Thursday, July 26, 2012

Crab Steaming, birthdays, and dog paddling

Having a long stint of time in the San Juan islands and nothing specific to occupy my time, I decided that I would focus most of my meal planning around crabbing and eating the bounty of my harvest. I dropped a crab pot and the next morning pulled it up to find several very large dungeness crab. I kept two crabs and dropped the pot with some fresh bait, in hopes that I would catch some more by the evening to supply my meals for the next day. I rowed back in with my huge crabs and promptly dumped them into the steam pot. After cooking and cleaning the, I sat down at the table to indulge. I picked all the shells clean and wound up with a huge mound of crab meat, which became a po'boy sandwich for lunch. It was devine.

Later that day I rowed back out to the end of the cove and pulled up the pot again. Low and behold I had a pot full of crabs and I kept three, which brought me to my limit for the day and would supply my next days meals. I brought my three new crabs up to the house and started the cooking/cleaning process again. Sadly, half way through the cooking process my pregnancy aversion kicked in and I felt horridly I'll by the smell of the crab. Cleaning it was horrible, yet I knew that I had caught them, killed them, cleaned them..and there is no excuse not to eat them.

I figured I would take a break from the smell by taking the shell remnants to the dock to throw into the water. As I approached the dock I heard a Decatur guest mention that they had not caught any crabs, and decided that the best option was for me to share my crabs with these people. They were very thankful and I was free of the guilt that would drive me to eat something that seemed so awful at the moment.

I had hoped to get sick of crab, and yet I expected that I would take more than two to get me to that point. Oh well.

I left my sanctuary on Decatur on 7/23/12 so that I could be "in town" for my mother's birthday with was the next day. My brother and I planned a surprise dinner at "How to Cook a Wolf" for our mom and then planned to bring her to the new Dale Chihuly art exhibit at the Seattle Center. My mom was thrilled by both the food and the art glass and we all had a great time together as a family.

The day after the birthday I headed back up to Decatur, this time with my mom in tow. Between now and August 1st I will remain on Decatur, except for one small excursion back into town to support a former client in their completion of a very rigorous program. Today I walked along the beach, threw the ball for my dog (who returns to her breeder on 8/4/12, and went swimming in the lake.

I hadn't been swimming in the lake for many years and it was great to be back at it. Zelda, the dog, joined me for a swim and was great about swimming with me and not trying to climb out of the water on me. She has become quite the swimmer, especially if her ball is in the water. Both the dog and I enjoyed our dog paddling together.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Could this be vacation?

After finally finishing nearly everything that I needed to complete at our home. I spent a weekend with friends on Camano Island and then headed up to my family's vacation home on Decatur Island in the San Juan Islands. I arrived on Decatur on 7/18/12 and will remain here (with a couple overnight returns to mainland) until 8/1/12.

It has been so wonderful to be in a place with so much calm, quiet and fresh air. Every day offers an itinerary of nothing or anything as I see fit. This morning I will row to the end of the cove and pull up our crab pot in hopes that I can feast on some dungeness crab for dinner.

The last couple weeks have brought a flurry of baby activity inside me. What started around 17 weeks with a slight shudder feeling in my uterus has slowly progressed into definite kicks, rolls, and jabs. This is most noticed when I am resting or sitting. There are very clearly awake times for the baby and sleeping times, and they generally are negatively correlated with my awake and sleep times. Fortunately, as this point the movement is generally gentle and, in fact, often lulls me to sleep at night. Waiting for gentle nudges from within is a bit like counting sheep.

The next midwife appointment is on 8/2/12, at which time I will have my fasting blood sugar tested, get a note of clearance to fly, and pick up a copy of my paper medical record to bring with me to Nairobi to give to my new provider...whomever that may be. 

Thanks to modern technology, Jason and I have been able to keep in regular contact with each other across about ten thousand miles. We have spoken with and viewed each other through Facetime nearly daily. It makes such a difference when we are so far apart to be able to see each others faces. Jason introduced me to some of the other fellows in his program today by walking his computer around with Facetime running. He also introduced me to the security personnel at his housing, who seemed very nice and also very shocked to learn that they were seeing me in real time from Washington, USA.

I'm off to hunt some crab.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

And the running joke is...

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of frenzy and activity as we have prepared to move to Africa for a year. We spent every day clearing the home and either selling, gifting or throwing things away. It is amazing how much stuff one can acquire in a short time, and even more amazing how long it takes to get rid of it all.

We had a significant help from Jason's parents, who were at our home nearly daily to help out. I am sure that we could not have gotten everything done without their help.

On June 28th we had another ultrasound and baby is doing very well. Here is a picture of our baby, though it is a bit hard to make out,since our baby was holding its nose the entire ultrasound.


On July 9th, this last Monday, Jason left Seattle for Gaborone, Botswana where he is participating in 3.5 weeks of training and orientation for the upcoming year. The night before he left we had a dinner with both sides of the family at his parent house. It was great to have everyone together for one last time before his departure. That night we slept at his parents home and the next morning we had breakfast at 13 Coins before I took Jason to the airport. It was hard to say goodbye to Jason, after spending the last 6 years together without more than a single night away on rare occasion. We are both so excited for this adventure, and so we focused on his need to leave in order for me to join him in a month. I told him how proud I am of him, and how happy I am to share my life with him. A kiss and a hug and he disappeared into the airport.

After dropping Jason off I ran some errands and returned to my parents home where I will be living for the next month when I am not in the San Juan Islands. There is a still a bit of work to be done at our house, mainly cleaning and yard work. My mom has been a tremendous help in getting the rest of the house finished and ready for our renters.

And so the running joke is: I am turning 31, pregnant, unemployed, my husband left me (with good intentions), and I just moved back in with my parents. Hurray!

Yesterday,the only car we hadn't sold yet broke down and is no longer running. So I guess I can add car-less or driving my parent car to the list above.