Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Little Adventures

All my life I have loved walking in the woods and fields. Often I felt like I could never get enough- I always needed to see what was beyond the next curve or over the next hill. 

I am thrilled to see this adventuring spirit alive and thriving in my son Henry. During our hike last Sunday morning, he continuously pushed us onward, wanting to see what came next, and to find something new and exciting. I love this. 

The woods and fields surrounding our house are a playground and classroom when we walk, and I’m so happy to be able to watch my kids blossom out in nature. 

I hope Henry never loses his sense of adventure and curiousity and that we can continue to learn important lessons in the best classroom - outdoors. 

Friday, March 30, 2018

Happy Anniversary

We moved to Maple Lake on Easter weekend in 2011. Seven years. So much has changed since then. Henry is, well...7! And Clare has completed our family.  I no longer stand in the driveway and cry (yes, I did that a lot) wondering if I should just pack it all up again and go back. While I will always have a strong connection to what I left behind, here is my home now. 

I’m not sure exactly when it became that, but over the years I’ve gradually let go. I have always known suburban life wasn’t for me, but it’s hard to leave behind the familiar. 

If nothing else, my children have grounded me here. I want this life for them. For them to know the seasons intimately. To experience nature. To never have “nothing to do”.  

And of course I still never tire of my morning view. 

Sunday, January 29, 2017

A day

A day doesn't go by that I don't think about you. A day doesn't go by that I don't think about what my children are missing. A day doesn't go by that I don't think about how you would react to the new milestones my children reach every day. A day doesn't go by that I don't think that maybe I could have let some things go and just enjoy the things we did have in common. These are the things on my mind two years after you were taken from us. 

Thursday, March 17, 2016

It's Coming

Spring, that is. 

It seems we are being blessed with an early Spring and I couldn't be happier. The last two winter previous to this one have been so long and so brutal, that I wasn't ready to face it again. 

This morning I ran up to Swords, and paused by the marsh. Even though it's still locked in ice, it is alive with sounds. Red winged blackbirds,  geese,  and the sound of the ice breaking and cracking filled the air. 

Soon, with a rise in temperature, that same air will be filled with the sound of spring peepers. 

I love early spring. Hope, anticipation and so many beautiful things to come.


Friday, February 26, 2016

The Cashew

So, you think you're doing pretty good. You think, wow. So lucky am I to have perfectly average kids with no issues. 

And then your world gets turned on its head. 

Both of my kids have had peanuts and almonds and granola bars and Thai food and mixed nuts.


I suppose Henry had never actually consumed a cashew. 

Both kids had a small bowl of trail mix (raisins, cranberries, peanuts and cashews) after dinner on Tuesday.  I was watching Clare eat. She held up a cashew and said, "wat dat?"  

At that moment, I thought, wait. She's never had a cashew ...is this okay?

Simultaneously, in the kitchen, Henry had also ingested a cashew. Told Rick something was wrong and immediately started to throw up everything he has ever eaten.   His face started swelling. Red cheeks. Blisters on his lips. 

Into the car for the fastest drive to town I've ever piloted.  

When we arrived at emergency we were ushered in immediately. Two shots of epinephrine, IV of two antihistamines and an oral steroid finally got Henry back to being Henry. 

I never thought I'd be a parent of a child with anaphylaxis, but here we are. The ER nurses kept commenting on how calm I was. 

There are two reasons for that. 

One: it is what it is. I knew what it was as soon as he started throwing up. It's manageable. I've worked with many kids with it. It's fine. 

Two: as I was driving in, I felt frantic. I asked my mom to be with me. I said, "mom, I need you here now". As a nurse, she was the ultimate calm in medical emergencies. She was with me. 

So. Henry is anaphylactic to some nuts. We go on. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016


Tomorrow is a day I will never forget. 

January 29. 

I will never forget where I was and what I was doing when my sister called me to tell me that my mom had died in a car accident. I heard the news sitting on Henry's bed. 

I remember strange details vividly. What boots I wore outside to tell Rick. I could not find my winter boots and threw on my rain boots, walking out in the snow with no coat. Nothing. 

After, other calls were made and received in absolute shock. I didn't crash until the day after. Spending the day in my pajamas, sobbing, and taking phone calls and visitors. I am so grateful to those who visited me and called me that day. 

So. Tomorrow. Tomorrow I will remember, as I do every day. But tomorrow especially. Tomorrow I will visit my mom, and spend time with two of my three siblings. 

Tomorrow I have also planned some enjoyable things to do for myself. My mom would not want me wallowing. She would want me to enjoy my life, and do things that she would also enjoy. 

Tomorrow is a day to remember. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Green and Brown

The woods felt exactly like late March today.  Damp and mild, the air was thick with mist in some spots.  Rocks and fallen logs were slick and the moss and ferns were still vibrant green.  The creeks and streams were high, full of run off from all of the rain we have been getting lately.

I walked through the marsh, and up through the woods and rocks, to the top of the rocky hill that overlooks the marsh.   I saw plenty of evidence of animal activity, paths through the leaves, and places where logs had been rubbed bar and branches broken.

As I made my way back down the hillside, I could hear the water from the stream rushing.  I came to it and made my way along it, moving toward the first beaver pond.  The beaver pond is not a pond any more, since the dam is no longer there.  It`s a small valley, surrounded on all sides by steep high banks with a stream running through it.

It`s quiet here and one of my favourite places to visit - probably the place I escape to most.  As I walked back out through the trees and across the fields the fog came in heavier.  I could feel water droplets settling on my eyelashes.  I needed the walk today - a quiet time before the flurry of activity and excitement that Christmas brings.