Friday, April 25, 2014

all the moaning

This is what I did last Sunday - packed alway all my winter woollies.
 This is what it did last night - started to snow.

 This is this morning… still snowing.

You should hear all the moaning around here this morning!  
And no one else is even up yet…..

Monday, April 21, 2014

apple bottom jeans

My little project today:
 What I really want to do is make a area rug out of these jean labels.  I think it would look very cool.  It would be even more cool if they were all real leather and I had about six times more of them.  My collection so far only makes a small door mat.  Maybe in time.  Or maybe I could be satisfied with what I have and just make it into a piece of artwork to hang on the wall.  I'm sure my family will think I am loony because of it but I am quite smitten with the whole thing.  Even just the picture of them would be great on the wall.  I'm kind of really super in love with the bottom picture.
 One of my bigger questions is whether I keep the ones that aren't leather or pleather at all.  Still not sure about that.  But I am excited about the possibilities. 
Knowing myself, I should probably just use what I have right now, frame it and stick it up on the wall or they will just sit there for years until I maybe acquire enough for my desired 4 x 6 foot area rug, at which time I may be entirely sick of the idea.
But if you are getting rid of some jeans and they have a leather patch, hang on to it for me, would you?


Today is really the first day that I've felt super-lonely since we've moved here.  The first time I have really longed for making friends. Actually, that isn't even true - I'm just longing to be around my friends (I am in no way against making new ones…. don't worry!).  I've always missed my friends but I've understood that we can't be together.  Today my heart is breaking that I don't have anyone.
I'm longing for a girls weekend but I don't have any girls.
That isn't really true.  I have wonderful family-girls with whom I adore spending time with, but they have their own lives, you know?  So they can't do everything with me.  And I get that.  I've moved into their already very established lives.  We've moved into pretty much everyone's well established lives…. and it kind of sucks.
It'll all be okay. But in the meantime, I'm lonely.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

party down, thirteen-year-old!

Last Friday (April 11th), Mia had her birthday party.  It was a day off from school (administration day for the teachers) so she figured that was a great day for a party.  And it was - except that I still had to work.  I suggested that she have it on Saturday so I could be there and help but I was mildly shrugged off and kindly informed that as long as I made the cake and caramel corn, my presence was clearly unnecessary, thank-you-very-much.  Humph.  Fine, little-miss-I'm-so-independant-pants.  In her words as a two year old "I do self, mommy.  I do self!".
I did get to join the festivities for the final hour or so, after several games and the viewing of the ever- popular "Frozen".  So I snapped a few shots with my phone.

After gifts it was time for cake.  Unfortunately I forgot that we still haven't purchased any birthday candles.  Nothing like a glade cinnamon holiday (or whatever it is flavoured) leftover from Christmas to be a quick substitute!

Of course, it had to be red velvet with Mia.  And I can't say I am sorry that she chooses it every year.  Other than an over dose of food colouring , it is rather delectable. 
Mia and three of the friends in her class demonstrated some weird dance that they came up with as a response to a demand from their teacher.  It was rather hilarious.

Then all of those wackadoos joined in for a group buggy-swayish dance type thing.  They are so weird.  I was never that weird.  I certainly am not that weird now.  I will never been that weird (okay, okay, I'm about as odd as they come).  But they are.  It is a great, wonderful weird.  Mia has been abundantly blessed with a great group of friends.  They are such great girls - lots of fun, caring, playful, don't take themselves too seriously for their new-teenagers status…. all around a great bunch.
And the aftermath:
So I guess my kids don't need me for birthday parties.  And that is fine and dandy.  Especially because, quite frankly, unless I am doing it to help someone else, I stink at birthday parties.  I'm too lame and lazy.  Well, not entirely - but kind of when it comes to my own family's parties.  I like simple.  And really, nowadays, simple is wonderful.


Last weekend was the "Sugaring Off Festival" in St. Pierre-Jolys.  This is to learn about and celebrate the production of maple syrup.  I've wanted to go and do this for a long time - probably since the first time I read "Little House in the Big Woods".  Very long ago.  Kim and Glenda had taken their kids before but now it was our time to join in the fun.
And it was fun.  But, it wasn't all that I dreamed it would be…. thanks to the longest, coldest and snowiest winter in 116 years (actually, the latest news is that it has been the coldest in 116 years, but I don't really know about the longest or snowiest.  quite frankly, I'm fine with the snowiest and it certainly seems like the longest).  Usually spring has sprung and so the sap starts running, but as you will see in a picture below - there is not a drop of sap dripping from the spigots.  Turns out that they had to have sap shipped in from Quebec (the head-cahuna of mapledom).  I kinda wanted to see the big huge caldrons of sap being boiled forever and hear the explanation of the whole process, but that didn't happen (I could always reread Laura's version….).  Regardless, there was plenty of maple deliciousness to be found in sights, smells and tastes.  The first and most important being maple taffy.
Hot syrup is poured on snow, allowed to cool and rolled onto popsicle sticks.  All of this is done at the Sugar Shack - Cabane á Sucre (á francises - or whatever).  
Side note:  It is time that you understand that there are two type of communities where we live: French and Mennonite.  There are either very French sounding towns like: La Broquerie,  Saint Adolf,  Ile des Chénes and La Salle or Mennonite: Grunthal, Kleefeld, Blumenort and, of course, the Meca of Mennonite: Steinbach.  By the way, everyone is kind, they all get along, respect each other and all that, but there isn't too much interaction.

At the ol' Maison Goulet (maison = house), they demonstrated how to make yummy baked goods, including delicious buns.  They also made hand-churned butter.  Oh my word, can I just tell you how much better homemade butter is?  Seriously.  It is so good.  So, so good.

Mia was being harassed by Auntie Kim, but I'm pretty sure she deserved it…..
And then we had a lovely ride.  Well, all of us except Alex and Maddy.  They decided to go and warm up in the car.  Only they didn't only warm up in the car.  They also followed us on our ride a little while - and then went on their own ride.  The hooligans! 

Spotting the girls following us….

Jesse decided to text them to tell them to leave us alone - or something like that.

After our lovely ride, we went to the museum.  They had a room set up as an old classroom, so everyone promptly sat down and pretended.  One of the ladies working there decided that she should pretend to - so she gave us 1890s (or something) French school lessons - math, verb conjugation, etc.  We excelled, of course.  We are all so bilingual.  Or in my case, quadralingual…. or even more.

Kim was kind of messing up most everything - rookie.  Pretty sure she would have got her knuckles rapped pretty stinking hard if she laughed like that in school back in 1890!

You'll notice that Alex and Maddy are conspicuously absent from these pictures.  They think they are too cool for school.  Literally… get it?  HA!  Did you catch that puniness I just threw at you?  HA!  I'm hilarious.
Okay, definitely time for bed…..