Monday, 27 January 2014

Not a Half Bad Day

We've been having an amazing winter.

It's been what winter is suppose to be.

Just when you think that it might 'let up' and give us a moment to feel warm....it doesn't.

I wash my hair and then I wash my toque.

Seriously.

Remember this.....


'the smorning' it looked like this.....


the sun tried to come out and then Jack decided to go up to the barn....


At lunch, Terry said that 'it wouldn't be a half bad day if it wasn't windy out.'

REALLY?

But actually, the sun came out this afternoon and all the snow that could blow had blown....and it turned out to be not a half bad day after all.

Does that make sense?

Time for another game of BINGO with Lydia....

Brenda

Thursday, 23 January 2014

The Old Days

Sophie got home from school yesterday and she said to me, "I miss the old days...when we played outside."

At first I thought she was talking about last week.

Because last week she played outside.

This week she has not played outside because it is so brutally cold out.

She goes to school and they can't let the kids out for recess because it's just too cold.

So they have had a full week inside.

But she wasn't actually just missing the 'last week' old days.

She was missing the 'summer' old days.

She started to talk about riding her bike and buying a fancy cycling suit.  I have no idea where she gets these ideas....a cycling suit....??

Then she sat at the kitchen table and started to draw.

She was missing the 'old days' of green grass.....and picnics....and leaves on the trees....

and riding her bike.

She thinks that maybe she is now old enough to ride on the road.

I told her that there are lots of rules when you ride on the road.  You have to be safe.

We talked about the bike rodeo that is usually held at the school in the spring....they could teach us all about safe riding.

She suggested that I could ride the van along beside her when she goes on the road....just to make sure that she would be safe.

And then she asked, "Do you need a driver's license to ride a bike into Douglas?"


Brenda

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

More Frost on the Barn

I posted about frost on the barn in December.

But when I look back at those photos, they weren't very good.

It was a little frosty but not like it was 'the smorning'.


Now there's frost.


The cows are toasty warm inside.



But it's freezing cold outside. 

It feels like something is eating your face when you go out there.

Apparently it's another polar vortex....or maybe it's just the same one and it came back.

I still think that it's just winter.

Brenda



Monday, 20 January 2014

Oh Ruby....

I snapped this pic of Lydia and this sweet new calf.


Then I suggested that Jack sit in for a pic too.


See the blur in the corner....

Where there is Jack....there is Ruby.


Crazy dog.

Always trying to lick your face.

She settled between them.....for a second.



 
And then she licked the calf's nose.
 

It was not impressed.


Oh Ruby....


Brenda

Friday, 17 January 2014

Good Mooooorning...and the smiling cat.



They came over to wish me Good Mooooorning.



I told them to have a good day.


Meanwhile.....Lydia told me that she would get the cat to smile for a picture.



Oh yes...I think it's enjoying that....that's definitely a smile.


Brenda

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

A Calf named Jessie

Today is my Grandma's Birthday.

She is turning 92.

I couldn't help but think of her this morning when I was out in the barn watching this cow calve.


She loved her cows.


When I would arrive for a visit in the spring she would say "come and see the calves".  And we would go and check on all the new babies.  She would have them all named....after her grandchildren.

I love the calves just as much as she did.

I thought I was going to see the birth this morning....but I was just a little too late.  As I walked into the barn, Jack said, "It's just out.  She is just eating the stuff off of its face."


I saw it take its first breath.


New life is just so amazing....it's something that you can never get tired of.

Grandma made me promise that I would never name any of my children after her.  She absolutely hated her name.

But I don't think she would mind if I named a calf after her.


This is Jessie.


Happy Birthday Grandma
xo

Brenda

Saturday, 11 January 2014

Rice and Onion Squares

We made gingerbread houses during the Christmas holidays.

Then the boys ground up the houses with Jack's grinder....after they had eaten all the candy off of them.

We ended up with a big bag of ground homemade gingerbread...with bits of royal icing.  It smells incredible.

The other day I made up a pan of squares....I used the ground gingerbread, butter, coconut and sweetened condensed milk....and melted chocolate on top.

The squares weren't 'set' yet when we were done eating supper....but it was one of those nights that we just didn't care....we needed to eat them NOW....most nights we put 'unset' squares in the freezer for an hour and then eat them.

When I cut into them, Sophie shrieked....'what did you put in those....rice?....I HATE rice!'

Terry was quick to say, 'and onions....don't eat them....they're awful.'


I assured her that it wasn't rice....it was coconut.

Both Sophie and Lydia were disgusted....they weren't going to eat them because of the coconut.

But they were so so good....even better the next day....when they were 'set'......just like a chocolate bar...only better.

I made another pan this morning and when I was mixing them up, Jack saw me and said 'Oh mom!  Are you making the rice and onion squares?  YES.'

I also made up a batch of chocolate chip cookies and I substituted half of the flour for the ground gingerbread.  They are really good too.

mmmmm.....gingie.....I love you.

Brenda

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Stepdancing Practise

The girls were practising their stepdancing this evening.....
 

Brenda

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

The Polar Vortex and a Distracted Stitch

The polar vortex is here.

But I think it's just winter.

It's a good thing it has come because otherwise there would be no news.

Seriously.

There is a lot of hype about this polar vortex.

I asked Terry what exactly a polar vortex was and he suggested it is native for 'it's damn cold'.

Anyways, it's cold and the boys aren't allowed to go outside by themselves in the dark to check the cows.

There is a polar vortex out there....and it might get them.

Anyways....it's to be gone by the weekend and the temperature will be back up to the freezing mark....and all will be normal again.

In other news, I went to a knitting class last night at the library.

I needed a refresher course....I had knit before when I was a teenager at a 4-H knitting club.

I just couldn't remember how to put the stitches on the needle.

My teacher suggested I do a rib stitch...and that way I could refresh both the 'knit' stitch and the 'purl' stitch.  But I seem to have this problem that I get so easily distracted, I can't remember if I just did a 'knit' or a 'purl'.

And so I have ended up with this....


I think it's called the 'Distracted' stitch.

It's sort of a mess.

But I think I like it.

Brenda

Monday, 6 January 2014

Another label....a grinder....and a new calf

It was suppose to be 'back to school' today but the buses were all cancelled.

We took down all the Christmas decorations this morning.

I found another one of Sophie's labels.


It was right under the Christmas tree.

Then I started cleaning and vacuuming.  I was washing windows and they were really 'squeaking' when I rubbed them....maybe because of the cold.  I overheard Sophie ask, "What is that noise?" and some one answered her and said that it was Mom washing windows.  She said, "Oh, I thought the police were here!"

I suggested at lunch time that we should smash up the gingerbread houses.  I could use them in a crust of some sort or bake them in a square.

No one really wants to eat the gingerbread....they just want all the candy.....and I hate to see all that good homemade gingerbread go to waste.


Then Jack thought of his grinder that he bought a few months ago.

 
 
 

It worked great.

The weather is terrible.  It warmed up on the weekend but now the temperature is dropping again....and the wind is howling.

Our first baby calf of 2014 arrived yesterday morning.


So so sweet!

Brenda


Sunday, 5 January 2014

Sophie's Labels

Sophie labelled the rooms of our house.


 
 
 

It's important to know where you are or where you are going.

I love my sweet girl.

Brenda

Saturday, 4 January 2014

So cold

The last couple of days have been exhausting.

Arctic air came down and sat on us.

Yesterday morning felt like -38*C.

We pretty much have to ignore all those warnings about not going outside.  We have animals to care for....and an outdoor furnace to heat our house.

All we talk about is the furnace....and animals....and frozen water.....and the cold....and what we are going to eat next.

Seriously....a body needs a lot of food when it's that cold.

Luckily, I cooked a 20+ lb. turkey on New Year's Day.  There were lots of leftovers for soup and oven rice and hot turkey sandwiches.

We have drank all the hot chocolate.

Terry was called in to work the last two nights for snow removal in the city....so my 'holiday' from doing outdoor chores abruptly ended.

But the worst is over.  Things are looking up.....and so are the temperatures.  When I went out this morning at 4am it only felt like -26*C....the actual temperature was -19*C.  It felt good.

It is suppose to snow and be -3*C by tomorrow.

Maybe I'll get out my shorts.

But probably not.

Brenda

 

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Gingerbread Houses 2013

The Christmas holidays would not be complete without an afternoon making gingerbread houses.

It's tradition here.

I was thinking that maybe the kids would 'outgrow' it.

But no.

Who is going to walk away from a table covered in candy?

No one in this house.

They were really looking forward to it....they kept asking me when we were going to make them.

I rolled out all the gingerbread the other night.

They were relaxing....watching another episode of the Dukes of Hazard.  I bought them the first 3 seasons on DVD for Christmas....and they have become a little addicted to it.  The first time they watched it, they were laughing at how the boys jump in and out of the car and they didn't open the doors.  I had forgotten about that part....hopefully they don't weld the doors shut on the van.

Anyways....back to the gingerbread houses....





If there is one thing my kids all know how to do....it's use a piping bag.


They are experts.


I'm so proud.




Then Sophie said "Hey look at me Mom!  I'm Boss Hog!"


Lydia wanted to be Boss Hog too.


Good grief....Mr. Boss Hog.....you are a bad influence.

Brenda