Monday, December 10, 2007
Sunday, December 9, 2007
Friday, December 7, 2007
Can you believe it? We have a temporary outdoor ice skating rink set up at the beach. We were thrilled when it opened. It's kind of small and the weather has to be just right for good skating, but at least we can skate!
Thursday, December 6, 2007
Well, this was a fabulous book-very enlightening. "St. Nicholas was a real person-a fourth century bishop, a defender of the Christian faith, a model for sacrificial giving, a protector of children, and a true churchman."
In the spirit of giving, I decided to let the girls purchase 2 small gifts for their sisters. It was so sweet watching them shop and really reflect on what their siblings liked. I wrapped each of the gifts and kept them hidden. I also bought them a gift-Christmas pajamas. We talked and read about St. Nicholas for a couple of weeks. This morning they could barely wait to see what was in their stocking. Before taking a peek, we took a moment to talk. I asked them to name one thing about their sisters that they were thankful for and liked. The comments flowed smoothly-even from little Emma. Finally they opened their gifts.
Another thing we did was bake. The girls each chose a recipe and made it on her own. We put them in pretty bags and handed them out to the neighbors.
We like the tradion of St. Nicholas day so much-I know we'll celebrate again next year.
Sunday, December 2, 2007
Over the years he's hunted in Texas, Louisiana and numerous times in Canada. This last trip to Manitoba was in October. He had developed cataracts, was becoming hard of hearing and didn't have that same old drive. He went on a few hunts then decided he'd rather hang out at the farm house with the girls-wearing his new Shoal Lake t-shirt and sleeping on Emma's soft pink blanket. Mark said he'd turned into a Moma's boy!
Here at home he "protected" us girls many nights while Mark was out of town. I also never worried about Mark on those long drives to Canada as long as Levi was riding in the back seat. He had his own unique way of keeping Mark awake on those drives. LOL!
I'm sorry to say that Levi, my little Fella, passed away Thanksgiving morning. He's left a huge void in our home, our family and our lives. This Thanksgiving Day I'm thankful for him-for the joy, the laughs and all the memories he's added to our family. He'll be greatly missed.
Secondly we went to pioneer day at Rikard's Mill. This was a water-powered grain mill and museum established in 1845. We were able to buy sacks of cornmeal and grits. There was a man carving bowls from wood, a blacksmith shop, ladies weaving baskets, candle and soap making and a man demonstrating how to make cane syrup from sugar cane. They gave the children pieces of sugar cane to sample. My oldest really liked this. Our favorite spot was with the "spinning lady". She was actually a young lady who was demonstrating spinning natural fiber to make your own yarn. Now we just have to have our own spinning wheel.
I've lived in this area all of my life and never knew about this mill. We'll definitely go back next year.
Then finally we went to a musical about Dr. Seuss-a Seussical performed by a local childrens group. I think Emma enjoyed this production the most. She sat in my lap, perfectly still for the whole hour.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Saturday, November 3, 2007
Thursday, November 1, 2007
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
The main thing that touched me this time was the people I met-the Canadian women. Mrs. Marion at the Olha Store who took the time to give us a tour of the Ukrainian church, gave the girls bags of candy and printed out a history of Olha and the surrounding district so that I could get a better understanding of what happened there. Lois at the Co-op who first invited my girls over to play with her daughter, provided them with ice skates and always had time to visit with me when I stopped in. Carla who could not do enough for us. She had us over for dinner and invited lots of friends and neighbors so we could get to know everyone. She took off a day from work to take us shopping in Saskatchewan. She loaned us a car and toys and sent the girls off with candy and souvenirs. She was just so bubbly and welcoming. Then there was Cheryl. She tries to come across as rough and gruff when actually she has the biggest, warmest heart. She came and visited us at the farm house, cooked a huge delicious meal and invited us over, asked my girls to go to school and took me site seeing around the area.
These women know the true meaning of hospitality. They welcomed strangers in with open arms. They left a mark on my memory and my heart that will be there forever.
The little farm house we rent while in Canada is kind of, well, primitive. No microwave, dishwasher, washer or dryer, limited TV and one bathroom (with 4 girls!). That's okay. Every once in a while it's nice to see what it might have been like years ago on the prairie. Granted we still had it a lot better than those first settlers. Mary and Grace chose to do the laundry one day instead of wash dishes. They were freezing by the time it was all hung out. LOL! They appreciate our washer and dryer a whole lot more now.
Potassium helps cotton to grow long, strong fibers. Fertilizer K is often referred to as "potash". Early American settlers coined that name. They produced potassium carbonate needed for making soap by evaporating water filtered through wood ashes. The ash-like residue remaining in the large iron pots was called "pot ash". This process is registered as the first US patent.Commercial production of potash in the US began when supplies from Germany were stopped due to military conflicts. Carlsbad, New Mexico, became the hub of US production. Other production from brines was developed in Utah and California. Then, in the early 1960s potash from vast, high quality Canadian reserves became available. As a result, Canada now supplies about three-fourths of the potash used in US crop production.