I have been doing a bit of housekeeping these days. One, Ross and I wrote wills. It seems like a very adult thing to do, but now that we have a kid, I feel it’s important. So I did the research and eventually decided to use www.legalwills.ca. We have both written our wills and now just need to have them witnessed and then they are legal. They won’t be “legal” in the sense that we are not paying a lawyer a huge amount of cash to do them, nor are we even getting them notarized. They are considered “living wills” and will legally be held up in court. It just means that our executor will likely have to do one step and have the witnesses testify that these are in fact, our wills. But seriously. $34.95 each (and one gets a 40% discount for being a spouse) compared to $600 – $800 when really, we hardly have any assets and there are no exes to contest any wills? Good freakin’ enough. Better than a kick in the pants.
I also decided at long, long, LONG last to retire an email address I have had for years. I signed up to Gmail when it first came out using my then-cat’s name and my name – bevanandjen. It wasn’t as bad as using something like naughtygirlxxx13563 but at the same time, I have to admit now, it’s no longer an appropriate choice. People frequently misspell it, and when Bevan eventually passed away, I started to get a lot of “who on earth is Bevan?” as my circle of friends changed and expanded over the years. So, I really didn’t want to go through the hassle (and holy freakin’ cow, what a hassle it is proving to be), but now with all of my more mature (and professional – type) ventures, I have upgraded my email to firstname.lastname@example.org (and have been using it for the past two months). Wow, that was a lot of parenthetical remarks.
Lastly, I was really excited to receive in my inbox this week an invitation to sign up to purchase a share in a Grain CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) being put together by the folks at Urban Grains. A CSA is sort of like a co-op, except you all purchase a share before the production of the grain, and it’s a risk that you take that the amount estimated to be generated may not come to fruition. Other CSAs have done extremely well. Part of the reason why I so badly wanted to sign up for this project is because I use flour a lot – every week I make a loaf of bread (sometimes two) and in a bid to buy more locally produced food, this is one of those things I haven’t been able to source. So, what the folks at Urban Grains have done is partner with a “transitionally organic” (becoming organic) farmer in Agassiz to grow a few varieties of grain. Part of our initial share purchase covers the cost of a grain cleaning machine. Then the grain will head off to a local mill and be ground and bagged and if all things go right, we will have 20 kgs of flour each. It’s an experiment – not only in the concept of a CSA – but also in the concept of grain being grown here in the Lower Mainland (okay, the Fraser Valley) and more importantly to me, an experiment in trust.
A long time ago, you worked with your neighbours and traded and bartered a lot. Frank may have had eggs, but you had dairy cows. Or Judy may have grown amazing carrots, but you had lettuce. Whatever. You traded off and it was a better system than the commercially driven system of acquiring food we subscribe to now where we go off to the store, buy something that may have been in storage for months, have originated in a country you can’t even locate on a map, and be over packaged for no reason other than it required the protection to make it that far and that long. When Ross and I move somewhere with a small piece of land, it’s my hope we can grow produce (and put it by in various ways so that we can eat it all year long) and have some chickens and bypass the need to purchase these things from the store. We’ve not bought bread for almost four months now, and, to be honest, that’s something I am really proud of.
This weekend is a bit jam-packed. I’ve been watching Craiglist for a few months now and finally found a stroller to replace the one I bought when Kale was first born. I had a whole great long list of requirements for the “perfect stroller” and they included: a bar type handle (instead of two separate handles) a snack tray, foldable, a storage compartment underneath, and a cup holder for me. I finally found a Combi Spoleto (no longer being produced) used, out in freakin’ Chilliwack, and the woman selling it happens to be coming west a bit and agreed to meet me part way to save me a bit of travel. So, tomorrow we are headed out to Abbotsford to buy a stroller. Once we get it, I’ll be selling this Peg Perego one that’s become a bit… overkill.
We are also attending a birthday party for a friend (and will be watching the hockey game at said party), Ross is going into work Sunday for a few hours, and I’m going for a drink with some girlfriends Sunday evening. And tonight, I’m headed over to my friend Erin’s after Kale heads to bed for a crafty party! WOO!
What are you doing this weekend?