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There are times that I really do feel like The Little Old Woman Who Lived in the Shoe. I even call our little house "The Shoe". I am a stay at home mom. I do really think that was my calling. My kids are 13, 10, 10, (yes they are twins) and 5. Our life is an adventure, most times it really is a beautiful adventure.

Monday, 13 October 2014

Hagerman Farms, Bloomfield, Ontario

    Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate the bounty of the land.  It's when we stop and appreciate the gifts that we have been given.  It's not just a time to enjoy a monstrous feast but to appreciate the fact that you have enough food that you can have a feast.  It's also a time to stop and count your blessings.  For me it is a gift to live where I live.  I am surrounded by farms.  At this time of the year I can go to any number of farmers markets, or roadside farm stand and share their bounty.  My family get to eat good whole foods that are so fresh that you can taste the freshness.  

    About 45 minutes from us is some of the most fertile land.  It is Prince Edward County, now known for it's fledgling wineries.  Whenever I go to Prince Edward County in the good weather I always stop at Hagerman Farms in Bloomfield. http://www.harvestin.ca/MAP%20AND%20DIRECTORY%20PAGE/RoadsideStands.php

    For me this roadside stand i.e. paradise is nirvana.  I want to skip through the rustic aisles humming a happy tune, a huge basket over my arm.  They have such an amazing selection of unusual vegetables.

    Their vegetables are super sized, like they are on steroids.  Their greens are greener, their orange colours oranger.  It's my happy place.  I fill my arms with copious amounts of fresh, beautiful vegetables making mental notes as to how I will prepare them.  Not only is their produce amazing, it's extremely inexpensive.  I almost feel like I am doing them on the prices.

    This year they have added a store to tempt me.  The first thing that you notice when you open the doors is the heavenly baked goods aroma that wrap themselves around you, like a warm hug from Grandma.  The next thing I noticed was how spotless it was.

   There was a huge variety of preserves.  Preserves that it would never occur to me to make.  They also have a spot at the cash where you can sample the preserves.  We tried watermelon jelly, and watermelon rind pickles.  Needless to say we left, after having paid of course with a jar of the watermelon jelly.  I plan to make a snack of it on a crisp cracker with a small scrap of cream cheese.

    This year I will be serving many of the beautiful vegetables that I purchased at Hagerman Farms for our Thanksgiving meal.  It means a lot to me to be able to not only have a generous feast for my family, but to serve them locally grown food.  It seems like the true spirit of this harvest feast.

Friday, 26 September 2014

The Middle Aged Woman Who Lived in a Shoe: Sarah, and the Girl's at Home Spa Day

The Middle Aged Woman Who Lived in a Shoe: Sarah, and the Girl's at Home Spa Day:     There are times that having three girls is a large headache (I'm talking about in the mornings before school when they are ...

Sarah, and the Girl's at Home Spa Day

    There are times that having three girls is a large headache (I'm talking about in the mornings before school when they are all screaming and carrying on about having their hair brushed, and that their pony tale is not right, and they don't want a braid, 'ouch you're hurting my head').  I know there will come a time when I will have three teen girls under my roof, although I suspect that when that day does come I won't care because I will be in the looney bin.  Raising girls is not for the faint of heart, that's for sure.  It can however at times be a lot of fun.

    Thankfully none of my girls are tomboys, not that I have anything against tomboys, I'm just not sure if I could relate to them.  My girls are all girlie girls, meaning they like the finer things in life.  I admit that I do really take great joy in watching them revel in their femininity.  I also love it when they bring their friends over and the house is filled with those giggles that only little girls do.  It is that giggle that makes a smile creep up onto my own face.  The way little girls always have to be touching each other, their heads together deep in conversation (ok if I admit it, it's not just little girls, my friends and I are very much the same way when we get together).

    A while back I noticed an ad on Facebook from a local girl, Sarah Crellin.  She had finished her first year at the local college for esthetics and was offering extremely reasonable rates for manicures and pedicures.  I should make Mom Of The Year, I booked Sarah in for a mani petti day for the girls and their friends.

    In the days leading up to our spa day, the girls could not stop talking about their special day.  The day before they were wound with excitement.  What would they get done to their nails, what could they get done.  Grace knew that she wanted a french manicure.  She wanted a french manicure on both her ands and her tootsies.

    Finally the much awaited day arrived.  Sarah was this quiet  but friendly girl who came prepared for a spa day.  I wonder if she realized just what she was in for?  The girls all shouted out their order fo their manicures.  As usual the noise in my house was crazy (I feel like I should be sending out form letters apologizing to the neighbourhood for the amount of noise my children make).  Most of the younger girls found their way into the kitchen to watch Sarah.  I felt a little badly because poor Sarah must have felt like she was on display in a zoo (my home being the zoo).  I felt badly, but not badly enough to make them stop.  Selfishly with their attention distracted in the kitchen, making poor Sarah feel uncomfortable, I was able to chat freely with my friend without the kids constantly interjecting or diverting attention, o.k. perhaps I should not be accepting that Mother of The Year trophy, and perhaps I should not even consider my nomination for any humanitarian awards either.

    It was a long day for Sarah, but the girls loved it!  They were floating on cloud nine, excited to show all their other friends at school their fancy nails.  It really was a nice day, and it was so reasonably priced that I will most definitely be planning another one for the girls and their friends.   Some may argue that this is unnecessary for little girls, that it encourages vanity.  I think that it encourages them to have fun, to enjoy being a girl, but more importantly to feel special.

    My girls have lovely nails, and big smiles.  After discussion with my own friends, we have decided that we too need a special day, but for grown up girls.  I think that our day will also involve much giggling, probably some racy jokes, and wine, lots of wine.  Sometimes it is nice to be a girl.