Saturday, December 31, 2011

"Hello Darkness My Old Friend"

I find myself struggling a bit with this winter. It might be because we didn't have all that great of a summer. This winter has been relatively mild, which is great for getting out of the house, but that also means lots of grey skies. I'd take a few days of 30 below with clear blue skies, please.



Of course, it doesn't help that Aedan's been waking up at 5 am these days. That means sitting around for 6 hours before the sky lightens. It makes for a very long, very dark day. I miss being able to sleep in til 9 or 10...that way, sun rise is only a cup of tea (or two) away. We're in the thick of it, though, and I know that it's only going to get better from here on out. Soon, the days will be getting noticeably longer, the sun rising earlier and earlier...



This last photo is a spruce grouse, in a tree in our yard. There were four of them in there this afternoon. I really love grouse, they seem like such gentle birds, with their soft clucking calls. It always surprises me to see them in flight. Their small wings are powerful, carrying their plump bodies to safety when saucy little dogs named Cilla chase after them in the woods!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Surprise Visitor

The dogs have been doing an awful lot of barking this week, and it's been driving me crazy.

Just now, they all started going nuts: I thought someone was here. Someone was...I got up to look out the window, and at the edge of the forest on our property, at the bottom of a small hill, I saw a gray, wedge-shaped face looking up at us.

A wolf.

For a moment everything stopped. I felt like I locked eyes with this wise-looking, powerful creature. The wolf was silent, and seemed to be checking us out carefully.

The moment ended. I ran to bring all the dogs in, although they were more interested in standing on the porch and barking. Now they're all flaked out around the woodstove, like nothing happened.

I've just stopped shaking now. I highly doubt the wolf is going to storm the castle, or suddenly rush at 5 barking dogs, but it's still quite something to see that face looking back at you from your yard...

P had heard reports of this wolf: a few people told him they'd spotted it on the highway within a 20km range of our place, but I really didn't expect to see it so close to home!

Well. That was exciting.

 And here I'd been planning a post about things to do while waiting for the sun to come up!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggedy-Jig

Last night we got home after two weeks of visiting family in Ontario. It was a wonderful vacation, and so great to introduce Aedan to everyone. He is such a happy, social little baby. And a great traveler, too!

It's so nice to be home again. It was a great visit but I am definitely not a city gal! I missed the woodstove, the snow, the silence, the woods...even the outhouse!

We had a stop over in Vancouver to visit the doctor's, and got some good news. Aedan's specific form of diabetes is related to a mutation of the gene that controls his "potassium channels". These channels are in the pancreas, and sense when the body needs insulin, telling the pancreas to get to work, and then they release the insulin into the bloodstream. Basically, his channels are blocked. So, his body is able to produce insulin, it just isn't getting the message to do so. The doctors are confident that Aedan's diabetes can be controlled with an oral medication that will allow those channels to start working again. Over the next couple of months, we will be transitioning him from the insulin pump to the oral meds, and if the transition is more insulin! His body will be making its own! This also means we won't have to test his blood as often as we have been. From 8 times daily down to 2 or 3. So exciting!

The solstice has just while we'll slowly begin to gain the daylight back, for now, it's pretty dark out there. According to the Government Canada website, sunrise is 11:12 am and sunset is at 3:22 pm. So I've got some time to kill before I can head into town to run errands! I'm sad we missed the actual solstice. Next year I want to make a bunch of lanterns for the yard and the trails around the house, decorate a tree outside, and have a big bonfire.

I've been thinking a lot about writing, this blog, and what I want it to be. I really want to offer a window into life up north. I think that is the unique perspective I've got to offer in the the coming year I'd like to focus on making a couple of focused and directed posts each week, with pictures! I bought us a fancy new camera while in Vancouver (Canon Rebel T2i) and I can't wait to start playing with it!