Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Just Say No!!!

Hubby and I took my mom, dad and students out to a Chinese buffet for my dad's birthday yesterday. I've got two words and two words only...

Never again!!!

Okay, maybe more than just two words :) The food was really good, but I always get ripped off because I believe that for myself, eating more than one plate full of food is considered as borderline gluttony. I don't eat a lot, so when we go to buffets and I try to stretch beyond normal capacity for myself, I feel sooooooo ill! When we go to buffets, we always feel compelled to get our "money's worth", which in turn is just not healthy...or natural for that matter! The place we went to said in their ad that they do not use MSG in their food (thank goodness). Though the food was oh so yummy, it was still greasier and oilier than what we are used to. Hubby and I rarely eat fried food. My students were able to pack away three plates of food each and went back for dessert twice. They told me that they have developed a system for buffets:
-never eat rice- it fills you up
-never eat soup- it fills you up
-don't drink anything except water- pop fills you up
-after your first plate of food, walk around for a bit
-pace yourself- eat slowly
-there's always room for dessert, no matter how full you are
Uhh...yeah. Right.

I felt so full and so ill last night after having consumed a plate and a half of food and fruit for dessert. I ended up not being able to fall asleep right away when we got home. I was tossing and turning and had nightmares of huge, horses (like the ones seen in Lord of the Rings--the ones the riders were riding when they were chasing Frodo). Then the dream changed to me being four months pregnant. What the heck?? WEIRD!

Lesson learned: I am never to eat at a buffet again!! (We say that all the time though!) Bleh! Hubby and I have decided that we (he and I) just aren't meant to consume copious amounts of food like that.
Monday, January 29, 2007

Toot Tooooooooot!!!

*sigh* You know you spend way too much time with kids when all your conversations end up with discussions on...farts and different types of poop!

I was reading Canine's review of the Grossology Exhibit she went to. I took my nieces and students to the exhibit when it was at Science North last summer. They seemed really intrigued by the information that was there. The farts and belching always seem to get kids' attention! Canine Cologne best summed things up with :

"According to one of the exhibit placards about farts, which they call 'toots' (that sounds so lame!!!). I've recapped the more important parts:"When you pass gas, the skin around the anus vibrates.... But not all toots sound the same."Then it goes on to say that some are high pitched and others are low-pitched. Why? It's because of vibrations. A tightened anus creates a higher-pitched fart. Just like a guitar string (I love that analogy), the tenser the anus muscles, the faster the anus vibrates. Blah blah blah...Finally, the more relaxed your anus muscles, the more lower pitched the sound." (Thanks Canine! LOL!)

What is it with kids and fecal matter? When I taught in Japan, all the little kiddies were obsessed with "unko". There were even children's story books about little Unko-chan. My nieces and my students also seem to end up talking about poop all the time too! Conversations usually are centered around:

-corn poo
-ghost poo
-log jams
-Hershey squirts

Oh my!
Sunday, January 28, 2007


While walking to my vehicle a few days ago, I spotted a creepy looking animal. I'd never seen anything like it before. I am always surprised at what kind of animals I'm able to find on the Island. This one in particular, had these strange kind of 'feelers' near its nose. It was dark grey (almost black) and its feet looked almost webbed. I'd seen moles and shrews in photographs before, but this thing looked almost like some alien life form.

After talking about my find to Hubby and Dylon, Dylon concluded that it was a star-nosed mole. After reading about it on this site, I was shocked as to why it was spotted on our driveway. Apparently, the star-nosed mole is an accomplished swimmer. Though the Blue Jay creek runs through our property, there aren't any streams or marshes near our house! What was this creature doing all the way over here in the middle of winter?? Could it be that the warm spell we had the other week had confused the animal? Poor thing. It's cold out now.

Ladies and gentlemen, introducing....

Condylura cristata!!
Copyright 1999 The Smithsonian Book of North American Mammalsedited by Don E. Wilson and Sue Ruff. All rights reserved.

Meme me all night long...

4 things meme....
From the lovely Jill at Yummy!

Four places I have worked:
1. Senior citizens' home taking care of the elderly
2. Summer camp for kids in Northern Quebec
3. English Academy in Japan
4. English school in Toronto

Four movies I would watch over and over:
1. West Side Story
2. Grease
3. The Outsiders
5. The Wedding Date

Four of my favorite TV shows:
1. Grey's Anatomy
2. CSI (Las Vegas)
3. Desperate Housewives

4. The Barefoot Contessa

Four places I have been on vacation:
1. The Philippines
2. Singapore
3. Bali

4. Pennsylvania-Kansas-Missouri

Four of my favorite foods:
1. Thai
2. Indian

3. Sushi
4. Pasta

Four things I like to do in my spare time:
1. Spend time with my husband
2. go for walks

3. Blog
4. it's a toss up between gardening, writing, drawing, and visiting with friends!

Four people I tag (tag as many as you like, it's okay)
Grrr...Jill already tagged Dina and Curiosity Killer! Does that mean I can't tag them??
1. Ms. Mamma

2. Danielle
3. Northern Mom and Sharkey
4. Canine Cologne (even if she probably won't do it! lol)
Saturday, January 27, 2007

Something to think about...

We had some friends over today/tonight and had some interesting conversations about things to do on the Island, solar and wind power, how to publish your own books, technology, video games from the 80's, food, cool movies...which led to favorite TV shows. CSI (Las Vegas) seemed to be the favorite amongst all of us and as we got to talking about the show, our friends shed some interesting perspective on what may happen in the next few episodes.
We got to talking about the elusive 'miniature murderer' and one person suspects that the new guy, Agent Keppler, may be the killer. Another person thinks it may be Grissom (who is on leave 'teaching a seminar' for four weeks. A comment was made on the box that was on Grissom's desk when Sarah went to retrieve the key in his desk drawer. Hmmm...interesting theories. Can't wait to see how things unfold! know you're wayyyyy too involved in a TV show when you begin to ponder these things! I'm a geek. I admit it :)

Just a regular Saturday morning

To Do:
- laundry, 4 loads
-mop floors
- vacuum floors
-clean bathroom
-wash dishes
-clean office(Hubby's office, so I can't touch it..grrr)
-clean master bedroom
-clean kitchen
-do groceries
-clean student#1's room
-clean student#2's room *students cleaned their own rooms. Thank goodness!
-clean foyer
-clean car

All this done before lunch time.

Student #2 and I were chatting while cleaning the car (and student #1 was feeding the animals). I was kind of tired and a bit bummed that Student #1 has been behaving poorly. Student #2 innocently said, "Christine, I don't think my brother is malevolent. I think he's just simple." LOL!!! That totally made my day. I love that kid. He's so clever.
Thursday, January 25, 2007

Things I REALLY need to get done ASAP

1. Get all my paperwork sorted for tax season. Urgh! I hate this time of the year!
2. Finish reading the book Dylon lent me AGES ago!
3. Learn how to play the guitar! Thanks Curiosity, for mailing me the present! A guitar book and CD! I’m so excited! This is something I’ve always wanted to learn!
4. Get myself a guitar! LOL! I know…
5. Figure a way how to keep my house clean. I mean, I can get it sparkling clean, but with two teenage students, a husband, two kittens (the older cat ran away again and we haven’t seen her all winter) and a dog (who only comes in when it’s really cold outside), it is so incredibly hard to keep this house clean! I sometimes feel like I’m going bonkers since it seems impossible- especially when the boys just leave their clothes and things all over the house! Aaargh!
6. Change the curtains in the living room.
7. Change the faucet and fixtures in the kitchen.
8. Give away, recycle, and throw away all the stuff in the house that we don’t use or need.
9. Try to be more patient.
10. Delete and get rid of all the extra junk on my computer.
11. Get Dylon to set up a wireless connection for our office and personal computers.
12. Investigate new computer packages and deals. My computer is still good, but hubby’s is almost antique! LOL
13. Start doing Turbo Jam and the Slim Series from Beachbody again.
14. Get more firewood split and piled.
15. Spend some alone time with hubby if we can. We seriously need to go away together. Maybe when the students are no longer living with us. Maybe.

The wonders of apple cider vinegar

For years and years, people have been using apple cider vinegar for minor ailments, due to its amazing power to remedy many different health problems. Of course, there are some that don't agree with the use of apple cider vinegar and its ability to help with one's minor ailments, but my mother-in-law and my hubby swear by the stuff.

I've read books, health magazines, pamphlets from the health food store, and websites galore on apple cider vinegar. I take it every now and then when I feel a sore throat coming. Whenever hubby feels under the weather, he immediately takes a few tablespoons of cider vinegar in a glass of water, and drinks it.

Cider vinegar is reported to help with high blood pressure, sore throats, chronic fatigue, and even in weight loss. Do you use apple cider vinegar in your house? If you do, what do you use it for?

Adventures in ESL

I'm always amazed when I see the progress my students are making. I'm also in shock at how much more they have to learn about the English language than people who speak English as a first language. English is my first language, so it just seems so natural to me. I've studied English and linguistics in university and have taken courses so I can teach ESL. Had I not studied to teach English as a second language, I probably would not know the ins and outs of grammar like I do now. I mean, my ESL students learn everything from dangling modifiers, conditional clauses, prepositional phrases, to phrasal verbs, tag questions and other fun things!

We certainly take for granted that we as English speakers don't have to always 'think' about the components of English. I was telling my students that sure, English speakers may speak fluently, but quite often grammar is not perfect.

Just by listening to people I know speak, I can point out to my students some common errors. This way, they don't feel so discouraged and they know that they're not the only ones making errors. Even people who have English as their first language can make mistakes. I'm guilty of this sometimes and I've been teaching ESL since 1998!

Most of the errors I hear often are SVA (subject/verb agreement) errors or VT (verb tense) errors.
For example:
My family are coming for supper tonight.
He don't know his a$$ from his elbow!
Yous guys don't know nothing.
Each student that goes to that school get good grades.
Yous guys got a problem.

I wrote down the sentences I heard and showed it to the students. They were immediately able to point out the mistakes. English is such an interesting language, isn't it?

Just for kicks- 100 most commonly misspelled words. Click here.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

A game I wanna play

Curiosity Killer had this on her blog and it looked like fun, so I decided I wanted to play. She was assigned the letter “L” and then assigned me the letter "T". If you would like to play, with or without variation of adding Things I DON’T love, let me know in the comments. I’ll assign you a letter. Here we go, Ten Things I Love That Begin With “T”, and 10 things that I don’t love that also start with “T”.

10 Things I love that begin with a "T"

1. Travel- my first love :) I just love globe trotting and jet setting! The more exotic the place, the better!

2. Tulips- they're so pretty in the spring!

3. Teaching- it's so much fun and I learn almost as much from the students as they do from me)

4. Thai food! I love it! Gimme a good pad thai anytime!

5. Theater- I love a good play or musical. One of my fave places in Canada is Stratford, Ontario. I love anything from Shakespeare to Gilbert and Sullivan!

6. Tiramisu- I don't have it often...perhaps once or twice every few years, but I love the richness and decadence of tiramisu.

7. Talking- to friends, family, students, strangers...LOL! I just love meeting new people and getting to know their personal stories.

8. Time with my husband. We don't get a lot of time together since the type of work we do and everything else seem to prevent us from having quality/alone time.

9. Tomato juice- I love it! Homemade is the best. It's so refreshing (and healthy)

10. Temples- when I traveled to Japan and Bali, I enjoyed visiting the temples there. I love learning about old, sacred places, appreciating the history and beauty of different cultures.

10 Things I DON’T love that begins with a "T"

1. Toes and toe nails really freak me out. I know I'm weird, but I think they're creepy looking.

2. Thistle- I don't like the way it scratches my legs when I walk in the fields

3. Tests- I know I'm a teacher and I sometimes give students tests, but I've never been one to do well under pressure. I get a bit of anxiety when taking tests. My driving test...yeah, let's not talk about that! LOL!

4. Trucks- I hate driving behind, in front of, or next to big trucks on the highway. They just freak me out.

5. Trailers (movie trailers) on DVDs and in the cinemas. I just want to watch the darn movie...forget the previews for the other movies!

6. Tom Cruise- I don't know why. I used to love him as an actor. Now he just seems so one dimensional and...weird.

7. Tar- well, more like the smell of it. It gives me a headache.

8. Tamarind- it's a delicacy in my mom's country, but I don't know why I'm not the biggest fan of it. It's kind of sticky and sweet and sour at the same time.

9. Thieves- I can't stand it when people steal things or take things that don't belong to them. Fortunately, I've never been a victim of theft, but I don't see how anyone can take something that's not theirs.

10. Toast- I'm not a big bread eater like hubby is. He grew up eating bread with every meal.

*An honorable mention goes out to 'tarantulas'. I HATE spiders and all kinds of creepy crawlies!

If you would like to play, with or without variation of adding Things I DON’T love, let me know in the comments. I’ll assign you a letter. Have fun!!
Monday, January 22, 2007

Something for baby

There's something so special about creating and making things with your own hands. There's a certain amount of pride that goes with knowing that you are able to make something beautiful to share with others. I've noticed with my friends who have had babies or who are currently pregnant, that some of them seem to want to pick up learning to sew or quilt...or knit. Perhaps it's part of the 'nesting' stage or maybe it's that innate wanting to create things. My friend, Rachel began making beautiful skirts and capris with the coolest material she could buy. A few weeks later, she discovered she was pregnant. My friend, Kim began baking all sorts of wonderful cakes and desserts and had no idea why the sudden interest in baking. Shortly after, she found out she was also expecting. Maybe this doesn't happen to all pregnant women, but it's been something I've noticed in the women I know.

Anyway, my mom has decided that she wants to crochet a blanket for her future grandchild. She had done one for my baby brother when he was born (20 years ago). En route to Montreal from the Island, mom began crocheting the baby blanket for my future niece or nephew (who is due in six weeks). It is gorgeous. The only problem is that her hands are not working the way they used to and she gets pains in her hands now. I said that if she could teach me, that I'd help her finish the blanket. It'll be a joint effort...a beautiful blanket to baby from grandma and auntie C :)

After much frustration and headache, I finally got the hang of it. I am officially addicted to crocheting. I can't believe I learned how to crochet on the ride home from Montreal! Hmmm...what's next? Baby booties? A sweater and bonnet? Maybe I'll just stick to blankets and scarves! LOL! I'll post pics of our work in progress at a later date.

This pic was taken from Google images. The blanket mom and I are making has the same pattern as the yellow blanket, but the yarn we are using is white, baby blue, mint green, and a light yellow. It's so sweet!
Sunday, January 21, 2007

baby showers and wedding engagements...

Hubby, my mom, my students and I made the trek to Montreal from the Island for a four day get away for my SIL's baby shower. It was a wonderful few days and just great to be with family and friends. The shower was fun and we had another little surprise. I had a dream the other week that my cousin had proposed to his girlfriend while they were vacationing in Mexico. When I saw them, I told them about my dream and...ta da!!! Amy held out her hand for me to see a gorgeous rock! Premonition dreams...I get them quite often, actually! Anyway, the only thing is I got the date wrong. They got engaged on Christmas Eve, but waited to tell everyone. Congrats to Edwin and Amy! We're so happy for the love birds. We'll be seeing the family again for the wedding in Montreal on August 18th, 2007 (my brother's 30th b-day!).

While the ladies were at the baby shower, the men were hanging out. Hubby, my student, my uncle and my cousin went the the Montreal International Car Show and out for a bite to eat. Can you spell s-p-o-i-l-e-d? Hubby really enjoyed his weekend with the guys.

I'll post shower pics sometime this week. What a blast. Amy did the decorations, my aunts prepared the food, and I organized the shower games and prizes. Too fun! We played:

1. Don't say 'baby'! -the one where each person is given a clothes pin and if someone says 'baby', they get their pin taken from them. The person with the most pins at the end wins) The mommy-to-be won with 8 pins.

2. Feed the baby -in pairs, one person is the mommy and the other is the baby. Each team is given a spoon and a bottle of baby food. Mommy has to feed baby, and the first team to finish the jar of baby food wins a prize. My mom and the girlfriend of one of my cousins won. It was the grossest thing ever though. Baby food kind of makes me feel's so stinky! The look on all these grown women's faces was hillarious! It looks like the faces of babies when they're being fed that stuff! I was kind of mean and chose 'beef and vegetable' and 'chicken and rice' for the ladies to feast on. I'm cruel...I know. Only one team was lucky and had apple and strawberry.

3. Pass the baby- it's kind of like the childhood classic, 'hot potato', where all the players are in a circle and have to pass around a baby (doll). When the music stops, whoever has the baby is out. Each time a member is out, they have to give some words of advice to the new mom). It was a fun game and these ladies are very cut-throat at this game! Note to self: Do not let mom or Aunt Florie babysit your babies! They'll end up with concussions! (yeah, mom and Aunt Flo were cheaters and kept throwing or dropping the baby when the music stopped).

4. Pin the soother on the baby- each lady had a chance to pin (blindfolded) the soother/pacifier in the baby's mouth. It's kind of like pin the tail on the donkey, but I cropped a picture of my brother's face and enlarged it and printed it. I then pasted it onto the body of a baby in diapers, which I drew (like a caricriture). It was so funny.

I always love getting together with these ladies. They're so much fun and such a hoot! Oh, and also very, very LOUD!! LOL!

Photos to be supplied soon :) Gotta catch some zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz's. As much as I love going on mini trips and seeing friends and family, I also love being back home :)

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


Fascinated by all the wildlife I see on the Island, I have been trying to document what I've seen so far. Unfortunately, I never seem to have the foresight to bring my camera with me every time I leave the house!! Here are but a few of the critters I've seen to date. Sadly, I missed taking photos of the two black bear cubs I saw (near Bay Estates and the second one in West Bay). I have also seen turkey vultures, an American Eagle, Coppers hawks, blue jays, chickadees, hummingbirds, luna moths, partridges, sandhill cranes, woodpeckers, porcupines, (skunks and racoons are common), muskrats, 4 wolves (on my MIL's farm)...and the list goes on.

The fox kits pic is from our property. The groundhog was on our property and the beach critters and my students were taken in Southbay. The pic of the deer in our yard isn't that clear. Sorries :)


Before moving to Manitoulin Island, I had never even heard of the term sundog. In my first year living here, an old farmer told me about the spectacular sundog he saw. Uhh...I had no idea what he was talking about. If you are interested in the scientific explanation of a sundog, you can ask Hubby and he'll be glad to explain it...or you can click here.
I haven't been able to get a good photo of a sundog because I never have my camera with me when I see one. They're not all that common. I usually have my phone cam but the quality of cell phone cameras aren't the greatest. Anyway, I've "borrowed" this photo from astrophotographer, Steve Irvine (located in Wiarton, Ontario). I actually e-mailed him to see if it was okay for me to use his photo.
On my way back from a day trip in Espanola yesterday, my students and my friend Elaine and I were lucky enough to catch a glimpse of a sundog. I was driving down Hwy 6 and yelled, "Sundog!!!" and the boys had no idea why I was so excited. I pointed to the rainbow seemingly shooting straight up on the left side of the sun. It was kind of faint, but definitely there. It wasn't like a regular rainblow where you can see the arc. A sundog looks more like a straight line going up on one side of the sun and another one on the left side of it. The boys finally saw it and then Elaine pointed out the second one (which I almost missed because I was driving). The one on the right side of the sun was much more pronounced in color. Absolutely spectacular. Since I've lived here, I've only seen sundogs three or four times. I've also seen the Northern Lights (aka: Aurora Borealis) four or five times. I've seen meteor showers, nebulas, the rings around Saturn...all amazing things for this city girl! :)
Monday, January 15, 2007

Island living

I often talk about how beautiful the Island is and how lucky we are to live here. Ms.Mamma and Minotte suggested that I take some photos of where I live and post them. Here goes!!! This is the first of many Island photos I'll be posting.

This is the Bridal Veil Falls in Kagawong. The first photo was taken in the fall two years ago and the second was taken last winter. I'll try to get out and drive around so I can take more photos soon. Doesn't the winter photo look just magical? It looks like a winter wonderland. This year, we don't have that much snow or ice....yet!

Terrible Twos

Yet another meme. This time from my friend, LisaB. Congrats to the new mommy :) Little Ryan is absolutely adorable.

Two Names You Go By:
1. Christine
2. Chris (also Chrissy, Tina, Tin, Tin-Tin....don't even ask! LOL)

Two Things You Are Wearing Right Now:
1. Turquoise top from Old Navy
2. Jeans from the Gap

Things You Want in a Relationship:
1. Communication
2. Trust

Two of Your Favourite Things to do:
1. Spend time with Hubby
2. Paint/sketch

Two Things You Want Very Badly At The Moment:
1. a baby
2. nothing else :)

Two pets you had/have:
1. Dog
2. Cats

Two people who will fill this out:
1. Curiosity Killer
2. Jill (I'm actually not sure if anyone will do this, since everyone's probably sick of memes right now. Hmmm...hopefully Dina, Danielle, MsMamma, and Miss Moneypenny will do it. japanmanpete, happilymarried and t don't have blogs, but maybe they'll do it. I dunno...)

Two things you did last night:
1. Corrected my students' journals
2. Cleaned the kitchen

Two People that live in your house:
1. Hubby
2. Students, "P1" and "P2"

Two things you ate today:
1. berries and yogurt
2. Korean spicy noodles

Two people you Last Talked To:
1. Hubby
2. my mom

Two Things You're doing tomorrow:
1. Teaching grammar and writing lessons
2. Going to Espanola for some shopping

Two longest car rides:
1. Toronto to New Brunswick
2. Montreal to Florida (Cocoa Beach, Miami, Orlando, Cape San Blas, Fort Lauderdale)

Two Favourite Holidays:
1. Christmas
2. New Years Eve

Two Favourite beverages:
1. Mango juice
2. Chai tea
Saturday, January 13, 2007

Yo' Momma!!!

Hubby, the kids and I watched Big Momma's House 2 tonight. None of them share my love for foreign or indie films, so we ended up watching Big Momma. Martin Lawrence plays an FBI agent who goes under the guise of Big Momma, a nanny/housekeeper for a suspect's family. It's a hillarious movie. The kids, Hubby and I were howling with laughter throughout the entire movie!
Warning: Rated PG-13 (some mild sexual humor, drug humor, some words not suitable for young children). It is a very funny movie though!

Oh, no movie night is complete without homemade PIZZA :) I used my biscuit recipe to make my pizza dough. Prepare dough, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Once you've rolled out the dough, spread tomato sauce evenly (I'll post my homemade tomato sauce recipe one of these days). Add whatever toppings you wish. As you can see from the photo, the boys opted for a meat lovers pizza. I also have a recipe for vegetarian rice crust pizza for those who are allergic to gluten. Anyway, bake pizza in oven for 25-30 mins. Et voila!
In keeping with the pizza theme over at my good friends, Stephen and Elisabeth's page, here's a quick poem I came up with. Stephen's way better at writing than I am :) Here we go...just for laughs!
Pizza, pizza,
You so good.
You make me happy like nuthin' else could.
Always with cheese,
You're such a tease.
Oh, how you make ev'ry one fight for your last piece.
Thick crust, thin crust...whatever you please.
Just as long as there's no anchovies!!!
For the record, I actually don't really like pizza at all. I've only been making it a lot recently because the boys love it. *sigh* Can't wait to get myself to Montreal for some mmm mmmmm good food! Dunno if I'll have Thai, Indian, Japanese, Greek...or poutine!!! Decisions, decisions!!! LOL

Here we go again!!!

Hubby got home from his firefighters’ meeting last night and was just laughing like crazy. This is what happened...

Hubby: News on the street is that you’re expecting in the spring!
Me: What? (totally shocked)
Hubby: (laughing) Everyone at the fire hall was congratulating me tonight.
Me: Seriously?
Hubby: Uh huh! (still cracking up)
Me: Oh boy! Won’t they be surprised when spring comes and there is no baby!
Hubby: Guess we better hurry up then!

LOL! I find it soooooooo funny living in such a small town! Honestly, back in Toronto (or even Montreal) no one would even have the slightest interest in my life. Here, almost everyone knows everyone. You say hi to all your neighbours. You know the hairdresser, pharmacist, post office workers, delivery person (Courier/Purolator), cashiers at the grocery store all by first name. I like the quaint, friendly, warm, homey atmosphere rather than living where I used to live, where I didn't even know my neighbours even if we lived next to each other for five years! Here, everyone knows things about your life before things even happen! For the record, we are not expecting (at least we don’t think we are!) but we would love to be. My brother and his wife in Kingston are expecting their first baby in March, so maybe that's where the confusion is from? They're expecting...not us. Barring that fact, I would really, really, really, REALLY like to have a baby soon though!!! :)
Friday, January 12, 2007

I'm such a nag!!!

Oh boy! I’ve turned into the type of person I swore I’d never become. Does this sound familiar?
"Turn off the lights when you leave the room!"
"Don’t leave your socks on the floor!"
"Please put your cup in the sink if you’re done!"
"Do your homework!"

"Please stop fighting with each other."
"Stop trying to kill each other!!!"
I started out with polite requests, but after a zillion times of having to repeat myself, I’m starting to get a little miffed. We went over rules and etiquette when the students first arrived. I thought things were understood. Then again, they are boys. They're not adults. Do I expect too much? Am I too strict?
I brought the boys to the hairdresser’s the other day so they could tame their unruly manes. I thought their hairdos were cute, but they wanted it trimmed. Anyway, the hairdresser and I were chatting and she said someone had mentioned earlier to her that "she’d just like to skip the whole baby part. You know, all the changing diapers, feeding, crying, etc." I kind of said that I’d much rather go through that process so I could "grow" with my child and "learn" with my child…not just get thrown into raising a teenager.
P2 has been more helpful and thoughtful than P1. He has been helping me with chores like washing dishes, preparing meals, and putting the compost onto the garden. I did delegate chores and used positive reinforcement, and it works with P2. P1 is a bit more stubborn.
Hubby keeps reminding me that not only are the boys learning English, but they are also learning valuable life lessons like how to treat others, respect others, have responsibility, be tolerant to other cultures, and so on. I must keep remembering that…especially when I need a time out! Thank goodness for our greenhouse! The kids haven’t found my secret hiding place yet!

One quick question: The students study grammar and vocab acquisition in the morning, followed by either reading, writing, speaking or listening in the afternoon. Normally, after lessons an activity would follow (such as skating, bowling, a trip to Science North, a movie, etc). However, P1 has been particularly bratty, selfish and inconsiderate, so I have witheld all rights to activities. For some reason, he can't seem to understand why I'm not letting them do activities. In his homework journal, he wrote: "Today was sucky. What a sucky day. We didn't do activities today. We just studied. Oh shit." Uhhh...hello??? He's rude, selfish, bossy, and his personality needs some adjustment. Personally, I don't reward poor behaviour. I honestly don't think I should give the kids a reward. Activities are a privilege and not a right. The kid just doesn't understand!!! How can I effectively get this into his head? Anyone???
Thursday, January 11, 2007


that's what I am! I had no idea that this week was national delurking week. The only reason I found out was that a few of the blogs I visit have mentioned it! Soooo...if you're reading this, please drop me a line and just say hello :) LOL...delurking week and it's almost over. How swift am I?

Here's a quick question: Do you always comment on blogs you visit or are you a lurker?

PS. Happy Birthday, Dylon!!! I hope you had a great time in the 'city' yesterday!! See, I didn't forget! :)
Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Easy Apple Crisp

It finally feels like winter here since we got a nice snowfall the other day! I was beginning to get worried that it was so green outside in the middle of January! Anyway, the cool weather calls for a nice, warm treat for the kids and Hubby. What better treat than apple crisp? It's got just the right amount of sweetness...I don't like anything tooooooooooo sweet!
4 or 5 tart apples
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (I omit this in my recipe)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup rolled oats
4 tablespoons cold butter (1/2 stick)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (I also omit this because our nieces have nut allergies)

Preheat oven at 375. Peel, core and thinly slice apples, toss in a bowl with lemon juice to prevent darkening. In a separate bowl, combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg; stir into apples. Set aside.
In another bowl combine flour, sugar and oats.
butter into 8 pieces, and cut butter into flour until mixture looks like crumbs. Stir in nuts. Butter a 10 X 10-inch baking dish. Spread apples in bottom of baking dish then sprinkle with flour mixture. Bake at 375° for 30 to 45 minutes, or until apples are tender and topping is lightly browned. Serve warm or at room temperature.

My students and I tried an alternate recipe that called for crushed shortbread cookies instead of flour. Luckily, I had made cookies and had them on hand. They thought it was fun to crush the cookies and pour it over the apples with the oatmeal.
Tuesday, January 09, 2007

I'm such a failure....

I have no idea why, but I have never been able to successfully make Jell-O. For some reason, mine just never congeals. What is supposed to be one of the easiest, dummy-proof things to do, always ends up as a disaster.

On a side note, I used to eat Jell-O as a kid. However, as a teenager and young adult, I stopped eating Jell-O when I became vegetarian because I discovered (as many vegetarians do) that Jell-O consists of animal matter. "Gelatin is basically processed collagen, which is a structural protein in animals' connective tissue, skin, and bones."

Anyway, this past week at the homestead, we’ve all been plagued with flu-like symptoms (and we even had the darn flu shots in the beginning of winter to prevent this from happening!). We thought that Jell-O would perhaps make our sore throats feel better. But alas, I can’t seem to get my Jell-O to not be watery. I guess we’ll have to resort to drinking hot ginger tea and honey! Hubby hates ginger tea and thinks it tastes wretched! It’s sort of like Buckley’s. "It tastes awful And it works!" (Check out the horrible grammar! Buckleys, you should know that you never begin a sentence with ‘And’!) LOL!

Home Cookin'

Today's lunch menu featured a Spanish Fritatta and cabbage salad, followed by an apple crisp.

To make your cabbage salad, you will need 1/4 large cabbage (save the rest for future use), 1 carrot, 1 small onion. Put all of these into your food processor so they look like they've been grated. Put cabbage, onion and carrot shreds into a medium sized bowl and add 2 Tbsp. mayonnaise, salt, black pepper, a touch of cider vinegar and a little sprinkle of Splenda (I don't put sugar or Splenda in my recipe though).

Mix everything together and serve. It's a balanced meal with the protein from the eggs and you've also got a bit of carbs with the potato in the fritatta. Hubby and the boys wanted freshly baked bread too. They aren't like me--they don't mind doubling up on carbs! LOL!

My student, P1 helped make the apple crisp. You could smell the fresh cinnamon all throughout the house! Mmmmmmmm! P2 made the bread, as he's becoming an expert bread maker here! Ahh...the things these kids are learning living in the country! :)
Monday, January 08, 2007

What ever happened....

I once had a best friend that I knew would be there for me through good times and bad. This young chap and I grew up together and I knew that he’d forever be a part of my life. As kids, we’d hang out all the time. He helped me through a lot and as his folks were going through a divorce, he’d spend a lot of time at my house. He instantly became part of our family.
Through high school and college, we remained close. There was always the comfort in knowing I’d always have him there. Romance was impending, though I only wanted to be friends, for fear that a relationship would somehow ruin what we had.

I recall one June afternoon, when he walked me home from school. It was the last day of school and we cleaned out our lockers. He was so sweet to carry all my books. He casually said, "Wouldn’t it be cool if we ever went out?" "Like as in boyfriend and girlfriend?" "Yeah." "Nah. That would never happen." That was how it was left. I never thought anything of it. He had walked through a blizzard one Valentine’s Day to hand deliver a bouquet of flowers to me. I opened the door, said thanks and sent him back on his way. My mom opened the door and called him in. She scolded me for being rude and not offering him a cup of hot cocoa. The poor guy had icicles on his long lashes and his cheeks were all red.

We both grew older and had dated here and there. Through university, I always felt somewhat jealous whenever he had a girlfriend. After university, he went to Japan to teach. I followed soon after. I had requested to be sent to the city where he was, but was stationed at the other end of the country. We kept in touch. We both had a good life in Japan. We saw each other a few times. He came to my side of Japan when my mom and little brother came for a visit. I started having romantic feelings and knew that the jealousy I was feeling was not right. We both dated people while we were there. I returned to Canada and continued meeting all the wrong people. Everyone thought that we’d one day be together because we shared a history and were both very special to each other.

The e-mails and letters slowed down and I’d be lucky if I got a message from him once every few months. I met Hubby and we eventually got engaged. I e-mailed my beloved friend and we reminisced. "I always thought we’d end up together", said I. "You had your chance, baby! I had given you so many opportunities." Now I’m happily married, and Hubby is the only person I could ever see myself spending my life with...but I often wonder what my friend is up to and how he is doing. Life has a funny way of working out sometimes. Do you ever wonder about a certain person from your past?

"ComePinky,we must prepare for tomorrow night""Gee,Brain,wut r we doing tomorrow night?""The same thing we do every nightPinky-TryToTakeOverTheWorld!"

For those of you who are not familiar with this tagline, before you think I’m some crazy lady, I nabbed it from the animated TV series, Pinky and the Brain, which aired in the late 1990’s. Hubby and I don’t really want to take over the world. We just want to make a difference, even if it means starting in our own home. We’ve been very interested in alternative energy (for obvious reasons). I’ve been perusing the net for info so that hopefully within the next few years Hubby and I will be able to draw our energy from solar and wind generators. Natural Power Products has some interesting info for solar panels and wind turbines. We won't be doing this for another few years, so in the interim, we have discovered a neat new gadget to help us monitor our energy consumption.
We first heard about the power cost monitor through friends of ours. They have one at their house and they told us about it. We qualify for a free Power Cost Monitor. You can check online if you are eligible too. The only thing we have to pay for is the shipping and handling, which is less than $10. The actual price for the monitor is $149.99.
This is how it works:
"Despite its small size, the PowerCost Monitor™ is a powerful direct feedback device for your home. You can see at a glance, in real time, how much electricity your home is using. Your PowerCost Monitor's™ smart technology measures your home's electricity use and displays that information in a way that you can understand. Your PowerCost Monitor™ displays and calculates this information for dollars and cents and kilowatt hours. "

It's pretty neat. Hubby enjoys seeing how much money we're spending daily on energy and I enjoy seeing what the temperature is outside! LOL It's very cool and handy little gadget.
Sunday, January 07, 2007

World Travel

Our Manitoulin! has a really neat post up right now. He mentioned this site where you can keep track of all the countries you have visited. There's also an Html code for all the states you've visited in the US too. It's pretty neat and a cool way to "see" how much of the globe you've covered :) Thanks for sharing, M!

I was really excited that I'd done a lot of traveling in my teens and early-twenties, but now that I look at the map, it makes me see that I really haven't covered much of the world! It also makes me a tiny bit envious of friends who are still out there, traveling and backpacking around the world. My parents have also been world travelers and I'm sure they'd have a lot of this map
marked. Here's where I've been:

create your own visited countries map
I was talking to someone the other day who said, "All I need is right here. Why would I ever want to set foot off Canada and see other parts of the world?" I was a little taken aback. I mean, I thirst for this stuff...I LOVE traveling. Sure, I'm married now and we're tied to the land, but I think there is so much to be learned by visiting other countries and learning about other cultures. It's such a beautiful, beautiful experience. I think I learned more about life and people by traveling to places like Japan, the Philippines, Bali, Singapore, etc than sitting in a lecture hall for 3hr lessons! Don't get me wrong... I loved studying and being in university, but I think a person benefits greatly from travel too. Being amongst lush, tropical flora and fauna, hearing different languages, meeting other travelers, eating local food, and exploring new terrain can be both exciting and relaxing at the same time. It's exciting because everyting is new. It feels like you're on a great adventure. It can also be relaxing just to get away from your everyday lifestyle and take a mental break. I also love being able to visit old ruins, temples, and even old, culturally and historically rich cities where you can truly appreciate the architecture of the buildings and monuments. Do you think travel is important? Why?
Here's where I've been in the US...

create your own visited states map

Which countries have you traveled to?
Saturday, January 06, 2007

Another great big shout out...

This time, the shout out goes to Telehealth Ontario!!! Residents of Ontario, please be aware of a wonderful service offered by the Ministry of Health. You can dial a toll free number and speak with a registered nurse and she/he can advise you on what to do by listening to your symptoms. Of course, in case of emergency you should always dial 911 or go to the nearest hospital. This is only for general health questions and advice.

One of my students (who shall be called P2) had a rash on his head upon arrival in Canada. I t hought it was acne and that it would go away after a while. It's been over two weeks and the rash has turned into a bubbly, bumpy, crusty, nasty looking thing. It hasn't been getting fact, it's started to spread. He also has rashes on the inside of his arm and in the crease of his neck. Hubby, being on the First Response Team, happened to know the Telehealth number by heart and told me to call it. I spoke with a nurse and she told me she thought it was Impetigo. She also said I should take him to the hospital within 24 hrs because if not treated, it could spread all over his face. Yikes.

So this is Hubby's and my "Parents in training" session, I guess! Hubby and P1 stayed home and washed dishes and cleaned up while I took P2 to the hospital. The telehealth nurse was right. It turned out to be Impetigo and P2 requires 2 types of topical creams, antibiotics, and he needs to use Ivory soap and his clothing and linen are to be washed in Ivory laundry detergent and absolutely no fabric softener.

It started off with Eczema, a condition the student has had for a while, but he has been scratching his skin because it was itchy and thus infected the skin on his face. Fun, fun, fun!

This shout out also goes to the wonderful staff and attending doctor at our hospital! :)
Friday, January 05, 2007

Never again!!!!

I absolutely refuse to drive to the 'city' by myself again! Usually when we go on day trips to Sudbury, Hubby does the driving. We hit the malls, catch a movie, take the students to Science North, do all our shopping at Chapters, Canadian Tire, Costco, etc...

Hubby was sick today, so being the independent woman I am, I decided I'd drive the 2.5 hr jaunt to Sudbury (and 2.5 hrs back!!!). We were going to take the students on a field trip to Dynamic Earth, so off we went. My friend, Sean went with us (but he's from Toronto too so he didn't know the streets in Sudbury either). I don't ever want to drive to the city again. I'd rather someone else do the driving! LOL!

Now that I've lived on the Island for 3 years, I've grown accustomed to driving the highways other cars in sight...just free as a bird on the open road. I get to Sudbury and the streets are so wonky...the names change like 3 times for the same road!!!! It's so confusing and there's so much traffic!! I got sooooooo stressed out! I think Sean thought I was a total spazz. He was probably thinking, "You're from Toronto! This is nothing!!" Seriously...I am sooooooo not a city girl anymore. I simply cannot take the traffic and crowds. Gimme Manitoulin anytime! I like the peaceful, quiet roads. I can't take stress!

I think the kids thought the coolest thing today was eating at King's Buffet. I totally get ripped off at buffets simply because I can't eat that much food. I don't know how anyone can! The kids can just pack it away. I don't know where they put all that food. Hollow legs, I guess! Oh, and when Hubby goes to KB, he can pack away 2 or 3 plates of food and still have room for dessert!!! I needed to stop in Espanola on the way home just to split up the drive and stretch my legs. We stopped off at Tim Horton's and boy, was that iced cappuccino worth it! I haven't had Timmies in ages!!

We got home after our day trip and Hubby asked, "So, how was your day, honey?" All I could say was, "I am never doing that again!" LOL! I don't know how I ever did alll that driving in the city. All the crazy drivers and people who don't follow traffic rules totally make me feel like I'm going to have a heart attack!! LOL

There's no place like home....there's no place like home.....
Thursday, January 04, 2007

One thing you should know about me...

I never measure anything when I cook. I'm like that. Even if I have the recipe in front of me, I never follow the instructions exactly as they're stated. I don't know why. That's just the way I am. It's also hard for me to give recipes to friends, since I don't use exact measurements. It usually sounds something like: "A bit of this, a dash of that...use your discretion...a pinch of that...".

Today, my friends and I were going to take all of our kids bowling. I'm not a parent yet, but I took my two students who are
homestaying" with us (and we're legally their guardians during their studies here) and one of our nieces, Toad (since Pook was sick). There were three groups of parents with a slew of kiddies ranging from 10 to 14 yrs of age (my friend's toddler stayed with grandma for the evening). Our bowling date was for 7:30 and by the time I started cooking it was almost 6PM. Grrr...I had no idea what to cook. Tonight I was so uninspired. I'm usually really quick and creative in the kitchen.

This is what I came up with:

Chicken Soup

-dice 1 medium onion
-peel and cut up 1 medium carrot (I use the peeler to make slivers of carrot so they cook faster)
-boil 1 chicken breast (bone-in) in a medium sized pot of water
-when chicken is done boiling, remove from water and "shred" the meat with a fork
-put chicken shreds back into the broth (I didn't add any artificial niece has Celiac so I didn't want to use anything with fillers. Everything is all natural for her
-add salt and pepper to stock
-add onions and carrot shreds
-let boil for a while

(LOL, see how precise this is???) You can add elbow noodles or whatever else you like, but because of our niece, I didn't add anything with noodles (gluten, remember?)

Omelette with Korean pepper paste over a bed of rice
-4 eggs (that's all I had left in my fridge! LOL), salt, black pepper, a bit of water...all beaten together and then poured into a greased, hot pan (I sometimes use milk to make the omelette, but my niece is also lactose intolerant and my MIL taught me that the omelettes are lighter and fluffier when you use a bit of water)
-rinse and cook rice (I have a rice cooker, so it does all the work for me)
-add Gochujang (pepper sauce)

This was all served with heaps of other veggies

Then for dessert, we had:

Apple-orange-raisin salad

-in a bowl, add a few drops of lemon juice
-dice 2 royal gala apples, add to bowl
-peel and dice 4 clementines (other oranges will work too, but these are especially yummy), add to bowl
-add a handful and a half of raisins (I used sultana raisins tonight)
-add a few tablespoons of Hellmans mayonnaise (this is the only mayo my niece can have)
-make sure the fruit is covered with the mayo

It's a really tangy dessert.

Banana Chocolate Bread

-preheat oven to 350
-in a bowl, cream together 1/2 c butter, 1 c brown sugar, 1 tsp vanilla, 1 egg
-mix in 2 c flour, 1 c oatmeal, 1 tbs baking powder
-pour into greased baking pan (I used the loaf sized pan)
-bake for 50 mins

Of course, our niece couldn't have this dessert, but she practically devoured the fruit salad! I'm not exactly sure of the measurements for the Banana bread, as I don't really measure. I can assure you that this is an EASY and fast recipe and it is delicious!!!

We ended up leaving the house a bit after 7PM and arrived at the bowling alley around 7:40. Only 10 mins late!
**UPDATE**: Apparently, my friend Jill is the only observant one :) She noted that I forgot to include 2 key ingredients in my banana-chocolate recipe!!! I forgot to mention the banana and chocolate!! LOL Duhhhhhh! Okay, you need 3 ripe (brown) bananas (I save all the brown ones that don't get eaten and I store them in the freezer so they don't go to waste and I use them for when I want to bake something that calls for ripe bananas). Cream the bananas into your "wet" ingredients (butter, egg, vanilla, brown sugar). Once you've incorporated your wet and dry ingredients, mix in 1 c chocolate chips. I use semi-sweet.
There you go! Thanks, Jill! :)

A little cat nap....

Ever feel like that's what you need? Just a little cat nap to get yourself all refreshed and your batteries recharged?

I don't know why, but just this week I have been starting to feel a bit sleepy around midday. Unfortunately, I've got absolutely no time to doze off for a few minutes (I can't nap anyway--it totally messes up my sleep pattern). In the morning, I get everyone's breakfast made, then tidy up the house a bit. I then teach grammar and vocabulary acquisition until noon. I make lunch for the students and my husband. Teach reading, writing, pronunciation, TOEFL and SAT prep classes...then we go on an outdoor activity, and then I come home and cook supper. I also help Hubby with stuff around the farm too if he needs me.

Here's a pic of the girls (Fred and George) taking a cat nap. See how they're sprawled across the quilt my MIL made Hubby and me? *sigh* Ah.....the life of a cat :)
Wednesday, January 03, 2007

The Greatest Canadian Invention

I don’t really like the idea of kids watching hours and hours of TV, but tonight Hubby and I let the boys watch The Greatest Canadian Invention on CBC.

Certainly, many countries have been responsible for creating useful inventions that help us with our every day life. I was interested to see that some of these important creations were ones I knew were by Canadians, while others really surprised me. (I had no clue!)

Here are a few more reasons to be proud to be Canadian, eh?! : ) Here’s the list that was on TGCI (in alphabetical order):

Alkaline long-lasting battery – 1959 (Lewis Urry)
Ardox spiral nail- 1954 (Allan Dove)
Automatic lubricating cup- 1872 (Elijah McCoy) click on the CBC website for this one, otherwise it just sounds obscene!
Basketball- 1892 (James Naismith) there has been lots of debate in the past on this one.
Birch bark canoe- (First peoples)
Blackberry- 1999 (Mike Lazaridis)
Bloody Caesar- 1969 (Walter Chell) seriously? I had no clue!
Caulking gun- 1894 (Theodore Witte)
Cobalt-60 "Bomb" Cancer Treatment- 1951 (Harold Johns)
CPR Mannequin: ACTAR 911- 1989 (Dianne Croteau, Richard Brault)
Crash position indicator- CPI –1957 (Harry Stevinson)
Electric oven- 1892 (Thomas Ahearn) Didn't know this was Canadian either.
Electric wheelchair- 1952 (George Klein) or this one!
Electron microscope- 1938 (James Hillier, Albert Prebus)
Electronic music synthesizer- 1945 (Hugh Le Caine)
Explosives vapour detector- 1985 (Lorne Elias)
Five pin bowling- 1908 (Thomas E. Ryan)
Steam fog horn- 1853 (Robert Foulis)
Goalie mask- 1959 (Jacques Plante)
Green garbage bag- 1950 (Harry Wasylyk, Larry Hansen, Frank Plomp)
G-suit- 1941 (Wilbur Rounding Franks)
Instant mashed potatoes- 1962 (Edward Asselbergs) who on earth eats instant mashed potatoes?
Instant replay- 1955 (CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada)
Insulin, treatment for diabetes- 1921 (Frederick Banting, Charles Best)
JAVA programming language- 1994 (James Arthur Gosling)
Key frame animation- 1969 (Nestor Burtnyk, Marcelli Wein)
Lacrosse- (First peoples)
Light bulb- 1874 (Henry Woodward, Mathew Evans) Lots of dispute over this one too.
Marine screw propeller- 1833 (John Patch)
Marquis wheat- 1908 (Sir Charles Saunders)
Pablum- 1930 (Alan Brown, Theodore Drake, Frederick Tisdall) Didn't know this was Canadian
Pacemaker- 1950 (John Hopps, Wilfred Bigelow, John Callaghan)
Paint roller- 1940 (Norman Breakey)
Plexiglas- 1931 (William Chalmers)
Poutine- 1957 (Fernand Lachance) yeah, baby! But you can only eat real poutine in Quebec. Anywhere else is not 'authentic'. You need the special frites sauce! I don't get to eat poutine often (thank goodness, because it's really not good for your health...and I won't eat it unless it's real poutine--only when I go back to visit family in Quebec...but I am a poutine snob!! LOL!
Radio voice transmission- 1900 (Reginald Fessenden)
Retractable beer carton handle- 1957 (Steve Pasjack)
Robertson screw- 1908 (Peter Robertson)
Self-propelled combine harvester- 1937 (Thomas Carroll)
Separable baggage check- 1882 (John Mitchell Lyons)
Ski-doo – 1922 (Armand Bombardier)
Snowblower- 1925 (Arthur Sicard) had no idea this was Canadian either
Standard time- 1878 (Sandford Fleming)
Telephone- 1876 (Alexander Graham Bell)
UV degradable plastics- 1971 (James Guillet)
Walkie-Talkie- 1942 (Donald L. Hings)
WEEVAC 6- 1980’s (Wendy Murphy)
Wonderbra- 1964 (Louise Poirier) For real???
Zipper- 1913 (Gideon Sundback) Had no clue.

What do you think the greatest Canadian invention is?

I’d have to say IMO, it’s a toss up between: insulin, the pacemaker, electric oven, the telephone, the light bulb, and the zipper. I’d probably choose insulin if I really had to choose one invention though. Oh... and poutine, since I’m from Quebec! LOL!

A Big Shout Out...

to the wonderful and talented (and gorgeous!) J from JetBabyInc. J's new store for the coolest clothes for "your half-pint hipster" sells a wide array of items to meet your child's clothing needs. From funky cool t-shirts and onesies sporting logos from all time faves like The Ramones, AC/DC, Bob Marley, vintage washed '70s and '80s shirts, this store has it all! I especially love that J has a John Deere section!
I also find it very cool that JetBaby has patches, stickers, and t-shirts that reflect many things that are near and dear to me. As you may already know, our two nieces have nut allergies and one of them has Celiac disease, so the fact that JetBaby has stuff that reads: 'Gluten Free', 'Nut Free', etc...makes me really happy! I'm also thrilled that J shares my view on agricultural awareness and on buying local :) This is really important to me, as my husband is a farmer.
She's got some neat t-shirts with No Farmer, No Food, No Future written on them. I guess you can say we found each other via the Farmers Feed Cities website. We're both 'city' girls, but share an interest in the future of agriculture in Canada. I often think it's funny (not haha funny) how the internet can bring together people who may not have otherwise met.
Anyway, we'll certainly be keeping an eye out for more cool JetBaby clothing items. I just know JetBaby will be a huge success!
Monday, January 01, 2007

Christmas Pudding

We normally have Christmas pudding at my MIL's house on Christmas, but this year we had it on New Year's Day (today). Christmas pudding is traditionally a very "English" dish (there's a pic of the Christmas pudding behind the icing sugar snowman). My MIL makes a really sweet icing to go on top of the steamed pudding and shapes it in the form of a snowman. It's custom for my SIL to eat the snowman's head off, as I learned last year. If anyone dares try to get the snowman's head, they may lose a limb. The icing is delicious (icing sugar and butter) and a diabetic's nightmare. It's a good thing the holidays only come once a year. I don't think I could eat anymore heavy meals!!!


I thought it would be a good time to give thanks for all the wonderful things that have happened in the past year:

1. Hubby and I got married
2. Lele and Bu are expecting their first child in March of 2007
3. Dad has had a healthy year and is doing well recovering from his stroke and heart attack
4. Peejay is doing well and has one year of university left
5. I've got wonderful students
6. I've got amazing friends and family
7. K and J have gotten engaged
8. My grandmothers are both healthy
9. Mom's doing well
10. We've had frequent visits from the Cruz family (4 or 5 trips up here in the last year!)
11. Many of our friends have had babies in the past year (what cuties!)
12. We haven't had any major problems in 2006
13. Life has been good to us
14. My vehicle has been holding up pretty well for its age and has taken us on many long distance road trips in the last year (knock on wood! It's a '96 Ford Explorer)
15. We have a roof over our heads, food in our tummies, a few pennies in our pockets

The last photos were taken last winter - we don't have snow on the Island right now. What a big difference from last year!!

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About the Blog Author

City girl moves to the country, falls in love, and marries a farmer. She tries to incorporate her city ways with her new country lifestyle and blogs to keep in touch with friends, family & students who live far, far away :) Can this city girl go country? Watch as she learns all sorts of exciting things about life on the farm and in a small rural community. *UPDATE* We are now parents! Our baby girl was born on Nov. 11, 2008 (at 28 weeks gestation- 12 weeks premature, but she's quite the trooper)!!!
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Life on Manitoulin: Just a bunch of ramblings from a city girl gone country!

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