Thursday, August 28, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
I like that minimalist Scandinavian white look, or the French Shabby Chic, I do, I truly do. But I just can't bring myself to take a paint brush to any of the woodwork in my house.
In a later post I'm going to introduce you to a very dear old lady, who has come into my life.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
In his bassinet
About one month
My husband and I had been married thirteen years when our first child came along. I had just turned forty in the same month I had our son. We had not tried to have children before, he was my first pregnancy and he is our only child.
"Women your age imagine they're pregnant, but if you are I want you to go to a high risk obstetrician."
So I took his advice and went to a woman doctor, who specialized. She said I don't consider you a high risk, I have patients who are have higher risks i.e. twins, diabetics, etc.
They wanted to send me for genetic testing, but we considered this after the fact, because we would not consider on abortion.
On the first ultra sound at three months they found out that I only had a two vessel umbilical cord, you are meant to have three. One vessel, the blood flows to the baby, the other two, flow back to the mother. This factor was upsetting. I did a lot of research, and his progress was followed by monthly ultra sounds, all looked good.
My pregnancy went well, with a truly happy 2nd trimester. I felt well and was very happy. I gave up coffee and tea, cold turkey. Coffee OK, but everyone knows how I love tea, but it wasn't hard. What you will do for love.
He was already a week late and the doctor said she would give me a few more days, but being an older mum, they don't like to leave it too long. I decided to have him induced. In hind site I would have left it a few more days.
They started me off with a gel, well unknown to me I went into a continuous contraction fortunately he was on a heart monitor, the resident doctor and others came rushing into the room, my doctor had just seen me and left. I was turned over on all fours, to relieve pressure on the baby. Things happened very quickly, they made me sniff something that smelled like glue, and eventually got the contraction under control. His heart beat came up and I was saved from a Cesarean. Consequently for the next four hours they just let everything calm down.
Before all the doctors came in, my husband said you're acting as if your having contractions and I said no, I couldn't tell anything was wrong, at least not that wrong, how could things change so quickly, because the doctor had just left, after giving me the gel. Bo was right, thinking back to our birthing classes. The doctor said it was a negative reaction to the gel.
Contractions are an amazing thing and totally amazingly painful. But they last long enough to start the baby moving on it's passage out, then release, giving the babe a little rest and then again and again. But when you have a continuous contraction that does not let up, the baby is under continuous stress and this adversely affected his heart rate.
At about 6:00 pm, they started me on a drip to induce him which went fine until they broke my water then I was in complete pain, this was at 9:00pm. I did have an epidural and it helped. I was tired, exhausted from pushing and he was almost there, when the doctor helped with a suction cup. He was delivered, just after midnight. My doctor Christine was convinced he would be delivered before and had to make out all new paperwork.
My husband was there all throughout the delivery. Also taking photos.
We were delivered of a perfect baby boy. He was just beautiful, all was well. He was put on my chest, then cleaned up, footprints taken, then given back and he was ready to nurse, which he did.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
This is a post-script to my earlier book review of Facing The Lion, Memoirs of a Young Girl in Nazi Europe.
The town that Simone lived in was Mulhouse, and Mulhouse is the home of, Dolfuss-Mieg and Company (DMC) known for, printed cotton material, called Indienne and better known to us here in the States and I'm sure all over the world for their embroidery thread, DMC.
Dolfuss, Mieg, and Koechlin were leading brands in Europe - their factories were the first to institute social measures for their employees. This is were Simone's father worked as a print designer. So now I know what DMC stands for, I found this information in the apendix of the book.
Yes our new insert Jotul Stove has been installed. Now of course we can't wait to use it, which I'm sure will come in October. In anycase we have to light three small one hour fires, to break it in before fully using it.
In an earlier post we were trying to choose which one .
These are the before and after photos.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
You get to know her family, the every day life of town and country pre-war Alsace-Lorraine and what it was like during Hitler's regime.
She has a close family, loving parents, grand parents, aunts, uncles and cousins. In the pre-war years her parents turn from the Catholic church and become Jehovah's Witnesses. The war years come, the schools are the propaganda machine of Hitler. Simone refuses to accept the Nazi party as being above God. Her simple acts of defiance lead her to be persecuted by the school staff and local officials, and ignored by friends.
With her father already in a concentration camp, Simone is wrested away from her mother and sent to a reform school to be "reeducated". While there she learns that her mother also has been sent to a concentration camp, and she remains in this harsh, embittered environment until the end of the war.
How she stands up for her beliefs under overwhelming pressure to conform to society, when all her peers around are conforming, is a potent reminder to stay true to one's beliefs.
I enjoyed the picture into a young girl's life, what it was like before the war, where her dad worked, where they lived. How she felt, what her feelings were. It is a snap shot, just as Anne Franke's Diary is a snapshot into a young girls life during this time period.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Monday, August 11, 2008
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Anglo Saxon times was when much loved crumpets came into Brit cooking. Made from a thick yeast batter dolloped on to a hot, flat pan and cooked until the air bubbles rose, making holes at the top.
Haggis, made from chopped up organs, including, oatmeal and herbs, this term may have derived from the Viking word hagga, meaning to hack.
Introduced during this time were walnuts, which take their name from wealh, meaning 'foreign lands'.
In small houses it was the women who cooked, but in the great kitchens of noblemen, only men had the strength to lift the enormous equipment. The Old English word for 'cook', cok , is a masculine noun.
To know why we say, what we say, and why we eat, what we eat, gives depth to who we are.
Saturday, August 9, 2008
Also I did not add links, because I don't know if they would link you to a book that I would not feel comfortable recommending.
So if you like a book and would like to buy one, please feel free to do so through my book store.
This book is just fascinating with a wealth of information. It starts at with pre-Roman times , through the Roman occupation of Britain and continues right up to the present day. Describing the different foods eaten, and how they fit into the culture of the time.
Something that I find interesting is the derivation of words and phrases, so I thought I'd share some of these with you as I read through the years of British cooking history.
This mosaic, from Chedworth Villa, illustrates how the British and Roman cultures integrated. The character is depicted as Winter wearing a typically British hooded cloak (birrus) and carrying a brown hare introduced to Britain by the Romans. The bare tree is a symbol of Winter.
Some believe that the routes of the imperial army through the south of England can be traced by following the white blossom of the wild cherry trees, distant descendants of the saplings that sprang up wherever the soldiers spat out stones as they marched.
Dinner or cena, taken at twilight, was abundant, often in the form of a convivium, or dinner party,that oiled the wheels of commerce, politics and friendship. The word convivial must originate from this word convivium.
Apicius wrote down many recipes. The first word of each of his culinary instructions gives us the noun that we use to this day, for recipe was the Latin word for 'take'.
Winter stores of food were crucial and salt preserved them. Salt was so valuable that it could form a part of a man's pay or taxes - his salary - so important that an inadequate man would be labelled 'not worth his salt'.
You will see this book in my Lil Bit Brit book store. Where you will find books that I've enjoyed and would recommend.
Last night, well the early hours of this morning I woke up out of a sound sleep and thought, "where is my camping stove?" I got up went downstairs and looked in the basement where we usually store it, it wasn't there. I looked in the garage and it wasn't there. I knew I had left it on the picnic bench a the park. Now this is Saturday morning and we went there on Tuesday. I even blogged about it, but didn't twig that anything was wrong. I was mortified. Pennsylvania Summer Picnic
So just after nine on a Saturday morning I went to the park, and was walking across the wide expanse of grass to where we had picnicked, when I saw a park ranger driving in the distance. So I hailed him down and asked about lost and found items in the park. He said he hadn't noticed it at the office, but would walk over with me to where we'd picnicked. He saw it before I did, because I was focused on the bench we picknicked at, but it was sitting on the bench behind. Oh! joy of joys.
So now because I've been thinking of my stove and thinking that I might have to go and buy another one, and also thinking about my friend Zi who ordered herself a Japanese, Bento lunch box, Japanese Bento Lunch Box I thought I should take a trip over to Assi. And guess what they had an even smaller stove absolutely perfect for picnicking and there I was thinking my other one was perfect, see what going shopping does!
So here they are.
Well the boy is at the shore today with his friend Vinny and his parents. It's a lovely sunny clear blue sky summer day. A little on the cool side maybe for the beach, but I know they'll have fun.
Hoping your weekend is fun.
Friday, August 8, 2008
Monday 5th May 2008 Barcelona, Our Last Day. Casa Batllo, and La Pedrera, the architect being, Antoni Gaudi
Yes I know this has been a long time coming to finally post the last day of our vacation in Europe. We had breakfast in the little tiled dining room, which had a beautifully carved wooden ceiling, which somehow we omitted taking photos of.
The tile work on this central atrium, starts with a darker blue tile and gradually gets lighter as it gets to the glass top.
This is the roof that looks like a dragons tail.
This is the second Antoni Gaudi building we visited a complex of apartments he designed called La Pedrera.
One of the apartments has been staged as it would have looked when the apartments were first built and lived in.