Trying to work from home

I attempted to work from home one day recently - the boys had a PD Day and we were stuck at the last minute with no one to watch them for the day. I don't like to bring my work home with me, but there were things that needed to be done, deadlines to meet, projects to be completed. While I envisioned a very productive day without the office buzz of distractions, I couldn't have been more wrong. For some reason, a laptop set up at the kitchen table was a novelty for Finny that needed to be explored. And while he wasn't glued to my side asking 'what does that button do?', the two boys were at each other like rival sports teams that I was doing a poor job of refereeing. It was going to be one of those days. Out..get outside...and don't come back until you fill a bucket full of nature. It bought me some time and worked at refocusing their energies. Back they came with everything they would need to get crafty (and after getting most of my work done, I was ready to get crafty too!). This was a simple fall wreath cut out of cardboard that they each hot-glued their nature finds onto. 

Enjoy the last bits of fall!


102 years...

I had a really hard time writing this post. G's Gramma Z passed away this weekend. She was in her 103rd year. Yes, that's right, she was 102 years old. Incredible! SHE was incredible! Never have I met a person with so much strength and determination; with so much faith and hope. But how do you properly honour a life that has spanned more than a century? She was born before the inventions of ball point pens and zippers, before microwave ovens, computers, and cell phones. It's astounding to think of all of the things that have happened in the last 100 years.  In her lifetime, she lived through two world wars, crossed the Atlantic Ocean with her husband and four young boys to make a new home in Canada, and suffered the tragic losses of her husband and son in quick succession. Yet she lived life to the fullest and lived for every moment she could. I can't get enough of these old photos and wanted to share just a couple from her life - the top is one of her and her husband and the second photograph of her, at right, with friends. Both photos taken in the Netherlands. Below is a photo taken in Canada four years ago during the 60th anniversary celebration of the liberation of the Netherlands - still standing tall and strong and ready to take in all that life had to offer.

She was always ready for competition (she did not like to lose in card games!) and accepted any challenge that came her way.  It was well into her late 90s, before her hands could no longer manage the crochet hook they held for so many years, that she made 100 afghans in one year to warm those in need. She was an amazing crafter and a true inspiration.  As family gathered over the weekend to honour her passing, I looked around my home and admired the hand-crocheted doilies and the handmade socks and the knit stuffed mice she loved to make and lovingly gave to each grandchild - pieces of her that I will pass on to my children, her great-grandchildren. She is here and will never be forgotten.


Don't worry, I haven't forgotten about you!

I've been so crazy busy getting ready for next weekend's Frederick Art Walk in Kitchener, I haven't popped in lately to say hello! So I thought I would just quickly stop by to leave you a recipe - one of my favourites! Fruit crisps are one of the easiest desserts to adapt to anyone's dietary needs. It has been a staple in our house and has seen many different variations adapted from my Aunt Sylvia's apple crisp recipe. Here is the original recipe - we use dairy-free margarine and spelt or rice flour and it tastes just as yummy! Even yummier with a scoop of maple-flavoured soy ice cream on the side!

Aunt Sylvia's Apple Crisp
4-6 apples sprinkled with a spoonful or two of white sugar and 1/4 tsp cinnamon. Place in square 8x8 baking dish and combine:
1/4 C butter
3/4 C brown sugar
3/4 C flour
1/2 C oatmeal
Sprinkle on top of apples and bake at 350F for about 30 mins.