5 Things This Week

    Here's what is happening at the Gary's this week as Christmas approaches:

1.  This is what our table usually looks like on a Saturday.  We love being around our workers, our friends.  These 2 men fit both of these categories.  They have worked for us for several years and are sadly returning to Mexico for the year.  We will miss seeing them at church and at our home.  I have loved opening our home & hearts to them and am grateful for the cultural experience they've brought to my family.  Jose's wife (who still lives in Mexico) made us authentic Mole.  The first time Jose brought it to me I placed it in the pantry, waiting for the day we had a group of Mexican friends over to teach me how to make it.  When that day came, I took it out and discovered mold!  (I was supposed to freeze it! Horror.)  They took me to the store and bought Mole in a can.  They shook their heads as they ate it. I think the translation came out that it was equivalent to us eating Ragu out of a jar. Yikes!  Jose has since brought me a new bag of Mole and it is in the freezer.  He asks me every time I see him when I'm cooking it.  To Mole and Mexican friends!  Adios amigos!

2.  This winter fort.  The kids tell me, "Mom, it's not a winter fort.  It's just a fort."  But I won't hang out in the fort if it's not cold (too many mosquitoes) , so I call it such.  Yes, I hang out here a lot. They have little benches to sit on around a 1 foot in diameter fire pit.  This hangout is located in the far back of our property, tucked away in the tree line.  It's equipped with a "potty" (plant pot), blacksmith shop (above pic is Canaan building it), first aid kits, sitting area and fire ring.  The back opens up to a horse pasture.  Sometimes we slip under the fence to hike and visit horses.  To be noted:  I have found lots of chicken feathers back here!  Those bandits that ate my chickens.  They must have been hanging out here when it was a summer fort.

3.  The garden is crawling slowly right now.  We're feeding it with fish emulsion fertilizer to help the plants out.  Right now we have broccoli, spinach, beets, carrots, cabbage, brussel sprouts, kale, lettuce, arugula and cauliflower.  We're harvesting almost half of that list.  Canaan has perfected cooking broccoli with lots of butter and Meyer lemons.  The kids actually fight over who gets the last of it!  Brussel sprouts are not doing well at all.  (Sad.)  They did great last year and tasted awesome. The guys are really into glass blowing right now, so they hurry and help in the garden in order to quickly return to the shop.  

4.  I was actually able to sit in on the end of the girls' dance classes this week before they let out for the holidays.  They did awesome, and I was so proud.  It always takes my breath away to watch Ruth dance.  Grace is doing aerial silks with gym.  She wasn't planning on doing this class but we had trouble with the schedule.  She was disappointed as she says she's "waited (her) whole life to do bars"; but she is enjoying the silks class.  She might change to ballet in January. Ruth is in Trainee D classes where they dance 3 times per week.  She has a great group of friends and loves ballet!  They are preparing for pointe this year and have daily home exercises.  

5.  These guys.  They have turned into glass blowing junkies.  They live, breathe, and if it were possible, eat glass.  They've been selling their glass at our monthly art walk downtown.  (Right now Canaan's in the shop making his teacher pendants for Christmas.)  I was brought to tears when Chap showed me what he had made Canaan (see pic above).  Our kiln is pretty big, so it is hard for Canaan to open, so Chap made him an insulated blanket with plywood and wire for him to put his small pieces in.  I watched Canaan make a spinning top and ornament when we had our Open House a couple of weeks ago.  I was blown away at how good he has gotten!  He's so cute to watch with his own torch and supplies (you can guess what he's getting for Christmas this year). Oops, he's walking in from the glass shop.  Gotta go before he reads this!


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