Posted by: Kate | May 21, 2018

Nature Connects Us

The magic of nature is obviously a recurring theme in my life. It is what I turn to in times of worry and doubt as well as joy. It is where I seek my calm. And it is where I am most comfortable with my friends.IMG_4810IMG_4824IMG_4826

For 23 years Mr. Kate and I have been camping with our best friend on the May long week-end, starting with the year we got married and we camped in my mum’s front yard. Since then we have added our child, and then her husband and then her child. It is the one long week-end we will brave full campgrounds for – to be together in nature and celebrate our connections.IMG_4861

This long week-end was as spectacular as ever; we walked and talked and sat around the fire eating way too many s’mores. We geocached and explored and played with a five-year-old. IMG_4899

And we came home rejuvenated and reconnected.IMG_4817IMG_4803

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Posted by: Kate | April 25, 2018

Oh the Frantic Pace of Spring

The rain has stopped and the sun is shining. Birds are chirping, Flickers are banging on anything metal with their beaks, the frog chorus is starting at night. You can see the grass growing over night.

Spring has settled in on the west coast and for gardeners that means one thing: it’s go time!

Spring is a marathon for gardeners and it’s crucial to remember not to run flat out at the beginning or you’ll burn out. I have a lot to do, but I am forcing myself to enjoy it and pace myself.

I am accepting that I can’t do it all in one season and that this is supposed to be my happy place, not my stressed-out work harder place.

So I have a new plan. A reasonable list of what can be achieved this spring, with an acceptance of what can’t. I still feel the call of the spring garden, but I will pace myself. I will find peace, even with the Spring garden chore list.

Posted by: Kate | April 15, 2018

Letting Go

My brother’s 48th birthday would be this week. Instead we went to the woods and found a magical, peaceful spot to say our final goodbye.

Time has helped me gain some perspective. I am letting go of the childhood angst, the resentments, the anger. I am finding positive memories and moments of laughter.

The end of our journey as siblings was inevitable. I have no advice for anyone else in my shoes. I have no regrets in how I handled things, but I have sadness that we got there. I am so sad he was almost never content and he never found his truth.

Addiction is a symptom, and we will never know the root problem in his case. Countless rehab programs and childhood counsellors and support groups and he didn’t know either.

And so I breathe, and I close my eyes, and I let go.

Posted by: Kate | April 1, 2018

At My Doorstep

I live in a city of 30,000 people. We are a service centre for another 30,000 people, so we have a large hospital, big school system, major retailers, two rec centres. We are a small city; I can drive to work along a street with no traffic lights and only three 4-way stops. But we are a city.

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And yet. The ocean is a 10 minute walk from my front door. From my work it is a two minute walk. The forest is a 5 minute walk from my front door. And Elk Falls Provincial Park is only a 12 minute drive from my house.

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This is a 98 site campground at the edge of town, and you’d never know. The Quinsam River runs along the edge and the forest surrounds the campsites. Like all provincial sites, the campsites are spacious and private.

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This wilderness at our doorstep shapes our children, our city, our lives in a mayriad of ways. And that is why we moved here. Bushboy may move away, but I know he will always feel the call of the wild.

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Posted by: Kate | March 26, 2018

March Knittings

I finished up the Boy Sweater this month, which felt great! This took longer than I intended, Christmas got in the way and then some socks for the same boy took precedence. I knew I’d be seeing Boy’s mom this month so that spurred me on to the finish line.

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The pattern was Half-Zip Pullover, from Bernat (now archived). I am a fan of Bernat sweaters – all the ones I have made have turned out well. The yarn was called Ringspun Loops and Threads, which I found on clearance at Michaels last fall. It is a cotton/acrylic blend (45% cotton) and the colour seemed to be suitable for a boy’s sweater, so I scooped it up. Of course, I did not stop to look at dye lots, which led to a hand slap to the forehead moment when I realized halfway through the first sleeve (after completing both body parts) that I had two dye lots. So the sleeves and collar are a different dye lot than the body.

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Zippers are the bane of many a knitter, but I managed to get it sewn in. The sweater reportedly fits and was well received by the five-year-old, so all ends well!

(As an aside, I made Bushboy that blanket under the sweater when he was 4. It has held up well!)

Posted by: Kate | March 13, 2018

Eighteen

Dear Son,

Well here you are, getting all adult on us. I am so fiercely glad I am your mom, that I have gotten to take this journey with you. And of course it doesn’t end now, just passes through another gate.IMG_4406

I am proud of you. You are becoming a capable man, that people respect. You are a hard worker, a good friend, a thinker and a doer. You continue to create your own path regardless of others, and you protect your truth.IMG_2168

I like you, and I like spending time with you. You are intelligent and funny and observant. You are creative. You have a unique way of looking at the world that makes me stop and think. IMG_3560

Wherever you go from here, your Dad and I will be behind you, supporting you and encouraging you. IMG_4231

It’s finally your turn.

Posted by: Kate | March 5, 2018

Hello March

Ah March. Usually this is the month on the coast where we brace for unsettled weather, but as my last post mentioned our entire winter has been unsettled this year. So who knows what March will bring weather-wise! I just hope I can get in to the garden soon. Things are emerging out there and my fingers are starting to itch for the dirt.

March is a busy month in our house – there are milestone birthdays happening which I will talk more about as we get closer to them. We have a Colin James concert to attend (so excited!) and some other fun things planned. This is our first year not thinking about Spring Break, which is just weird.

There is light now in the morning when I walk, which is nice. I realized, as I walked looking from one set of mountains to another (there are mountains to the east, south and west of me) that we are an odd town. We are surrounded by mountains on three horizons, yet  we are not a mountain town. Because we are at the ocean’s edge we are an ocean town. These are the lovely thoughts I have when I walk. Great discussions in my head!

I hope March brings at least a hint of spring to you, where ever you may be.

Posted by: Kate | February 27, 2018

Unsettling

February has been a month of unsettled weather. There were a few warm days but also some snow, and rain and colder than usual temperatures. February in many years brings a week or so of warm weather, when I start to feel the hope of spring.

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This year I have found it hard to hope for spring. Although lighter in the mornings when I walk, it is a cloudy light, a weak light. There are moments of clear skies, but they haven’t lasted.

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To combat the unsettling mood of winter, I have been playing with art as much as possible. Scrapbooking, knitting, even painting – all help lift my mood.

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What do you do to lift those winter blahs?

Posted by: Kate | February 18, 2018

Olympic Spirit

I am a huge fan of the Winter Olympics. From slope style to ski cross and from bob sleigh to ice dance, I love it all. There is a sense of camaraderie and team spirit that is different from the flashy Summer Olympics.

Of course Canada has a strong team at the Winter Games – we identify as a Winter nation, after all. I have had fun this year showing some Olympics spirit!

I also use the two weeks of TV watching to knit. This past week has been about finishing up projects. To that end I got the boy socks off my needles and in the mail – they were well received!

Next up was a cowl that used up a bunch of left over sock yarn in striped goodness. The pattern is stripes and stripes on Ravelry. I really love it!

Of course, you need a coach in the Olympics; Hubert has appointed himself to that position.

Posted by: Kate | February 12, 2018

Family Day

People say Bush Boy is a total clone of Mr. Kate. They sound the same and have similar interests in cars and music. They also have similar builds.

It is a common occurrence for Bush Boy to have someone say “You must be T’s son…” and people often have trouble telling which one they are talking to on the phone.

Of course Bush Boy is his own person and while similar to his Dad he is not just his Dad. But, considering Mr.Kate and I are both adopted and during the pregnancy we reminded people we had no idea what this kid might look like – it’s pretty nice that you can tell by look that we are family.

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