Friday, 29 July 2011

See you at Heritage Days?

Last week, Grandpa and I went to the Shellbrook Museum in Saskatchewan. Shellbrook is where the first Canadian canola crop was grown, more than 80 years ago.

When Mr. Fred Slovunuk and his wife immigrated from Poland, they brought a handful of seeds with them, and what started as a small plot of canola turned into giant fields of yellow. You can read the whole amazing story of canola’s beginnings in the book, Fields of Home. (This will be a link to the page where they can get the book...)

But after visiting the museum, I got to thinking about my heritage. Mom and I are going to Heritage Days in Edmonton this weekend, where I’ll sample all kinds of great food and learn about different cultures.

I’m a proud Canadian, but I love to learn about other countries and their peoples. Heritage Days is going to be amazing!

Grandpa asked me what I would take with me from Canada if we had to move. That’s a very good question. I’m going to think about it for a few days and let you know.

How about you? What one thing from your country would you want to take with you? Let me know here...or on Twitter. My user name is SupermanDuffy. 

Gotta jet.

- Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 22 July 2011

Taking a break

Happy rain day - again!

Grandma says taking a "break" is important to an overall health and wellness plan, so we're having a family "shut down." I've got a big stack of books to read, Grandpa is having fun in his wood shop, and Grandma is making cookies. Even Mom and Dad are taking a day off.

I'm not even supposed to be on the computer.

So - gotta jet before I get caught.

Hope you and your family have a chance to take some time off! Why not send me an e-mail and tell me what you did on your day off? My e-mail is

- Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 15 July 2011

Racing against the mosquitoes!

Maybe I'll be able to run as fast as a deer!

 I am on fire this week!

Between an inspirational writing week at WordsWorth, a great trip to the Calgary Stampede (even though I didn’t see Will and Kate), and a solid few days of running, it’s been a perfect July.

Minus the rain and mosquitoes, of course.

I’m really gearing up for track training.

Grandpa says I need to work hard, like the race horses we saw at the Stampede. I did some research, and just like for track and field, a horse’s training schedule depends on the race – most importantly, the time and distance. And just like humans, their fitness plan has to be properly coordinated to prevent injury.

I wonder if they eat canola, too? I’ll have to ask Grandma about that. The proper fuel is key, right?

And so is knowing your body well enough to understand how to achieve your personal best. Take me - I’m a sprinter, but I still need to log some longer runs to keep my endurance at peak.

Lucky for me, the canola fields are in full bloom and I can run along the roads by Grandpa’s crops. This year, I’m going to shatter my record!

Maybe then I’ll outrun the mosquitoes...

Gotta jet!

- Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 8 July 2011

Stampeding to Calgary

You wouldn’t believe the storm over Grandpa’s canola field last night! It was like a strobe light was in my room with all of the lightening – it flashed every three seconds for almost two hours. The power went out. My internet crashed. The thunder even rattled Grandma’s dishes.

I love a good thunderstorm, but last night was a bit much. I even heard on the news that there were three tornadoes that touched down in Alberta. Scary!

I’m staying with my grandparents this week because we’re going to the Calgary Stampede today. I can hardly wait. Grandpa says he’ll even go on most of the rides with me – if I’m good while Grandma shops, and Grandpa visits his favourite agricultural booths. (Don’t say anything, but I really don’t mind shopping or visiting with Granda’s friends at the Alberta Canola Producers’ display.)

Have you ever been to the Stampede? It’s amazing! My favourite part is the rides (and those mini donuts, shhh), but Grandpa bought us tickets for the rodeo this year. It will be my first time.

And Grandma says if we hurry there’s a chance we might even see the royal couple – William and Kate. I guess I better start practicing my royal wave…

Gotta jet.

- Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 1 July 2011

Celebrating Canada Day

Happy Birthday, Canada!

I love Canada Day, because every year Grandpa and Grandma come into the city to watch the fireworks with us, and Mom invites all of the neighbours over for a barbecue. Dad and I have a hot dog decorating contest – that’s when you put as many different foods and as much as you want to on your hot dog. I always win because he says chocolate doesn’t go with mustard and ketchup. 

It’s tradition!

I’ve been thinking a lot about traditions this week, especially when I’m out on my runs. Did you catch that? *Out* on my runs – the sun’s been shining much more, which means no more indoor running for me! 

Traditionally, I’d head to Grandpa’s farm after the Canada Day fireworks and spend the first few days of the holidays helping Grandma in the garden and Grandpa in the field. Some of the canola fields are starting to bloom, so there’s work to be done – like scouting.  No, that doesn’t mean pitching a tent and being a Boy Scout; that’s when Grandpa and I walk through the fields with a net and swish it through the crop and see how many bugs get caught up in the net. Grandpa says that’s a good way to know how many bugs are feasting on his canola.

This year, I can’t go to the farm.

That’s right, I’m breaking tradition! But it’s for a great cause. On Sunday, I’m going to WORDSWORTH, the camp for young writers who believe in the power of words. I can hardly wait. Camp, words, and running with the mountains as a backdrop – could it get any better?

I think this year, I’m going to start a new tradition, like being thankful for all of the reasons it’s great to be a Canadian. Sounds like a list I can start mulling over on this afternoon's run.

Gotta jet. Hope you get to celebrate Canada’s birthday with your family – and some new ways to top your hot dogs!

- Chase Superman Duffy