Monday, January 31, 2011

Things We Say: Cool

She's ba-aaack!

Even though the winter weather here has been awful since Friday, this has been one of the happiest weekends I've (we've?) had in a long time.

I am so pleased to have welcomed Kelsey Kathleen back to Canada after her five month journey through India.

We've only had a couple of days to catch up, but one thing we noticed right away is that we haven't lost our ability to
finish each other's sentences,
say the same thing at the same time with identical inflection,
and we still use the same inside joke expressions.

In the spirt of generosity, I'm letting you in - dear readers - on one or two expressions that are a part of our sister language.

While the word "cool" is no longer cool at all, we still use it. But when we say "cool" it comes out sounding more like "coo..." and to the trick to pulling it off flawlessly is to think of the most adorable thing and then say the word with the intention of professing a endearing solidarity.

The word is only ever a one word sentence. You can't say "Oh that's so coo!" or "Wasn't it coo when...?"

"Coo..." stands alone.
But the other person is always allowed to echo "coo..."

It's not really an answer to a question as much as it is an affirmation. So for example, Kelsey might say "Hey Sister, I'm really jet-lagged. I'm going to go to bed. I'll see you in the morning." And then I'd say "Coo..." and then she'd say "coo..."

But you have to nod a little, like you're giving a mini "yes" nod gesture. Usually only one nod with your chin tucking slightly towards your chest (try it out a few times for practice).

Got it?

Credit for the invention of this expression goes to the crazy and talented Kate Nash and her song "Birds" .....
wait till the end.... you'll hear her say it.....
and you'll get lots of ideas for adorable thoughts from the animation...

We don't mind if you start using it.

Friday, January 28, 2011

With Me

Oh what good is it to live
With nothing left to give
Forget but not forgive
Not loving all you see

Oh the streets you're walking on
A thousand houses long
Well that's where I belong
And you belong with me
Not swallowed in the sea

You belong with me
Not swallowed in the sea
Yeah, you belong with me
Not swallowed in the sea

Dear India, this is how I feel about you. Take care of yourself. All my love,

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Stop. Smell The Roses.

Let yourself fall in love a little bit every day...

I love this story. The Sartorialist is a professional photographer who spends much of his time studying and photographing fashion on the street. I love how he expresses himself in this video.

And my wish for you, dear readers and dear sister, is that you take time to fall in love with a little bit of beauty every day.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Sometimes I Think I'm Andy Warhol...

As I am lacking in my access to the Internet at the moment this post is just for fun... We all know that sometimes I get distracted while falling asleep. These are some of the results:

What I really need is some great pictures of my friends, and then maybe one night I'll do a whole set!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Tiny Miracles

I am thankful for the tiny miracles of the:


that have allowed me to talk to my sister these past 5 months while she's been in India, and I'm in Canada.

I'm also thankful for the tiny miraculous invention of the telephone that allowed mom & dad to join in on our sisters conversation last week.

This is a photo of

Mom, yelling in the background to
Dad, who's jabbering as fast as possible to
Me, who's transcribing what both of them are saying so that
Kelsey can feel like she's right at home with all of us!

sorry for the blurr... I wanted to capture this moment - a conversational miracle.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Thoughts From Places: Banbassa

By this time, I have left the small town of Banbassa and am in Delhi doing some shopping. Yet in actuality, as I am writing this, I'm sitting on the roof of the Small Boy's Hostel surrounded by the sounds of Cricket, and motorbikes, laughter, tears, and every sound that the kids here make when they have a bit of free time. As of now there is not enough separation between myself and what I may have learned during my stay on the Farm.

All I know is that I love it here, and I wish that I knew if or when I will be coming back. I'm not sure if I am able to say what it is specifically that makes me love it here. Many of my good friends know that I believe I'm only truly good at one thing: Loving people.

That's all I wanted to do when I left Canada to come to India. I think that the Farm has simply given me the opportunity to love. In different ways to different people of course, but the beauty of it is being able to interact with those people in one place.

But the time has come (“The Walrus said...”) to leave. Which I am ok with. It's hard, and no amount of contemplation is going to make tearing myself away from this place any easier. But I have come to understand goodbyes as a wonderfully heartbreaking beautiful thing. The only thing I am afraid of is this: I don't know if the kids here realize how much I love them. They see people come and go so often, many of whom make promises that aren't kept (like “Of course I'll be back! Next year, even.”), and so trust in another person's love... a person who they may never see again... is something that can be very easily broken. Perhaps the only thing I can do is try to remind them, as often as I can, from across the world, that no, I haven't forgotten them, and yes, they still mean the world to me.

...and perhaps many of us need to do that with friends at home. The ones who are close in proximity, but no effort has been made to remind them that:

No, I haven't forgotten you & Yes, you still do mean the world to me.

Strong Farm, I love you, and already miss you.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Snow Skirt

Today I came across the most genius invention I've ever seen for cold climate fashionistas.
I know we all want to look our cutest at all times, but sometimes, the -30 temperatures make it impossible. Fashion takes a back seat to function, and the layers get piled on in the interest of staying alive.

I've found the solution, my friends.

Today I saw a mom of two venturing out in the cold, and all three of them were bundled to the brim, but the mom was wearing a different interpretation of snow pants. I was captivated by her look, so much so that I had to ask her

"What are you wearing?"

I didn't mean for it to sound like a rude question, but as I write about it now, it kinda sounds rude... trust me, I had ample time to compliment her on her stylish winter wear as we chatted.

And then she told me "A Snow Skirt!"

Similar to the images above, this mom was wearing her winter boots, pants tucked into her boots, the snow skirt, and then a long cable-knit sweater that came down to her thighs. It was the extra layer of the snow skirt that caught my attention.

She told me that this stylish item designed and hand made by a couple of women in Montreal.

... those classy French Canadians.

So, after doing a little bit of internet research, I found the Etsy site for Fantasy World Heroes, and the inventor of the Snow Skirt, Stephanie says that it's "an outer layer you wear over anything, just like snowpants but MUCH more stylish"

And that her mission is to "Bring the snowskirt to all (cold) corners of the planet and save the world from chill and unstylishness."

I'm glad there's finally some fantasy world heroes saving the world from sad, frumpy winter outfits!

... i think i need one.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Zor Ka Jhatka

I have a nice little collection of Hindi songs that I now know and can groove along to thanks to my group of lovelies here at the farm. We dance, sing and change the words. Most of the time I have no idea what is said, but I prefer these ones to any of the cheesy songs from the West that the kids here like to sing ;)

My newest favorite is a comedic song about marriage... I think.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Where You'll Find Me

Now that the snow has covered the mountains...

...and the conditions are perfect.... can find me up here...

... looking this good...
...hope to see you all out there!

Monday, January 10, 2011


A week and a bit ago a small group of us went to Siphon which is part of the Sharda Canal. The Canal goes under the Jugbora River through 10 undergound/river pipes (the Siphon).

Here is the river, and the bridge that spans it...

speaking of the bridge...

Let's take a closer look...

Why yes, there are people on top of that bridge!

...umm yeah, that's me too... OF COURSE! And then we did some modeling...
And finally we danced.

It was a pretty fun time.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Bring It.

Sorry to do this to you, Sister.

Dear Readers,
We had the very first violation of our blog Rules on Wednesday, January 5, 2011 (articles #3 & #8 respectively) when Kelsey didn't post on her designated day until 1:01 am on Thursday January 6, 2011.

According to the rules, Kelsey must now receive a punishment.

We are inviting all of our readers to submit suggestions for what her punishment should be, so please leave your suggestions for painful, tedious, or mildly embarrassing punishments in the comments below. PLEASE KEEP IN MIND: suggestions should still be family friendly, according to article #9 in the rules.

Together as sisters, we will agree on which punishment she must complete.


Photo taken from here

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Nice Try

Thank-you to my sister for trying to cover me dropping a post yesterday but I was enjoying my time at a wedding up in the hills, with this as the view:

Yeah so Thanks Ai, but I think I need a punishment on this one. I didn't plan ahead, I was spending my time enjoying, dancing, scrambling up foothills, and staring at the Himalayas. OH! Did I mention eating freshly picked oranges?
...Right so, ANYWAYS! Look up Pithoragarh on Google Maps. That's where I was. Also look at the road that leads south to Banbassa/Tanakpur. 'Cause that took six hours... it's 134KM.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Oh Brother.

Kelsey has mentioned this fact once or twice before that we have brothers. We love our brothers, and we don't mean to exclude them from our blog, it's just that our brothers are so very different than us sisters. We are interested in all of the opposite things, you wouldn't even guess that we were from the same family.

Here, I'll prove it to you.

1) Outfits
The sisters in our family like to pretend sometimes (... okay, often) that we know something about fashion. We enjoy pulling together interesting outfits and then posing as someone else takes our pictures.

Our brothers would not be caught dead pretending that they're models.

2) Shoes
We sisters understand and appreciate how the right shoe can complete an entire outfit. Shoes are of the utmost importance when dressing up for an event, and when we pose for photos, we're always sure to instruct the photographer (in unison) to "GET THE FEET!"

Our brothers, on the other hand, would never insist that a photographer take a photo of their shoe(s).

3) Accessories
When dressing up for an event, us sisters will take great care in choosing our outfits and accessories according to the nature and theme of the event. We are the chameleons of an event - if there is a theme to be had, we'll embrace it fully, down to the last detail of our outfits.

Our brothers just throw on whatever outfit they have lying around.

See? We're nothing alike.