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Canadian Life as I Found It
Chapter XIV April, 1905

THE winter is practically over, and so to-morrow I hope to take my wife and boy out to the homestead, with the rest of our belongings. I have bought some seeds, and I intend to make a garden this year. I shall try and buy a pig, and a few hens; but oh! how the money runs away in this country.

Our parson told Mabel the other day that he would come out our way this year to hold services, so I hope that we shall be able to go to church, we shall all feel more civilized.

I had a very nice birthday treat. I spent it on the trail. I caught a bad cold the day before through sleeping on the floor at the homestead, as the beds had not arrived, so you can guess what a pleasant time I had, rather different to my last birthday at home; dinner this year consisted of a cup of coffee and a piece of bread!

I went back to town yesterday to fetch Mr. S----, his wife and two little girls. I am pulling out early in the morning. Mabel is glad to have her cousin within reach, for the feminine element is wanting out West.

By a lucky chance I have at last sold my oxen and got a good price for them. I got 200 dollars for the team, and I am getting another pony so as to do the work with them, and when my little mare foals she will be able to work too. Anyway I am crawling out of a hole by degrees, so please do not worry over my complaints, it does one good to grumble openly sometimes.

Mabel and the boy are quite well, which is the principle thing, and my wife is quite happy, for an old Manitoba farmer, to whom we had shown some hospitality, came up the other night, and brought her six hens and a rooster—a present. I only hope that she will not kill them by too much care. I know she has been running out already a dozen times a day to feed them, and if one cackles she is off to look for the egg. Now we only want the pig to complete our menagerie. We had rather a tiring day the end of last week. We had five teams up at our place, eight men and seventeen head of cattle, and all had to be fed. Since we came out again we have not had a single day without some one turning up; all the neighbours come round to say that they are pleased to see us back.

I am going to haul out the cousin's lumber for him, so for the next ten days I shall be on the trail. I shall be glad when it is done; but as some one must do it, it may as well be me, and so put a little in my pocket, if only in return work by and by.

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