Salt Dough Ornaments

The other day I looked at my toddler’s hands and was shocked at what I saw. How did his hands get so big already?

I can remember holding them when he was a newborn, amazed at how detailed and functional such a little thing could be. His chubby baby hands were my favourite.

So in order to preserve them as they are now, as well as his brother’s very chubby little hands, I decided to make salt dough ornaments. Specifically little Santa hands. Continue reading “Salt Dough Ornaments”

Sleigh bells ring, are you listening? In the lane snow is glistening

The makings of a perfect evening.For the last three days, all it has been doing here is snowing. In Ontario, if it snowed for three days, people would be getting mighty grumpy and mighty wet. Here, after three days of snow, things are still relatively dry and people are still relatively happy.

Our receptionist asked our regular senior columnist the other day whether or not she was enjoying the weather. The columnist smartly replied, “I’m 82 and I’ve lived here all my life. I’m more than used to it by now.”

Despite the continuous snow fall, we don’t have an excessive amount of snow, just a few inches and it’s all light and fluffy. Since my roommate has been gracious enough to grant me garage access for the winter (she remembers her first winter in Grimshaw with a small car, it was both that little car’s first and last), I shovel off the driveway to make sure I can back in and out. I’m constantly amazed at how easy it is to shovel the stuff.

The snow here is almost always fluffy, and it rarely becomes heavy. Perhaps that’s because it doesn’t get any warmer than –5.

A couple of weeks ago, when it was really cold here, I was walking to the gym and noticed all the trees and fence posts were covered in a fine mist. Everything was bright white and looked as if a layer of tinsel had been applied to my little corner of the world.

I love winter, and I’m going to blame that on being a January baby. I think if I could teleport between Grimshaw, Alberta and Orono, Ontario I would consider making this place a permanent home. I could get used to Grimshaw, if it weren’t for the fact that everyone I love and care about lives more than 4,000 kilometers away.

Last night I sat curled up on my couch, with a lamp on for reading light and the Christmas tree lit up in the corner. I was wrapped in an afghan that I bought in La Crete last weekend. I probably shouldn’t have bought it, but the second I saw it, it reminded me of home. It’s a lot less worn than the one my mom has, and not nearly as sentimental. The one my mom has was made and given to her by her grandmother. Mine was likely made by some elderly Mennonite woman, but I can’t be sure.

Anyways, I was sitting at home, curled up on the couch, under my blanket reading an excellent book. The only thing I was missing was a fireplace. I left the curtains open last night so that I could occasionally glance out the window at the snow falling on the street. I live right off main street so the streets are brightly lit by street lamps and Christmas lights.

In that moment, I realized that I couldn’t ask for anything more perfect. I’m glad I listened to my heart and followed through with God’s little push to northern Alberta. I’m not sure I’d want to go any further north, where it gets darker faster and longer and infinitely more cold. But right here, in my little corner of Alberta, I’ve found a place I know I’ll be telling people about for a long, long time.