Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

It is a hard year to find things to be grateful for in the current climate. Yesterday there was an attrocious terrorist attack in Mumbai, earlier in the year and ongoing are the job losses, people I know, young people and friends are battling cancer and other diseases and this doesn't mention the ongoing trials, tribulations and suffering that so much of the world does on a daily basis, out of the public eye and swept under the carpet.

It is a particularly prolific trying time at the moment, but perhaps there is still something deep that we can be thankful for at least for today. I know for me I am grateful that we are well and healthy (an old cliche, but so true) and I am grateful that we have a roof over our heads and food on the table in front of us. I am also quietly optomistic and hopeful that with some of the economic crisis that is going on, that perhaps the world will start to become a better place, that people might become more empathetic toward each other and that as a world we might begin to be more consciously aware of each other and help those in need much more. I hope that the New Year might start to take a turn for the better for so many families and that would be my thanksgiving wish if I could have one.

I am also grateful for my children, so, so much for the brilliance they've brought into our lives. Yesterday they chose to make up some boxes to send to some people overseas. We decided to send one to a soldier through a friend whose brother is deployed overseas and the other we've sent to some friends in Africa who, by far are not a charity and I hope they won't view it as that, but don't get the frivolity that we are lucky enough to have due to the unselfish choices they've made to help in that part of the world. It's nothing much, some magazines, a dvd, chocolates, some coffee and some little luxuries, but I hope it'll make them smile and think of home!

I also wanted to share a couple of craft projects I'm working on and one I've finished and then I have a recipe too.

This just needs darts to finish the sides.

This is Mr Beehive's sweater. It is knit in the round and I have yet to do the sleeves. It's a very easy raglan, but the yarn is so heavy that my wrists ache if I do too much.

..and this baby is a skirt I made yesterday for myself. It is admittedly a "little prairie girl yeeha", but I like it. The photo on the top shows the ruffle that I made, you can actually see it clearer in the bottom picture.

Finally, a recipe for you to try. I must warn you, it's calorie laden, but ya boo to that, it's lush, it's decadent, it's e.a.s.y!!!!

BTS Cheesecake!!

Two pots of Marscapone cheese (or Philly if you can't get marscapone!)

Three limes juiced and you need the grated rind too.

Enough icing sugar to sweeten the cheese but not overkill

2 packs of ginger snap biscuits


Small bar of 60% cacao chocolate

1 large glass of wine

Okay, so smash up the biscuits into small pieces, or grind them in a processor. Add about 6 oz of melted butter to the biscuit pieces and then press down firmly into a flan dish and let cool and set in the fridge. Whip up the cheese - do this by hand otherwise it just goes runny! Add sifted icing sugar to taste. Add the juice of three limes (more if you want really tangy, but watch it doesn't get too runny)and the zest from the rind. Stir and place ontop of the now cooled base.

Put back in fridge.

Drink wine!

When it has cooled, use a cheese grater to grate or roll if you are fancy bugger, some curls of chocolate onto the top of the cheesecake.The rest of the chocolate may be consumed at your leisure.


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Travelling cape

So it looks like our time in the States may finally be coming to an end. I am sure, for those of you that know us, you have been able to read between the lines of my entries over the last few months, but it has been so up in the air. I suppose it isn't really grounded as yet either, it'll either be Edinburgh or London, but likely that Mr Beehive will be gone come the end of the financial half year and we'll either follow in June if I can cope alone that long or at the end of March.

Of course, now comes the time (just as Thanksgiving and Christmas and the Little Miss's birthday draw upon us!) that I need to cull and perge, throw and declutter. This is actually the longest that the Beehive has been in one place, in one house, since I think we both left home when we were 18! Hence we seem to have actually got one or two feet firmly in the door and accrued a shed load of .......stuff!

I feel somewhat how I imagine a child to feel when faced with an entire room to clear and not quite knowing where to start. The feeling is overwhelming, where do I start? What do we really need and not need. What, if push came to shove, could I do without? How much of my life can I really squeeze into a limited amount of boxes?

My first port of call has been the kitchen, which managed to fill one bin bag for charity, then I moved onto my wardrobe which went to another charity and then the children's playroom which is being handed to friends and going to Goodwill. Obviously we will keep what they use a lot, but we have to be realistic that we have lived in, let's face it people......America.........the land of the brave, free and............well, quite frankly frickin' meganormous, so going back to Britain, the land of the equally brave, free, wet and ............itty bitty houses, we may need professional help!!

I have mixed feelings about it all, obviously my adventurous side is ready to go, ready to move on to the next place, my rooted side, my "I hate change" persona (yes, the nomad is obviously a jekyll and hyde character!) is screaming "it'll be awful, you won't see people again, the school, the school.......omg, the school!" That will be a big loss to us. The Montessori school. I am considering, certainly for the short term, to help the children adjust and fill the gap from march to September if we go then, to home educate them, that way I can gently introduce the UK curriculum but with a Montessori style approach. I imagine they'll take to it like ducks to water and as always in these cases, it is me who will have the harder time.

So over the next few months I expect this blog will turn over a lot to our impending move and the trials and tribulations that go with packing up five people, a dog and four years worth of lives. I also have to try to work out how we fit in some of MB the elder's list of "things to do/places to see before we leave" which include Washington DC, The Statue of Liberty (can you believe it - not yet!) and California. I think we can work the first two, the latter I'm not so sure.

Oh and to add insult to injury I've chosen now to give up caffeine......that'll see me right over the next very busy few months.................................................not!

On another note, I have managed to have the most empowering births recently, after a long session of tougher ones I have finally hit a change in the tide. Now, whether that is just these were all second time moms (I imagine that is a lot of it) or perhaps I am actually more aware and practised these days (possibly a tiny part of it!) but since the first VBAC in may this year I am on some kind of roll (of course, saying that I have just burst my big fat bubble of destiny now!).

September saw a 1hr 2om natural birth that I made with 40 mins to spare!
October was a 2 hour 30 min natural VBAC
and on Monday was perhaps one of the hardest births I've ever attended. Again she achieved a natural birth in around six hours, but she found the tail end of it incredibly hard and was not helped by jobsworthy nurses insisting she had to birth on the bed and the jobsworthy IV nurse who couldn't take her blood from her arm when it was on a table and she had to lie down to have her blood taken (wtf is that all about?!) and kept huffing and sighing when my client had a contraction so she was unable to relax enough for the blood to flow, or that she had to have a Hep Lock in at the start. As she transistioned she began to take flight and I did think I might lose her. Her eyes were imploring me to take the pain away and I had to be firm with her, tell her she was nearly there and that she needed to go deep inside herself and find that last bit of inner strength. She was finding that standing leaning over the table was working best for her contractions and I was vigourously rubbing her lower back. She progressed the latter part of first stage (from 4 - 9) incredibly fast, within an hour, and thus (this is why I find hospitals and L & D nurses - some of them- hard work) the nurses didn't believe she was there when she said she had to push. Of course, there she was wanting to push the baby out standing up - no issue, but the nurses decided that was the time to flap like a bunch of hens with a fox up their bum one decided that perhaps putting matting under her might be wise (so I grabbed it and moved it just in case) and then some bright spark thought it would be funny to lift her (head fully emerged at that point!) onto the bed.................the baby literally fell as she landed on her back on the bed - luckily one nurse was at least positioned to catch, but had she fallen as the mother was being moved, well it doesn't bear thinking about. Why oh why could she not have been left alone or just helped to kneel down onto the matting I'd laid out underneath her. It is things like this that infuriate the heck out of me as I am totally helpless in a situation like this. I either get evicted from the room (and potentially the hospital and future births there) if I question their authority or I seem to "take the side of the nurses" if I go along with their suggestions. It's a tough call.

So, this may be my last birth until I am established back over the pond somewhere. It seems odd to think that this could be it for now. Mind you, if you are going to go out, at least go out on a high and these last births have certainly done that.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

You've been Elfed!

Be warned, you need tissues, a change of tena and .......a quiet office space!!!!!! Hysterical!!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

It. Is. Done!!!

Ta da!!!!

Wee missy has a new sweater. I am actually very chuffed with my perserverence with this one! It's taken me just over a fortnight and some cursing into the small hours, but it is complete.

So on to the next project, sweater for Mr Beehive the younger now. I found some eco-wool made out of recycled plastic bottles in "The Store that cannot be named" the other day, $2.85 a pop!!!!!!!!! It's really soft too, so I am going to give it a go, see how it knits up.

I will try not to get so embedded in this one that I don't update my blog!!

She's also wearing a recycled skirt that I made from an old sweater I had. Very recycled thrifty girlie today and uber blue too, no idea where that all came about!