Wednesday, August 25, 2010

this moment

As the summer draws to a close, here's a pic of Signal receiving his first-ever soccer trophy. He's certainly not a baby any more!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Lion, the Tiger and the Jaguar by Signal

Once upon a time there was a lion, a tiger and a jaguar. The lion was at the river. The tiger was at the pond, and the jaguar was at the lemon patch.

On day an owl flew by the lion, the tiger and the jaguar. They said, "Wow! We wish we had an owl for a pet!"

The belted kingfisher was the witch.

Monto del Montey ate a witch last. "Luca muca ooca shmuca," laughed the lion, the tiger and the jaguar.

The end

This story appears exactly how it was dictated to me (though I did figure out the punctuation myself!). I could be wrong, but I think his style is showing some influence from our one-chapter-a-night reading of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Experiments: Morning Screen Time

Last week, Signal and I tried something new. He and I agreed that we would get up in the mornings and do something other than turn on our respective screens first thing (TV for him, computer for me). The screen first-thing in the morning thing is an old habit, one that I attribute mostly to how badly Signal slept for the first three years of his life. Having the TV going made it much easier for me to ease into the morning without having a total breakdown, day after day after day.

These days he is sleeping better (a little bit), and I am getting better and more sleep as a result, so I thought it was time to perhaps wean ourselves off our morning drug a bit. So last week, these are the things we did instead of watch TV first thing in the morning:

- made butter (sort of, we turned OFF the TV to do this)
- went to the park (x3)
- read books (to each other and separately)

I think we both enjoyed it. I think it is something we will continue trying - to move away from morning screen time in favour of morning together time.

Friday, August 13, 2010

this moment

borrowing a feature from Amanda over at Soule Mama - a moment to remember.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Home Creamery

That is the name of the restaurant Signal wants us to open. He will be the chef. I have been assigned the duties of "Assistant No. 1." M has been designated "Assistant No. 2." On the menu at Home Creamery?

Well, first up, it's butter. Good, old-fashioned, salted-down, homemade butter.

Nearly two years ago, I saw this book in the Cookbook Store in Toronto. The book is called Home Creamery by Kathy Farrell-Kingsley. I was fascinated by the idea of making my own butter, yogurt and cheese. So I came back home and asked my library to purchase it. They did so dutifully. It has been checked out four times since December 2008, when it was purchased. Every single time, it was checked out by yours truly!

In all that time, however, I had never gotten around to actually trying one of the recipes. Until Sunday morning. I had a cup of cream leftover from our adventures in ice-cream making earlier in the week. (More on that later, but we ate it all before I could take a picture, so it will have to wait!) And since that is pretty much all you need, ingredient-wise, Signal and I went to work.

We poured the cream into a Mason jar. We screwed the lid on tight. Then we shook. Then I stopped shaking to set the kitchen timer for 20 minutes. Then we shook some more. We turned some Indigo Girls on the computer to provide a soundtrack. We danced and shook and shook and danced. And then we shook and danced some more!

At about the 8 minute mark, I noticed considerable thickening of the material in the jar. At the 10 minute mark, I thought "Huh. That's it. We've whipped the cream." But I kept at it. (Signal at this point was playing Noah's Ark with his plastic animals and a Winnie-the-Pooh book cube.) At about the 12 minute mark, all of sudden, I heard a "whack" and a "splash." I looked in the jar, and there was a completely solid, light yellow mass in a thin, whitish liquid.

Holy crap! We did it! We made butter in a jar with nothing but cream and shaking!

I rinsed it, salted it, and put it in a little bowl in the refrigerator. I didn't eat any right away, though I did dip my finger in for a small taste. It was salty and delicious.

It might have taken me nearly two years to get it done, but I finally made my first foray into what I like to call our adventures in homesteading. And the fact that Signal loves it so much he wants to open a family restaurant? Well, that's just butter on the bread!

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Okay. This is it. I am doing this.

For the longest time I could not figure out why I am having such difficulty kick-starting this blog again. It is never far from my mind, and when I think of it, hanging out here with its old photos and stagnant news, I cringe.

The other day, I finally figured it out. I started this blog before Signal was born. It was a random little place to collect things - quotes, poems, moments. And then Signal came along, and we turned the blog into a chronicle of all things Signal. Rightfully and fully understandably so. And now, it is time to turn it back. Oh, not back to just what it was before.

First of all, I am not taking back sole proprietorship. M will still be free to post or not as she will. So that is a difference. And of course, we are different people now than we were pre-Signal. I can certainly see my pre-parent self in my now-self. I like to think that my pre-parent self would recognize me, if I saw me walking down the street. (Of course, the buzz cut does help, even with self-recognition!) But I do different things. I am concerned about different stuff. My lunches are no longer about sitting on a curb ruminating on the breeze until a haiku forms. My lunches are now about cramming my food into my face so I can score some reading time before having to go back to work!! Just an example, of course.

So I think that I might have a plan now. A plan for how to dust heddadabbler off and get her going again. Please keep checking back! I have plans for a post for tomorrow!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Moment capture

Me: What shape do you want your jam-toast cut into? Triangles or strips?
Signal: I can't decide right now!
Me: Why not? What shape do you want?!
Signal: I am trying to keep Zeus [the cat] out of my kingdom [the couch]!

If there was ever a good reason not to be able to make a decision about something...