Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Today our daily bread

When the price of Silverhills bread (made with sprouted organic grain) rose to  $5 a loaf it was time to start baking again.
The bread machine does a fine job if you don't mind a coarser crumb and the weird shape but it doesn't come close to the taste and texture of the real thing.

The picture is obviously the real thing. Can't you just smell it? It just came out of the oven and I had to take a brag picture before cutting into it for that delicious hot crusty first bite.

OK, the flour is not organic. Just good old Rogers whole wheat, nothing added, nothing taken away. Some extra goodies like toasted millet grains, a scoop of nutritional yeast, honey, blackstrap molasses, grapeseed oil, Celtic sea salt, and our good clean well water.

No dough conditioners, no calcium propionate, whatever it may be. Read those labels sometime, even on your nice looking "artisan" bread.

And a lovely leisurely process of priming the yeast, letting a sponge rise with just a part of the flour, adding the rest, kneading till the ball of dough has the smooth springy consistency of a baby's bum, letting it rest again, kneading some more, shaping the loaves, letting them rest and rise a bit more, and finally into the oven.

The energy of baking bread is similar to food gardening. Primal, sensuous, totally therapeutic and always morally right.
It gives me profound satisfaction, especially on a day when not much else got accomplished.

Sunday, 20 January 2008

A walk in the neighborhood, with camera

We had that rare phenomenon today: A sparkling blue winter day. I have been so indoorsy that I am getting prison pallor, so today we headed out, new digital camera and all.
The first picture shows what it looks like a few feet from the front steps, at the top of the driveway.

When the camera arrived we, meaning my Old Dutch and I, started to peruse the printed manual that came with it. Our son mocked us for being so totally twentieth century!
A true native of the digital age, Alex informed us, checks to see if there is a big red button warning of potential nuclear explosions, and in the absence of such a button turns on the device and learns by looking at the menus and just playing with the buttons.

Sounded good to me, so I merrily hit buttons and twisted dials to see what would happen. Alas, people born in 1943 should not pretend to be digital natives. Somewhere along there the camera got into Movie mode. Some nice pictures are interspersed with wildly swinging footage of my own feet crunching through the snow, accompanied by snortings and mumblings.
The second picture shows the road below us, with Saddle Mountain. Half the businesses in town are named either Saddle or Arrow something.
We used to see the big field to the left from our place, but there are too many trees in the way now. Our land is sloping up from this road to the right out of sight in this picture.

I had a bunch of other pictures to show the neighborhood, but I also had a pixel setting too high, and each one is about 3 mb and takes over half an hour to upload. So for now this will have to do.
Yes, I do know how lucky we are, and give thanks daily. To Whom it may concern.

Friday, 18 January 2008

Catan, catan!

The picture is from son Alex' blog, http://nothernlites.blogspot.com/
Our Christmas guest Christine had brought over this board game, Settlers of Catan. Son Alex, Christine and I had a blast with it. I ordered two games right after Christmas. One for the grandson and his family, and one for our household. 

Two players are not as much fun as 3, but even so Alex and I had some good fanatical games after the girlfriend (not Christine) left and before the North claimed him again. Alas, my husband is so not a game player. Though the few times we manage to entice him he really likes to win.

Alex figured Catan would be just the right gift for the friends in the Okanagan where he spends part of his break. It was a hit, they spent hours playing and promptly bought the expansion set.

So there, 4 purchases made, make that 5 because another friend wants a set too. And lives were enriched because one person shared something she liked.

Now if this had been network marketing, Christine would have made some nice commissions, and where would be the harm in that? 

I continue to bless the friend who introduced me to the brain food that saves my ADDled brain and ended my peri menopausal misery. Yup, she made some money on me. She is more than welcome to it.

I stopped being an active business person. I may blog about the joys and the nonsense of MLM some time. If Amazon Herb Company had not ditched all its Canadian distributors I would still be doing it. I occasionally buy products from other "independent distributors".  It gives me a warm fuzzy to think of the smiles my order creates along the upline. 

Thursday, 10 January 2008

An EFT moment in the Hot Springs

There is nothing like a long wallow in warm water to take the winter blahs away. OK, a beach in Mexico would be nice, but this will do.
Apart from the soak, I love the way Hot Springs allow casual chats with old acquaintances or strangers.

Last week this neat incident happened.
On the way out of the pool I noticed a lady lying on the bench between the dressing room and the outside. Someone else was with her, helping her to cool down. When I emerged from the shower the same woman was sitting in the dressing room, looking somewhat distressed. She said she had high blood pressure and had stayed in the water too long.

"Would she like to try something totally different?" I warned her that what I was about to do might seem a bit weird, but it was harmless and it just might help. She was OK with that.
"Sure, why not". I asked what she was feeling at that moment that was most bothering her. "Nausea and dizziness."
So I grabbed her hand and started tapping on the "karate spot", while mumbling: "Even though I feel nauseous and dizzy, I deeply and completely accept myself". Two little rounds of tapping on some points on her face and torso, and she felt much better, to her utter amazement. It took 3 minutes, if that.

I wonder what she'll tell the people back home in Calgary about Nakusp, where fat old ladies wrapped only in a purple towel start tapping on you.

Emotional Freedom Technique has become one of the passions of my life.

Thursday, 3 January 2008

Moving into 2008, jiggling my fat butt with Bhangra

Happy New Year everyone!

I quite enjoy the winter break from gardening, but it is scary how sedentary one can get.

My big New Year’s resolution is to get MOVING.

I feel so much better when I do daily Yoga, but it has been a while. It is so easy to slip into a later rhythm in winter. If I don’t do it first thing in the morning with one of the TV programs it won’t get done.

Today I managed to be on the mat at 6.30 for Yoga with Padma. Yes! Stretchy! Blood is flowing! About time!

And just as I was about to turn the TV off the next program started, and it was dancercise with Bhangra, presented by some gorgeous ladies in shalwar kameez. That's those flattering colourful tunic/pants outfits from Northern India or Pakistan. They look comfortable too.

Now I cannot dance. A deep block prevents my feet from moving in time to a beat. I may feel jiggly, but don't ask me translate that into meaningful motion.

However, this program was explaining the moves one by one: feet like this, hands like this, and even though I got quite lost right away and felt like a clumsy elephant I had a wonderful time just bouncing around.
We'll do it again tomorrow. No matter what else the day may bring: this body has moved!