Posts in Photography
Cranberry Sauce With Cinnamon, Port and Cherries

Thanksgiving is in the US is major. As with most things northern, Canadian Thanksgiving is a quieter, more understated affair. A quaint little family holiday, with turkey of course, but no candied yams or or marshmallows or daytime meals. Canadians spend Thanksgiving day, which is in October, btw, in the kitchen, cooking, roasting and baking and then break bread together as a thankful family. While entirely enjoyable and even eagerly anticipated as a celebration of thankfulness and family, Canadian thanksgiving carries much less cultural significance than it’s American counterpart. It is not a harbinger of the coming season; it is not a shopping fiesta, and I doubt that many Canadians would count Thanksgiving as their favorite holiday.

 

I’m becoming more and more acquainted with with American ways and means, and I must admit that I’m developing a certain fondness for American Thanksgiving. I love that for many Americans it carries the weight of Christmas without the pressure of and excess gifts.

 

I’ll be spending this Thanksgiving in the air, but we celebrated last weekend. With family, friends, conversation, and cranberry sauce. I’ve always liked cranberry sauce more than the actual meal. Probably because it’s full of sugar and I have the sophisticated palate of a five-year old

  Cranberry Sauce

Anyway. The sauce. I made it. And it was delish.

 

Here’s the recipe.

 

1 cup port

2 cinnamon sticks

12 oz cranberries

1 cup dried cherries

3/4 cup water

1/2 cup sugar (or to taste)

 

Here’s what you do:

 

In a saucepan heat the port to a low simmer. Add the cinnamon sticks, and simmer for maybe 5 minutes. Add the dried cherries, and cook until soft on medium low, probably about 3 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients, raise heat to medium and bring to a boil. Then reduce heat to a simmer, and cook for about 20 minutes. Take out the cinnamon sticks about half way through the cooking time. Reserve for a garnish, if you’d like. 

Decant the cranberry sauce into a serving dish, cool, and voila! Yum yum. 

  Cinnamon, Port, and Cherry Cranberry Sauce

Although this post is pretty much the opposite of wordless, I’m linking up anyway for wordless Wednesday at my usual hangouts. The Paper Mama. And Then, She SnappedLive and Love Out Loud.

 

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The Little Details

The lips. The eyelashes. The skin. I'm in love with the details. 

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I didn't touch this picture in post. It's right off the camera. A moment. A miracle. 

 

The Paper Mama

 

{Updated} Hey...LOOK...we made the top five in this photo challenge. Now I'm officially validated and life has meaning and stuff. 

 

The Paper Mama

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Favorites From September

As trite and prosaic an observation as this may be, September has gone by in a flash. 

Four weeks ago, summer was still upon us with heavy air and punishing heat, and now we wear sweaters and rub our hands together against the chill.

I started this month like most, drifting. But now I’m focused, putting all my energy and all my words into a class I’m taking.  I’m building something, every spare moment  I’m hammering away, getting ready to launch.

Stella started September sitting and scooting. She’s now hiking up our hill on her own steam, holding my  hand only for a moment. 

She had a handful of signs at the beginning of the month. Then, suddenly there was a burgeoning of new words. Some we’ve been working on for months, some original Stella creations: bath, please, thank you, water, iPad, dog, baby, eat, cracker. She’s signing for everything, making little Stella sentences. “Papi, phone, more.” 

Please call Papi. 

After he hangs up, Stella kisses the phone good bye.

 

What a month. What a year. What a sweet girl.

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The Paper Mama

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Favorites From September

As trite and prosaic an observation as this may be, September has gone buy in a flash. 

Four weeks ago, summer was still upon us with heavy air and punishing heat, and now, we wear sweaters and rub our hands together agains the chill.

I started this month like most, drifting. But now I’m focused, putting all my energy and all my words into a class I’m taking.  I’m building something, every spare moment  I’m hammering away, getting ready to launch.

Stella started September sitting and scooting. She’s now hiking up our hill on her own steam, holding my  hand only for a moment. 

She had a handful of signs at the beginning of the month. Then, suddenly there was a burgeoning of new words. Some we’ve been working on for months, some origional Stella creations: bath, please, thank you, water, iPad, dog, baby, eat, cracker. She’s signing for everything, making little Stella sentences. “Papi, phone, more.” 

Please call Papi. 

After he hangs up, Stella kisses the phone good bye.

 

What a month. What a year. What a sweet girl.

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The Paper Mama

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Office Assistant {Wordless Wednesday}

Confession time: I'm taking a course. It's taking all my time. Bloggy neglect ensures. For example, these pictures are all straight off the camera. 

Shut up, whatever. Its better than child neglect. 

Anyway, at least I have a super cute office assistant. 

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{Linking up at The Paper Mama, And Then, She Snapped, Prenting By Dummies, Project Alicia, Jenni From The Blog and A Little King and I.}

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Housebound {Wordless Wednesday}

We staged a revolution today. We didn't leave the house. Not once. And it was glorious. 

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{PS: These photos are not, strictly speaking, from today. I was to lazy to even lift my camera. I did edit them today, if that counts. However, they are indicative of how we did actually spend our day.}

{PPS: Japanese apartments have terrible light. Gha. Noise noise noise. Top priorities as we look for housing in our next posting: double glazed windows and good, picture pretty light. Serious.}

 

{PPPS: Linking up with A Little King and I, & The Paper Mama}

and then, she {snapped}

 

 

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My Darling {Wordless Wednesday}

Hello internet. I don't think you've yet had the pleasure of meeting the youngest of our fur-children. This is Mr. Katz. Oliver Katz. He's Chinese. Though, he's forgotten most of his native tongue, what with being an orphan and all. He now speaks English and Swiss German, but no Japanese yet. He's not put much effort into his studies.

 

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Oliver was found as a wee little mewing thing, eyes barely open, in a Shanghai garbage can, covered in worms and sores and mange. He was nursed back to health by a wonderful Canadian couple and then we adopted him. 

 

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I tell you, this boy is a darling. Kind and gentle, and soft and cuddly. He loves tuna. And cat grass. And sun on the balcony. And cuddles. And couch sitting. And soft bellies for kneading paws.  

 

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He hates strangers. A lot. And outside Oliver, his doppelgänger-nemesis. He's a tad neurotic (i.e. probably needs to be on cat Zoloft) and, so, the transition from being our youngest - our furry baby -to middle child when Stella came along was a tough one for Mr. O. 

 

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But he has learned, after about four months of hiding in his cave, that attention from the baby is still attention. Cuddles from the baby are still cuddles. And there is a fairly strong chance that baby cuddles will lead to mama cuddles. So he tolerated the snotty baby kisses, the tail pulls, the clumsy attempts at brushing. And in fact grew to adore this new little person, so hungry to love him and hold him, and cuddle him, and brush him. 

 

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Sometimes, when he's feeling especially affectionate, he jumps into my lap when I'm nursing Stella, and nestles down into the crook of my arm for a triple snuggle. I told you he's a darling. 

 

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and then, she {snapped}

 

{linking up at Paper Mama, Parenting BY Dummies, And Then, She Snapped, and Supermom}

The Paper Mama

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Beachy

The beach is only 20 minutes away by bike. Just follow the tidal rivers out to the coast. And yet, we've only been once this year. Routine, laundry, and lack of imagination have choked out our fun. With this post, I'm officially removing the blockage. We're going to be enjoying the beach, and our good fortune at having it so close.

 

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Behind the Times. Whatever.

In my mind's eye, Stella is still a wee little thing. My mental construct is about six months behind reality.

I see a nine-month-old baby and I think, Oh, look. Someone for Stella to play with.

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When in fact, she well on her way to being a big wee thing these days. All legs. Leaning out. Almost tall enough to reach the counter tops.

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Anyone else feel like they're behind the times, running to catch up with a rapidly growing baby? When does time slow down?

***

I'm entering the above shot in The Paper Mama's Weekly Photo Chalalnge. 

The Paper Mama

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