Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I've learned a lot in the last...almost four years. Ye gods, time flies. With the Spawn's birthday being a mere month and two days away, I've been mulling over some of the lessons I've learned.

When going to the park, always wear something with pockets. This allows for the easier transport of random stuff. Today it was peanut shells and acorn caps.

Always have a spare change of clothes, including shoes, in the car for everyone.

Who says you can't have waffles for dinner? Or pie for breakfast, for that matter.

Cornstarch is a very cost effective toy. It also results in cleaner kitchen floors.

Sleep is still overrated.

If you don't like a wet seat, always wear rain pants into the woods. You never know when it will be time for a picnic with Pooh and Piglet.

Trees are a lot bigger when you're only a bit over a meter in height. So are dogs.

A hole in the ground is a very cost effective toy too.

It is important to have lots of paper in the house. Also lots of crayons, markers (Sharpies, please), etcetera.

Never, ever run out of either bananas or yogurt.

It is possible to draw recognizable animals of all kinds, even if you think you can't. Then cut them out and make them talk.

Never underestimate the ability of a young person to remember things. Long neglected and boxed up toys, for instance.

And now it's bedtime, or so I have been informed.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Good, the Bad, and the...Indifferent

Life just keeps chugging along around here (and elsewhere, I presume). This would definitely fall under the "good" category. We'd had only a few and relatively small trees fall since the big windstorm last month. Finally got a good soil sample out of the garden. It's in the oven to dry even now and should be on its way to the lab soon. The Spawn seems to have decided to become a storyteller. That's great fun, even when she wants to tell her stories as she goes to bed at night. I guess there's nothing wrong with providing your own bedtime stories! Today we decided on a spot for a small herb garden. I don't know that it will provide all our herb needs, but it will be a pleasant place to be, I think. These are all good things.

On the bad side, the Better Half has been dealing with horrendous allergies here. The current theory is that there were dogs in the house when it was being remodeled, so until that dander has lots its oomph, it's going to be difficult. Lots of expensive but effective drugs later, things are starting to get better. Me, I'm just so tired of being tired. That too is slowly getting better. There are fewer days when it's all I can do to cope with a wonderful, active child, let alone keep the house running and the finances in order and keep up with e-mail. I think I've let a lot of stuff go that I'd rather not have done. And no one really seems to feel that tired is any excuse. So phooey and hopefully things will continue to improve. The real estate market is still a mess, but things are showing up that aren't totally impossible. Maybe we WILL find our "forever house" when our lease here is up at the end of the year.

I've been able to get a bit more reading done lately, which has pleased me enormously. I just finished _The Unorthodox Engineers_ by Colin Kapp, thanks to interlibrary loan. I do love me some classic sci-fi. I recently finished _The Resilient Gardener_, which has given me some interesting ideas for the garden. We need more space! Currently working on _The Ideal Soil_. I need to finish it before we get our soil sample results back. Good stuff though. And so forth. I find I've not got a lot of patience for frivolous books any more, which is a bit sad. There are just so many things I want to KNOW that I have a hard time taking a break for fun reading. Ah well, at least I get to read frivolous stuff with the Spawn.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

My husband!

I'm so glad I married a man who can dig out ditches (whilst the water is running high) and still have the energy to push over a tree afterward. That's all.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

So far, so good

Yay for me and all that. I've been gluten free (mostly grain free since it seems to be easier) for...six months now, I think. It really has helped. The first two months were not fun. Think withdrawal symptoms, I guess. Now though, I've been having far fewer headaches than I've had at any time in my adult life. It would seem I was having problems all this time and never knew it. That actually makes me a bit mad. If I'd known it might be a problem sooner, I might have lost more headaches. Better late than never.

The whole household has been gluten free for two months. The Better Half's doctor recommended it for him, at least as a trial. Given my history and the fact that both my mother and grandmother seem to have gluten issues to some degree, we figured it might be good to do a trial for the Spawn as well. It's a lot cheaper than most of the available and reliable tests. Ain't it great to be "underinsured"? I think it's helped with one of her issues too. Maybe not. It's harder to tell with a kiddo. If we get less underinsured, we might do some testing.

In the meanwhile, I've devised a recipe for gluten free German pancakes--one of her favourite breakfast dishes. I've found an acceptable recipe for gluten free bread. It ain't sourdough, but she'll eat it happily and the Better Half will eat it because he has no other option. And there's rice. And quinoa. Millet isn't so popular. Fermented buckwheat things. I'm going to try my hand at real enjira (however that's spelled) one of these days. It turns out that you can make a lovely chocolate cake with coconut flour too. Things could be worse.

Aside from the health benefits, it saves money on eating out too. We avoid places that focus on pasta, of course, as well as any place that serves pancakes all day (the Spawn loooooves pancakes from Elmer's *sigh*). We did have some lovely Lebanese food recently, minus the bread and spinach pie. It was very, very good. Then again, maybe we've just been deprived!