24/7 – What’s on the menu?

All right ladies, here is my rant for today. I can be many things, play many roles, and where many hats. I even like to think once and a while I’m really good, but being a cook is not something I’m passionate about. Sure I enjoy baking and cooking a great recipe, but lets be honest, being a mom and wife requires more then just the occasional meal.

The thing all women need to be told if they are to become moms is this…. your day revolves around food. First its what to feed them for breakfast, what to pack in their lunch, and what to pull out to make supper. When and where to buy the cheapest groceries for the food, and are they getting enough food. Then cleaning all the dishes you cooked and ate the food in. If your nursing are you eating enough food to feed your baby, and when will they wake up again to eat…. It is a never ending thing with a family.

This week I am going to a meal prep workshop with a friend, hopefully it will inspire my creativity again about food, cause boy is it a big part of my life these days.

Christmas 2012

Well I finally feel like it’s  Christmas time. The Tree is up, the carols are playing in the background, Christmas gifts are being wrapped, and Family gatherings have begun. This past weekend we spent two wonderful days with family. Good food, good people,good news and great memories.

As I have gotten older, I really cherish that part of Christmas. The gathering’s, the family traditions, the giving. Yes, I really enjoy finding a great gift and giving more then receiving. I am in the process of trying to teach my eldest daughter just that. And I am also learning that giving does not mean spending lots of money. Sometimes a simple homemade gift or baking is just as nice, if not better, cause it was made with love.  Giving of our time is also a wonderful thing, like some of my family did last week. We helped sort Shoeboxes at the Wearhouse in Calgary for Samaritan’s Purse. Giving our time to this charity felt wonderful, it certainly helped put me in the Christmas mood.

This Christmas will be a first for our baby boy, so that’s always exciting. This year we get to share the joy with our growing family and Christmas with kids is very joyful. It’s the joy in their eyes I look forward to on Christmas morning. Being able to spend the day with my Family, just like I did with my own family as a kid,  means so much to me and this year is special again. I hope that I can pass on the importance of family to my own children.

Now I’ll admit that this time of year brings some stress too. Busy-ness, Sickness, Finances, End of the year just to name a few. Busy-nes; Trying to fit everything in, visiting and shopping, baking, decorating etc… can get a bit hectic. So trying to slow things down and enjoy the moments helps. This year for us seems more relaxed and I will enjoy that I think. It will allow us to think about what Christmas is really all about and try to bring that out more. Sickness; Winter is flu season, and our house has had it twice. It’s hard to get things done when you are tired and cant stop sneezing from that silly cold. My Poor Husband.  Finances; I don’t think I need to say much about this one, but that every year I try to spend less on gifts. Still it can be a stressful time on your bank account. End of Year; Christmas means the year is almost done, and a new one around the corner. Sometimes that is good, sometimes it is bad. I lately have been thinking about all the things that didn’t get done this year, and how nice it would be to do one more project before 2013 rolls around. Oh well, so instead I’ll focus on Christmas 2012. For the next two weeks, I’m going to go easy on my self, do what I can, and just enjoy what the season has to bring.  Family Dinners, visit’s with friends, parties and Christmas Concerts. It’s going to be a wonderful Christmas season.

Plus, I’ve perfected my crockpot yam recipe, and my mom has requested it for Family Christmas. That’s really neat. Boy I’ve come along way this year. Here’s to a Merry Christmas to everyone and to growth and Joy in 2013.  May God bless your home and your heart. From all of Us here at the Duquette house.

You Should be Dancing….. Yeah!

For those of you who remember, that phrase brings to mind a man in a white pant suit. Yes great song, and yes “I” Should be Dancing….. literally!

Tuesday nights for  many many years have been my dance night. I would truck off to Airdrie to rehearse with the professional Bellydance group I am part of.  Yes I am a bellydancer too, another role to add to my list,  and I have the closet of costumes to prove it! On Tuesday evenings, the amazing Suzy Q, and wonderful friend,  of Shimmy Dance Productions would lead us in shimmies and undulations and glorious choreographies. Not only is it a great workout for body and mind, it is also my sanity time, a retreat with the gals.  I developed many wonderful friendships with the other dancers, and although the drive was long, I always had a fabulous time there.

Now recently, another great friend of mine started fitness classes at the school by our house. This is great, as they are close to home  and twice a week.  A little less driving for me and still a great workout. Over the summer she did her Zumba certification and so now it’s ZUMBA twice a week.  ARE YOU kidding me!!!! THAT”S SOOOOO AWESOME!!!!  I love Zumba.  I used to go to a studio in Red Deer when I had time, and Natalie’s  Zumba classes rocked the house. Rachel’s classes are just as fun and I am so excited that its right around the corner. Oddly enough Rachel’s classes are on Tues and Thurs. So now I have two wonderful classes I could attend on Tuesday nights. Great! But lately there have been many factors in my life working against me going to dance.

1. My growing family of three kids – with each one comes more demands on my time, and harder and harder to leave all of them with my husband Dean, or babysitter. I have in the past packed the kids up and taken them with me to Airdrie, but with two kids in school and a baby who likes to nurse 24/7, that’s not so realistic right now.

2. Money- well it’s just a little tighter around here as I stay home instead of working. Justifying the gas money, or cost of class can be hard, but it is my physical health after all. Also paying for a sitter has to be considered too, so…….

3. Child Care – Besides the cost of paying for a sitter, evening dance classes mean night time routine up to the sitter, and believe me some-days putting my kids to bed is a hour long drama filled adventure, with cups of water, pj’s that don’t “feel right” and triple hugs and kisses ( I don’t mind that one actually). Needless to say I don’t really want to pay a sitter to fight with my kids for bed. If the Dean is home, then it’s not so bad, which brings me to….

4. My husband farms – And right now its harvest. So as I write this, he is still running the Combine, and will be till after dark. I am a ” Harvest widow” as my mom would say. Now I’ve had this battle in my head and debated it with many friends, but I  need to always remind myself, that Harvest is where the income comes from. It’s our bread and butter.   The short weeks of the year that I am left to fend for my self, come the rewards of having a roof over our heads and food to eat.

So right now I will not complain and know that one day my kids will be old enough to leave at home while I go shake what MY mama gave me. In the mean time I will think of all you ladies in Airdrie and the ones at the school and maybe I’ll put on my own Zumba class in my living room. If fact a friend just got Wii dance, maybe I can borrow it for a few weeks until the crop is off.