December 31, 2011

The last day, in N.Z., of 2011, and today I’m thinking of Judy, who grew sweet peas every summer. Jen has sweet peas growing in her garden here. Jen also loved Judy.
I was in N.Z. when Forest was going to be born, when I heard that Judy was dying. Birth, death, sweet peas. Love. New life. Old memories…gold memories. This one’s for you, Judy.

December 29, 2011

I always love the hand comparison photos, though I must say they look better when the adult hand belongs to the young parent! Nevertheless, these old hands of mine are helping life go smoothly for the owner of the wee hands…which have chubbed up in one week of life. Asa better enjoy the years where that’s a positive statement.

December 28, 2011

What could I never leave home without? Yes. These three gems, over a few years, were all acquired in New Zealand, as gifts. I think I have some people well trained.
Each day Forest checks to see if I’m wearing earrings or a necklace, and wants me to wear both at the same time, but I’m not that kind of girl.

December 27, 2011

I took myself for a walk today, into town, about 20 minutes walking, while most of the family slept. Along the way were some lovely “character homes”…New Zealand for older, original. Nature is quite flashy on this property, and the white on white look against all the green, is very cooling on a hot day in December. I just had to say that.

December 26, 2011

There is something about flowers, given lovingly as a gift, that can transcend the fact that the front and back yard are overflowing with them. Flowers in a vase, in the house, gifted. It just works.

December 25, 2011

I’m staying in a mobile house. This is what it looks like in the daytime. The toys are strewn about the room. Then, presto, once Forest is asleep, the toys are put away, and the moving starts. The carpet and coffee table swing about to face the fireplace. The couch swings in behind, facing the fireplace, and more importantly, the Television. And exhausted parents, and grandparent (Frank left yesterday…sigh.. ), sit and watch a movie. Then presto, the moving happens in reverse, and the mobile home is ready for a new day.

December 24, 2011

Celebrating Christmas day in New Zealand is a first. Frank and I made a Lemon Tart, which we served with strawberry puree. Frank took great delight in cooling the tart on the window sill, as one sees in photos in Country Homes magazines. Funny how doing this created another layer of comforting ambiance to a lovely Christmas Day. It’s the small things.

December 23, 2011

This photo seems unbelievable to me….this is Jen, who had a baby Yesterday at 6 a.m. and this was today at 10 a.m.! some people’s children….

December 22, 2011

At 6 a.m., after 3 1/2 hrs. of labour, Asa was born. Asa means healer. The amazingly calm, gentle and sweet home water-birth, assisted by two mid-wives, and which both Frank and I were part of, was also viewed in real time, through Skype, by Tish and family in LA, as well as by Drea who is visiting there for Christmas. What a world wide event this was.

December 21, 2011

Making some Christmas baking, so reminiscent of cooking with my own mother. Jen had picked the walnuts off their tree, taken off the outer black casing, and today we cracked, split and picked at the walnuts, to add to our cranberry loaf. My mother and I would do the same with walnuts, (except for getting them from the tree) ,then chop them finely. We would do this at the kitchen counter, but when you’re “due” in 3 days, you get to sit. Memories are so close to the surface at Christmas time.