Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Funny Story

The kids, Bear and I were out playing on the bales last night (again),  when Kaitlynn announced loudly that she had to go to the bathroom, but didn't think she would make it to the house.  She ran off behind some tall grass, but I could still see enough to realize she was taking off everything from the waist down, including her boots. 

Jared was sitting next to me, and I said, "I need to teach that farm girl a thing or two about emergency 'field trips'".  Bear decided to join Kaitlynn out of curiousity, and I tried to call him back, without success.  After a moment, Kaitlynn starts yelling at Bear, and is starting to sound quite frantic.  I asked her if she needed some help, and she literally screamed "YES!". 

So off I went, telling Jared to stay on the bales in hopes of saving what little dignity my daughter had left.  There was quite a surprise.  Kaitlynn's little 'field trip' turned out to be quite the episode.  'Number 1' turned into an explosive 'number 2'.  And Bear, in all his curiousity, had gotten underneath her! 

So now, I had a messy little girl, and a messy pup.  Kaitlynn takes a lot of pride in herself and this was something definitley 'beneath' her.  Becoming increasingly upset as she redressed to walk back to the house to get cleaned up, I had to think of a way to calm her down.  I'm trying very hard at this point not to let loose the laughter that is building. 

So I said,  "Now, lets think about what just happened here.  You decided to go pee in the field.  It ended up being explosive diarrhea.  Bear gets too close, and you shit on his head?" 

Now I never curse in front of my children, even though I realize they know every curse in the book from their playground relationships.  So I knew this would work in cheering her up.  She found it so funny, her big sobs quickly turned into an uncontrollable laugh, and between gasping for breath and laughing, she said, "Yes Mommy, and he ATE it!!!". 

We laughed our way back to the house where I cleaned up both girl and dog.  Kaitlynn's tummy ache subsided and the evening went on as normal.  I asked if I should scrapbook about it, and she said "Definitely, and blog about it too.".  So, this post is with her permission. 

Moral of the story?  Always try to find the humorous side in an otherwise emabarrassing situation.  My favourite personalities are the ones that can laugh at themselves.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

I Can Actually Fly!

The kids have built their dragon nests in the bales, and are now playing out there every chance they get.  The game involves touring around the 10 acres and looking for a specific grass and other oddities to add to their homes.  It takes up entire afternoons.
Here is Kaitlynn during one of her take-offs. I'm not entirely certain that one of these times she won't actually take off. After all, they say if you believe in yourself enough, anything is possible.

Here is Jared launching himself off the bale and landing so hard it makes my feet hurt! It doesn't faze him though and he keeps doing it over and over again.

"Mommy, take more pictures of me in flight!" So I just set the camera to snap multiple images and away they flew! We got several great action shots, a few of the best included here.

Here is Jared with "actual wings" he fashioned from his sweater. I still can't believe how fearless my children are. They think nothing of throwing themselves off a 5 foot high bale.

Watching them is a lot fun.  I'm taken back to when I was that age, and the world around me became anything I wanted it to be.  I also remember being called in for supper, and gulping down my food as fast as I could so that I could get back out to that world.

For myself as an adult, I get close to that same excitement when I'm gardening, creating new spaces outdoors.  Most of my ideas are still in the imagination stage, so I guess it isn't so different from childhood.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Sheer Joy!

Here is a series of photos I took of my dog, Bear, as he is running up to greet meet me.

I was just going out to check on my kids, take a few photos and call them in for supper.  Bear was playing on the bales with them, and when he noticed me, launched himself off the bales and started running toward me.

I just love watching him run!  In the last few years of my last dog, Ginger's life, there was no more running and bouncing.  The arthritis had taken that freedom away, and watching her was often filled with more pain than joy.

Bear is just over 6 months old and weighs in at over 60 pounds.  He is a force to be reckoned with.  At this point I am already starting to brace myself for the impact!

I'm loving the one ear up, one ear down look.  He has big floppy ears that will often turn inside out when he shakes his head.

Just look at that face!  He has not started to slow down yet, so I know if he hits me, it's going to knock me over! 

Look at those ears!  I just loved scratching and playing with them.  Bear enjoys it too, and will lay his head in my lap for as long as I'm willing to sit there and massage him. 

Just before impact, I move a foot to my left and he goes slighty past me before reeling around and pushing his head, hard into my legs.  If I don't bend down, and offer him my cheek for a kiss, he will jump.  So, I'm better off to bend down and take the kiss. 
The entire time I'm watching him run to me, I have a huge smile on my face.  Where else will you get such a reaction for just showing up?  If there is a human who feels the same way about me, then they have a lot of self restraint!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Early Spring Yard Work

Last year at this time, I was still living in Cold Lake, Alberta.  I would have been packing and showing the house, and getting ready for the move in July.  Now I'm all settled in, and enjoying the house.  Time for yardwork!  There is not much I'm able to do without a tractor, as much of the work that needs doing is major landscaping.  But I can make a few improvements...

Here is my fire pit area (one of them anyway).  I didn't mind the fire pit on its own, but the rocks make it look fabulous.  You can see I've been raking leaves in the background.  There is still a lot more raking to do.

This is an overall view of the part of the yard I've been working on.  It is on the west side of the house, and right now is my favourite part of the entire 10 acres.  I can't wait to see what it will look like when the trees fill in and my planters are overflowing!  Cleaning up fallen branches, pruning trees, raking and weeding were all part of the workload.  But the difficult part, (and the most fun) was creating the stone borders and paths.  They are only partly done.

A view of the path that leads to my firewood pile.  I plan to have my husband build a charming, little shelter for the wood.  I just love little buildings!

This is the view of the path coming out of the area where the firewood and pit is.  I plan on creating several little shade gardens in here as well.  I'm not too sure how it's going to look yet.  It is a work in a progress, and I just sort of go with the flow.

This is the start of another path going into the woods where last fall, my daughter made an exciting find.  Did I mention I like paths?

Look closely.  See the old stone and cement foundation?  It dates back to the early 1900's when it was a service station, and 'highways' were dirt roads.  There are small trees growing in it now, but we will gently remove them, and create our own little secret garden.  My favourite thing about this foundation is all the lichen and moss it has growing on it.

An interesting plank I found lying around, and a couple of logs make up this little stand for my blue planter collection.  The best thing about this?  Simple and natural. 

I did all this work, every single stone in the past few days.  Not a good way to reintroduce myself to yard work.  My legs are killing me, as are my triceps, and even my back is complaining a bit.  And even though I promised myself I would rest today, once it warmed up outside, I just couldn't help myself.
But now I have run out of rocks in my yard, and I have to wait until the fields dry up a bit more, before I can hit up the really well stocked piles.  I also have to wait for my husband to find the time to help me move some of the really big stones.  We will need some big equipment for those. 
I can't wait to keep going!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Fantastic Giveaway!

Vicki at 2 Bags Full... creates these beautiful yarn nests you see in the photo, and she is giving one away at the end of May! 

I do not usually promote giveaways, but I had to make an exception for Vicki.  Not only is she uncommonly kind, but her blog is always a delight to read and look at.  Her photos from all over the world are phenomenal, and I always feel inspired in some way after visiting her little corner of blogland.    

Great art picks up where nature ends. ~Marc Chagall. 

That is how I feel about these wonderful, little nests!  

I hope you feel encouraged to visit Vicki's blog, and even if the nests aren't your thing, take a look around, and absorb some of the lovely energy that resides there.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Another Kitten To Love

My house is turning into a zoo.  I will soon be able to charge money to anyone entering my home.  A gecko, several cats, a puppy, a fish, and who knows what will show up next.

This little orange guy is Georgie's (the kitten he's hugging) big brother.  It took quite awhile to gain his trust, but he is now the friendliest cat in the house, and he does not show a desire to go outdoors, although that is where he was raised.  His momma is still around, but we rarely see her now that our new puppy has taken over the deck.  But she is showing up at her cat house everyday for food and was chased under the truck today by that puppy who has yet to learn what kitty claws can do.

These kittens are a fun pair, going at it like gladiators one minute, and then curling up into a tight ball the next.  Their personalities are like night and day.  Georgie, the female, being far more uptight, aloof and chosey about when and how she will be handled.  Crush is far more relaxed, much like the turtles in 'Finding Nemo', with a very 'life is cool' attitude. 

Junior, my going on 19 year old male is slowing down, and interacting less and less with the kittens all the time.  He is healthy though and still shows up for regular meals, and lets you know if you are at all late with his food.  Junior still loves to snuggle and although he's def, he knows when someone has settled onto the couch, and he quickly lays claim to their lap.

The benefits far outway the drawbacks when it comes to owning pets.  They are a lot of work and they tie us down.  But I would never trade the everyday joy they bring for anything.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Flying Kites

My husband likes to surprise people.  So when my daughter found the kites hidden for her and her brother, there were 3 very disappointed people.  My husband, because his big reveal was ruined, and my two little ones because Dad wasn't ready to give the kites to them yet.  The next couple of days, I had a son who went on with life like it was no big deal.  As long as he has his bicycle and a puddle, he's happy.   And I had my little girl trying to find things to do to impress her Dad to the point of giving in on the kites.  This past Saturday morning, that Dad took the kites and quietly went to his shop to start assembly.  My son, being curious as a kitten followed shortly after and came running back to the house after about 5 seconds outdoors, yelling at the top of his lungs that Dad was putting their kites together.    After another 5 seconds had passed, they were both outside, under Dad's feet, eagerly awaiting their kites.  Kaitlynn received a dragon, which couldn't be more perfect.  And Jared a fighter jet, which he couldn't wait to see how it looked up against the blue sky.  The dragon was up and flying in no time, but the jet is a bit of a heavier piece and we had a hard time keeping it up  there.  But that didn't seem to matter.  He loved running around and looking up at Kaitlynn's dragon, and she even let him fly it for a bit (after a bit of motherly persuasion).  Today, Sunday, brought some much stronger (and colder) winds.  Both the kites were up and flying right after breakfast.  But the force was a bit too strong for either of them to handle, and as such, we spent more time untangling the string from the fence then we did flying the kite.  At least we didn't lose the kites to the wind.  They are both here to fly another day and capture the imaginations of all who see them soaring through the sky.