Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sunday morning waffles



Growing up it was Saturday morning pancakes.  Here in this day and age its Sunday morning waffles.  At least since I got my much dreamed about snazzy waffle maker last Christmas.  Waffle morning is now anticipated and much awaited.  Most Saturday nights a typical conversation between a three year old, five year old and thirty-two year old (Phil) includes the line "tonight is Saturday night which  means tomorrow morning is 'WAFFLE MORNING!"  We serve them up many ways: with fruit and whip cream or butter and maple syrup.  Occasionally I'll make fruit syrup with various kinds of fruit heated up in maple syrup.   One thing is certain, two small members of this family always need waffle faces for breakfast.   This particular morning we are enjoying peaches and black raspberries (freshly picked) with a little whip cream.  Hope everyone else out there is enjoying a good, peaceful Sunday morning.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Small victories

Last night at a neighborhood barbeque, my neighbor and I pulled apart our screaming, kicking, crying three year olds.  The argument was over a feather.  The usual chorus of 'It's mine!' 'No, it's mine!' rang through the back yard.  We removed to our separate houses where I sat down with Noine and asked what had happened.  As she clenched the feather in her tight little fist she told me Mia had found it while they played in the yard; but now she needed to keep it because it was so beautiful. We talked about how if Mia had found the feather then it was really hers.  The right thing to do would be to give it back even if it was so beautiful.  I also pointed out that if the roles had been reversed Nonie would be pretty sad and angry with her friend.   We went next door and Nonie returned the feather politely and calmly without fuss.  As we walked away holding hands it felt really good to be able to look down at her and say 'Nonie you did the right thing.'

I think too often as a parent I have a tendency to want to 'fix' problems for my children.  To fix the crying and handle the problem myself because it's faster, easier.  (Why I always feel in a hurry is a really good question for another day)  But in the three minutes it took to ask what the problem was and help her solve it, we both learned a lesson.  I count that as yesterdays small victory.  I look for them everyday.  Then when I make a mistake I can remind myself that I am human too and there will be another small victory later in the day or tomorrow.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

A day fishing in the Rockies




My Dad got us into fly fishing when we were kids.  I've never been 'great' at it but then that really isn't the point is it.  There is nothing like standing in moving water in nature with only your thoughts and the birds and burbling water.

My brother Matt lives in China.  It's been far too long since his last visit.  But finally this past week he joined us for a few days.  I figured fishing in the Rockies would provide some clean air to repair his lungs from all that China, city living.  (And who could resist those mountains?! Not that I'm trying to convince him to move to Colorado or anything...) We spent the day in the river.  This was one of just a few in the area right now that is low enough to fish.  We have had record snowmelt and lots of rain.  Even here we fished from the bank much of the time.  Just before lunch the rain clouds rolled into the valley.  Thunder echoed in between the mountains.  Eventually the rain clouds opened up and drenched us.  It was heavenly.  Nothing like spending a day in a river to refresh the soul.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Lady bugs


Our small aspen trees started spitting a month ago.  Turns out they have aphids.  LOTS of them.  Lucky for us ladybugs are sold by the bag.  Our aphids are biting the dust and our garden is full of beautiful spots of red.  

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Summertime




It finally feels like summer.  There are refrigerator pickles pickling, flowers on the table, a sour cherry cobbler to be eaten and sour cherry jam to make.  The house smells like inspiration and good food.

Packing up a balloon


On any given weekend morning we see around ten hot air balloons.  We spend our early  mornings watching them fly over.  Occasionally they even land nearby. Our neighbor knocked early to tell us a balloon had landed down the street.  We got there in time for Lil to help squeeze the air out of this beautiful, brand new Cameron balloon.  I like Cameron balloons because I grew up near their shop in MI.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Book making



I know I've said this before but my children regularly amaze me.  Today it was my oldest making a magazine for the younger while she waited for the actual one to come in the mail.  They took turns reading it to each other.  The words were simple enough that they memorized them.  Lillian decided what it should say and asked how to spell the words.  I know its hard to tell but the middle picture says 'Kim and Carrots are climbing a mountain.'

Saturday, July 9, 2011

From the garden

Having a garden is good for so many reasons.  Best of all is that I can't get the girls to stop eating veggies.  What is it about picking something out of your own garden?  I could buy a never ending supply of vegetables from the grocery and they wouldn't touch half of them.  But let them go crazy in the garden and there will be nary a leaf of tatsoi or a carrot left.  

Friday, July 8, 2011

Strawberries

Can't beat good scenery while berry picking.  Love those mountains.

We found a great organic u-pick berry patch called Berry Patch Farm. We're going back next week for sour cherries.  The strawberry rhubarb crumble that ensued was mouthwatering.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Sour Cherry Pancakes

I found myself up early this morning all on my own.  Imagine, a quite, early morning house just for me.  It was brilliant!  Wonder of wonders, Phil found our last bag of frozen sour cherries at the back of the freezer a couple days ago.  Those cherries, all defrosted in the the fridge begged to be used this morning.   As the title would suggest I used them to make pancakes.  I added some vanilla, a couple tablespoons of honey and a generous helping of cherries to our usual pancake recipe and then made cherry syrup to go on top.  The syrup consisted of berries and juice in a pan on the stove with some maple syrup thrown in for sweetness.  I've already had two plates but I may go have another.  If the kids don't get up soon they may miss out.