Archives for the month of: March, 2012

Our new counter top is complete! River finished the sanding, sealing and waxing yesterday – it is beautiful. It has a lovely sheen and looks a bit like granite – but it is actually concrete.

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We ordered the faucet yesterday and I can’t wait for it to get here! Only a few things left to do before the kitchen is totally functional, like a stove and a refrigerator….


I just don’t like them. I don’t like pretending to be them – I don’t like the shows, cartoons, books or movies – I can not seem to get into them at all.

My son loves them.

He pretends to be them he wants me to pretend to be them, to have zowards or what ever it is that they have and run around out side like a crazy person fighting the bad guys.

I can’t do it.

I have tried and it is horrible.

I last about two minutes.

It makes me want to cry.

I feel like an inadequate parent.

One of my friends will actually wear a pink power ranger costume and chase the bad guys for hours, Trace’s dad will do the same thing (minus the pink costume).

I willingly play games, read books, bake cookies, cook, play basketball, color, paint and set up train tracks (although running the train along the track and pretending to be Thomas the Tank Engine is beyond my play capabilities).

Am I the only one that feels that I am depriving my son of this interaction with my lack of interest in certain play genres?

Should I try to peek my interest or should I concentrate on what I am good at – snuggles and books – and let Trace play the other things by himself?

Why does it make me feel so lonely to see him playing alone?

It is good for children to entertain themselves right?

We made our raised garden beds this weekend! With River’s patience, I learned about power tools and I must say I cut a pretty straight line with the circular saw – not bad for a first timer! We have them nailed together and they are ready to go in place…as soon as the appropriate areas are cleared for them. We have to clear the areas in front of the house. Right now there are lots of day lilies, what my dad calls sneeze weed and a few other flowers. Our rhubarb is also in this area but will soon be in a new raised bed all its own down in our field with a healthy dose of horse manure to increase production. (How the rhubarb ended up in the flowers is still a mystery to me – my dad might know the answer…)

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We are currently gathering the ingredients for our soil, a blend of peat moss, vermiculite and compost.

We have had a bit of a conundrum about the vermiculite and the peat moss as both of these are non-renewable resources. Most peat moss comes from bogs in Canada that are being depleted faster than they can grow back. We have decided to get a little at the store and to harvest our own locally so the moss will have a chance to regenerate. Since these are raised beds with bottoms that will not be walked on (very important not to crush your soil!) – the soil can be used forever while only adding a bit of compost to the beds each time something new is planted. We know that the peat moss and the vermiculite will have a long life in our garden growing veggies for our family so it will not be wasted.

On Monday while Trace and I were at bird class, River started seeds for broccoli, cauliflower, spinach,  lettuce, swiss chard, cabbage, kale, mesclun, onions, arugula, parsley and salad greens.

Trace can’t wait for peas so he can “pick ’em and eat ’em right in the garden”. I agree peas are a fan favorite around here!

I know I married a good man because he cleaned diarrhea off Trace’s carpet at 11:00 last night while I was cleaning up my son (and trying not to throw up).

It is the little things that make a difference.

Every morning my son makes his bed.

On his own.

I have never asked him to do this.


He also picks out his clothes the night before.

By himself.

I have never asked him to do this either.

I do not remember doing this when I was six.

Did you?

The Peepers are out!

When my brother was little he had to have his bedroom window closed during peeper season – the deafening noise scared him. I embrace the sound that surrounds me and becomes the background to evening and early morning activities as the peepers find there mates and create new life.

The peepers sang me to sleep last night and it seemed they awoke when I did this morning, a half hour before my alarm. I stayed in bed, snuggled up to River, and listened to the peepers and the song birds wake up.

How glorious to listen to the world awaken!

We have a small cabin in the woods, no power, no water, I think it is 12′ x 12′ plus a sleeping loft, one time Trace said he wished we lived at the cabin. I asked him why, he said “Because everything has a place here”. There is not a lot of STUFF here. It is simple, we have some pots and a cast iron skillet, some cooking utensils, a few books and games, a bed, a small table, a futon and a cooler. That is pretty much it.

Trace’s playground is the surrounding woods – he stays where he can see the cabin and hides behind trees or swings on the porch swing. He does not miss Netflix when we are here or ask to watch it – he never says he is bored and what can he play or say he has nothing to do (as I must have heard at least three times on Sunday) – and yet he has less at the cabin. Perhaps that is the answer.


Less distraction from finishing a task or a game, less of the modern conveniences that make our lives easier.

A simpler time, food, peace and appreciating the moment. Not worrying what we are missing on TV or who we should visit or the errands and tasks that need to be done to keep the house running.


Less of everything except each other and the moment.

I washed two small blankets that we keep on the couch yesterday – they dried on the line and smell fabulous.

This morning I noticed that there is bird poop on one of them.

Back to the washing machine it goes – good thing I really like the smell of clothes dried outside or bird poop could be a deterrent.

I am off to hang up some more laundry – I hope the birds keep away from the clothes line.

What a great weekend! Since River owns a guide service we decided to check out some local bodies of water to see if they would be good for day trips with clients. We found a nearby bog – got the canoe off the top of the car and hoped in! It was a glorious day – the sun was shinning – there was very little wind and both my guys were paddling behind me.

Ready for the trip!

On our way!

I re-learned some paddle strokes, the dufek and the draw, both steering from the front moves, that River taught me last summer. On the paddle into the bog, we saw four beaver houses and a muskrat house, as well as some beaver traps. As we came closer to the bog we could see that ice was still covering most of it, we paddled around the edges using the canoe as an ice breaker in a few places so we could continue our adventure.

The beginning of the trip was a narrow stream...

the stream got wider and opened up to...

the bog - it was beautiful.

Three eagles were way out on the ice, we pulled the boat to shore so we could get a closer look at the eagles, they must have been eating something on the ice. Some ducks made an appearance as well, it was nice to hear them as they flew over the canoe. They must have known it was not hunting season, they did not seem scared of us at all.

River went for the first swim of the season much to Trace's amusement.

Sunday morning we did a little house cleaning (I will admit that our guest room, which is on the way to the attic, collects things that need to go to their proper homes – our skis, skates, sleeping bags, outgrown clothes we are saving in hopes of #2, etc.) and prepared a bunch of items to go to the children’s consignment store.

Then Trace and I went OUT! It was so beautiful outside – I had to change into a short sleeve shirt before long.

I transplanted our blueberries, which have done very poorly where they were, partly because I would forget about them – out of sight, out of mind – and partly because they were not getting enough sun.

Some good old-fashioned horse manure should do the trick as well as a more visible, sunny location. I removed some flowers from the flower beds and planted my blueberries right next to where our square foot gardens will be. I will not be able to forget about them this year. I think they need to be pruned. I should get right on that…. We also measured for the materials that we need to build our raised garden beds – I am so excited about our garden!

We hooked the truck up to some stumps that needed to be removed for more veggie gardens – right in front of the house and next to the steps. I have wanted the shrubs removed for a long time (I thought the shrubs were ugly – they have been there forever!) but did not have the time to do it myself. This was fast and very entertaining for Trace!

The laundry dried completely on the line today – ahhhh spring – there is nothing like the fresh scent of spring on newly washed sheets!

I  decided to make lasagna this weekend and for that we need spaghetti sauce. specifically sauce without basil in it as Trace is having a reaction to basil right now. (Who knew basil could cause so much trouble!) We canned a lot of spaghetti sauce this summer – but it all has BASIL in it – of course. Luckily we stewed a heap of tomatoes too!

So I set up a temporary kitchen next to the wood stove (our new kitchen is almost ready!) and got to work – it is raining out so the wood stove was nice and hot already.


All of our veggies came from two local farms, Goranson Farm and Dig Deep Farm. The pork sausage came from Goranson Farm too – delicious!


I added the tomatoes and sausage to the pot and the sauce smelled yummy!

We let the sauce bubble away on the top of the stove all afternoon – the house smelled glorious and the sauce tasted terrific! Yesterday I made the lasagna and we all agreed – delicious! We hope to do more of our cooking on the wood stove next winter when our kitchen and living space is in the same room.

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