Life's Little Details: Knitting, Sewing, Green Living, Frugal Living and Cooking In A Little Corner of Southern French Countryside.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Where Have I Been?

It's been a little while since my last post, and I have an excellent excuse for it. We ran away - from the heat, that is. We went up to the department (like a province or state) of Lozère for a little time away. It was wonderful if for no other reason than the fact that it's significantly cooler there. The days can get hot, but if you stay in the shade, the air is light and breezy. And, the nights are blissfully cool. It actually gets down in the 40's and 50's (F). Wonderful for a great night's sleep. And, the cabin we were staying in is nicely insulated, so even naps are a pleasure (and you don't wake up drowning in your own persperation - Oh, I mean, your own "glisten". We're females, after all. We don't sweat, right?).

The kids are having a great time there, hanging out with cousins, romping around in open fields and splashing in the river. Yep, that's present tense. The hubster and I came home on Thursday, because I had an appointment with the OB/GYN (all's well with the baby). We left the kids there, and I'll be heading back by train tomorrow to finish out the next week with them. It's certainly been a welcome break from the heat here down south, and I can't wait to head back up. Besides, I miss my little ones and really couldn't stand to let them stay there without me too much longer. They might do something cute, and I wouldn't be there to see it. Now do you understand why I choose to be a stay-at-home mom? There's no way I could work outside the home. I enjoy the presence of my children way more than some random boss in an office.

There's even a little museum in the main town in the area that interests me. My mother-in-law and I tried to visit, but we got there just after the last tour of the morning. I'm hoping we can sneak in a little trip there before heading back home next weekend. Can anyone tell what the museum is? If you can read French, you can surely tell why I'd like to visit it. Cute old building, too. Alright, I won't make you guess too hard. It's a place where they have traditionally made yarn from local wool. Actually, they still do, but probably just for the tourists' sake. I saw some of their yarn in the gift shop. It's all natural colors (3 different colors). It's not bad looking, but since it's made from what the French call "laine de pays" (roughly translating to "country wool"), which is made from whatever local breed of sheep they have around (often they're main purpose is meat). They don't exactly rival merino for softness. I think you could make a great rug from it, though - especially with those beautiful natural tones. I don't know that I'll get any of it, though. It was pretty reasonably priced, and I wouldn't mind a nice rug, but you'd probably need a hefty pile of it to make any decent-sized rug.

And, in crafty news, I actually got a little sewing time in just before heading off on our trip. I had been dying from the heat here, and I had some cotton gauze fabric calling out to me, begging to be made into a skirt and blouse. I couldn't stand to listen to it whimper at me like that, so I pulled it out and designed a simple skirt and a shirt that should work for me for the last month of pregnancy, as well as afterwards. At least for now, it fits nicely and is so lightweight and airy, I feel great in it. I also had some time while in Lozère to get a bit of knitting done. My chosen project for the moment is a simple mohair scarf for my midwife. This is the second birth she'll be helping me with, and with the paltry sums they get paid for such an amazing job, I thought I'd give her a little something extra. Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures of either of these projects. I will, though. I promise.

And, just so nobody says I didn't take any shots of Lambchop #1, I'll throw this one in. I did have a little more trouble getting her to stand still long enough for a good picture, though, so it's not a great one. Grandma will be happy, though. In this shot, she's opening the Barbie clothes Grandma and Grandpa gave her for her birthday. Notice the look of sheer concentration. Such a cutie (if you ignore the evil-looking red eye)! I sure miss her and her brother and can't wait to see them tomorrow. I was actually a bit disappointed I wasn't able to catch today's train out to see them. I find myself thinking of their cute faces and the silly things they do quite frequently when we're apart.

Oh, and speaking of Lambchops... you can probably all guess by now that the next kid will just be named Lambchop #3 for this blog's purposes. But, for real life, I don't think that will stick well. As always, we're having a hard time selecting just the right names for our offspring. Girls' names are slightly easier, and we may have that one covered, but for boys it's always really hard. First, it has to be pronouncible in both French and English (not just any old English - Southern-accented English, and not every name can sound good down South). So, anybody got any good ideas to offer up?

Our problem is that, to me, many male French names sound weak. I guess it's the fact that French sounds so musical, and I can't exactly picture always singing my child's name. We also kind of like semi-original names that not every kid at school is going to have, though. That makes the choice hard. The other day, we had some great fun throwing out names that we could never give our child. See our problem? This is the only kind of thing we can come up with. My husband's last name is German, since his family originally came from the northeastern part of France that bumps up against the German border. It kind of rhymes a little bit with Hitler, so we thought we could always name the kid Adolf - you know I'm thinking that not many kids have been given that name in the last 60 years or so. Then, there was an actual nazi guy who apparently ran one of the concentration camps whose last name was the same as my husband's. His name was Walter, so maybe we should steer clear of that one, too. Seriously, we need help (perhaps not just for choosing the right name, but help of the psychiatric kind, as well). Really, don't worry, though, we have no intentions of naming any of our kids after nazis. It was just something that struck us as funny the other day (blame that on my slight anemia and the apparent effect it has on my husband).