Tag Archives: Christmas

Snow – Housebound, With Projects

I’m so glad to be proven wrong – down below us the snow is nearly all gone, but up here on the mountain it lasted through the night and all of today as well. It’s plus 2, so it has continued to melt slowly all day. I can hear little streams trickling and running everywhere in the thick brush, invisible but noisy.

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I notice that the cedars have all shaken off their snow, with those big floppy branches of theirs.


My darling little workshop/office…


Too bad I couldn’t get out there to work today – the Boss was home from school recuperating from a bad cold. Even though she lost her voice for the past couple of days, that did not prevent her from constantly trying to tell me things. Once when I was outside fetching wood – how rustic! – I heard a knocking… I thought it was a woodpecker but it was just her in the doorway, imperiously rapping on the side of the house to get my attention!

Even though we didn’t go out to play in the white stuff today, we were quite industrious. Prompted by an app which rewards (virtual) badges for completing challenges, the Boss – who would tackle advanced calculus if there was a badge to be earned – took over the kitchen to complete “Learn How to Use a Knife” and “Make Stew” challenges. (Fantastic app: DIY.org. Suitable for age 5 to adult.)


After this exercise – an excellent lesson for me in when-to-just-take-a-deep-breath-and-walk-away – she wanted to move on to the Stew challenge.  So I gave her a few more potatoes to cut up, and coached her as she chucked a whole lot of stuff into the slow cooker, et voila! She made supper!


Any impulse to learn to cook MUST be encouraged in any way possible, I figure. And while these things totally depend on the focus, maturity, and klutz-level of the individual child, it seems to me that 6 is a fairly good age to allow a child to handle large knives.

One last Christmas baking project for the evening and the day was done:


Best quote of the day from the Boss: “I didn’t know what you were going to say next, but I knew it wouldn’t be important.” (I’m so glad she’s gotten her voice back.)

And one last highlight of the day: I finally caught a glimpse of deer dashing through our yard – three of them bounding up the driveway and disappearing behind the workshop. Lots of other little tracks in the snow, crisscrossing the yard – we must become wildlife detectives next.

One fun challenge follows the next. Life is good.

Snow on the mountain

Ye gods! It’s snow! I never thought the rain would ever turn into big ol’ flakes but tonight it happened at last. I immediately tried to take photos – not so easy in the pitch black, but I finally got some I liked. (Rather unexpected effect from the flash on snowflakes…)

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Can’t get much more flippin’ Christmassy than that!

And here the trusty Volvo has a chilly night.

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It’s a good thing I grabbed my camera. As I post this I can hear the rain pitter pattering down and I expect the whiteness will disappear before the dawn.

The Story of a Tree

This year I had the brainwave of digging up a Christmas tree from our new property, putting it in a pot, and keeping it to use every year. So green! So sustainable! So… virtuous!

And so, this weekend we set out in the rain and sleet – Grandpa with his shovel, me with my camera, and the Boss with her artistic eye. (And the other one as well.)

After much bushwhacking and trudging around getting muddy and wet, we picked out this gem…

It looked so full-bodied...

It looked so full-bodied in amongst the other trees…

... so we dug it up.

… so we dug it up.

Out Charlie Browning Charlie Brown's tree.

Out Charlie Browning Charlie Brown’s tree.

A little better, I guess...

A little better, I guess…

The Second Coming of Santa, so to speak

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This time Santa came by boat… at night… shooting fireworks off the bow! He was travelling with an odd assortment of pirates and clowns, which lent him a little outlaw cred. After they all disembarked there was a mob scene – a ruly mob scene – and we waited nearly an hour for a moment with the great man.

The long line was a killer after a busy day, but I can’t really complain as I have somehow managed to get through six Christmases without doing the excruciating Santa lineup. (Cannily avoiding malls at all costs, if you must know my secret.) It was just our time, I guess. This is one of those parenting moments when you’ve just got to suck it up and play through the pain. And have your camera ready.

(My favourite moment, after the fireworks, was the withering look the Boss gave the pirate who offered her a balloon sword at around the 45-minute mark of standing in that crowded noisy hallway.)

Santa Comes to Saltspring

What a gorgeous day! We walked down to the dock at about five minutes to 1, and Santa flew in pretty much on time. The small crowd greeted him, high fives were exchanged, and we were strolling outta there by about half past one.

A little easier to take than the cold, crowded marathon event of the Santa Claus Parade in Toronto…