Tuesday, 22 July 2014


Here I am again with a blog on BIRTH.  My youngest daughter, Salome is pregnant with twin boys...fraternal...and should give birth any day now. It's July 22. Her  common law husband, Brad's birthday, by the way. How Cool would that have been for them to share a birthday?!  it's 8 pm ...she has 4 hours to make that happen!  If we could choose...which apparently tons of people do for convenience ( that is strange to me I love the excitement of the unknown!)
So, obviously my thoughts are filled with babies, births, my children, and Grandchildren.
I gave birth to all 3 of my kids at home. Two in a log house 1 1/2 miles back in the woods in New Brunswick. I was thinking today how my first experience was  painful and scary...but only because I had never felt this before. Plus I felt like I was hallucinating much of the time...probably hyperventilating! I started making my birthing spot in the first 2 hours...little did I know! Plus my husband had to go do chores for the neighbours...and I was worried that he had slipped on the ice surrounding their well and fallen in! Thankfully he returned coaching me (he'd read the books and was very knowledgeable)...nothing went amiss and...12 hours later, Zaak was born.
 The second, Saison,  I was more confident and had a midwife with me as well as my husband....and we weren't  a mile and a half into the woods.  Southern Alberta . The midwife brought her knitting and was settling in for a long night.. She had given me some herbal tea and apparently it worked like gangbusters! ....3 hours later I told her I felt like pushing...and she said that couldn't be....but checked anyway....yes indeed...follow your instincts when giving birth! Saison was probably my easiest birth and my most stubborn child ..ha ha... ....
3rd time, Salome ( about to give birth and causing much anxiety! I want to be with her so bad!) Again in the log house...and I thought today how odd it is...I barely remember any pain at all...I remember pushing her out and reassuring Zaak and Saison that Mama was ok....I remember that it hurt like crazy every time I nursed her for the first few days...and I remember I couldn't bare to be away from her even to eat for the first week or so...I had to hold her while I ate.
I've been with both my daughters and my daughter in law, Amber when they gave birth to their children, all except one, Acadia who was born in Guatemala...
I was so thrilled to share this experience with them and honoured that they wanted me there. I was so proud of how they handled it all.
I watched a documentary called "The Business of being Born" How giving birth is almost treated like an illness now a days. Like I mentioned early on...people actually choose the date of birth and schedule surgery! They want to be put out, put under...numbed! Yes, it hurts. But to feel that little body being pushed out...WOW!
I understand. Sometimes there is a need for emergency procedures and all...And I'm very grateful that there are trained professionals to deal with problems. But I it is such a great experience when nothing goes amiss!
And I'm very grateful that my youngest child, Salome, will be in good hands when she gives birth to those little fellows!
Thanks for reading friends!

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Voila! I am now a Canadian ! AND American!

 June 26, 2014 I became a Canadian  citizen.  I've been in Canada for almost 40  years as a landed immigrant.... Why wait so long to make it official?
My reasons sound kind of lame.... I was pretty busy raising a family and got pretty comfortable with my permanent residence status....I could do everything except vote.
Also, being a hippy in those early years I disliked red tape and paper work . In the past year and a few months since I applied for my citizenship  the idea of incorrectly filling out the forms freaked me out!
I almost applied a few years ago, but when the time came, the money had to go else where...which turned out kind of cool because after you turn 54 you don't have to take the test!
Anyway , about a year and a half ago I thought it was about time...  ( I was encouraged by my Son, and also new information about filing taxes to the U.S. had me more freaked out than I was about filling out the application!)  I buckled down, filled out the applications, photocopied  a whole wack of documents and filled out another whole wack  of documents and waited....
I thought about it a lot...got a letter saying it was being processed....it could take 2 years....I stopped hoping it would take less time....
Funny how cool things happen. Have  you ever noticed that? Wonderful stuff happens all at once , like the world is all magical.
My Son, who had encouraged me to  become a citizen on Christmas Day, 2012 just happened to be visiting with his family, just arriving , in fact. When I went to greet them at the door I also checked the mail...and lo and behold there was the much anticipated letter from Canada Citizenship and Immigration!  It was a notice to attend an  interview and swearing in Ceremony!
Much Happy Dancing!
There were of course the instructions of what to bring with me....photocopies and original documents and the invitation....time and place were noted....I checked and rechecked to make sure I got it all right.
When the day finally arrived, I barely slept the night before! Woke way too early, left way too early....just in case there was an accident, traffic downtown, car broke down....
It was such a surreal day.
I met 3 other ladies that were also over 54 that didn't have to take the test. Out of 85 people we were the only ones over 54!.  We hung out together joking and also comparing our experiences ...we had all worried that we got the date wrong, didn't have the right documents, left way too early...just incase....older ladies are so fun! 2 were from England , one from Switzerland, and me...USA...One turned out to be the sister of a very good friend of mine...what are the chances??
After I was granted the letter of invitation to be sworn in at 2 pm that afternoon, I breathed a sigh of relief and took a walk along the river, there were giant iceland poppies growing alongside the pathway. I had a delicious Indian dish in the sunshine. Simple pleasures are the best.
Then the time came. My Son was the only one to be with me. If  I had to choose only one person to be with me it would have been him.
He filmed me being sworn in and getting my certificate....I was pretty choked up for the whole thing. The judge was phenomenal! She gave the best speech ever! You can read about in Zaak's blog. My Mother, the Canadian
He really put it perfectly....I enjoyed my visit with him...walking for blocks for an icy cold beer after....supper with Him and the family....delicious red wine and chocolate cupcakes topped with little mini canadian flags. Life is good!
Today is my first Canada Day as a Canadian Citizen and I felt so proud at the celebrations at Bower Ponds to proclaim loudly and enthusiastically with the people around me "I AM CANADIAN!"......(and still American too!)

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Me. The Health Nut

I'm all revved up because my daughter , Saison and her two kids , Abby and Ayla are coming to visit this weekend because Dad has a conference.  When ever I'm going to get a visit I start thinking about what food I can make that they especially like. Saison has always loved coconut cream pie. Ayla, can't have milk. ....My mind started it's usual  goofy gamut of ideas. AH! I'll make a coconut cream pie with coconut milk and to top it off I also have coconut oil and coconut sugar!  Seems the new rage is the health benefits of everything coconut. The planet is nuts for coconut.
Anyway, I made some coconut cream tarts with all  of the above...they look kind of ...strange because coconut sugar is brown...but it tastes real good...if I can figure it out I'll put some photos....maybe of the girls enjoying them...(or not ....ha ha , they may have to close their eyes and ignore the brown colour)
Anyway, as I was making the tarts I got thinking of my new thing...blogging and about how I might share my love of eating, creating, and serving foods that are nutritious....and when this love began.
I'll tell you when it began!
When I discovered that I was expecting my first born, Zaak. I started pouring over nutrition books and how to take care of this little person that would be in my care.
I made sure that I ate properly to nourish this little being inside me.
This mind set  stayed with me through all my 3 pregnancies and child rearing.
My kids tease me now about how they used to think it was a sin to eat white bread....how they would open their lunch bags at school and see my heavy thick sliced homemade bread with peanut butter and honey sandwiches soaked with juice that had leaked out of the bottles that I had reused.Then  look longingly at their classmates wonder bread and baloney sandwiches and juice boxes.
I'm sure they appreciate me now.....I mean, they are all healthy...and brilliant...as well as their off spring....you've never seen such amazing grandchildren. ....I'll save that subject for another blog.
However it all continues....the teasing.
 I don't mind. It's all meant in love.
I just cry myself to sleep  after ward...
I know some of the food is strange and isn't as delectable as its less nourishing counterparts.
Take my black bean brownies for instance. You can't even tell there's black beans in them!  Oh sure the texture is a bit different from delicious fudgey brownies ...and the gas produced is ...definitely different.
BUT....they are high in protein and fibre, so that makes it all worth while.
Now I'm a cashier at Costco...and I see what people choose. The body builders with the chicken, egg whites, spinich, bla bla bla., the heavy weights with the chips, pop, fast foods ....trust me you ARE what you eat.
The ones I love best. the families with lots of fruit and veggies and whole grains...the little kids with rosy cheeks and bright eyes.
Ok. I should tie this up. Bottom line. A treat is great now and then but its important to care. To take care of the people we love...and even the people we just met. Its important to care about the planet and animals and our own self. I'm not perfect. I have issues. But I'll save that for another blog....maybe.
thanks for reading.

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Last night I was thinking how my whole life,  my height has influenced people's view of me. And in fact how I see myself. Sometimes using it to my advantage . It's the first thing you notice about me.  I'm 4foot10 inches. People comment  or tease about it because they are comfortable doing so... I'm very approachable. Sometimes comments are very funny...
I'll start with the funniest.
My son and his family moved to Guatemala for the first 3 years of my grandson, Blaise's life. When they returned just before his third birthday he said to me on his first morning at breakfast, " your little" then holding is fingers close together and looking through them , " your this small" out of the mouth of. Babes!
I decided to actually blog about this for real because there are daily experiences. Half an hour ago I was in the grocery store walking I front of an aisle and a very tall big guy almost ran into me . He stopped short " whoa! I didn't see you!" I 'm sure tall people have their own issues.
Ok, here's a few issues:
Grocery shelves are so high! Seriously I always have to wait for a taller person to happen by to help me.
Size 5 shoes.... Always on the top shelf... How many tall people do you know with size 5 feet?
The lack of size 5 shoes in shoe stores! Although I do manage to find plenty... My closets can attest to that!
Drivers seats don't adjust we'll enough, I sit too close to the steering wheel , if the airbag goes off I'm toast!
I have to hem all my pants atleast 5 inches!
I have to drag a stool around my kitchen to get to the upper cupboards.
My work place is not set up ergonomic ally for short people.
Now here's a list of comments I get as a cashier at Costco:
"Are you standing in a hole?"
" are you sitting down"
"You need a stool"
Some very kind comments when they are concerned that I have to stretch to reach the receipt 100s of times a day.