Friday, January 29, 2010

the strider

Yesterday afternoon the lil' farm hand brought over the bike he got from his Omi and Opa for Christmas.

Have you heard of the strider before?

At two years old. . .

a child can learn to balance and ride a two wheeler. . .

no training wheels needed.

It needs no smooth roads. . .

just a bit of energy ...

and things to see. .

places to go.

The faster their little legs can move. .

the longer they can lift their legs and balance. . .

and the farther they can go before putting their legs down for another run at it.

What will they think of next?

All for now. . .

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Vancouver Olympic Gardens

Did I mention that the Vancouver Winter Olympics start in a couple of weeks?

As we were walking around the city we were enjoying buds and flowers and. . .

this community garden.

It was looking spring like with fresh herbs and spring perennials looking green and healthy.

The Cyclamen in these pots outside this hotel were real ..

I checked.

The beauty of Vancouver is that you can walk around the seawall in the morning. . .

go for a bit of sailing before lunch. . .

take in a round of golf for the afternoon. . .

and then take a gondola up the mountain to ski a few runs before the day is done.

We're all watching the weather for the next few weeks hoping the freezing level will be low enough for the snow they are needing to make on Cypress mountain. Cypress mountain is where the Snowboarding events are being held.

We will be having a state of the mountain address later this morning. They are doing all they can but with this winter being warmer than usual .. they have their work cut out for them.

Even though it does seem like there has been some excessive spending for the Olympic games. . .

and I have no ticket in my pocket. . .

I'll be keeping my eye out for free fun in Vancouver on this site. . click here.

(you can also see a beautiful little video of Vancouver on that site. . well worth the look)

I hope that the games will be enjoyed by all.

I am a proud British Columbian.

On the day of the opening ceremonies. . . our flag will be up .. .

windstorm or not.

All for now. . .

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Vancouver Olympics

Yesterday. . .
after pouring my beloved a cup of freshly ground . .brewed coffee . . .
I asked him as sweetly as I could ..
"do you want to come with me to Vancouver to see how things are shaping up for the Olympics?"
He said. . ."let me do the chores and we'll see."
That meant we were going .. .and I went to wash my hair.
It was a balmy 11 degrees Celsius or 51 Fahrenheit with a slight overcast.
We parked in our favorite spot and set out on foot.
We crossed over Burrard Street Bridge heading to Granville Island Market.
At the other end of the bridge underneath the bridge we found the parking lot for the officials Olympic Cars.
We found some scrumptious blueberry Focaccia bread that I will be making soon .. .very soon.

Instead of walking back across the Granville Street bridge we took the sea bus back across . ..
because we could.

As the sun set. . .the city lights came on . . .
and it was beautiful.

I couldn't resist seeing which sport would best suit me . . .
they had several to try.

The Bay had these amazing photos. . .
cheering on our athletes.

The Bay is the official supplier of our Olympic teams uniforms.
Sure. . they wanted to show them off.

Canada Place was beautiful but the sails were not lit up . ..
I was a bit sad about that.
We walked all around the Convention center. ..
everything was hidden behind special Olympic curtains. . .
no peeking for me.
Granville Street is closed to traffic.
The art work is being set in place.
Even the store mannequins are getting into the spirit of the games.

The artwork . . .
was lighting up the street.

The artwork I enjoyed the most. . .

was done by children .

Lanterns lighting up the street. . .
lighting the way of excited visitors to Vancouver.
As we left the city .. .
He said . .."I think we'll go back during the games".
I said. . ."what about the traffic?"
He said. . ."we'll go early".
I love that he can be flexible and spontaneous.. . .
I really do.
All for now. . .

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

office work

Yesterday after my beloved went out to do chores. . .

I went for my walk and then went to my office to get some work done.

At the end of the month .. .

there are bills to pay and reciepts to organize and staple to their bills.

Things were all fine and dandy until my stapler ran out of staples.

Can you find the staples in my drawer above?

I couldn't either.

I did find this note though . . .

Hmmm. . .

I recognize that handwriting.

It isn't mine.

After lunch I ran to town and found a drawer organizer with movable boxes.

An hour later. . .

voila. .

I put the note in a spot where I could easily see it . . .

and I went back to blogging.

On the weekend Stuart spent an afternoon setting up my new desk top computer.

The old one sounded like a freight train. . ..

the screen flickered like a neon sign. . .

and every time I attempted to load a picture. . .

it took a fit.

I'm good to go. .

It's all good here in the bungalow.

All for now. .

Monday, January 25, 2010

splitting scarves

After shopping for for a new thin scarf on Thursday with little success I decided to go home and revisit the scarves hanging lonely in my closet.

I buy scarves. . . and then wrap them around my neck .. .

re wrap them differently around my neck . ..

and because I'm in my year of jubilee . .

I get hot 10 minutes later and take it off.

The scarves for outdoor wear ..

I want warm.

The scarves that are fashion accessories . ..

I want cool.

I pulled out all my light colored scarves . . .

made a "split" second decision .. .

and sliced the first one up the center.

I put white thread in my serger. . .

and gave it a quick serge . . .

and after trying it on. . .

proceeded to divide them all.

All weekend long . . .

I've been wearing my scarves.

I'm not sure a fashion consultant would be convinced that they look better thin. . . .

but I'll tell her one thing. . .

they feel better thin.

So . . .I have a few dark colored scarves hanging in my closet . . .

and unless someone stops me. . .

they'll be split by noon today.

All for now. . .

Friday, January 22, 2010

double date day

Our weather yesterday couldn't have been more perfect for a January outing.
A very long overdue and long planned day together finally came together.
Kathy and S. came for breakfast at 8:30 and soon after we were on the road.
Our first stop was LaConnor Washington.
The guys moved from the bench in front of one store to the bench in front of the next store. . .
and crossed the street back and forth following a safe distance behind.
After a shared lunch at Seeds. .a wonderful little restaurant we made a quick stop at Camperworld .. .the one stop shop for RV trinkets.
We covered them all .. .
Target. . .Fred Meyer .. and lots of fun shops in Fairhaven.
Two couples. . .
great friends . . .
guys catching up on months of what each other has been up to. . .
and the girls trying on clothes and giggling in the change rooms.
Mexican food for dinner. . .
a belated birthday celebration for Kathy. . .
and a quick stop at Macy's. . .
it really was the perfect day.
The only thing that has changed in the last thirty years of friendship . .
is that now instead of us needing babysitters. . .
we make sure someone is not needing us to babysit.
From being young mom's to now grandma's. . .
our conversations are much the same. .
just a generation removed.
All for now. .

Thursday, January 21, 2010

flowers in January and mom's for dinner

Is there anything better in the middle of January than a walk in the field to pick flowers?
I'll never say no thank you to a mitt full of dandelions .. .
not ever.
If the day had not already been near perfect . . .
we had dinner to look forward to at my mom by love's.
She's such a fantastic cook and since Auntie Loretta is there for a little holiday we had double the fun sisters to entertain us.

What made it more perfect yet .. .
was mom sending home a jar of soup that she had made . . .
so I could post it on the blog ..
and to enjoy a few fantastic lunches for the rest of the week.

Then. ..better yet. .
while my beloved was doing a few fixes here and there ..
we looked through her fantastic recipe box for some new ideas for the Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog.

We went home with a jar of soup . .
some leftover stuffed peppers from dinner .. .
and a stack of recipes . ..

It was a good day .. .a very good day.

Today is double date day. . .woo hoo.

All for now . ..

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


I look at the face of our little Polynsky and wonder where he is.

I sit here looking at the empty form letter that had been sent for our "easy no excuse" response to the Christmas letter he sent us. I'm so sorry I didn't fill it out. .. and send him the picture that my beloved and I had taken with our grands. I could have pointed out his little birthday twin. . .the lil' farm hand. He surely would have liked to know that we picked him because he shared the birthday of our lil' farm hand.

I look more carefully now at the information sent to us. . ..and read now looking for more information that before I so quickly filed away. His mom and dad are employed as farmers . ..and I think that might be a good thing . . .perhaps they do not live in the city.

The news coverage is nearly too much. . .380,000 orphans before the quake .

Nearly 300 Americans families and 100 Canadian families that had been waiting to adopt now wonder where their children are.

So many families are waiting for such crucial news of the children they hope to bring home.

The part of the Compassion letter that really makes me ashamed is the prayer card.

It says. . .your PRAYERS are POWERFUL!

So often I forgot to pray for Polynsky. I meant to pray for each sponsor child while praying for it's Grand twin.

The whole reason we decided to sponsor one child for each grand with matching birthdays was to make a difference in a child's life. .and we only did half a job.

I look at the Bible Verses that they suggest . . .and my eyes stay focused on the verse for Provision

Philippians 4:19 . . I look it up ..

And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

I'm praying now Polynsky. ..I'm praying now.

All for now. . .

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

kitchen gadgets

Confessions from the gastrointestinal bug girl. . .

I started feeling better but was so enjoying your get well wishes .. .

I let you continue on all day . .

Thanks for being such great friends. . .I just appreciate you all.

Okay .. .what happened to my island counter you ask?

I actually was going to call this post. .

What a Girl Needs.

Then I realized that I'd be fibbing a bit and stretching the reality besides.

Yesterday in a moment of renewed energy and spring like sunshine coming through the windows . ..

I emptied my three kitchen gadget drawers in an attempt to bring some semblance of order back to the bungalow's kitchen.

If confessions are good for the soul ...

here is mine .. .

I have a wee bit of a fascination with kitchen gadgets.

They all look so "sure to make life easier" in the stores . . .

and yet . .

I find I'm often disappointed with their ratio of work effectiveness and rapid cleanabiltiy. (sure I know that isn't a word but I did smile when spell check offered "gullibility" instead .. .how did they know?)

I have a few things I couldn't live without.

I say that with personal disdain knowing full well if an earthquake would strike the bungalow .. . I could well be thankful for water and shelter.

However . . .as far as kitchen gadgets go . . .

please don't take my medium sized ice cream scoop that I use for my drop cookies . . .

nor my bench scraper . . .

nor my slotted wooden spoon . .

oh .. and please not my little serrated knife to slice tomatoes . .

to name a few.

If the saying goes in a woman's wardrobe that you should remove everything you haven't used for a year . ..

perhaps that makes sense for the kitchen gadgets as well.

I laid out all the gadgets that every kitchen should have.

  • A bench scraper (starting at the top left hand corner)
  • a pizza cutter
  • a pastry cutter to make a nice edge ( okay . .not necessary but nice to have)
  • a corkscrew
  • different sized ice cream scoops for the obvious but for cookies mostly
  • a melon ball maker (there is no such word as baller apparently)
  • a pronged spaghetti lifter/spoon
  • a potato masher
  • a small grater (and of course a larger one but it doesn't fit in my drawer)
  • a very fine grater
  • a flat metal spatula . .for decorating cakes
  • various sized rubber spatulas . . a narrow one is especially handy for narrow jars
  • a non metal egg flipper
  • two sizes of ladles .. .a smaller one is nice for sauces
  • a large metal egg flipper which I most often use for cookies
  • a wavy vegetable cutter. . not necessary but nice
  • a garlic press
  • a knife sharpener (dull knives are more dangerous than a sharp one)
  • a pastry brush
  • several sizes of whisks . (actually need a medium sized one . .. mom)
  • serrated knives for bread ( a large one for proper loaves and a smaller one for banana bread type loaves)
  • chefs knives for chopping .. .I like the ones that have little wedges in the blade . .it seems to make them slice easier. You really need various sizes.
  • a narrow fillet knife to remove bones from fish
  • a candy thermometer
  • different sized serving spatulas for pie and lasagnas and dessert
  • a can opener
  • another bent blade metal spatula again for cake decorating
  • several small tongs and one large tong (which is not shown)
  • a paring knife
  • a small serrated knife for tomatoes and soft fruits
  • a small chef knife for cutting small vegetables
  • a citrus reamer (love that thing)
  • various wooden spoons. . I have a thing that I can not use a metal spoon in mixing against metal or china.
  • the large opening in the wooden spoon is my favorite for batters
  • large slotted spoons
  • a meat mallet
  • a meat fork

Oh .. and a few more necessary things I have in my cutlery drawer simply because it is right where I need it quick.

  • 2 sets of measuring spoons. I have found that the narrow spoon set is wonderful to get into spice jars. . .look for one of those sets.
  • a vegetable peeler
  • a pastry blender

Sure. . and when you look back into two of my drawers you'll see more was put back than was on my necessary list.

I love those bag clips. . .I maybe don't need that many.

I shoved it all back in. ..

but at least it got a good wipe and one box is set aside for my dil's perusal.

Oh and do run past Judy's front porch today .'s her birthday!

All for now. .