Wednesday, September 26, 2007

rennovations. . . .

Well here is an update on the very long projects we seem to always be undertaking on our home.

The arches still are not completely finished but here are some before and after pics of the living room. I wish the first picture was with the nasty carpet in the living room. It was even grosser then. It was so bad that when were living on the subfloor while we waited for the wood floors I kept thinking how appealing and attractive particle board was compared with dingy nasty old carpet.

Of course the only problem with wood floors is once you have them in one room you want them everywhere. . .

Oh and if our house doen't sell this fall I think we will be getting a woodstove for the winter, which will go where the morris chair is. Angelica told me the other day that probably we should get a woodstove. "Mama, it would be a better idea than building a fire in the middle of the floor in the living room." She advised.

Yes I included that third picture to show off Angelica's artwork. I am a shamless mother. . . .

And lastly I am so exited for these next three months, which are my favorite three months of the year. October is the month with of course the best feast days: St. Francis, Our Lady of the Rosary, Miracle of Fatima, Guardian Angels, St. Teresa of Avila, and of course good ol' St. Frumentius.

Sunday, September 23, 2007


Check it out. Angelica found this strange fruit while we were walking thru the woods today (illegally might I add on the Christendom trails--which according to their new sign is off limits to alumnae??????--what the heck. . . . )

Well they smelled so yummy that we harvested a bunch of them by shaking the trees and brought them home. When I showed them to my most knowlegable husband, He said, "hmmmmm, looks like pawpaws." Which is exactly what they are. They apparently were a staple in the Indian and early American colonial diet, being George Washington's favorite dessert--(chilled pawpaw). Unlike their wild friends, the blueberry, cranberry, etc they never were domesticized because they don't keep well enough to make it to markets and grocers. But that doesn't stop them from being the largest native north American fruit.

Did I mention they smell like mangos? (I'm sold. )

So tonight the patriotic Hatkes are following George washington's lead and haveing chilled pawpaw for dessert.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Some pics. . .

Well as promised to Annie, here is a picture of my current obsession, wool. Since I have yet to get knitting down, I have taken to buying wool sweaters at the thrift store and making them into things. Last winter I made the girls little wool long johns and this winter with a baby due I'm pretty much going nuts. I modelled these after a super cute pair I saw made by the German clothing manufactuer, Disana, who makes tons of cute little wool clothes for babies and children.

Wool is really amazing stuff. It is the ideal material for baby clothes because it keeps babies warm in winter and cool in the summer. Apparently the lanolin in it acutally kills bacteria and so a baby in a wool diaper cover or wool pants over a cotton diaper, actually can't have any nasty bacteria on their little rumpus. I just lanolized these overalls today after I made them so once they are dry they will be ready to go.

Our good friends, the Storks visited us from out of town the other day and they just had their fourth baby, named Zita. So here are the two Zita's united for the first of hopefully many times. I can't beleive I am lucky enought to know two Zitas. Wow.

Lastly, so as not to be behind too much here is the baby at six months along. Last trimester here we come!!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Favorite Illustrator Number Two

I guess this is only the second time but I like from time to time to highlight some illustrators of children's books whose work I find simply. . . beautiful. Lizbeth Zwerger is another of my favorite children's illustrators and her work is very simple in its lines and pallet but very soothing especially at for bedtime stories. Angelica is very much enjoying her version of Little Red Cap right now which is translated from the original German fairy tale. I like this version because the hunter cuts grandmama and Red Cap out of the belly and then they replace themselves with rocks and sew him back up, after which the wolf attempts to walk and falls down dead. (its rather comical to think of, actually)

Of course the Front Royal library only had one or two of her books but there are a fair amount out there. I would love to get a hold of her collection of Hans Christian Anderson fairy tales. I saw it at a bookstore out in CA but we were in a hurry and I didn't have time to look at all the pictures to see if it would be something the girls would really enjoy yet or if it is for older kids.

Anyway, in other news, a package arrived today from Ben's parents, who have been over in Italy and it had all sorts of wonderful goodies for everyone. We all had a very nice mini chirstmas opening it on the porch. There was a lovley pair of the softest most beautiful baby booties I have ever seen, made out of sheepskin. I can't wait to put them on the baby. And then of course there was pecorino and reggiano, and lavazza cafe, and my FAVORITE jam in the entire world. Then there were little toys for the kids, pottery from Assisi, a little book for Ben, and so on and so on. Ben and I have already been sneaking to the regridgerator to steal cheese. It made me so homesick for Italy, and Pontremoli and Gravagna in particular.

The only damper on the fun of the package was that the poor mail lady shut her hand in her car door trying to get the package out and she had to come in and ice it and it was bleeding really bad. I felt to sorry for her. If she had taken me up on my offer to stay a little while she might have made off with a little Italian cheese for her trouble but she was in a hurry so I guess she missed out.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The new baby's lambskin came in the mail this week. I won it on ebay for real cheaps. I feel a little silly owning three of these now but the girls both sleep on one still and I used them so much when they were little. Then Ben got some checks he forgot about and well there you go, I ordered one for the new baby.

It is the nicsest of the three. The lady auctioning it said she bought it in Germany and it is so soft. I put it in the moses basket and it gave me such a wonderful feeling of anticipation for this new little Hatke.

I read somewhere earlier this week that Indian women used to line the floors of their tents with rabit skins so all the surfaces would be soft for their new babies. I thought that was really sweet. Then I found a rabit skin in my old trunk while I was getting something out for Angelica. It was REALLY soft and Ben suggested lining a little hat for the new baby with it and I think I may do just that.

People might just think we've gone a little tribal here, what with all the animal skins. I just hope the PETA doesn't show up at my door. (or the SSHOA-SHenadnoah Shores Home owners Association.---yikes)

In other news I have made three vain attempts to check out books from the Front Royal Library. I went there to request a book on interlibrary loan and they suggested I buy it for myself on amazon!!! (sigh) Are they TRYING to lose patrons??

Monday, September 10, 2007

Spin those babies round and round. . .

We must be getting close to that last trimester now. My belly gets bigger and the daily kicks and punches from deep within me remind me that there really is a little person in there. I am so exited to see the baby.

Today I was happy to finally discover this website. Having gone through two posterior births I am willing to do it again but it sure would be great to to this baby in a better position. I wish someone had told me with my first baby how important fetal positioning is. Of course I was lucky both times to have really patient midwives. I am really sure Zita would have been one of those Cesareans for "failure to progress," had I not had Karen who even spent the night on the couch with my mom when my contractions almost stopped. But enough on labor.

When not attempting to "omptimally positon my fetus" I am very busy these days on the house. We are thinking of trying to sell it this month but if things don't work out quickly we will have to stay here at least thru the winter if not longer. This is hard as that nesting instinct is getting stronger every day but at least if we don't move I try to console myself that we will have this great clean fixed up house. It actuallly is starting to look really nice. So somebody come buy it, okay.

I am at least glad that we are all over this horrible puking bug we had over the weekend. Ben and Angelica and I were having to take turns in the bathroom. Meanwhile Zita who for some mysterious reason didn't get it ran about happy as a lark. At least it ran its course quickly.

Oh and if you want to learn about how awesome Salt Spring Island is, just think. . . . they decided three years ago to print their own currency to try and stabliize a more local economy and now they are backing it in silver. So cool. Also who wouldn't want to live in a north pacific island off the coast of British Columnbia with the most faboulous farmer's market in the world. There motto is is make it, bake it, or grow it! (unilke the now defunct Front royal farmer's market, whose motto must have been manufacture it, buy it from out of town and and resell it, or feed it chemicals until it gets really huge.. . . okay, okay, now that's not really fair I know---its not even around any more and Front Royal does have a really fantastic flea market. )

I'm getting too complainy. Time to stop. good night.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

oh one more

Tree of Monkeys
Originally uploaded by househatke

Everyone ended up in the tree after dinner yesterday, even the cat.

Anna's Cardboard Kitchen
Originally uploaded by househatke

Here is the girls playing with their cardboard box kitchen we made the other day.