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Gwen Tuinman

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Farm

Trip to a Goat Farm

Oh my gosh—goats! Since choosing to incorporate a small herd into the novel (in progress), I’ve become completely enamoured with the little scamps. My curiosity was fully lit after a call out to my Facebook community garnered anecdotes and recommendations on where to learn more. I’m continually grateful for the anecdotes and facts they shared, many of which will colour the pages of my story.

“When they are happy, they do a little ‘corkscrew’ dance/prance which is very comical.” ~ Mila

 “The goat, unhappy at being left alone, would invariably open the field gate with her horns and strike out for company, joining us companionably for the duration of the walk.” ~ Aisha

“Merlin is so sweet & loving, & so smart! He loves to come up to you and let out a quiet maa, waiting for a leg or head massage.” ~ Hanna

Part of acquiring context and developing authenticity in writing can involve field research. I took that term quite literally when my husband Eric and I recently visited friends, Candice and Ken at their farm in Northumberland County. They introduced their herd of Lamancha goats and acquainted me with the basics of their behaviour and care. After growing up with fairy tales and children’s stories featuring billy goats, nanny goats and kids, it’s going to take some practise to refer to them as a buck and a females as a doe, and a youngster as a buckling or doeling.

Continue reading “Trip to a Goat Farm”

Feeling Nostalgic — Canning Applesauce

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I feel a strong kinship to this woman. A few weeks ago, I sat amongst heaps of apples waiting to be cored, quartered, simmered, and mashed.  It was all part of transforming a bushel of apples into apple sauce which I then canned in Mason jars.  Why would I go to all that trouble when applesauce comes ready made in cute little jars at the grocery store.? The answer is simple enough — nostalgia. Continue reading “Feeling Nostalgic — Canning Applesauce”

Walt Whitman: Part 1

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I first became interested in Walt Whitman’s poetry after seeing him featured as a character in a Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman episode called The Body Electric. He was portrayed as a gentle nature loving man who extended great patience when people were judgmental. This was only a story, I know, but his personality was appealing.  So, off I went to the library, in search of a copy of his collection of poetry, Leaves of Grass. Continue reading “Walt Whitman: Part 1”

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