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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