Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Hares, Hairs, and Mr. McGregor's Garden

Easter came and went a few weeks ago, but I've yet to put my decorations away. I consider that more than enough of a loophole to actually write a little bit about such ancient history as "a few weeks ago." The holidays are getting a little more challenging for our little non-religious family. We're quietly finding the best way to answer questions like, "What is Easter, mama?" when we're not necessarily celebrating the same things as 80% of America. So, we explain (in as few words as possible since he is only 2-1/2) both the Christian story and traditions of our extended families as well as what might be considered the Pagan stories and traditions that the papa and I have found feel right for us. Both have their roots in the same themes--birth, renewal, the spark of life growing, budding and flowering--so it has been much easier than I think I anticipated.

Rowan's spring renewal came in the form of his very first haircut. We took him to the local salon where all the ladies doted on him. I know, I know, I surely could have given him his first cut myself since, as far as hair goes, he didn't have much. Well, lots on the top, not much on the sides. Basically he needed some shaping.

But, his first cut was already promised out. Four days after Rowan was supposed to arrive, I found myself itching to do something to keep my mind off new and strange ways to encourage labor naturally. So down to the salon I went for a quick trim and some conversation. The women giggled about how the salon had everything necessary should I go into labor then and there and I pledged my little one would have his or her first haircut at Soapothecary. And so he did. This is his I-got-my-hair-cut dance.

The best part about this spring is that Rowan has his very own garden. We went to the greenhouse and he picked out rosemary, violets, pansies, and a dahlia. He's so entirely excited to have his own little piece of ground (not to mention his own garden bag including gloves, tools and a "mystery" bottle--translation: misting bottle). I'm sure he's not the only 2-1/2 year old who knows what compost is and actually calls dirt soil, but I'm just amazed at what he picks up from us without prompt.

He's also a huge fan of The Tale of Peter Rabbit and insists that all gardens belong to Mr. McGregor. In fact, if you ask nicely, he would be happy to recite the entire story of Peter as well as that of Benjamin Bunny. But only if you ask nicely.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


Above is my flickr mosaic for the questions listed below. Inspired by rants and dreamy musings. Since I'm a sucker for these sorts of things by email, it only follows that I'd also enjoy the blog-o-sphere version of the getting-to-know-you-but-not-really games. For those interested in my actual answers as well as the strange assortment of photos that came up in a flickr search, I've included them in parans after the questions....

Flickr mosaic game
a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into a mosaic maker.

1. Your blog name? (mmmm mama)
2. What is your favourite food? (home-baked bread)
3. Where were you born? (Kingston)
4. What is your favourite color? (peacock blue)
5. Who is your celebrity crush? (Johnny Depp)
6. Favourite drink? (apple cider)
7. Dream vacation? (mountain lake)
8. Favourite dessert? (creme brule)
9. What you want to be when you grow up? (herbalist)
10. What do you love most in life? (Rowan)
11. One Word to describe you. (hidden)
12. Favourite novel? (Watership Down)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

North Wind

An owl sits beside my chair and whispers in my ear
Who-who could that be knock, knock, knocking
Who-who could that be here

It’s nothing but the North Wind blowing, blowing at the pane
Blowing cinders down the flue, tugging at the vane

Come out, come out, come out and play
He howls at the door
I’ll lash you with a lock of hair and beat you ‘til your sore

Come in, come in, come in and play
I answer to the door
You bluster, blare and bellow but you’re wind and nothing more

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Family movie night

As much as I had visions of raising my children without television, we are a family that loves our movies. I can hear my mother's tisking tongue and see her wagging finger in my mind when I think of how many movies Rowan has seen in his short two and a half years of life. He was sleeping in my arms at our local drive-in his first summer, nursing and dreaming while my husband and I enjoyed the season's blockbusters. Maybe his love of movies happend by osmosis. I've been reading a series of theortical/spiritual books that suggest what a mother thinks while she's nursing has an affect on the life of the child. Yikes! Whatever the reason, Rowan absolutely adores a good film.

We took him to see Monsters vs Aliens in 3D on opening night. (That's Rowan's "date" Ava on the left looking at the camera and Rowan on the right enthralled by the screen. We double family dated with some close friends who have a 4-year-old and a 1-year-old.) On all counts, it was a great movie and everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

Then, of course, I had to keep thinking about the damned movie. It was so made for parents my age. Anyone who grew up watching the GenX classics featuring motley outcasts who save the world/get the girl/get the guy/make the team/etc., etc., etc., will appreciate the underlying symbolism and messaging. From cookie-cutter references (the suburban hometown party, the evil alien destroying his own world to create one populated entirely by clones of himself) to mindless government gags, it's like one big inside joke created by a bunch of powerful geeks. Despite the big wigs not marketing it as a "strong girl" movie, the protagonist is definitely Ginormica and the storyline centers around her literal and metaphorical metamorphasis from shallow girl "living the dream life" to confident freak finding her way in a world that finds her simultaneously amazing and revolting. Sounds about right to me.

I'd like to see it again when I'm not balancing a rootbeer float with one hand, pushing Annie's cheddar bunnies and Twizzlers on the 1-year-old to keep him quiet with the other hand, and keeping an eye on Rowan's reaction to the 3D.

This weekend we accidentally rented a dubbed Chinese Disney flick called The Magic Gourd. But the psychological seisures I gave myself after thinking too hard about this one is a whoooole nother ball of yarn. Let's just say it veered into musings on how The Magic Gourd would be a great example of how one might make a film for children about a boy's battle with schizophrenia. Oy vey! Where do I get these things?