Harrison Farm

for now, the only thing we're growing on this farm is kids - not the goat variety

Month: November 2013

A Foodie Post

Slowly but surely I’m developing as a cook – trying new foods and methods.

Ever heard of a custard apple?  Me either.  It’s call “chirimoya” in Chile.

It’s a super sweet, soft tropical fruit.  You don’t eat the peel or the black watermelon-seed-sized seeds; the flesh is soft like that of a banana.  It’s so sweet, it reminds me of a meringue.  It’s nice in a fruit salad paired with sliced bananas and blueberries. Yum!  They are on the pricey side, as far as fruits go, so we eat them like we eat dessert – once in a blue moon.  Okay, maybe it’s a bit more often than that…  After all, chirimoyas are in season right now. Continue reading

Guess Who? (City)

Doodle and I have created a new game that’s very educational for both of us.

With labels turned off in Google Maps, I look away while he zooms in on a random city somewhere in the world. Then I look at the city and tell him what continent it’s on. Sometimes I can tell him what country it’s in, and once I was able to tell him what city it was (St. Louis).

Here are some of my techniques.

This city has some reddish roofs, a developed road system (hence the traffic circles) and the center of the city is very tight, signifying pedestrian based zones. To the west, you see the face of first-world subdivisions.

What do these point to? Europe. Probably central-northern, judging by the shade of the green spaces.

Prague, Czech Republic

Considering the photo below: the only thing keeping me from guessing Africa is the hard-to-see road layout, which points to a developed country. The roads wouldn’t look like that if Continue reading

Belated Photos

For the Chilean independence holiday, Dieciochera (September 18), you may remember that there was a weeklong festival in the park next door.  The festival is sponsored at least in part by the city of Providencia, and the city provides the park’s immediate neighbors with free entrance tickets to the festival.  This gesture is, I suspect, a sort of apology for all the disruption.  Our apartment complex is right next to the park.  During the festival traffic is heavy around our usually quiet block, and finding a parking spot is nearly impossible.  Noise is also an issue.  Concerts would start around noon, and music would blare from the park until midnight.  We could hear it inside our apartment, and we’re on the side opposite of the park!  I can’t image being in one of the units that faces the park.

The city sent us a few different types of tickets.  Basically, we were all able to go together two times.  But we also had two tickets that could be used repeatedly for the entire week.  So, at any given time, two of us could go enjoy ourselves.

So, one afternoon, Rosebud and I went together.  It was like a mother-daughter date.  Here she is all dressed up and ready to go.

You can see she had a spring in her step as we headed to the park. Continue reading

Winter Impressions

Our gas bill is generally accompanied by a small magazine similar to those hospital magazine/advertisements we used to get in the states.  You know the ones.  There would be an interview with a doctor; an exceptional success story; some recipes; photos from a fundraiser, etc.

The picture on this month’s cover of our gas company’s magazine cracked me up because it illustrates what winter is like here in Santiago.  There is rarely snow here in central Chile – so we don’t get a picture of some bundled-up, snow-sprinkled kids coming in the back door, tired but happy, greeted by their smiling mother who has hot chocolate waiting.  No pictures like that here in the Santiago area.

You should know that winters here are really not very cold at all.  Continue reading

Rosebud said 5.0

Rosebud changes her best friend a lot. One day it’s Sudoku, next day it’s Doodle, and today, it’s me. I stole “doria”, her doll, and told her I would only give it back if she would be my best friend (talk about extortion!). She agreed to the deal, and so far she hasn’t broken it. Continue reading

Comical Illustrator Signs

Recently did some Illustrator work, made all of these from scratch.

Continue reading

Dolls Grow?

Rosebud recently out-grew her last year’s swimsuit, and we managed to find a replacement at a Hiper Lider (the Super Wal-mart equivalent in Chile).  Yesterday she brought me her old, outgrown suit… Continue reading

What’d He Say?

In Spanish “rusio” means “Russian”.  “Rubio” means “blond”.  Carman, my most blond child (I know, I know, he’s not a child anymore! sniff.) is called both on the streets in Santiago.

Being blond is a bit unusual here.  And Chileans, especially the working class, are comfortable addressing people they don’t know.  They’ll mumble something about “rubio” under their breath as he rides past on his bike.  The guy at the bike store will ask, “¿Qué buscando, rubio?”  (What do you need, blondie?)  They call him blondie with a straight face.  It’s neither good, or bad, it’s just what he is – blond.

What surprised me is that folks on the street will also call him “Rusio” (Russian).  I feared this was a jab, an insult, an “Oh dear, you need to watch your back.”  But it’s not that way at all.  For whatever reason, here in Chile, the two words (rubio and rusio) can have the same meaning: blondie.

Now, if you’re a woman or a young child, you’ll also be called “mi amor” (whether on not you’re blond.)  I can go to La Vega, and be claimed as the “love” of 5 different men, usually at the completion of a vegetable transaction.  I say “thank you,” and they say, “Thanks to you, my love.”  It’s quite typical and nothing to be flattered or offended by.  Young children are addressed in this way too.

If you’re a woman, you’ll likely be called “reina” (queen) too.  No need to get a big head, because they’re going to call every 5th woman they see “reina.”  It’s like calling out “ma’am.”  This usually happens when someone is trying to get my attention: “Reina! Zapallo, repollo, cebolla…” (Queen! Pumpkin, cabbage, onion…)

It’s like being in a small, southern town and having the waitress call you “honey”, and the cashier at the diner call you “sugar”.  It seems though, that these “sweet” words are mostly spoken by women in the US.  Whereas in Chile, the men get in on the sweet talk.

I’m Dehind You!

We have a new writer folks!  Meet Doodle.  Take it away, Doodle.

I have these weird socks that have words on them. I mean, doesn’t that sound a little funny?

Firstly, go through a store and try to find some socks that fit nine year old Doodle that have words on them.

Secondly, these socks say, “I’m behind you”. How much sense does that make?

Thirdly, these socks actually don’t say, “I’m behind you”. They say, “I’m dehind you”.

Milkmaid told me this poem that goes like this, “‘I’ before ‘E’ except after ‘C’ or when sounds like ‘A’ as in neighbor and weigh”. I had a hard time spelling “weird” because of the poem, but now I’v corrected it. “I” before “E” except after “C” or when sounds like “A” as in neighbor and weigh – also in the word weird (the fourth letter of this post) because it’s weird.

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