Saturday, September 12, 2009

Autumn around the corner

Well, we are off to a good start with school this year. T loves his new Montessori school, and we are very happy with it as well. As one of the oldest kids at the new school, he enjoys being a leader. I am happy that he will be able to have the full Montessori education though 8th grade. It is like the greatest gift! Such a lovely freedom within a structure suits him well. Especially since he has gone from school to homeschool back to school. It is good to find a fit for him where he can read all day if he's like, but can also do the lovely works. The physical education plans established by Dr. Montessori are also quite impressive--they focus on synthesizing the mind and body so that the child can develop deliberate motion/control over the body. It is pretty impressive, and I'd like to read more about it.

I've my job cut out helping develop the urban gardening part of the school, and look forward to teaching some vermiculture to the kids. Kids and worms are a winning combo. T is also excited for the bunnies that will arrive soon, too.

V will get to go to the school next year, and J is hanging out with me, gardening and baking and going to the library (which is her favorite place) as well as a gymnastics class through parks and rec.

We have all our fall crops planted-- the brussel sprouts look good, even though they had those little nasty bugs on them. I sprayed them off and will put some garlic tonic on the leaves tomorrow. The purple cabage whihc I thought I killed is also doing well, and we have new rows of radishes and beets...

And we are still picking tomatoes, peppers, corn, pumpkins (K made the absolute best pumpkin pie with one of V's pumpkins last week), tons of spearmint, and some little carrots... K dug up the last of our potatoes today, too--which looks so lovely and red. I don't know if the celleric root will grow fast enough before it gets too cold, but next year I am going to grow tons of it. It tastes so good in soup and can be used as cellery, but seems to last longer. But is costs so much at the store!

Our kefir water is going... going too well. I had to put the little grains in the freezer because I felt like I had two extra pets between the kefir grains and the sourdough--constantly feed and tending the little growing things... it was too much. Plus I am surprised how alcoholic some of the kefir water I've made has smelled! Being pregnant, I'm nervous about throwing it back.

So, I can't believe I will be a mom of 4 in a few short weeks! Some days I panic, some days I am calm and it all makes sense. But 94 days seems like nothing.

Especially with Halloween, All Saints Day, Martinmas (which we are planning a lovely lantern walk and cider/pumpkin bread party for), Thanksgiving and then a new baby! Then Christmas!

I love this time of the year, and feel so strange because I want it all to come, but I don't want to miss it by it going by too fast... Such a strange reality time is, that is but hardly is at all.

I found the USB cable and can upload some pictures soon!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Cure of Ars

“Oh, how beautiful will be the day of Resurrection! Those beautiful souls will be seen coming from heaven like glorious suns, to unite themselves to the bodies they animated on earth. The more those bodies have been mortified, the more they will shine like diamonds.” ~ St. John Vianney, Cure d'Ars

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I don't know if I can get an Oregon Driver's License ...

and I think it is part of something more then not wanting to go to the DMV. I've never really had a problem with the DMV; you just go and wait and stuff, and then you get what you need. But I typically don't really harbor urges of overly importance... so maybe that is why the DMV never bother me.

And the post office--people always complain about the postal service in the us. try living in Italy for awhile; you'll love the US postal service after that...

But anyways, I can't get a drivers license here because I don't want to give up my California license. I mean, I like living here in Oregon, but I love California. She is my motherland.

I've been so homesick for things like the cherry corn scones from the Cheese Board... and my taco truck in the Fruitvale. At least there are lots of food trucks here in Portland, with excellent food.

And also, having this baby outside of California is weird.

If it ever cools off below 80 degrees in this house, I'll make these cherry corn scones, since we have pounds and pounds of cherries to eat from the buying club. Farm fresh Organic cherries!

We also went berry picking on Saturday, and the tayberry jam Mr. bibliotecario made is deliscious, so I need to make some bread for that, too. Any excuse for tayberry jam.

Oh, and here is the Cheese Board collected works: YUM!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Summer is here!

So it is lovely to have arrived at the first day of summer. Everything in the garden looks lovely, the sunflowers are all taller then me. I feel like we were so luck to have such luck with starting them inside, and the transplanting went well... We dug up our first potatoes today and they are the best thing I have ever eaten. It is truly a blessing to get such good yields on the high caloric foods.

It is also Fathers' day... I guess I am lucky that the father of my children, my dear husband, loves to cook. So he barbecued kefta kabobs, barbecued eggplant for babaganoush (sp?), and then we found a great recipe for breads cooked on the grill... flatish breads like naan. Recipe here.

Of course I have beautiful pictures of all of these things, trapped in my camera... senza USB cable. Which is part of my second big project... decluttering. Blah. I hate it. But I am determined to make five (soon to be six) people living in a tiny house comfortable. So back to work I go... But I have some interesting photos from this venture as well... as for now, I will leave it to the imagination of you, dear reader.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Christos Anesti! Alithos Anesti!

Happy Easter! Christ is Risen! Lent has been wonderful, and Easter is here! YEAH! We've had a great day of feasting and reveling in our new being--Christ rising in us.

And we've had a surprise... number 4! We are having another child, the estimated due date is around the 8th of December (the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary, the Theotokos!)

Wow, like we don't have enough going on in December with our Wedding Anniversary, two birthdays, Advent and the birth of Christ.

I'm freaked out, totally surprised, but very excited, as well.
The freakish part is that I was planning on taking a job for a few months, like a fulltime office job (I know, scary, eh?) to pay down some bills from moving and such...

I guess this is God's not so subtle way of saying NO.

Never a dull moment... eh?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

This was the best apartment ever. We lived there until we discovered that Josephine was on her way. It has the most beautiful park outside, and it was close to everything: Peet's coffee and Park street (toy safari-- the greatest toy store in the world), and Trader Joe's was in the other direction.

We had the best neighbors, too. Our down stairs neighbors were musicians, and they would play the loveliest cello ever, and often she played with a trio. And you know how sound is amplified when it passs through walls? It was glorious, to look out the great bay windows during The Beautiful time, and the cello would seep up, rising through the floor.

And we had kids in the building, downstairs and next door--so we had building friends for the kids.

When the family that owned the building put it up for sale we mourned, and ached a bit, because we always stated that when they sold it someday we would buy it, because it was so perfect and lovely. Except it was too small; barely a 2 bedroom with the second bedroom basically fitting a bed for the boys and a dresser.

I miss Alameda now, and the whole beautiful bay. And the air, the way the sea would marry the air and make me want to run down to the sand on the bay, and sink my teeth into the rocks, crying out like the sea birds.

But I miss that apartment the most. It was the most 'home' of anyplace I've lived since, well, since my parent's home, I guess.

the mini farm

So here is a tale. A tale of desires, and plans, and hopes and dreams.

I'd like to grow something really tasty and vend it at the farmers' market. Originally we wanted to lease an acre and start a CSA, but that seemed a bit ambitious. But I can grow anything, and I could grow enough of a product (I must keep the exact product to myself, for now... this is a part of my business sense, which is highly backwards and superstitious. Please forgive me) in my front and backyard.

Food not lawns.

But there reality sets in: I need to incorporate, so that cost fifty bucks, then there is insurance, business license, a table and a canopy. All of this costs money. I have a loose confederation of ladies who want to band together and collectively get one spot at the FM (I think we would all fit) and we could create another structure to act as a single entity for the purposes of marketing, but keep our own books, sell our stuff; and enjoy each others' company.

If there was a day when someone couldn't make it, chances are another one of us can--so we won't miss out...

And the whole idea is that is will have zero carbon footprint, even negative footprint. The only time we would impact anything is driving the few miles to the market, or I thought eventually when the baby is big enough to pedal, we can bike there, puling the product in a trailer. I guess I could deliver the goods (if we do go CSA style, I think insurance is not required then, so the overhead is less) via bicycle. I think I can still take food stamps for payment that way, too. Because that is another goal, to take food stamps... and there is a market nearby that might buy the product. But the maximum returns are from the farmers' market me thinks... but then there is less overhead. That is when the teeter totter starts going back and forth in my mind...

But I need some money to start this up. And I'm not sure about how to get the money. And I don't know how to ask people for money. I have a business plan... but it just seems awkward to say "hi can I borrow some money ?"

Because who is going to give it to me?

And for some reason this makes me think of Dickens... who is such a weird author in my opionion when we consider all of English literature (not just British, but all in the English language). He is almost too simplistic in his plots and charactersrs... like a Victorian mother goose or brothers Grimm. But then there are these gems in there. ike the contrast between scrooge on and tom cratchet (sp?). Scrooge is such a good, miserly Calvanist. According to the time, he would be predestined for heaven, because being bloody rich was one way to find out if you were moral or not.

But then there is Lady Poverty... and Cratchet... so there is this religious tension. Except if the Calvanists were kicked out of Britian? I don't recall... I'll have to go look that one up.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

this is ground control to major tom...

Perhaps that is the wrong message, I haven't been strung out and floating in space. We moved to Portland, OR and are here. We have three chickens, baby chicks now, soon to be big hens. The kids love the hens....

We are now part of Holy Rosary Parish--a great place. The kids are so big. T is almost 8, and V will be 5 in two weeks. J had a lovely 2nd birthday right after Christmas. And she is totally out of diapers now. Yeah cloth! So I (kind of) sadly (kind of joyously) pack all her little diapers and woolies away. I guess I'll hold onto them for a bit here, for maybe #4?

I'm getting ready for Lent. I really need Lent this year--after moving and all the upheaveal,, I want to get refocused (sp?). Because we aren't eating dairy except for the occasional sheep cheese, I'm cutting out olive oil and wine as well. I'm basically following the Eastern Orthodox Great Lenten Fast--I don't think I can fast for a complete 3 days in a row because J is still occasionally nursing (for comfort). I hope to go to Mass at least 2 times per week. Daily would be great, but with 2 little ones and limited funds, that might not work.

Which brings me to my big part--Lady Poverty. lovely Lady Poverty. We are considered economically poor in this country. We live below the 200 per cent above the povery line ( I won't say exactly where, but it is down there ;) ). And I have mixed feelings about telling people this. I feel like it is show what shameful--but then don't the poor have a special place in the Heart of Jesus? Isn't poverty something to strive for?

So why do I feel so weird about it, in this land of the protestant work ethic and calvanistic predestination anxiety? When did capitalism invade my conscious and begin to inform my ethics?

I;d like to really give away what we don't need/use and be content with the bare minimum if stuff. So I'm perging the things. We gave away a lot of stuff before moving, but we are kind of nostalgic pack rats, and well--you know writers... it is hard to pry stuff out of their hands.

So that will be a task. To embrace Lady Poverty, and reconnect with Him.

So I plan to spend little time on line. I'm going to refocus on my place here, and live poor.

sorry this is kind of wacky and disjointed, but I just need to get it all out before my bread is done baking in the oven.

Yeah! Lent.