Wednesday, February 28, 2007

henna on hands

I liked this one alot....

a cool moroccan cuff and ring on my friend for a World Outreach program

I have been practicing and getting darker designs using a better henna mix than I was before. Now I am getting such good color using just hot water, henna, fructose, and teatree oil.

There is a world outreach program at my friends church next week. They are studying the berber people, and would like to have something interactive. So.... she has asked me to do henna there, and also to serve moroccan mint tea. Apparently there will be several hundred people attending. So it will be a busy few hours! I have taught her how to do the henna as well, and one other friend too. So the three of us will be giving the attendees a choice of one of three designs, and we will just crank through them all.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Pango's first snow

Pango, our ferret, was completely intrigued in the snow. We scooped some and brought it inside for him. He stuck his nose in, then way in, and was digging as in a frenzy.... snow flying up in chunks. He seemed to not be able to get enough of it. He was really hard to take photos of though, as he was moving soooo fast. Mostly everything came out blurry. He kept pawing the snow out, and in general was totally energized by it. Totally funny.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

snow lately

Finally we have gotten a bit more snow. The boys have even had a snow day. Not even close to how much we usually get, and the 'big' snowfalls have only been about 4".... totally lame. But beautiful just the same.

Adam tied a little sled to the quad and was dragging Eli around. totally fun.

We all went skiing together the other day. Adam was blown away when he saw how well the kids were really doing. They took off and left him in the dust....
and yes, I taught them how to 'tuck' so they cruise down this part of the run.

my view on one of the runs.... all three of the 'boys' butts

People complain about driving up this mountain (dangerous driving- frequent accidents), but I love how it is after the snow. and on this day it was sparkling and clear.

Monday, February 19, 2007


okay, yeah, both of the boys have now been down this black diamond run with me!

it is such a cool steep and intimidating run. emmett had no idea what he was getting into, but he wanted to do it anyway. He was a trooper and went down, slowly surely, snowplowing and turning all the way. Eli, loved it, and is eager to do it every time we go.

Just after you go down one little quick slope, you turn, and stop on the plateau at the top....

to be stunned by how beautiful it is to take in the view. The hill drops off just below that, and you plunge into paying attention to skiing down the snowy steepness.

cool henna

I liked this one that I did last week. I have gotten inspired by a henna book by Sumita

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Eli is ten!?

how did that happen? time seems to go so fast and yet so slow at the same time. He is so grown up, and so young at the same time. So wonderfully smart and sensitive and funny, and intriguing and infuriating and fun to be with. all rolled into one. How can a parent love their child so much?
I feel like I know him so well, yet he is growing older and I do seem to know less now than I used to. But I still love lying down with him at night, as he lets me into his world by talking with me in the darkness. It is then that I am told and questioned about so much. We both love that time together. Somehow it is a safe time to talk.... with no distractions from anything or anyone else. just us. I love my ten year old. immensely.

Friday, February 16, 2007

knitting sale

The local knitting shop is closing and having a good sale. The owner is retiring. Bummer, as it is close by and have been buying yarn from them for many years.

I got some great yarn, and will use it for 2 sweaters once I finish the several projects I am on now!
I used this yarn before for a sweater for Emmett, and will do another one in red and gray for him, and one for me with black, pale green and fabulous blue. but first need to keep working on the eggplant colored alpaca rollneck for my friend Jenny. I am getting close to being done with it! Maybe by next week.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

snow on the ground

finally we have a bit more snow to cover the spots that became bare. This is the strangest winter. We have hardly any snow, and so many places are being dumped on with snow. The weathermen said this time we were going to get about 12-18", but we didn't. It was bitter cold, and most of what we got was actually frozen rain, and very strange, but still fun to play in, and have the first snow day of the year.

Even Adam had fun playing in the snow his own way (stealing Eli's little quad!).

I shoveled a bunch of it into the kitchen sink, and emmett spent about an hour dripping colored water into it and making a colorful mass of coldness in the sink.

Then we all bundled up and played outside in it for a while. Eli slid down all sorts of things, and emmett was busy 'sawing' through the crust with a stick.

I made maple syrup taffy and had it in the fresh snow......

fresh snow only

I made this tasty maple-ness to have in the fresh snow. It brought back memories of being in Vermont, at Uncle Cheyney's little cozy cottage that we used to visit. White River Junction.... always lots of snow... skiing..... going to maple sugar houses..... sleeping all snuggly.... listening to an old radio in the house..... mom making this gooey mapley substance that we would eager crowd around for- first running outside to scoop fresh snow into bowls, then watching the steamy simmered maple syrup poured onto the white coldness that would make it chill instantly and then we could pop it into our mouths......
yum...... had to come in and make some quickly the other day and enjoy it with the boys.
okay, so neither one of them liked it. at all. bummer. (why did I care? other than that I wanted them to enjoy it the way I did)........ I ate all of it. and enjoyed it, although less so, as neither of them shared it with me. poor lonely sweetness. so tasty!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

little, cold and skiing

My mom brought this photo of me last night. I was about 1 1/2. Eli thought the skis looked dumb. I thought I looked kind of cute and cold. I wasn't terribly 'styling'. Not that I am now, but at least now I am aquiring all of the trappings I need to keep me ultra warm. I have found that as I have gotten older, I am less tolerant of being cold. I absolutely love being out in the cold weather- it makes me feel alive and invigorated. Breathing in a real sense of life. But I don't like to be cold.

I now have very cool mittens that keep me warm, along with some good layers of high tech stuff underneath everything to keep my core warm too. I do need to use the toe warmers
to keep my feet toasty (after getting frostbite 20 years ago in western Canada, now they are so suceptible). At some point I would love to invest in Hotronics, as everyone seems to swear by them for keeping feet warm. But right now, I have spent enough, and the toe warmers are only $1 each time I go. I do ski with a helmet now too.... head warm, and safe.

So, yes, I am totally warm, and comfy in the cold weather, and while skiing. Stylin'? getting there I think :)

Thursday, February 08, 2007

what to not wear

since I couldn't wear much at my colonoscopy the other day ..... :)
I thought I would wear some henna instead.

I did these on my hand and thought they came out pretty well. I have had several people stop me and ask about it. I have been handing out my card alot, and have been getting some business too. Helps that many people are going away to warmer places- they seem to want something cool to 'wear'.

I like this one alot...

the swirl down near my wrist ended up looking cool

The results of my colonoscopy (see post about 'prepping' below) :
they removed 4 polyps and I am good to go until same time next year. Seems I just grow polyps quickly. I am the polyp farm, and the doctor needs to just harvest them once a year :) and then I am fine. No cancer to come again, unless I don't keep removing what I grow!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

snowy and more

finally some real snow here, and beautiful skies...

the waterfall at Renbrook is finally frozen! and beautiful:

this igloo is so appealing to emmett- he climbs into it now every time before we ski!

it has been biting cold, but fabulous skiing and fun with the boys.
Eli and I went night skiing a few nights ago. We had so much fun trying to ski down and see if we could beat the lift. All of the chairs are numbered. We were trying to see how fast we could come down the hill (okay, yes, I taught him how to tuck down the flat part - although I can still smoke him on it) The first trip we were on chair 97, then the next trip the exact same one! that was what inspired us to try to beat the lift. So the next run we cruised straight down. Chair 71. Cool. We found that we could gain almost 20 chairs each run. The fun things you do as a mom to a 10 yr old boy!

Sunday, February 04, 2007


today is the yucky day.. the prep day..... tomorrow I get to lie down, strip naked, have them check out my whole colon and make sure they remove anything that might turn cancerous. Do I like it? No, of course not.... but.....

I consider it wonderful that I have the opportunity to have a colonoscopy done every year. I had colon cancer. I caught it early. I am fine. My sweet friend Julie was not so lucky and she died from her colon cancer only a year and a half after finding out she had it. She left behind her two boys, then aged 10 and 14. She was a few days shy of her 40th birthday. I had Eli just days after she died. Poor little boy was born to a grieving mom.

I had been with Julie for the year and a half before she died, helping her with all sorts of things on a daily basis, so she could spend her time and energy enjoying what she had left. I did laundry, groceries, and more. I made lunches for her and friends who stopped by to spend time with her. But funny, in hindsight, she and I never really talked about her cancer and how she felt about it. Sure, I took her to get her a wig, and we laughed as she made fun of my huge round belly, and I poked fun at her bald head. I remember us laughing together as I tried on maternity things that day. But we never really talked about it. I think maybe it was that she could just be 'Julie' with me, and not 'Julie with cancer'. She dwelled on my pregnancy. She was the first (after Adam) to know. She bought me a little pink rose that day. God I miss her.

She died about 2 weeks after she made me take time off since I was due in about 2 weeks. I was sad. So incredibly sad. And I had wanted so badly for her to be able to hold my baby. A friend told me that perhaps she was getting her chance to hold my baby up in heaven before he came to me. That helped. But I still cried. Alot. Finally I went into labor.... all 35 hours of it. Yuck. And then an emergency C-section. But Eli finally came out. And I found out later that he was born right during the memorial service for Julie. Odd how things happen. He was born the day after her birthday when she would have been 40.

So then my life went on, and I still missed Julie terribly. Then a year later, a month after little Eli had his first birthday, I was diagnosed with colon cancer! WHAT!!!???!!! Me? Why had I never talked to Julie about it? Was I going to die in a year and a half too? So many things went through my head.

I had my surgery on April Fool's Day. I had a colon resection and was woozy and out of it for a few days. Adam brought my little Eli to visit me in the hospital a few times. I loved seeing him, and he was fascinated with my 'zipper' of staples that went up my belly where they had cut me open. I soon learned that the cancer hadn't matastisized and I would not need any further treatment! Yeah!!! Sure, I had lots of tests for a long time after to make sure I was clear and check my CEA levels, etc. But I was going to be okay.

And I still am. 9 years later, and past 40 that my sweet Julie never saw. I need to have a colonoscopy every year. so what. I am glad that they keep me clear of cancer. For those of you who should have a colonoscopy and are putting it off..... don't. It isn't worth it. It is yucky to prep for it. Yes. But it is ONE DAY. get over it. (oh, and when you do the prep- make sure to BLOT don't wipe.... your hiney isn't used to being wiped so much! you will be glad you blotted)

Tomorrow I will be done, and look forward to eating something soothing when I am done. Perhaps a simple bowl of rice to start. Not sure. Maybe a big old baked potato. Then I have a whole year to enjoy before having the chance to do it again. But for now........ I'm off to the loo.........

Friday, February 02, 2007

change for Eli

things have been a bit crazed around here lately- mostly due to the fact that we have had to pull Eli out of the magnet school and have him re-enrolled in the public school nearby. He was being verbally bullied at his old school, and not much was being done about it. He was hating school and suffering emotionally, and feeling as if he had no friends (which he really didn't).

So now he has finished his first week at the new school, and things are good. I am feeling really good about the change as is Eli. We are also now finding that he is academically behind, so I am glad we pulled him when we did! He has been in much better spirits, and seems back to being much more light-hearted and even funny, as he was at the end of the summer.

I have been incredibly busy just trying to get him steady on his feet there, his records transfered, meeting with his new teacher, trying to get the work he needs to get caught up, and fit in the regular ski lessons, grocery shopping, food cooked, laundry done, etc.
overall.... good decision.
we are all happy about it.