I hope I never lose my sense of wonder. If that makes me naive, then so be it.

Friday, 29 June 2007


Today I find myself looking forward to next week. D is off work for the week and we have not-so-grandiose plans of staying here at the farm and doing all those little jobs that need doing but just don't seem to get done. Important things like putting the clothesline back up, like covering the hole left in the siding when I took the stone wall planter down, and like camping out in one of the fields for a night or two, like going for bike rides as a family. In other words, just working together and spending time together. Perfect.

Times like these, I don't need to travel anywhere to find some relaxation. It's good right here. D's goals for the week also include having a nap on the hammock. Something he well deserves but gets little opportunity to do.

This post is the last of June and so the last of my series of "in" titles. It's been fun, kind of challenging for my vocabulary and writing focus. But next month I'll get back to normal titles. Or perhaps start a series of "un" or "pre" or some such thing.


Thursday, 28 June 2007


I didn't think they had the guts. The night before last, we used my flour trick to determine what was breaking into the container where we keep the dogs' food. Sure enough: raccoon tracks. We always thought they wouldn't venture so near to the house, to the back door for goodness sake, where we go in and out all the time. But they are bold critters. Again, though, it's odd - like the chickens, who had a year of peace and then two nights of attacks, we've kept dog food out there for 3 years now and the 'coon starts going after it every night. Perhaps they're staging some sort of insurrection. What is it with this month?

Last night D spotted it around 12:30am. We looked out the back door and there sat a raccoon, sleek and happily crunching kibble that he'd gotten by chewing through a bag. He was duly chased off (though D had hoped to do more via the .22), but we noticed this morning that the remaining bits of kibble on the ground had disappeared this morning. The nerve.

Today: strawberry picking with our homeschool co-op, M's soccer, and band. Tonight: the Havasnack - I mean Havahart - trap gets tried again.

Wednesday, 27 June 2007


The heat yesterday was really over the top, one of those days when I realize that the pool is definitely worth all the work. The morning was spent sweating at the go-kart place for R's birthday, then to our friends' place for more time with her friends at their pool. She had a wonderful day and spending it with her buddies was one of the highlights for her. After all the activity, though, she appreciated some nice quiet time with me, floating on the pool, talking and just being together.

The heat really showed through at bedtime - just too much. The air conditioning hadn't been on and would have taken too long anyway. Upstairs never quite gets cool enough. Duct situation, maybe? Poor D tried to go sleep downstairs but still couldn't get comfortable. The girls all slept sprawled across their beds. The end is in sight though, as thunderstorms should roll their way in tonight.

Also intense yesterday in an amusing way was A's go-kart driving. It was her very first time being at the wheel, having attained the magic height required. She started out after us and on one lap stalled, so M and I were able to lap her. She was focusing on her driving until we pulled alongside, and then she looked over and very deliberately pushed the gas pedal harder. Cute. Then, when I slowed enough to let her pass us, she had this very self-satisfied happy look on her face. No open smile, just a little tight-lipped grin and sparkling eyes as she passed.

Today, my first real day home this week, will be hiding from the heat and doing all those little mundane things that make our home less chaotic.

And on the farm front, I am still thinking about goats. Or maybe sheep. Baa. We shall see.

Tuesday, 26 June 2007


Yesterday with all its driving went well; today we're off to the local go-kart & mini golf park with a few of R's friends to celebrate her 11th birthday. Our little girl continues to grow before our eyes and is becoming quite a young lady. She was thrilled with her birthday gifts and is looking forward to her day. I am not making a cake for her; I asked her what kind she wanted and she said: pie. Birthday pie. So this morning I baked her a strawberry and rhubarb pie as per her request. I guess I'll stick a sparkler in it.

Last evening was one of those ones you don't plan and is strange and kind of surreal. Good friend J, whose family just got chickens a month ago, called in a bit of a panic: one of the hens had died in the coop, no idea why. From my own experience I had no idea - I'm just a year into this after all and we've not had any losses like that. Of course the concern was disease and if it was something contagious. So I gulped and did one of those things that I would only do for a very good friend: offered to do a post-mortem. Friends don't let friends ... um ... not sure how to finish that. The irony (or providence?) is that last week I received one of my hobby farming magazines and wouldn't you know, in the back was an article on how to do just that.

So, reaching WAAAAY back into my university days, I set out to do it. She brought over the hen, and we started operating. Some searching and some awful smells later, the culprit was found: the hen had eaten a nail. It had lodged in her stomach and punctured the wall. Sad, but thankfully not something the other hens could catch from her. I guess I can add another chapter to the CSI:Farm files. I would say something about the verdict being no foul play, but that pun would just be too much. So I won't.

Monday, 25 June 2007


Many thanks to futsaldreamer for that word! I didn't know I would get title submissions. Today, though, I do feel as if I can get a lot done. We shall see.

A good weekend, not too busy but nicely so. The sleepover was fun without too much late giggling heard from the tent (set up indoors, given the cold overnight temperatures); Saturday included a trip to the local TSC store (picture Home Depot for farmers), and some much-needed family time. Church yesterday morning, the afternoon spent mostly outside cleaning baby furniture and working in the veggie garden. Supper included the first food from this summer's garden in the form of some lovely spinach in the salad.

Baby furniture, you ask? No, there is not a 4th little one on the way here. In fact, the furniture is leaving us, on its way today to a young woman I have spoken to only on the phone. A local pregnancy center, First Place, offers support to young single moms who decide to keep their baby and need some help getting started. One way they do this is through a network of donations. We had told them some of the things we had, and a week or so ago I got a phone call from Miss F who has just had her first baby and when I told her what I could take to her, she told me over and over in heavily accented English how much she appreciated it.

So yesterday I pulled the playpen, the highchair, and the baby swing down from the storage in the barn. Then I realized how dirty they had gotten. For the next hour or two I scrubbed, and wiped, and tossed things in the wash, and bleached, and scrubbed some more. The stuff looks almost new. I was thinking as I did it that spending some time like this was a good thing. By having it all clean and ready to use I wanted to show Miss F some respect and perhaps even some dignity (I have no idea of her personal situation, but really, who among us doesn't feel better when someone does something that speaks of respect?). And while I scrubbed, I prayed for her - for her strength as a single mom, for her and her baby's health. Maybe I shall never see her after today, but I figure if I can be a little bit of God's love in her life, then it's worth my time and effort.

The chickens seem to be quite happy and Cheeky is definitely looking better, even growing back some feathers where the bite had been. She's still mostly separate from the others but R has been bringing her out with them for supervised visits ... "now, play nicely, girls..."

Yesterday afternoon also brought to my ears the first cuts of some song tracks from uber-guitarist. He had taken some raw tracks we recorded at his place and come up with some ideas for guitar and bass parts. Some things I liked better than others, but just hearing my songs done up like that was cool. From what he's given me we can start picking the things that work and eliminating what doesn't (for example, I am thinking now that "Let it Go" needs no piano, really. The laid-back jazz style just asks for a guitar/bass combo).

Today is delivering the furniture, then to a couple of stores including Chapters so A can spend some of the bday gift cards that are burning a hole in her pocket. I think this week may actually approach normal.

Friday, 22 June 2007


You know those cold-blooded women in movies, who can plot and plan someone's demise with a coolness that is at once intriguing and terrifying? I am not one of those women.

Today was Chaos's last day. I checked on her this morning and there was no improvement, and so pragmatism had to take charge of the situation. I decided last night that I would not make a good candidate for plotting murder; I was on edge because of culling a chicken, for goodness sake. D very gallantly agreed to do the actual dirty work, which was quiet and pretty quick. The other hens seemed oblivious to the fate of their fellow and continued with the serious work of scratching and pecking. Cheeky does seem to have made progress and is much more active. Perhaps she overheard our plans for Chaos and decided to get better NOW.

Today has seemed like Saturday, with D home from work having taken a vacation day so he could work on preparing the message for Sunday. It's one of the three Sundays that he's speaking this summer and he really does like to be well prepared. Tonight is A's party, for which I have made a tent cake, including a campfire made from pretzel sticks. And I was pleasantly surprised with the results. When D gets back form an errand I shall try to steal his phone for some pics.

Thursday, 21 June 2007


in·di·um Pronunciation Key - in-dee-uhm
–noun Chemistry.
a rare metallic element, soft, white, malleable, and easily fusible, found combined in various ore minerals, esp. sphalerite: so called from the two indigo-blue lines in its spectrum. Symbol: In; atomic weight: 114.82; atomic number: 49; specific gravity: 7.3 at 20°C.

There, don't you feel better knowing that? Next time you have a chunk of sphalerite in your hand, see if there's any indium in it. It could happen.

I had nothing really to say that began with "in" and it seemed like a fun random thing to do. Life is quiet these days; upkeep at the farm, prep for A's sleepover tomorrow, band practice tonight. I had to make the reluctant decision to not serve on the board of the regional homeschooling association, something that certainly intrigued me and seemed like a great experience and a chance to help out, but when viewed in the light of my current activities and priorities, would be the "one more thing" that made it all too much.

On the chicken front, I am realizing that I may have to be pragmatic and poor Chaos may need to be culled. The sad reality of even hobby farming rears its head. There is no improvement and she'd likely have the same thing recur even if it did heal. Which begs two questions: (a) can I do it? and (b) do we eat her for dinner if I can? Icky factor aside, I'm not sure if she's completely healthy and don't want to go the whole food-poisoning route.

Wednesday, 20 June 2007


It's amazing how a person's reaction can make you feel like you've done something more than you really have. Little A yesterday opened her gifts, delighted with them all, especially a camouflage shirt from goaliemom and Uncle B. The fact that it was real hunter's camo, not the generic pattern, was a definite plus. What a little girlie girl I have (not).

Her biggest smiles came when we went to the store to buy her a bike. Her own bike, a real mountain bike with gears and everything. New, off the shelf. Not pre-owned by anyone. As the second of three girls, she gets much in the way of hand-me-downs. To have a NEW new bike is a first for her. And we the parents we pleased to have made her so happy with it. As soon as we got home she was out for a spin; when D got home he was promptly taken out to see her new treasure.

Friends over in the morning for an impromptu visit, errands including the bike in the afternoon, and a family birthday supper chosen by A (tortellini with Alfredo sauce and steamed asparagus), the day rounded out well. The party is a Friday night camping sleepover, for which I plan to make a cake that looks like a tent. Silly me.

Tuesday, 19 June 2007


There are things I want to accomplish, some today, some soon. And with the choir trip done and out of the way, it's time to buckle down on them. Today will be some errands, clearing my mental slate for the rest.
- income tax return (yes, I am sheepish on that front). They haven't missed us as they will be owing us money, but it would be nice to get that done for the same reason
- registering my songs with CCLI, a copyright administration group
- registering myself/songs with SOCAN, the society of Canadian musicians, so that if my recordings do become usable for radio or soundtrack, they administer royalties
- planning the recording of said songs, so some can be entered in the songwriting competition. Who knows?
- catching the henhouse raider (quiet night last night, but then I didn't get around to setting a trap)

My incentive in this is twofold: to get it done, it's well overdue, and I have also decided to take the hunter's safety course. That will allow me to legally use a gun, so that should the need arise I know what I'm doing. That and I'll feel like I can officially wear camo. But, as incentive (also a good "in-" title for today) I won't take it until the rest is done. So, at my current rate, that should be in 2016 sometime.

Today though, more importantly, is another milestone in our family: A is 9 today. She's been up for an hour now, patiently waiting for her sisters to wake up so that she can open her gifts. When I think that it's been 9 years since I first held our smallest baby (6 1/2 pounds), 7 years since the two-year-old stage when I wondered if she'd think her name was "No" - and here we have this little girl who loves sports, excels in math, who struggles with self-control sometimes and yet has a determination that I know will serve her well one day, I remember how richly God has blessed us and am thankful for the time we have had with her.

Happy birthday, A.

Monday, 18 June 2007


What's the name of the Bill Murray character in Caddyshack? I fear I am approaching his obsession level with what I still think is a raccoon that thinks my coop is the local Swiss Chalet.

It's annoying to be outsmarted by a critter. But this one seems to be of the wily variety.

For the second night the Havahart (which I think should be renamed Havasnack, since that's what the animals seem to be getting from it) has been robbed of its bait with no animal to show for it. The first night the chicken drumstick (taken from the freezer; I didn't go into the coop and say, "Ok, girls, I need a volunteer!") was gone, so I decided that tying it in would mean the animal couldn't simply step gingerly over the trap trigger, daintily pick up the food in its mouth, then back up. Oh no, this would be something to keep it there. Think again.

This morning: trap upside down and sprung, empty, the twine tied nicely to the cage but the end that had tied the chicken leg just a frayed little end. How does he/she do it? *sigh* D is making plans that seem to be of the stakeout variety, luring the animal into the demilitarized zone around the coop and shooting from the grassy knoll.

On the non-chicken front (yes, there is one) the weekend was one of setting things to right in my house after a week of minimal housecleaning, enjoying the pool with the girls, movies with the kids Saturday night (Charlotte's Web with all three, and the first Pirates of the Caribbean with R, which she greatly enjoyed. Sunday was church, taking some borrowed sound equipment back, then having Serendipity and Bee over while we waited for our hubbies to return from a weekend canoe/camping trip, and making a yummy chickpea-couscous-veggie salad that even D liked.

Saturday, 16 June 2007


Last night marked the finale of our Alabama visit week. We finished with a free meal and concert, both of which were great and well-received. Lots of hugs and goodbyes and thanks-for-comings and you-really-must-come-visit-us-in-Alabamas. What an amazing group of people, and what wonderful new friends we have made.

CSI:Farm update: more flour was put at the run entry last night, and the live trap set with a chicken drumstick. I awoke around 2:30 and thought I heard something, but there was no following sound so I went back to sleep. This morning the hens were all fine and happy to go outside, the flour had prints in it I couldn't decipher, the trap was lying on its side unsprung, the bait gone. Hm. It seems the critter slipped under the door, as there were blobs of flour that seemed to be belly prints just inside the door.

I'd like to set my alarm and do a stakeout tonight, but have to be alert enough tomorrow for the band at church. Wouldn't really do to have me fall asleep over the keyboard mid-song. Besides, what would I do if I saw something? Throw a rock at it?

Friday, 15 June 2007


War update: all quiet on the chicken front. Finally. D had set up his own version of a grassy knoll and went out a couple of times last night to see if a target would present itself, but no action was to be had.

CSI:Farm update: the hen injured in the previous night's attack did turn out to have some wounds; I found puncture wounds from the raccoon's teeth in her side. She's getting antibiotic ointment and is also separated from the others. I am running out of wards for ill hens. Of course with wounds there is also the whole did-the-raccoon-have-rabies question. Yippee.

Yesterday much got accomplished, from caring for sick birds to making temporary fenced safe zones for the hens, then making a new door for the coop. The ball game was fun too. Today is the big finale at a local farm attraction, with a free meal, a concert by the choir, and fun with the farm's hedge mazes and stuff for the kids. I'm nursing a sore throat, not surprising given my lack of sleep and being out at silly times of the night.

Before that I'll be doing the hen nursing thing, weeding my veggie garden, and other such farm-ish activities like updating my facebook.

Tomorrow I shall collapse in a heap.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

in the nick of time

This means war.

That's what I was muttering last night as I went out again at 3:00am, thanks to some keen listening from R, who woke me to say she heard squawking. I got up, got the dog and the stoutest stick I could find and the flashlight, and out I went, making enough noise so as not to end up cornering something potentially nasty. I got to the henhouse run to see the door I had carefully put in place pushed open. Oh, no, not again. I did hear some noise in the growth around the barns but wasn't sure if it was the retreating attacker or an innocent bystander.

I ran in to see four of the five hens who had been there looking pretty anxious but quiet, then sighed and went back out. Much to my surprise, I found hen #5 limping in the run. I gently got her back into the coop (no cuts, apparently, just had her leg pulled at badly) then went out to do some more investigating. I did have a wry smile as I looked at the sign from Sunday's party that said "Please don't feed the chickens" and realized that "Please don't eat the chickens" might be more applicable. I ended my late-night romp by screwing the door in place, a good temporary measure but not for the long-term.

So now to the latest episode of CSI:Farm. I'm glad I had the foresight the night before to sprinkle a layer of flour by the coop entrances; last night's attacker seems to have been a raccoon from the look of the tracks. But according to the websites I've been reading through to determine the predator, the first night's kills were more in the line of a fox, coyote, or fisher. Raccoons don't typically take the whole bird and leave only feathers behind. Yesterday I had followed the trail of the attacks around the coop and it seems to have been quite a chase, with several clusters of feathers including a run through a culvert until it reached the last clump of feathers at the foot of a tree. That's where the chalk outline belongs, I think. So another question comes up: was last night a return, or a first go? Am I dealing with an Axis of Evil Chicken Predators?

I also noticed something new about the hens' behavior last evening when they roosted. They have always had the majority of them on a nice little roosting pole. Last night they roosted anywhere but there. That got me thinking that the first night's attacks happened after they had roosted and whatever it was came into the coop.

The chickens have always been low-maintenance until the past three days. *sigh*. Used to be, just open the door to the run, make sure the food and water were good, gather the eggs, clean out the manure once a week, close up the door at night. Hopefully some changes to the coop security will re-establish that.

The action steps for today are to make a new door worthy of Fort Knox, to try and get shocked and injured hen #5 more herself, to continue nursing Chaos back to health, to cut the grass around the coop well down so there are clean sight lines should a gun get involved, to make a portable run so they can free range on the grass during the day without being able to wander off, and finish it all in time to leave for a ball game where the choir will be singing this evening.

But thanks to R, last night seems to have been a rescue in the nick of time.

Wednesday, 13 June 2007


If I could get my chickens to talk, what a lot of tales I would have from the past two days. Now if I could just arrange that...

They could tell me why some (or all? or one of them?) chose to gang up on poor Chaos the hen (named after her exploits upon her first arrival at the farm) and peck off most of her tail feathers, leaving her vent (that's where the eggs come out) exposed and really quite disgusting looking. So, though I was planning to leave early to meet the choir at their first gig of the day, instead I was picking up a messy chicken while R and A brought over a dog kennel and put in shavings so Chaos could have a little isolation time. From what I've read if we had left her there, the others would peck at her until she died. So, in her little home with food and water, she seems bored but otherwise content.

Then we went off to the afternoon and evening party (which was AMAZING!!! hundreds or people and lots of new contacts in the community), and I left the other seven hens out free-ranging. We've left them out lots of times and they very diligently go back to roost at bedtime.

So, assuming this interrogation could take place, I could find out why NONE of the seven returned to the roost. I came home after dark to find an empty coop. Not good. A walk around with flashlight yielded no results, so I went to bed feeling very stupid for having left them out and very worried for their safety. We do have coyotes, raccoons, weasels, skunks, and many others who'd love a chicken dinner. I slept very little last night and around 12:30am heard what definitely sounded like a chicken squawking; a run outside didn't reveal anything except some more noise but D very kindly joined me to see if we could trace any of them. Back to bed, with visions of the hens out there getting picked off one by one. Yeah, they're just chickens, but I felt responsible for their little chickeny lives. At 3:00am I heard more clucking, this time close to the house. I ran downstairs and sure enough the flashlight showed one trotting to the house from the field. Rather than being happy at my attempts to get her back to safety, she screamed bloody murder until I had her in my arms; then she seemed to realize that this was a good thing and was calm right away.

I got up at first light (that's about 4:30 this time of year) and went outside to find two more hunkered down at the edge of the long grass; later I found two more near the coop. So, as of 6am, there are 6 hens accounted for and back in their coop. And I found one definite spot near the coop where a hen was attacked by something (trail through the grass and a blob of feathers), and one other possible in the direction of the first squawking we heard last night. So while I hope there's another survivor out there who managed to slip away, it seems that that's the end of the story.

For some strange reason I am tired.

Tuesday, 12 June 2007


Where am I again?

Yesterday was so fun to be involved and help out the team in lots of little ways, picking stuff up and taking people places. The party downtown was a great time for the choir and the kids and the folks who attended. Today will be more of the same with another printer pickup, singing at two seniors' homes and then singing for a group that serves people with different disabilities and needs. Another party in the park tonight.

The girls are doing well with our crazy schedule, but nothing is getting done at home. That's the inefficient part; I'm doing lots but nothing's happening here. It's very different from the norm for me; typically a day's hard work shows results here at home and so I'm not feeling very efficient when I get here at the end of the day and look around.

But D bought me a sweet new vocal microphone (yay!!), so that makes everything better. Right?

Monday, 11 June 2007


That is the course of my week, spending a good chunk of it with an amazing crew of kids (I say 'kids' but most of the choir are in their upper teens) from Montgomery, Alabama. I am resisting the urge to say "y'all" and am glad that it is a nice hot week. Many of the group told me it wasn't what they expected Canada to be like. Come in February, I told them, that'll be more like it.

Saturday and Sunday are a blur. Soccer Saturday morning, setup on Saturday afternoon for a party, and off to recital for R & A that evening. Both did well and after sitting for 2.5 hours it was nice to watch my kids for their 2 minutes of fame. Sunday was church in the morning, our band leading some songs and the choir doing a few, then wrapping it all up with one big song together. Sunday afternoon was the party at the farm. We figure we topped 200 people here, a new record. Everyone really seemed to enjoy themselves, and it was good as always to be able to share our home, give people a little bit of the country to enjoy, and have lunch all together. I had to leave while the party was still going strong to take M to her recital, which was again well done. When I got home most of the crowd had gone and it was cleanup time. D very kindly went downtown to another church to borrow some sound equipment for the week, and then I took a last walk around outside after the kids were in bed for another late night.

As much as I love seeing the farm full of people and life, it was so refreshing to walk around after it was empty again and just enjoy that this is our home, our place of peace and contentment. The fireflies were coming out again and the crickets and frogs were singing.

Saturday, 9 June 2007


I have posted on different occasions about the creatures that call our farm home. Some are cute (baby swallows), some are ugly (giant water bugs), some beautiful (deer), some funny (chipmunks).

But last night was the light show.

It happens for about a week and a half each June. There is a field across the laneway from the house, overlooked by our bedroom window. It's a good-sized paddock more than a crop field, and the grass stays long because part of it is the septic bed and so the cows don't graze there and we don't mow it all. There are no lights that way unless you look far into the distance on the horizon. And for a couple of hours each night for that week, the fireflies come out.

Now, fireflies are not new to me. I remember summers in PEI, going onto the golf course at night to catch them, when you would see little flashes in the dark to show where they were. But that is nothing to what we have here. The field is literally full of fireflies. There must be thousands out there, all flashing messages to each other that would probably be quite lewd, could one translate, given that it is their way of simply signalling their availability to potential mates.

But it's beautiful from my bedroom window. It looks like someone has turned on little twinkling Christmas lights in the dark field. It goes on and on, lights flashing all over the silence. I perch on my dresser, lean over the window sill with a glass of wine, and enjoy the show. The only sound is the distant rush of water on the creek, the calls of killdeers (little birds who are somehow up at night), and wind rustling the leaves. Then I look to the distance, across to the second field, and see flashes out there. And to think I am seeing a 1/2-inch insect that is several hundred yards away is pretty cool. It's mesmerizing, it's peaceful, and it's our own private show.

Unless you come and visit. We do share it.

Friday, 8 June 2007

in tune

My piano, that is. The piano tuner just left and it sounds perfect and now the guitarists can't go on about having to tune down to the piano at rehearsal. HA! Practice is tonight, with little Snowman the violinist playing a jig in Casting Crowns' "Praise You with the Dance". It'll be sweet. We're joined this Sunday by the youth choir from Alabama, so the music will be lots of fun and the week will be fun in all its insane busyness.

I do love to play my piano. It's sort of my dream piano; I grew up playing on an apartment-sized Baldwin, a good piano to be sure though now it is mostly ashes from the fire at Bee's house. I spent the first 9 years of my married life with no piano, and I missed it. Then in 2000 we moved to a large house and D surprised me (shocked me might be better) by suggesting that instead of a little upright, we get a grand. So, we got this model. It's a full-size grand, not a baby grand and not a huge long concert grand. Just perfect for us.

And oh, it's lovely. I think my favorite time to play is when it's a calm clear night, with a full moon that lights up the room just enough that I can sit in the dark, look out the window at the moon, and just make up songs. I find little melodies and chord progressions that sing to me; some of them have ended up as songs and some have gone no farther than my own private enjoyment. Playing by moonlight is delicious but also melancholy in a way; it always makes me miss J.

Thursday, 7 June 2007


The facebook phenomenon continues to roll, and yesterday I got in touch with several people I had not heard from in years. Kind of fun, really, to see where people are and what they're doing many years later. It's sort of a 'six degrees of separation' in action. The interconnections between people are funny.

There is much sadness on the part of the girls and most of Ottawa this morning, after our Sens lost the series last night. Sad to see such a good season end like that. It was amazing when I was downtown last week to see our normally calm and decorous city give into Cup madness, with red flags and GO SENS GO on windows, walls, and cars everywhere. I think that there should be a stipulation attached to the Stanley Cup that any city winning it must, at some time of the year, have naturally occurring ice. It's wrong on so many levels.

On to more cleanup and work and dance rehearsals and soccer today.

Wednesday, 6 June 2007


If only I could be. Look it up.

But the busyness continues. Rehearsal #2 of three this week was last night, M's dress rehearsal. I had learned from the night before when I arrived at the posted time and then sat for the greater part of 3 hours that if your kid's dance number is at the end of the program, there's no need to be there spot on 6:30 for the practice! My late arrival was heralded as evidence of being a true veteran of recitals by the other moms, and M was duly dressed and made up for the dance with no problems. Tomorrow night is the last rehearsal, and M's first soccer night. Band rehearsal has been moved to Friday to make up for that. And just for fun let's add in more calls to make, a large BBQ to pick up for Sunday, various 'normal' errands, soccer practice for A, and indolence is looking pretty good (did you look it up yet?).

And it's gotten cold again - we had come nicely into summery weather, and then in came wind taking the temps way down. I fear for our non-heated pool and the large party (150 people? 200?) that is to be held here on Sunday afternoon - here's hoping it will warm up nicely in the days to come.

Tuesday, 5 June 2007


That's how I feel today: less than able. Many things clogging my mind, much time to spend on things, much work to be done here. But, little by little I am chipping away at the list that seems to have two items added for every one taken off.

A simple pleasure this morning has been standing in the wet grass, watching the chickens happily trotting out of their enclosure to have wonderful adventures in the great wide world. They all stand by the door, looking expectant, then tumble out all at once when I open it and set immediately to the business that has been occupying their teensy brains since they woke up: eat grass and scratch the ground to stir up bugs to peck at. So, after seeming like they had great plans to run away and make good their escape, they wander around and scratch and eat and cluck, not straying much more than 200 feet from their coop. It's a surprisingly pleasant thing to watch; very calming.

Perhaps I should give it an exotic name and sell tickets for relaxation. Optico-avian therapy?

Monday, 4 June 2007


I may just do a series of "in-" titles. For no other reason than to be somewhat clever, or at least to feel somewhat so. Then again, I might get tired of it tomorrow.

The inescapable is the next two weeks, with planning and dance recital rehearsals and the recitals themselves (two, between the three girls), the arrival of a choir from Alabama here for a week, soccer, etc, etc. I'd like to go hide in the field and make it go away, but it won't. So I must buckle down, bite the bullet, and all those other cliches that mean DO IT.

The weekend was wonderful, the wedding and reception were fun, with an elegant location, good food, and excellent company. I felt very genteel with it all. Then yesterday afternoon six of us were here at the farm, burning scrap wood and looking very far removed from the very classy crew that had been at the Rideau Club the day before.

Friday, 1 June 2007


Yesterday was spent attacking the flower gardens on the north side of the house, getting one cleared out and making inroads in the other. Annuals were transplanted into pots and the veggie garden was weeded. Then it was indoors to get ready for a band rehearsal that had me wondering what the cows thought of all the noise.

Today I sit here typing carefully due to my recently-painted nails, getting ready for a day on the road to pick up baseball promo tickets, book a meal at the Hard Rock Cafe, take A to a bday party this morning, the girls to dance class this afternoon and then the sitters, so we can go to a cocktail wedding reception tonight, all dressed to the nines. I might find time in there to get on the tractor for a quick lawn mowing.