Saturday, December 7, 2013

Slow Living Essentials - November

Not sure if Christine is doing her Slow Living Essentials this month, but here is mine all the same:
9 years!
Started the Whole30 - 30 days without grains, dairy, pulses, sugar or alcohol - Or as much seafood, fish, meat, eggs, fruit, veggies and nuts as you want.   Did I cheat at all?  Yes!  One morning I found that I had no bananas, avocado, eggs or ham in the house so I had some oats and almond milk.  Rémi celebrated his 9th birthday so I had a little slice of cake and a glass of Petit Arvine.

Quite frankly it's a fantastic way of eating, but that is not to say I don't think it has it's drawbacks.  For me the main issue was buying enough vegetables (I only shop once a week) and then 'preping' them.  I cook almost everything my family eats from scratch so to add on too this, extra servings of vegetables meant quite a bit more work.  Simply skipping grain part of the meal left me feeling that something was missing.  
It's difficult here to get avocados, of the last 10 I bought 5 were rotten, 4 went from rock hard to rotten over night and only the one in the photo actually made it into my digestive system, and they are very expensive to boot!  A big hearty salad is definitely a great way to start a meal but as I try and eat 'seasonal' I had issues buying things that are for me 'summer food'.  But did I look and feel healthier for it? Yes I did.  I lost some weight that I had gained since stopping running and the dark circles that I always have under my eyes (not from lack of sleep) are visibly reduced.  Well were visibly reduced until he came along...

... I'd forgotten what it's like getting up every two hours at night when you have an new baby in the house!!
On the 20th we welcomed the lovely Ringo into our family.

Made my christmas cake, now have to make one for neighbor before putting them to rest for a few weeks.  I usually 'water' them once with a little brandy then decorate them just before the big day.
Prepared the Advent bags for the kids.  Same bags, same kind of chocolate and same jokes will be greeted with the same enthusiasm as years gone by!

Patched up a second hand pair of jeans that a friend gave me and covered an unsightly ink stain on a fairly new dress, also with a patch.  It looks a bit 'cinderellaish' but it beats the ugly blue blob the ink left.

A friend of Richard's gave us two sofas, in excellent condition.  They open out into double beds so we're all equipped for guests should anyone be crazy enough to brave the freezing cold, noisy kids and hyper puppy!

Just needs some granny square pillows to jazz it up a little.

Well not much really considering the ground has been frozen solid for weeks.

Finally finished my lace fern scarf - 140cm with 2.75mm needles is quite a feat of endurance.
Also made Rémi's birthday cake in the image of his pet fish Bill and Hugo

Here they are in the flesh.  Not sure whether they approve or not of their likeness due to the subtlety of fish expressions.

The public library has an english section!! Eight shelves to be exact.  For years they had in total about eight books.  It is situated right next to the ice-rink, so when Rémi has practice I can pop over for an hour or so.

It's been a good-will month here both giving and receiving.  My s.i.l dropped off three huge cartons of clothes for Rémi in almost perfect condition, much more than he needs, so I let him choose a few things that he wanted and took the rest to the catholic mission drop off point.  Was saddened to see a notice outside waring people that security cameras were in operation to catch people pilfering the boxes.

The highlight of the month, for Tino, was a private guided visit of the chamonix fire station.  Last week two fire men came to the door, as they do each year, selling calendars for charity.  With wide-eyed excitement Tino got out all his fire man paraphernalia and ended up being invited to visit them at work the following wednesday...

So we say goodbye to November, good bye to the sun for the next six weeks and settle down next to a roaring warm fire to dream of the white christmas that awaits us.



  1. Emma, what a fabulous post today, so much o celebrate and be thankful for. you are such a great Mom, it shows in everything you do.

  2. I was hoping to join in this month, I love these posts of yours. Belated Happy Birthday our eldest's are the same age, we also celebrated a ninth birthday in November :). It is lovely to see what you have all been up to, I would love to come and visit you all, your pictures are always of beautiful surroundings.

  3. so much fun and cuteness and beauty. i wish i could send you some avos, they are all over the place here, so many trees!

  4. Lovely review of your month. I always enjoy popping in here for a visit.

  5. Hi there thanks for popping into my blog and leaving a lovely comment. I love your fish cake, looks just like the real thing. Regards Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia

  6. Love the pic with the Leafs hockey sweater.. it's my girls' favourite team as well. And the 30 day eating program sounds like an interesting idea. I might have a bit of difficulty with the veg too, this time of year. It might be a lot easier to do when the garden is in full swing.

    Bonnes fêtes.

  7. I love reading your blog via the slow living essentials list, I don't know if it would help but avocados can be frozen! Learned that when I lived in California, you have a gift for writing and making it interesting - thank you for sharing -from Idaho

  8. Hi Emma! After you commented on my post about the Whole 30 - I spent ages reading about it and page hopping. It sounds really interesting - even though I have cut back on a lot of gluten, i think it would still be a challenge to completely remove rice and legumes from my diet. Are you inspired to keep at it? I'm enjoying the site: - loads of good looking recipes to try. Have a beautiful (white?) Christmas. xx