stamped on the front.

And thanks to that gift card she won at a local event, she even came home with money left in her jar.

A happy girl! (She went right to work and finished construction late last night.)

Do you love pumpkins?

How about GIANT pumpkins?

Roadtrip Recommendation for TODAY: The Roland Pumpkin Fair!

Where the heck is Roland?

Skee-daddle on up to Roland for a daytrip and prepare to be amazed! We have a friend who's a giant pumpkin grower.* She'll be in Roland, too. This time a year ago, we got to visit her pumpkin patch near Lac du Bonnet. (pronounced Lack-d-Bonnie. None of that fancy French stuff, got it?)

The Great Pumpkin & Vegetable Commonwealth Weigh-Off begins promptly at 10:30 a.m. (Good luck, Laverne!) followed by the beer garden opening at 11:00. There'll be plenty of activities for families and folks to enjoy the rest of the day. If I had to pick one thing - other than the weigh-off, of course - I would pick Pumpkin Patch Tea Room Pumpkin Dessert Specialties.

The 2017 giant pumpkin champion was Charlie Bernstrom of Lancaster, Minnesota whose pumpkin came in at a whopping 1,498.5 lbs! That's a lot of pie.

If you think I'm making this up, you've mistaken me for other W.A. writers, prone to hyperbole and truth-stretching for the sake of a good story.

After the weigh-in, our friend is donating her biggest pumpkin to "A Pumpkin Promise" to raise money for Cancer Care Manitoba. It will be carved for Halloween and this fundraiser. (Click the Pumpkin Promise link for the address to see the carved pumpkin on Halloween.) You can donate at the Cancer Care Manitoba foundation website for this event.

One of my favorite pumpkin recipes is Sweet and Spicy Pumpkin Seeds. (Thank you, Martha Stewart.) These little munchies pack the right punch of sweet heat and are crazy addicting.

I'm almost finished reading: I Like You Just Fine When You're Not Around
Book Club Pick for October: A Discovery of Witches

Fun Facts from the Kids

The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird can fly from Toronto to Prague in 1.95 hours.

First grader's illustration and explanation of what she wants to be when she grows up.

On This Day

Historic Highlights (credits)

2007 - First successful human powered attempt to circumnavigate the world
Englishman Jason Lewis set out on the journey, also called Expedition 360 on July 12, 1994, from Greenwich, London. The over 46,000-mile expedition around the world took him 4,833 days, during which he used only human-powered modes of transportation including bicycles, roller blades, and a pedal powered boat.

1995 - First exoplanet orbiting a Sun-like star discovered
Swiss astronomers Didier Queloz and Michel Mayor announced the discovered the exoplanet called 51 Pegasi B or Bellerophon. The Jupiter-like exoplanet orbits a star called 51 Pegasi, which has a magnitude of 5.49. 51 Pegasi B takes 4.23 Earth days to orbit around its star.

1981 - Assassination of Anwar Sadat
The third president of Egypt, Sadat was killed by members of the terrorist group Takfir Wal-Hajira during a parade held to commemorate the 8th anniversary of Operation Badr - a military operation where Egyptian forces crossed the Suez Canal and overran the Bar Lev Line in Israel. The military operation stated the Yom Kippur War between Israel and a coalition of Arab states. The assassination is thought to be a result of Sadat’s efforts to bring peace to the region which started with the Camp David Accords in 1978.

1976 - Coup in Thailand
Admiral Sangad Chaloryu staged a coup ousting the civilian government of Seni Pramoj.

1908 - Bosnian crisis
Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria-Hungary declared the annexation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which had been nominally under the rule of the Ottoman Empire. The takeover raised tensions within the Balkan region in Europe and threatened to end in a war.

Happy Birthday to You!🎶 

1985 - Mitchell Cole, English footballer

1955 - Tony Dungy, American football player, coach

1930 - Hafez al-Assad, Syrian general, politician, 20th President of Syria

1846 - George Westinghouse, American engineer, inventor

1769 - Isaac Brock, English army officer

And I want to recognize Alfred, Lord Tennyson, English poet who passed away on this day in 1892. According to Poetry Foundation, "In his own day he was said to be—with Queen Victoria and Gladstone—one of the three most famous living persons, a reputation no other poet writing in English has ever had."

Perhaps his most famous quoted line:

"I hold it true, whate'er befall; I feel it, when I sorrow most; 'Tis better to have loved and lost Than never to have loved at all."

Yes, there's snow on the ground, but don't let that stop you from making it a great Saturday!


Tears, Idle Tears
by Lord Alfred Tennyson

Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean,
Tears from the depth of some divine despair
Rise in the heart, and gather to the eyes,
In looking on the happy Autumn fields,
And thinking of the days that are no more.

Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail,
That brings our friends up from the underworld,
Sad as the last which reddens over one
That sinks with all we love below the verge;
So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more.

Ah, sad and strange as in dark summer dawns
The earliest pipe of half-awakened birds
To dying ears, when unto dying eyes
The casement slowly grows a glimmering square;
So sad, so strange, the days that are no more.

Dear as remembered kisses after death,
And sweet as those by hopeless fancy feigned
On lips that are for others; deep as love,
Deep as first love, and wild with all regret;
O Death in Life, the days that are no more.


  1. Congrats to Lucie, our latest "conspicuous consumer."
    Fascinated by kid fact about the SR-71


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