Monday, 27 September 2010

Almost Back to Normal

Whatever normal is ... spent most of yesterday at the West End Artists' Tour with Helmut and Ottilia ... and had fun.  Came home with enough energy left over to take Kenya for a real walk and to make dinner ...

I bought another sculpture ... this one the polar opposite of "Grief".  "Grief" is hard, grey and a realistic rendition of sorrow.  "Alley Oop" is a soft felted sculture, brightly coloured, and on springs which almost allow him to leap with joy.  He has a smile that inspires me to say, "Don't worry; be happy".  Grief's strength derives from the body and its language.  A great deal of the charm of Alley Oop is in the facial  details.  It is a sculpture by Edwina Sutherland.

I have placed this one on my desk in front of a wall dedicated to flights of the imagination ... paintings and prints that make me want to soar ... to let my imagination fly free.

Happy September, Everyone!

Friday, 24 September 2010

Tarnation ... Hibernation

It's been a while ...and this post will be short, I am afraid.

I have no idea yet why I am so tired. Teaching four days a week is undoubtedly a factor, but this exhaustion far exceeds normal tiredness.  I was felled by a short but severe case of food poisoning the Saturday before last, and since then have faded a little more each day.

I finally went to the doctor on Wednesday and she suspects anemia , a possible side effect of the food poisoning as I lost quite a startling amount of blood.  I can't get  blood tests done here until mid-October so am going in to town on Saturday to have them done ... (have to fast for 12 hours so can't easily go tomorrow after class ... but that is a possibility since I am up in the middle of the night) .  My blood pressure keeps falling to about 102-110/ sixty-something  as well, so the next step if I am not anemic would be to adjust my blood pressure medication again.

Right now I am teaching a lovely thoughtful man about my age from a town just 200 kilometres away from my family's roots in Germany  ... and next week the other teacher and I will switch, I think, and I will work with his friend who is a Swiss German and very different ... bubblier and much more carefree.  I like them both but when they are together Helmut is as silent as a spring, and Ottilia lapses into German rather than attempting to work her way through things in English.   I think we will switch each week so that they have two different kinds of teaching throughout their four weeks.  I wish I had more energy because I do love teaching.

I will be happy to get to the root of this sudden exhaustion for a number of reasons ... not the least of which is that I hate the state of my house these days.  Kenya will be delighted to have regular and strenuous exercise once again.  (She is reacting to my inertia by being very naughty when she does get out with me ... Yesterday she pulled me right off my feet when she went streaking after one of Rowboat Flo's cats.  My weakness and the wet grass were also factors, but the main one was that she has an excess of energy as a result of my energy deficiency. Today she took off halfway home from Rowboat Flo's where we had had dinner, and returned to Flo's to steal one of the bones put out for those same cats.)  My students who likely have no idea what they are missing will also benefit.  And I guess my loyal readers will be glad to have me back blogging ...

So ... not much of a post ... just an explanation for my absence.  There will be another hiatus ... to be broken when there is either a recovery or I have something else to add.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Ketchup and Relish Time ... or time is still a luxury

This has been a busy week!  I will give you one of those over the shoulder views ...

I am off to a barbecue-potluck tonight and so I have prepared a real harvest dish to take with me ... zucchini topped with chopped tiny tomatoes and croutons and then sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and baked at 400 degrees.

Before that I made corn relish with corn left over from the lake's horseshoe tournament and barbecue which fizzled rather badly, especially for me and my gang ... but for everyone because of the weather.

My students were supposed to come with one of their house mothers.  She completely forgot and so I waited till seven and then walked over carrying my chair and chocolate zucchini bread.  Imagine my surprise when I discovered that most of the people had eaten and left early, and the other half were just finishing up the last of the desserts and were about to head home.  Lise cooked me a hamburger, Tom invited me to his table and got me a plate, and Rowboat Flo who was staying at my place this weekend, had prepared me a plate to take home.  I shared my wine and zucchini bread, and, when the cold wet wind made staying truly uncomfortable, we all went home.  Not even a bonfire because of the wind and rain ... maybe the annual corn roast is becoming a thing of the past.

Flo and I toddled off to bed. after a game of Scrabble

Earlier on Saturday I made the chocolate zucchini loaf, and several herb jellies.  By the time I was finished, I had sticky surfaces everywhere and had to thoroughly clean the stove.  Do not let your apple jelly boil over! Whew!  I had forgotten what harvest time was like.  It has been years since I lived in the Ottawa Valley and canned and pickled and made jellies and jams until my shelves were full and I never wanted to see another cucumber, tomato or berry of any sort.

On Friday I  put up 9 large jars of Nana Sully's cucumber relish so my distaste for preserving is now complete for this year ... and ... I still have tomatoes and more zucchini coming ... as well as more cucumbers than I can possibly eat in sandwiches ...

On Friday night I had dinner with Tom and Marlene ... yummy treat.

Thursday I took the car in for an oil change and the answer to a question about the gassy smell ... and came away from the experience with an even greater regard for my mechanic who cut out the rotted piece of gas line and, for a pittance,. re-tooled it  They take very good care of their most inept clients ...

Monday to Wednesday I taught every day ...

It has been a long week and I was really looking forward to the Labour Day holiday ... but my students have asked me to come in on Monday ...  I told them I couldn't promise ,,, that I was going to a second barbecue tonight and all would depend on whether I felt energetic enough.

It will also depend on whether I have anything prepared!

That is what I plan to do this afternoon ... plan lessons, make worksheets and tests, create games, and rest up before the party!

I hope you are all leading somewhat less hectic lives than I am and that your Labour Day  weekend has been fun.