February 21st

oh it’s been a while
weeks it seems since I wrote a post
once you get out of a habit it’s easy to slip away
there goes another Sunday

traveling, looking after my mom
coming home, settling back into my space, time, work
to get in a certain frame of mind
this morning I went for a walk
routine

it’s a grey February morning
only a few spots of snow remain on the ground
it is warm and drizzly

I ended spending close to three weeks with my mom
exactly what happened is hard to say
a mix of loneliness, compilation of anxieties, blood pressure way of chart
when I found her I was somewhat distressed
my mama isn’t there yet
(there yet: to the point where one can not look after oneself)

first thing first I fed her
that is making meals
all sorts of healthy, nicely presented, varied meals
it was funny how most evenings my mama would say: I’m not really hungry
so I’d fry an onion, cook something up, make a colourful salad and place it all nicely on a plate
smells and sight makes wonder
appetite suddenly appeared
most times we’d freeze the leftovers
I wanted her to have a full freezer by the time I left

as the days went by we took care of the anxiety list
if you don’t suffer from that condition it is hard to wrap your head around it
and the list never ends
so I did my best
but I couldn’t do it all
my mama had to step up to the plate
I’m ok to be a crutch for a while but mama you can stand
and she did

it’s been two weeks already
maybe she was not quite ready when I left
but I wanted to be back for my daughter’s birthday
there’s only one of me and many roles to play
on the phone my mama voice wasn’t at it’s best at first
but day by day it improved
she’s getting back into her own routine
seeing more people
and picking from the freezer every now and then

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changes

Friday was my birthday
I turned 48
two times 24
my eldest is 24

a couple years back while working as a french assistant in elementary and high school I had to teach the question: quel âge as tu?
I tried to avoid that question, I didn’t really want the kids to ask me how old I was
didn’t want to hear me say forty something
in front of that young crew it sounded so distant
wrinkles of separation

how sneaky
the day when the mirror shows you
the lines, the quality of the skin, it’s elasticity
as if between Time and Gravity
Epidermis said: screw it, I wain’t fighting no more

to which I say
don’t answer useless questions
don’t hang out with mirrors
give Dermis a drink, water is best

My kids came over for my birthday
it’s always such a treat to hang out with them
my babies have become fantastic young adults
(as oppose to old adults)
they are smart and thoughtful and caring and just plain fun
I love them to bits
I feel devastated the minute they go
then I refill and become myself again
I stop being the mama who’s main preoccupation is to feed her brood
I start focusing on current affair
which is, today, to get in the mind of a child
and take care of my mom

is this what is called the circle of life?
a merry go round of personality
mama, child, me, mama, child, me

I have nothing to complain about
how lucky to be here, now, breathing

here’s what I got to do
as a mama I must let my progeny flourish and feed them (always) with what they need
as me I need to be true, to care, to find nourishment so I too can flourish and be helpful
as a daughter I will be present and loving, for my mama needs it

today’s forecast:
sun and cloud no too cold
weather seems right

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for my cousin

Talking to my mom yesterday she mentioned that my cousin, who has been reading my blog every week, was wondering when I would get back to my regular day to day blog content
My cousin isn’t that interested in recipes
It made me smile and happy in some ways that she missed my blog
I have to admit that I have been taking a little break
See, for the past three weeks my husband and I have been child less
our baby left the nest for university at the beginning of the month
We were both more or less anxious about the whole affair
– It’s only you and I darling

When for twenty plus years your focus has been child-rearing it felt like being on the verge of retirement
(although I don’t believe you ever retire)
So to celebrate this new freedom I, without meaning to, took a break
and I cheated
I have been publishing a weekly recipe on a different site and boldly copied and pasted my work to this blog
hence this series of recipe
I knew my mom and my aunt would appreciate
truly I was taking a break

Thanks to my cousin I will get back on track
take the time once a week to reflect
to pause
spend time with my thoughts
and share them with you

I will keep posting the odd recipe
because that’s still nice
and you may visit this site if you like to cook and are looking for inspiration
but otherwise enough indulging
back on track

oh, so how is it to be child less?
as a couple I’ll say: so far so good
it’s like revisiting the chapter when we first met
having all these possibilities
all this time
knowing that we did a good job, and thinking alright, what’s next

for one thing we’ll be planning another trip

ps. I randomly picked a few photos from the past weeks, hops for beer, cooking outdoors, and the delicate beauty of cabbages

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visit

my mama’s gone to church
I’m visiting for the week end
alone in her house I wander
I look around

it’s a quiet house
the sound of the humidifier fills the rooms with a constant hum

my mama is in her late 70
she lives alone
her days are regulated by a routine that keeps her going
prayers, exercise, a good diet
any break in those may set her off
she needs routine

I wander in her house while she is gone
presence of her children
presence of her faith
are everywhere
it is a peaceful atmosphere

I live far away
I have never lived in the town she was born
I can appreciate her environment and her mine
but even though we share the same blood
our constitution, our needs, are not the same
to be well we need different conditions

tomorrow I will leave
it is always difficult to part
without saying we both know
that soon routine settles again
and we keep in touch
with the regular punctuation of phone calls

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Hope

I met Hope this week
I didn’t know Hope
I went to her apartment complex where she resides in River Hebert
she used to live on a farm
but at 80 some she now lives in a much smaller space
with two cats
although residents are not suppose to have cats
actually one of her cat is missing
which is troubling her some

I met Hope because I was to interview her about seed saving
going to a seed saving workshop recently I was presented with some beautiful beans that had been saved and planted for decades
in awe of that I had asked if I could interview the lady that did so
and so I ended up in Hope’s apartment

Hope is a lovely lady
she answered my questions graciously
I found simple, plain wisdom in her comments
I kept telling her that I wanted to hug her so content I was with the turn of our interview

to the question why save seeds her answer is this
keep seeds from plants that grow well in your region
keep the best ones
save them, trade them
they are the best seeds you can get

to the question why garden and why buy local
her answer is this
grow your own food or buy from a local farmer because the fruit you get is the tastiest
period

now of course there are political reasons
we can save seeds to fight Monsanto
we can grow gardens to lower our carbon footprint
we can do so for financial reasons
for physical and mental health
(yes, it helps my mental bits to hang out in the garden)

for Hope it boiled down to taste

it made me wonder
have we forgotten what home grown food taste like
think about a fresh, perfectly ripen, strawberry
a tomato still warm from the sun
fresh shelled peas
carrots with their tops and a tiny bit of dirt just pulled from the garden

there are many reasons to grow a garden
save seeds
even forage for wild edibles

Hope said she likes to know where her food comes from
it taste better
I agree

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