Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I'm Losing My Mind!

For someone who likes to keep a tidy house, this time of year always makes me a bit crazy. This time the harvest is coming in a bit earlier. To think we went from temperatures in the mid 80's, low 90's to 50's and 60's almost overnight! One night we even had a bad frost predicted. It didn't happen but just made us realize that it is the end of September, not the middle of July!

This is what my hall looks like right now.

Boxes and baskets of cucumbers and hot peppers litter the hallway coming in from the front door.

The back door leads to these goodies, more cucumbers, some eggplant and the last of the green peppers.
We only picked one plant clean of tomatoes, and are busy covering the others.....
Thank heavens or I would be wondering where to put everything.
I did manage to get the onions dried and in the cold room, and the cantalope and watermelon are down there as well.
I am beginning to think I live in the produce section of the grocery store. I keep telling myself soon, soon everything will be cleaned up.

Well off to visit you all.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Decorating For Fall.

I am a bit behind the rest of my blogging family in getting my house ready for this special time of year.

Well, today I decided it was time to do some fall decorating.

I went into my closet and started to pull out items that have been put away since last fall.

First was this Hurricane Lamp. I placed it on my table. It makes a lovely center piece.

Then I put the artifical flowers into one of the vases I received from the School Board. This arrangement will go on top of the TV cabinet eventually. Right now I have it sitting on the floor beside the TV. Hmmm, looks pretty good right there. Might have to do something else on the cabinet top this year.

Lastly I filled my mothers green glass bowl with colourful leaves, the remainder of the fake mini pumpkins and placed it on our coffee table. I put two orange tapers ( I don't remember where on earth I got them from) beside the bowl and a burnt orange toffee smelling candle in front.
Slowly but surely I am bringing fall into my house.

Off to visit you all.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Five Words Meme

I saw this meme on one of my favorite blogs, and thought it would be fun to do. Mary emailed me my words and so here I go.
My first word is Profession.

To me a profession is anything at all that you are good at doing. I love being with children and so when the chance came to take a Teacher Assistant course, I was the first one to sign up. It has taken me a long time to become a full time Assistant and I am enjoying every minute.

Before this happened I had numerous professions from professional homemaker to professional sales assistant. Just like everyone else my profession has changed over the years, but the love of what I am doing during that time has never changed.


Perhaps the best way for me to talk about the province I now call home is in pictures. I will say this, we are a very laid back province and in most cities, towns, villages and hamlets greet everyone with a smile.

Here are a few pictures of what Saskatchewan means to me.

Fishing one of the many hundreds of small lakes, coming back just as the sun is setting.

Driving down the highway meeting a train. Then having the driver of the train blow his whistle and wave at your children as you pass.

Fields and fields of hay bales in the fall, waiting for the farmers to pick them up and store them for the winter.

Fluffy white clouds, floating in an endless blue sky over golden fields of grain.
You can see for miles and miles there is just such an openess in this province. This same openess is in the people that live here.
We only have just over a million in population, but are known for our volunteering spirit and our willingness to give to others. I have a feeling it is the pioneering spirit alive and well.

Anyone who reads my blog knows that I have many of these....but what do they really mean to me.

Reading takes me away to another place or time for awhile. I can be a swashbuckling pirate one moment or a nurse the next. Never a dull moment, I can travel the world and never leave my house if I have a book in my hand. Harvey usually tells me he knows if a book I am reading is happy or sad by looking at my face.

Knitting....well that is a bond between my mother and I. It keeps her alive to me.

Cross Stitch is something that I enjoy as well. The feel of the skeins of thread as I ready them to use, the in and out motion of the needle in the fabric takes me back to days when the ladies of the house would sit with their needlework.

Hobbies to me are something you love to do just because they add beauty to your life.

What can a person say about Christmas. To me it is a time for family, for celebrating a very special person in my life, Christ is the center. Giving is more important to me than receiving, finding that right gift or making the right gift fills me with joy.
The smells of cinnamon, pine, vanilla, chocolate and snow (yes, snow actually has a smell to me) tell me that Christmas is filling my home.
Taking days to decorate my tree just right, unwrapping each ornament and remembering where they came from, wrapping gifts, singing carols and bundling up to attend midnight Mass as a family all mean Christmas.

I think that overall my childhood was a happy one and so I still enjoy many of the things I did then. Give me a puddle to jump in, worms to dig up in the garden, snakes to chase down the road and I am happy.
I loved to play army and baseball with the boys, climb the highest tree and jump the creek. I think my poor mother never thought that I would take to being a girl at all. Mom always said if there was something to catch my clothes on and tear them I would find it. She spent a great deal of time mending my clothing.
I remember long days outside sitting under the Weeping Willow in our back yard reading. It was my own little hideaway. No one could find me or if they did know where I was they left me alone to travel the world.

Summers were spent camping in the trailer. We would go for the entire summer, Dad would come up on weekends but we spent most of the summer swimming, picking up big blocks of ice for the cooler and just lazing aroung the camper. This is still may favorite way to spend a summer.

Then every so often Dad would haul all of us from Ontario to visit relatives here in Saskatchewan. The camper came with us and we would live for weeks at a time in a relatives yard, or driveway. It was very hard to leave all the cousins when it was time to go home because school was only a week away.

Well off to visit you all now. If anyone wants to take part in this meme, let me know and I will email you your 5 words.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Starting to Decorate

This past weekend I decided that it was time to get my house dressed for fall. So I spent some time hunting up supplies to make a fall wreath for my entry way.

This is what I came up with. It is absolutely amazing what a person can find in the hidden corners of a craft room. All I ended up buying was the grapevine wreath base. I took apart some old artificial flowers, some stems of coloured leaves and found the pumpkins nesting in the bottom of a closet. The ribbon was part of a swap I took part in last year.

I still have a ways to go in my decorating scheme, but at least I have started. Now just to head over to the neighbours to collect pinecones for my winter project.

The weekend went a bit downhill after this. Seems that we need a new alternator for our Trailblazer. We went to church and when I came out after putting the lectionary away (I was a proclaimer at Mass) found Harvey sitting in the SUV without it running.....strange. When I asked him why it hadn't been started he turned the key. Nothing....not a sound. Good thing we only live a few blocks from the church.

We had the car towed this morning (turns out it was closer to this afternoon) and we will be waiting for at least another 12 hours before it has been fixed. I ended up taking a cab to work and walking to the shop after work. I did get a courtesy car to use tomorrow until ours is ready.
So my Sunday afternoon was spent making Eggplant Parmigian for the freezer. I ended up making 10 containers for use during the winter. My freezer is getting pretty darn full, perhaps it is time to invest in a bigger freezer.

Well it is off to visit you all.

Everyone have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The End Of Summer

While our temperatures are more along the line of what they should have been this past summer, I am seeing more and more of fall.

The sunsets are not as colourful or in the same position in the sky. It is off to the south a bit more and hidden by houses and trees. I am enjoying watching it disappear in the west however, and thinking of what the next day will bring.

The last few day lilies are blooming. Soon I will be spending my weekends cutting down the flowers in all my flower beds, getting them ready for winter.

The cayenne peppers are ripening nicely. Harvey figures he has enough to last him for the winter. Now I am just picking them to give to others....may as well use them up as much as possible. My frugal nature hates to see waste of any kind.

The only red I usually see in the fall is my Virginia Creeper. There are Dogwood trees/bushes farther north and I just love their reddish branches in the fall.

Most of our leaves turn either yellow, or a goldy colour. Some even turn brown and fall right away.
One sure fire way to know fall is here is the sound of the geese flying south for the winter. So far I haven't really heard them. Does this mean fall is still a little ways off?

Everybody have a wonderful evening. Off to visit now.

God bless.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Week End Officially Over

Well the weekend is officially over and I actually made it.

I did go down to my students football game, but please remind me how not to be embarassed by a person jumping up and down in the middle of a football field screaming at the top of their voice, "I told you all Mrs. P was coming to watch me play! Hi Mrs. P!" That plus having every person in the stands looking at me was nerve wracking to say the least. Oh well at least I was appreciated for a couple of hours.

The rest of the weekend was spent doing my regular chores, getting the garden produce put up and baking some cookies for the upcoming weeks lunches. I also promised one of the boys that since he was behaving so well I would bring him something special. Must remember to do that tomorrow, all he asked for was Chocolate Chip Cookies, homemade of course.

Here is the fruits of my baking labours. Chocolate chip of course. Just hope they last the week, I am afraid I have been nibbling a little bit too much.

The fruits of the harvest came next.

More cucumbers and a cantalope or two.

A tisket, a tasket, a basket of green peppers and eggplants. I did take some of the peppers to school today and we used them at lunch during our staff meeting.

Lastly, but not least I managed to process a few more bags of tomatoes. Add to that a few bags of sliced green peppers and my work in the garden was done....for at least a few days.
All in all a productive weekend both work wise and spiritually.

Off to visit you all now.

Everyone have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Long Week

Funny how a 4 day work week can tire me out and worry me so very much.
This week has had its ups and downs. Yesterday was a down day, today not so much so.

I received an email from our principal last night asking to meet with me....What? So many things going through my mind. Did I do something wrong? Was there a complaint about me? What did I do? Is it about the union? Am I going to be moved to a different class?
When I first read the email I was shocked. Then I thought I better phone the teacher I am working with this year to let her know about it. I probably shouldn't have but I felt she should know about it. Seems that she was very worried as well and had problems sleeping.

I arrived at work, and the first person I saw was the principal. I asked him when he wanted to meet and then came right out and asked if I had done something wrong as sleep was a hard commodity to come by last night. The poor man looked at me and said "Of course not, I am so sorry to have worried you. It was recommended to me that I ask you to sit in this meeting as a mediator if necessary by the Director of Student Services."

What? It seems that one of the other aides was giving him a very rough time with placement procedures, and he was worried about what was going to happen at this meeting.

While I agree with much of what our union has accomplished there are certain things I do take a neutral stance on. I am not rabidly union like a few of our members, and am willing and usually able to see both sides of the story.

Things went well, and everyone seems to be happy (at least aide wise). I do know that some of the teachers might be a bit upset with the appointment of one aide. She will be in grade 8 and can't seem to do even grade 6 math so there is a problem in the works. During the last two weeks, this same aide worked in the younger grades and had problems with English Language Arts, Spelling and Math. Heaven help the students.

One of our boys seem to be coming around. He has been coming in early every day to get work done that he didn't do at home. This morning he came in and started to talk to me about his football game tomorrow. He was a bit disappointed that his mom would not go and talked about riding his bike to the game. The look on his face just about broke my heart. I asked him when he played and then said maybe I would come and watch him play. His face just lit right up. When Harvey got home I talked to him about it. The first thing he said was "Your heart broke, didn't it?" I had to admit it did, and what I had told this child. My dear sweet husband looked at me and smiled and said "You did the right thing." Guess tomorrow morning at 9 am I will be down in the park watching this young fellow play football.

Off to visit all of you.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Posting Recipes

I never thought to post the recipe for the eggplant, and decided while I was doing that I may as well post the recipe for the plum pie as well.

Stuffed Eggplant

2 med. sized eggplant washed and stalks removed

1/2 cup chopped ham (for those vegetarians out there this can be left out)

3 tbsp dried parsley

1 or 2 tomatoes peeled and chopped

1/4 cup dried bread crumbs

1/2 onion finely chopped or grated (I finely chopped mine)

2 1/2 cups grated cheddar (I used 1 1/2 cups and then used 1 cup of grated mozza over top)


freshly ground pepper

Cut the eggplant in half, lengthwise and scoop out the flesh, to leave a 1/4 inch shell.
Roughly chop the flesh.

Make the stuffing by combining the ham, parsely, tomato, bread crumbs, onion, seasonings, and 1 1/2 cups grated cheese.

Place the eggplant shells in a baking dish and fill with the stuffing mixture. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Cover with foil.

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes and then uncover and cook for another 5 or 10 minutes or until crisp and golden.
Serve hot.

Now on to the Plum Pie

1 unbaked pie shell


11 plums, washed, pitted and quartered
1 well beaten egg
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup sugar

Mix all filling ingredients together in a medium bowl and pour into shell. I baked it at 350 for around 50 minutes until it was golden brown and bubbly.

Serve with ice cream.

Well off to visit all of you. Everyone have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Computer Is Mine Once Again

Well Kris has gone back to Regina and the computer is once again available for me to use. I am not really used to sharing it anymore and when the boys come home it is tough to even get on to moderate the forum I visit.

Thought I would share with you what I have been up to this weekend when I couldn't get on to make a post.

I finished processing the carrots from the garden. Now they reside in the freezer to use over the winter. Hopefully we have enough to last us.

Grated up a fairly large zucchini and put it in the freezer. If there is another one at the school next week it may just find a home

Made a batch of plum jam from the plums my neighbour shared with me from her tree. They still need to be labled and taken to the cold room. Hopefully I will finish them off tonight.

With the remainder of the plums I made this plum pie for dessert last night. Even pulled out the ice cream maker and made vanilla ice cream to go with it. Tasted so good. There is enough of each leftover for Harvey and I to enjoy tonight before bed.

Supper tonight was Stuffed Eggplant. I meant to get a picture of the finished product, but of course forgot. Harvey really enjoyed this recipe, so I think I will add it to my collection.

Well off to pay a visit to all of you.

Everyone have a wonderful evening. God bless.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

One Week Finished

The first week of school is over for me and things are going very well for the most part. Today had a few challenges, but nothing that I could not handle. Hopefully things will continue along the same paths that we have started.
I thought I would share a few photos with all of you of things that have changed, or that I have completed over the past few years.

Remember the bird feeder I won at the family reunion.....

Well, Harvey didn't like where we had put it so the feeder was moved to the backyard by the shed. Next he decided to "brighten it up" with some paint. Now I have a pretty all year sunflower in my back yard.

Then this year most of my delphiniums winter killed and a friend gave me a few plants that she dug out of her garden.

They are finally blooming!!! Harvey decided the easiest way to water them was to attach a small sprinkler to the top of the cages. It works great.

Lastly, a few years ago I decided we needed something on one wall in the bedroom so I picked this cross stitch pattern and once I was done had Harvey make a frame for it.

Sorry for the blurry picture, I don't understand why it is not clearer.

I really need to start a few more of these for other walls and spaces in our home. Perhaps this winter, if I can stop knitting for a little while.

Well off to visit everyone.

Hope you all have a wonderful evening.

God bless.