Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Here's our GREAT Christmas tree decorating event finally! Just never did get around to it before this and then buying a tree didn't seem worth it anymore. So we pulled out my old tree that I bought when I lived in a dorm. I think Kellen enjoyed the whole experience with this tree as much as any tree anyhow!

Sending you wishes for a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! Hope you make many wonderful memories with family this week!

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Any Practical Food Blogs?

Reading sister Jenn's post today got me thinking again. As much as I love reading wonderful food blogs such as this or this one with great pictures, really, do I ever have time or the ingredients to cook these recipes? Rarely or practically never. I like Jenn's quick meal, because that's more and more of what I do lately (Except for the shake and bake - have you read how much salt is in that? I'd make my own seasoning mix. Sorry Jenn.) Tonight Kellen and I had deer sausage, roasted cubed sweet potatoes and steamed broccoli. Nothing fancy but healthy and tasty. And very much kid friendly. Prep time minimal so that I could pay attention to the demanding boy under my feet who had been at the sitters all day.

Where are the food blogs that would be of assistance to the majority of us? The normal people who aren't chefs. I really like this blog that has 5 weekly recipes and a shopping list to go along with it. Wouldn't that be handy? Too bad for me that it's vegan, since I don't want to go that route. Last week I was talking to a mom who actually does a weekly menu and grocery shopping list. I would love to be that organized. Wouldn't you? I think I have to do it. No more thinking about it. That's why I'm saying it here. Now I'll have to do it - a practical food blog. Maybe, hopefully, even with a shopping list. Maybe then I would finally get more organized with our meals. Tomorrow is my last day of work for this year (and only 7 days in January!!!). I should start soon... Hmm, it's so easy to put things off. If I get it off the ground, I'll let you know, maybe. Would you use my ideas Jenn? (Maybe I should tell you that we had curry carrots and tofu last night...are you still interested?)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Kitty Love

We finally got a new battery charger, so I have pictures again. Kellen has changed so much in a month. He has become very attached to Kitty. Very funny to see him get very concerned and pretend wail when Kitty "falls" (with some help) on the floor. It think its the first time I've really recognized him pretend playing.

I've been enjoying my day off, but finding that there is never enough time. I'm trying to remind myself of the things I did get done instead of feeling frustrated by all the things I didn't. Lunch took some time, since I tried a new recipe - Cranberry Chicken Stew. I think it might be time for a recipe post soon. Anyhow, I promised Kellen we'd go play in the snow when he woke up, so I'd better take him out before it's dark.
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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Confusing mommy feelings

I'm not sure how to feel. Kellen started going to a new daycare this week (long story). The second day I literally dragged him screaming out of there. He didn't want to go home with me. This morning he asked "Betty's?". He was upset when I said no, Mommy and Kellen get to play together today. Am I suppose to be happy he LOVES his new daycare? I am glad, but I wish he didn't seem to love it more than me!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

I need a journal...

I should probably get a journal for the odd time I need to write on my life reflections. But I don't have one, so here I am. I guess you read by your own free will so I shouldn't apologize.

On Wednesday night, I worked late. I was doing a babyfood making/infant feeding class that went really well. I went as far as to say it was probably the best class ever since I've been working for the Tribal Council. It was the best turnout and the women were so interested and had so many good questions. I really enjoyed all the discussion and I had a lot of fun with these women!

Anyhow, on the way home as I came to the top of the valley the snow was falling and the town lights were twinkling and the lakes were reflecting beautiful a picture in a movie. It took me back to the time, almost exactly 4 years ago when I drove into the town and it looked like exactly the same picture. I remembered how overwhelmed I felt thinking this was going to be home, wondering what kind of a job it was going to be, and just wondering what I was getting into. I was amazed when I realized how much has happened in just 4 years...all the life things like got married, had a kid. But I thought of more, like how this town is home now and how much I've learned about my job, people, and life. It made me thankful. It also made me want to live life with more purpose every day because every day adds up to something bigger in the big picture. Do you know what I mean? I suppose I could try to give an example, but I'm not even going to try.

Ian and Kellen should be home any minute. They went to Regina to watch the Rider game at Andrea's. I'm sure they had more fun than me. I kept checking on the game but I was mostly studying. I write an exam to be a personal trainer on Tuesday. I've finally been through all the material once really good. Now my approach is try get some sleep so I can remember it all. I'm sure I'll be dreaming about muscle names tonight.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Boring Household Update

  • I have taken no pictures recently, so you are stuck with a boring update...
  • Ian's getting ready to go moose hunting for the week. That means the happiness level is pretty high in our house.
  • Kellen is making up for his lack of eating during the week and a half of battling a stomach flu. He is eating everything is sight and constantly asking for more. He must be gathering stores for a big growth spurt. He is even eating meat really well, which makes his mommy very happy.
  • After 3 weeks, we finally have our car back. I was getting worried I would be without transportation for the week of moose hunting. Being a one vehicle family was a real pain when public transit is non-existant. On a happy note the bill was much less than we had prepared ourselves for. On a sad note, it's not completely fixed as it still needs a $1000 part. However, happy note - the mechanic is looking for a used part for us, perhaps at the more reasonable cost of $300. Cross our fingers.
  • Baby girl is growing more active all the time and will be joining us in only about 11 weeks.
  • I am tired all the time. I pretty much go to bed at 8:30 or 9 these days. I seem to barely keep up with meals, house, work, and Kellen. I can't imagine having much else going on in my life. I am already looking forward to not being pregnant anymore.
  • A highlight of my week was probably taking Kellen to preschool gym night. Fun to be out with other families and see Kellen have so much fun. (Plus he goes to bed so good when we get home!)
  • Also fun was Kids Cooking Club at a school I work with (even though I confess I hoped it would get cancelled cause I was so tired). I had 3 super fun boys in my group that made me laugh. They were pretty excited to crack eggs! Working with kids always gives me the most hope.
  • My boys are both taking naps, so I should get to what I came down here to do...go on a scrapbooking frenzy.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Smarty pants

Here's my little smarty pants! I don't care that I look like "one of those parents." I will brag - while I laugh at myself for being so amused by the little things Kellen does.

He managed to find a little hole in the steering column of his payloader that fit Dad's keys. I had a good laugh when I saw him driving around with the keys hanging there. I think he's so smart to know where he should be putting the keys! Dad was quite amused too and got the camera...which lead Kellen to know he'd done something to be proud of.

Kellen does and says lots of new things lately. He's such a little boy now. He throws real great big fits when he doesn't get his way. He tells me to "go" with an emphatic punch in the air. Tonight he didn't want to watch me eat his supper and I got told. He knows how to ask for what he wants to eat...most often "noon-els", also know as noodles. Yesterday I learned that it has to be the usual - rotini pasta. Macaroni does not cut it. He surprised me by asking for toast the other morning and beans tonight at super. His vocabulary is finally picking up the pace a little!

I hope I have a good baby on the way so I can spend lots of time with Kellen on mat leave. I am very much looking forward to not having to drop him at the sitters. If he's grouchy in the morning and I reassure him that we are staying together all day, he is a much happier, cuddlier boy. He is definately communicating his emotions more (or maybe I'm just tuning in now). If I tell him we are going to Lori's he sometimes shakes his head "no". Aww, it breaks my heart.
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Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Deceptively Delicious

Here's the book I've had my nose into a lot lately. I don't often get obsessed with a cookbook, but I've been getting lots of new ideas...for our own house and for promoting healthy eating to the daycares and schools I work with.

I haven't actually followed one of her recipes completely yet. But I've been altering a lot of my favorites with her good common sense ideas. I have lots of pureed squash in the freezer now. I've added some to a pasta dish and to a chili. No one would have ever known. I see more than a nutritional benefit here, since we have more squash from our garden than I care to eat. Maybe we won't have to throw any out next spring.

Since cauliflower was on sale the other day, I bought 3 heads. So here's what's going on in my kitchen as I type... I think my steamer will be getting lots of use while I try out more of these ideas. Tomorrow morning will be scrambled eggs with hidden cauliflower puree. I guess this was one on Oprah that everyone loved. Kellen actually would eat cauliflower no problem, but I wouldn't eat it for breakfast. So, I guess this isn't really just a solution for kids to eat healthier. And, I see how it could save on food costs.
Anyhow, that's enough about my latest obsession. So far, I highly recommend this book. I'm looking forward to trying the homemade ranch dressing made with pureed white beans - I'd love to see this one in daycares if it's good, since I see kids licking it off their carrots. So far, I highly recommend it, but perhaps I should save that statement until I actually try a few of her recipes! Better go get the cauliflower pureed and in the freezer so I can get to bed.
Anyone else tried any of her ideas?

Attempt at family pictures

I thought with us looking so spiffy for the big day, we would get a picture to send out at Xmas, but no luck really. It's impossible to get everyone looking at the same time.

This was by far the best picture my camera got this weekend!

As requested...Kathy's Wedding

The bride and groom looked great...I'm sorry I didn't take a better picture than this. I hardly took any actually. I was thoroughly enjoying the day and plan to get GOOD pics their photographer. The wedding was magical, as Jenn said...I may as well just direct you there for a good summary and better pictures.
While Ian & I were dancing with Kellen, Andrea got some of the evening fun recorded for me...

Doesn't Jeff look like he's having fun!

The kids were the real dancing maniacs of the night.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

The Scary Month

I've survived October! At the beginning of the month I felt completely overwhelmed everytime I looked at my calendar. It was full and ugly. I tried to think about it in short blocks of time. Kellen did his best to end the "interesting" month in an "interesting"way. He added to the Halloween decorating on the sidewalk of a neighbors house...with his supper (chunks of spaghetti!) I felt bad that it happened at Val's, yet better there than other places since she's got a great sense of humor and we laughed about it! He had thrown up once at the sitters earlier...and the flu had been going around there...but, he seemed fine and ate a big supper so I thought maybe he'd escaped getting really sick. I learned my lesson anyhow. I spent the rest of the night carrying a very lethargic boy between the couch and the busy door. I was glad Ian got to come home last night. He even cleaned up the accident on couch that I didn't quite catch in time. I was suppose to be doing 3 cooking classes today, but I cancelled 2 and the other one is being taken care of by the other dietitians (I'm so glad we have 3 dietitians at work!) I felt bad about cancelling, but Kellen's still not himself this morning. He wouldn't go back to sleep when he woke up at 5, he whined at me all morning, and he brought his blanket to me and 9:30 and fell asleep in my arms - I don't ever remember him doing that! Now that he's sleeping I'm enjoying getting caught up on things...and getting ready to go to Moose Jaw tomorrow for Kathy & Joe's wedding! So enough blogging for now... Hope you had a Happy Halloween!
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Saturday, October 13, 2007

New Post

Seemed like it was time for a new post. Got the pictures and Kellen woke up. So, not enough time to say much now. Kellen is trying to push me out of the chair. It's time to go for a walk. Maybe we'll go swing in the park. He sure had fun swinging when Grandpa was here. See him asking for more with his hands in the first picture? Obviously these pics are from a bit ago. Things are no longer green and now no longer orange and yellow either. I'm tired of the brown already. How far away is spring?

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Secret's Out

Okay, maybe Ian would have liked to have kept this a secret, but I admitted that I just wouldn't be able to. We were excited to find out that we are having a girl! She looked really good at the ultrasound this week and made me laugh with her toes touching the top of her forehead. Didn't look to comfortable to me. Only about 18 weeks till we meet her...doesn't seem that far away!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


The park behind the house is looking very much like fall. Reminded me of the fall pictures I took of Kellen last year, so I thought I'd try it again. It was so easy to pose him then. He wasn't even crawling. Wow, he has changed so much. I followed him around for along time with the camera. Out of the 50 I took, I think this are about the only 5 that aren't of his back as he raced around the park. The apple helped slow him down for a little bit.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Beautiful Music

I told Ian while I was trying to get Kellen to sleep last night that I drafted a blog in my head, but "don't worry I won't post it and embarrass you." His reply? "Why not? I could use some good PR!"

I have had a long, trying week with a sick boy who is not sleeping well. I haven't probably said how good his sleeping has been in the last month. Putting him to bed is a 5 minute process and he only is up briefly once or twice a night. Not this week. Getting to sleep is closer to a 3 hr ordeal and he is up fussing too many times. After I would get him to sleep I'd fall asleep before I got any dishes or housework done, knowing that I had to get up early for work.

Last night it was 10pm when Kellen was finally sleeping. The deep breathing, although it sounded a little congested, was beautiful music to my ears. The noise in the background made it a perfect symphony - the dishes being done. I didn't even have to ask. I had heard Ian talking on the phone for a long time (mostly about hunting, of course) and then he said he should really go and help his wife who had a long week.

Ian thought my thankfulness was a little much, it was just dishes after all. No husband should underestimate the powerful statement of doing dishes. It is beautiful music to a tired, pregnant mom's ears. Okay, maybe it does sound a little exagerated when I write it, but I'm sure others out there can agree with me, right? (Especially if you don't have a dishwasher!) Anyhow, it's good to have Ian home for the weekend and Kellen seems more like himself this morning. We're off to go to the Farmer's Market!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

The Hunting Cabin

We (Bill, Mary, Ian, Kellen & I) went up to Reserve this weekend. Bill and Ian worked on the cabin while we entertained ourselves. We left early so the men could really get lots done without a trouble maker around. It will be a really nice cabin when all the work is done. I wish I had more pictures but forgot my camera :( I took a few on Mary's cell and thought this one, although blurry, is worth sharing.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Dancing and High Fives

I haven't shown Kellen in action for awhile. Here's lots of great dancing and high fives with Dad.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Rainy Day

Kellen's story about a rainy day (as I think he would tell it!) I'm so sad to not go outside today. Mom says no, it is too wet. I got my boots out again and again, but she just kept putting them away.
I got so bored I wrestled the bear. It got boring fast. He doesn't fight back.
I tried loving on him instead. He doesn't kiss me back either.
I whined and complained at Mom till she made me a cool fort.
I played in my fort for a long time. I read lots of books with a flashlight. I hope it doesn't rain again for a very long time!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


I was thinking today about how Kellen brings a sense of newness to my life about everything. Seems I'm always counting firsts and noticing new things. When I watch him, it makes me think about the adventure that life is or could be or should be anyhow.

This picture was Kellen finger painting for the first time at the first "friend" birthday party that he got invited to.

I was also going to post a picture of his new and first haircut, but sadly realized I don't have one! He probably doesn't realize he had a haircut. He fell asleep on the way there, stayed asleep while I carried him in, slept peacefully while i sat him up on my lap and propped his head up, never stirred while the hairdresser did her work, and finally woke up while I jostled him around while trying to pay. He happily waved goodbye without knowing why we had been there.

Tonight I heard him say "down" and understood he wanted to go downstairs. This language development is amazing to witness and is truly a learning experience for me as I try to listen for his words.

This weekend at the Cecil Bailey family reunion he showed us that he may enjoy being a performer and having an audience. He would stand on the coffee table and "sing" a song, grin, and wait for the clapping (he would prompt us by starting the clapping if we didn't realize the song was over). He learned this from watching Gavin sing a song (I've Been Working on the Railroad, I think it was) and being absolutely delighted with the applause Gavin got.

Kellen is sleeping through the night more and more. I love this breath of newness!

He is starting to throw himself on the floor and cry when I say "no". Not all new things are enjoyable, I suppose. Although sometimes it does make me laugh, he acts so dramatic and does such a good job of looking really pitiful.

Another great first was hearing the new baby's heartbeat for the first time yesterday. For anyone who has heard their baby's heartbeat for the first time nothing more needs to be said about the joy of new life, you know what I feel.
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Monday, August 06, 2007

A Book of Jewels

After Bill & Mary left this morning after a visit and coffee, I saw Bill's book on the coffee table that I should have returned. Maybe I forgot because I really don't want to return it! I sat down to read it again. I'll Never Marry A Farmer: Lois Hole on Life, Learning & Vegetable Gardening is a book full of little jewels. Maybe I am a old lady at heart because I love the vegetable gardening tips. This book is about more than that. It made Lois Hole my new hero for her outlook on life and people and her wisdom. (The short story format is also perfect reading for me right now.) So I'll share one story that touched me...

Society's Loss. Mrs. Dorocher, my dear friend and co-worker, gave me my first strong connection with the native community and my first insights into the difficulties native and Metis people face every day. Every time I saw other people dismiss her, it saddened me to think how much they were missing. Once I got to know Mrs. Durocher, I learned to look at all people more carefully.

When Ted and I first started farming, we truly depended on members of the native community to help us. Unfortunately, we quickly discovered that the problems of alcohol and conflicting cultural values meant we couldn't plan on having their help every day.

Mrs. Durocher's nephew, Peter, was one of the hardest working employees we ever hired. He wasn't always available for work, but Ted made it clear that he was welcome to show up whenever he could, no questions asked.

Peter was a handsome young man, lean and athletic, with a neatly groomed moustache. He was strong, but also shared much of his aunt's grace and agility. I remember when the barn was being shingled, he would slip some nails between his lips and criss-cross the roof like an acrobat, hammering away. The others would struggle to keep up, pausing now and then to watch Peter in amazement. He was quick with a joke and got along well with everybody. Ted often said he breathed a little easier whenever Peter was on the farm.
Then suddenly, on day, Peter was gone. They found him alone in a hotel room, where he had choked to death. He wasn't yet 30.

When you read items like this in the paper, stop and think for a minute. When that person was born, he or she should have the same human potential as your own child. But somewhere, somehow, things went terribly, tragically wrong. I believe very strongly in personal accountability, but it would be foolish and unfair to discount society's role in deaths like these.

I wish I had the answers, but I don't. I try, in my own way, to accept people for what they are and help wherever I can. I just know that we can't afford to simply throw our hands in the air and lament that there's nothing we can do.

Every time our world loses a Peter Durocher, it loses a lot.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Recipe #5: Bulgur Salad

I may have found my favorite summer salad yet. Taste is right up there, but what makes it the greatest is that there's no cooking involved. I haven't been making my usual favorite salads, because even cooking barley or quinoa is no fun when the house is already 30 degrees. This is a must try salad...

1/2 cup bulgur
3/4 cup diced cucumber
3/4 cup diced tomatoes
2/3 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint
1/3 cup chopped green onions
2 T fresh lemon juice
2 T olive oil

So, I'm giving the recipe as I read it, but I should say that although I think it would be better with the fresh herbs, I just used dried basil and parsley and skipped the mint. I also added more lemon juice and oil than called for.

Place bulgur in large bowl. Cover with 1 inch water and soak for 1 hour. Drain off excess water. Add rest of the ingredients and season with salt and pepper. Wait 10 minutes before serving.

-Original recipe from The Enlightened Eater's Whole Foods Guide. The book gives a description of bulgur - it's made from whole wheat berries that have been steamed, hulled and then cracked. (In case you were curious.)

Very fun that we now have our own cucumbers to make this with. We also enjoyed our fresh, just picked corn-on-the-cob with this salad for lunch. If only my herb garden had come through, this salad would be really delicious. I even enjoyed the salad for supper - this time in a pita with cheese and mashed lemon sardines.

I've really enjoyed reading some food blogs lately. I've been inspired to cook more and feel like starting a blog just for that purpose. But I would never do as good as a job as some people do, so I think I'll just enjoy theirs. I came across a vegetarian one that gives you a week's menu and the grocery list to go with it. Maybe I'll get around to putting up links to some of my favorites soon.
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Wednesday, August 01, 2007

From the Niedermayers

Our next door neighbour, Iris, got home from her visit to BC. She spent some time with her grandsons, Scott and Rob. They were nice enough to send Kellen a very special shirt. Not sure if I'll want to let Kellen wear this one. I'm sure there will be many shirts that I try to get marker out of, but I don't want this marker to wash away.

Uncle Tim, Kellen wants to know if you're jealous.
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Monday, July 23, 2007

Kellen's Latest

Kellen would prefer to eat fruit all day. I caught him munching on a plum before I put our Good Food Box away. He ate the whole thing without taking it away from his mouth (except for the few moments of screaming when I grabbed it to get the pit).

But the more significant news to report...Kellen slept through the night last night. He didn't wake up once! What did we do to acheive this? Nothing, really. Was it just a lucky night? Perhaps, but I'm holding my breath for tonight, hoping that we are entering a new phase.

I left Kellen and Ian overnight on Friday and enjoyed a scrapbooking/stamping retreat. Maybe that helped. Although he had still got up twice for me Saturday night. Anyhow, I may have to find reasons to leave overnight again to see if that brought on the lucky(?) night.

So, big news, eh? I'm sure all other parents can feel my excitement. Any guesses as to the likelihood of a continuing trend of more uninterupted sleep?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

More Fun, Summer Pictures

Too cute sitting at the fire, eating breakfast.
This one cracks me up. He looks like a monkey. Poor kid with a black eye and swollen face from all the mosquito bites. Those Northern mosquitos are mean and unstoppable. I laugh now, but I didn't that weekend.
These were on the way to Waskesiu, while he was still really looking cute.