Saturday, December 31, 2011
My dear husband and I met in 1995 but didn't actually start dating until 1996. We were young, naieve, and in love. Then I truly believed that the handpicked flowers he'd bring to our front door for me was truly the most romantic thing he could ever do for me.
When he proposed to me, it was with a pearl ring. The pearl in the ring had come from an oyster he had purchased for me on our first date - we had gone to Sea World. I believed this was the second most romantic thing he had ever done.
Both of these truly romantic things pale in comparison to the truly romantic things he does for me now.
Like washing the dishes while I'm bathing a kid or nursing the baby.
Building a fire in the wood stove, so that our family is warm.
Making sure I'm equally covered at night (seriously! I woke up to him tucking extra blankets around me on an especially cold night!)
Changing a diaper.
Cooking dinner together.
Getting up with the kids so that I can sleep in, especially if I'd had a long day previous.
Bringing home a bag of chicken feed, so I don't have to make a special trip to get some.
When he surprised me with a new blow dryer, because mine had blown up! (hence my blog about romance!)
I used to believe the most romantic words were "I love you". That was before childbirth, before gall bladder surgery, and before 2 c-sections.
I heard the most romantic words ever while giving birth to our first born. "I'd trade places with you if I could."
He'd trade places with me! To spare me of pain or discomfort! There is nothing more romantic than that!
I heard those words again, "I'd trade places with you if I could" when our second child was 7 weeks old and I was going for gall bladder surgery. I had been crying and told my nurse that I just wanted to go home and hold my babies.
I heard those words again, when our 3rd child was being born and again 2 yrs later when our 4th was born.
In 2007, when our 5th child was coming into this world via c-section due to complications, my husband squeezed my hand, and through his tears said he wished he could trade places with me.
Most recently, when Squeakers came into this world via re-peat c-section, I heard those same words again, "I would trade places with you. I wish it was me instead of you."
The words are not said lightly, I know he means them from the bottom of his heart. I know, because it is exactly how I felt when he was going in for his back surgery. I would have traded places with him.
I find it amazing that two people can find eachother and love each other this much.
This is romance. Not chocolates, jewelry, flowers - none of that is romantic when put into perspective of what I know now.
Friday, December 30, 2011
Thursday, December 29, 2011
I saw on another individuals blog Ten Things Thursday that I'm thankful for...so I'm going to try that right now, instead of complaining about how I've accomplished almost nothing that I set out to today.
1. I am thankful for my husband. He is kind, caring, has a good work ethic, and even though he's limited in what he can do since his back surgery, he works hard to do as much as he can inspite of it. That, and he found the perfect purple paint for the girls names today. I love this man!
2. I am thankful for my kids. Even though they make a million messes a day, are solely responsible for any and all gray hairs, and have selective hearing, I am thankful for each of them, and that they are mine born of my body.
3. I am thankful for a Loving Savior, who makes everything worth our time here on this earth.
4. I am thankful for family, both near and far.
5. I am thankful for a warm home, for I know there are those who have lost theirs and are now without.
6. I am thankful for coffee. Especially on cold winter days.
7. I am thankful for useful skills, and the ability to learn the useful skills. Like gardening, canning, and the use of power tools for building things.
8. I am thankful for dryers, for without such I'd be hanging clothes out in the winter.
9. I am thankful for kids that DO listen on occassion.
10. And finally, I am thankful that I was born an American. Even if the economy is teetering on the edge.
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
I'm totally addicted!
So it started with an idea to build a play kitchen for our kids out of a reused piece of old furniture, and it grew into plans to build an entire backyard playhouse for the kids! I'm envisioning something with the same color exterior as our home and a reading loft and a white picket fence for their "yard". Plus flower boxes under the windows!
Something similiar to this.....
And I imagine it being a bit bigger, with an inside space for storing their outside ride on toys and/or bikes.
I'm super stoked to get working on this new project!
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
We braved the craziness today and took the kids to Chuck E Cheese. They'd recieved a gift card from their Aunt and Uncle as a Christmas gift, and we figured the sooner we used it, the better. The kids thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
Unfortunately I forgot to take my camera along, so no photos from todays' fun. Boo.
But, I have this adorable shot from Christmas day of L chatting with his baby sister while she tried out her new playmat (which she loves!)
Saturday, December 17, 2011
I browned the stew meat in a tablespoon of butter....real butter. No margarine. Margarine is a sin against your body. I'm just sayin'.
After browning the meat, I tossed it in my slow cooker with 1/4 cup of water. Then I seasoned with some parsley, basil, oregano, salt, pepper, curry powder, minced garlic, tossed in some chopped onions, baby carrots, chopped celery, and diced potatoes.....
While that was cooking down, I then browned some flour in the drippings from browning the meat in butter. I think I used about a tablespoon of flour. I also used 1 cup of beef broth, made from a beef bouillon cube. Added it all to the slow cooker....
cooked it in that slow cooker from 10 am until around 6 pm and the end result was .......
It was delicious!! I served the kids theirs without much of the juices, and it turned out more like a soup than a thick stew. Still, it was delicious and I think the meat and veggies would be great over a rice pilaf!
Saturday, December 3, 2011
Friday, September 2, 2011
We're 17 days away from having our baby girl, and we've been super busy trying to get ready.
Decluttering the house - check!
Down sized poultry flocks - CHECK!
sold the goat - check!
Papa got the kids a pet rabbit - check!
Have more clothes than one kid could possibly wear for baby girl - check!
Got baby's hospital bag packed - check!
My bag is packed - um not yet? lol
today was spent going through the stuff we had packed away in totes when we moved into this house. Getting rid of A LOT. Just can't keep it all.
Also, pulling out all my scraps and quilt squares and looking at starting to piece a quilt together - by machine of course! I am thinking about doing the actual quilting by hand, though.
We have been so blessed in the baby items department! Especially clothes! We've been given so much, that I am going through and choosing a few things to pass on to a few other people who I know are also expecting girls!
That's it I guess here.
Hopefully the next time I meander in to blog, it will be to say that baby is here!
Thursday, June 30, 2011
I did get a little heavy handed with the smoker........... Only 3 of the 10 frames were filled, but they still looked good! Lots of busy bees, brood, and larvae!
Today we opened the hive again so that we could place a bag feeder inside.so much for the whole - and no one got stung!
and who do you think gets stung???
now i wouldn't have been stung if it hadn't been for the fact that she landed on my shoe and climbed up my pant leg - and me not thinking anything of it brushed at whatever was crawling up my leg....sigh.
It frustrated me, so I had to walk off for a few secs, pull out the stinger, and re-collect myself - and I decided to get my gloves because I originally went without out.
Funny, no veil, no jacket, but I feel safer with those gloves!
So while I was doing that, E slit open the bag feeder for me. I then went to close up the hive.
Freaked out (i know i know dumb!) because there were a bunch of bees (looked like young bees) on the inner cover and like an idiot I dropped the inner cover. (you do NOT want to do this!) a whole cluster of bees in the grass!!
I gently set the edge of the inner cover next to the bees, hoping it would smell like home and they'd crawl on it - and...and...it worked!!!! A couple of bees were still stuck in the grass, so with my glove I gently helped them onto the inner cover, and then we put them back into the hive.
the girls must have been hot today, because everyone was at the top of the frames, butts in the air, waving their wings like a thousand little fans.
And no, I did not take pictures.
One gal in particular was pretty mad at me when I picked up the inner cover from the ground - kept flying at my face.
And I was JUST trying to FEED them - although we did take a quickie peek at frame 4, because 3 days ago they were just starting on it. Today, they've got it almost full, and several of the cells had fat little larvae in them! (so Victoria has already visited that frame, too! yay)
So, got it all closed up, worried that I might have squished a couple gals when I put the telescoping top cover on, but I hope not.
Came in the house, and thought something else was crawling in my other pants leg....so I yanked those pants off, shook them out - almost put them back on, chickened out, and pulled a pair shorts out instead
and now - hope I don't have to go back in for another week!
How long do those bag feeders last anyway???
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
I thought her recognizing me when I saw her last Friday was a precious gift.
And it was.
But it wasn't her last gift.
My Aunt Hazel and Uncle Stephen had come up from TN. Aunt Hazel said she had something to give me before I left. I told her I could only stay for a few minutes because I was in a borrowed car and needed to return it ASAP.
Aunt Hazel ran out to her car and brought in a manilla envelope lined with bubble wrap. She starts out by saying, "Your Grandma started to make this and didn't finish it. I thought you'd like to have it."
I opened the envelope and inside was this beautiful green crocheted baby sweater! Started by my grandmother, finished by my Aunt!
My Aunt went on to tell me that there had been 2 unfinished sweaters - this one she brought to me, and a second one that she finished and sent to her son (my cousin) and his wife - who are expecting their first baby in September, too!
I cried - I couldn't help it. And I had just recently got this beautiful little white dress with little pink and green floral patterns on it - the sweater will go perfectly - and I want Baby girl to wear it home.
Even better, the very first baby item I had purchased upon learning about my pregnancy was a tiny crocheted pair of green booties! I have a pair of tights to match the dress, and a bonnet, so her little coming home layette is now complete - thanks to Grandma's Sweater.
Once Baby Girl has outgrown the sweater, I'll hang it up as decor in her room.
Monday, June 20, 2011
The kids gave their daddy their cards and a wood and glass birdfeeder - because he likes to feed the birds.
E also had a special visitor yesterday, along with his dad, but I'm not totally sure I am ready to talk about who the visitor was yet.
I'm still adjusting to some things.
Let's just say, sometimes the way we percieve a person, based on things we've been told and not what we've witnessed, aren't always the way the person is.
So, E and his visitor spent some time on the roof of the girls room getting the last 2 pieces of tin roofing in place.
And I got some great pics! (to be shared later)
Today, the flashing goes on.
We had steaks cooked on the grill, mashed taters, and green beans cooked with onions and bacon for dinner.
And lotsa coffee!
E's Dad was down, too, for nearly the whole day.
I think yesterday was the best Father's Day for him yet - if you don't count baby Boy eating all of Daddy's black raspberry pie yesterday morning before we were even out of bed
the kids even played in their kiddie pool, AND completed all their farm chores without much coaxing from us.
Everyone was so exhausted last night, that they just went to bed without prompting - and slept in until 7:30 am today!
It was a great day.
Friday, June 3, 2011
That pic was of the berry looking parts last month - and they look much more berry-ish out there now! :)
Last month every blueberry bush was blooming (we have about 7 or 8 bushes right now, and we plant 2-4 more every spring)
And this little guy did his part to help out!
Thursday, June 2, 2011
Monday, May 23, 2011
Sunday, May 22, 2011
So first she says she's going to give them to anyone who can come remove them.
Then she says, "Too bad you don't have a hive set up, I'd give you one."
O M GOODNESS!!
I've been wanting bees ever since my mom started taking the bee classes and participating in the Don Meyer program in 2009. I almost signed up in 2010, but too much was going on for us.
So here we are, in 2011 - and I got a crash course in Beeking this week!
Mom, with the help of kel's advice, managed to capture both swarms. Thank goodness they were in bushes low to the ground! She put hers into a cardboard box, and mine in a cardboard nuc box.
She brought the nuc box to us on Thursday night. We set up a dog box on cement blocks about where we wanted the hive to be. Then, we put the nuc box in the dog box to protect it from the weather.
Kel said she could bring me some beeking supplies and help me install the bees.
Lemme tell ya'll, she's an awesome friend! But she couldn't come until today, so the bees were in the cardboard nuc box over the weekend.
By Friday they had found a way out. Bees flying everywhere, but going back to the nuc box inside the dog box.
Kel and TR arrived right around 12:30 pm today and no time was wasted in getting out to the bees. By 2 pm the hive was set up and the bees installed.
Lemme tell you, when Kel lifted up the lid to the nuc box (while I watched and TR hid behind a tree screaming get the smoker get the smoker!) there were THOUSANDS of bees hanging to the box lid!
E said I should have seen the expression on my face when she lifted that lid and I saw those bees - and you betcha, I backed up and hid behind that tree with TR - I mean, she was wearing the ONLY SUIT!
But, it all went rather well, and I did get sorta close - and the bees didn't care that we were there, not really.
Well, the few that got squished when the lid was put in place might have cared but....well...lol
I have pics of the whole install process, and the dog box temp hive, but again, no cord, so the only pic I have to share is this one that Kel emailed me.
If you look close enough, you can see my bees flying in and out!
Her husband has a real obsession with the smoker - kel was working around the hive and he suddenly blurt out, "Need me to check that smoker? it looks like it's going out..."
I have a pic on my camera of the "men" hiding behind the trees LOL
Kel also had me suit up so I could feel comfortable trying things out. I practiced smoking my bees, pretended to use the hive tool (hahahaha) all just for photos!
I'll get to the library tomorrow to upload the install pics. I got an awesome one of the nuc box lid covered in bees.
Oh, and they had already started building comb in the box! Kel saved it for me so i can keep it!
The sweetest moment of the day was when Kel was putting on her bee suit, and her husband wanted to be sure she had a bottle of water on hand so that she wouldn't over heat and pass out.
Thursday, May 19, 2011
We're taking 24 young chicks, 4 started pullets, a pair of call ducks, and these:
Ernie and I spent most of the afternoon potting up our extra strawberry plants in hanging baskets and wooden buckets like the one above. We have 4 hanging basketes, 3 small wooden buckets, and 1 large wooden bucket.
I think they're really cute!
We're also potting up 3 of our old fashioned lilac bushes that we transplanted off my adult bushes. The young ones have really taken off and are sprouting out babies of their own.
Plus he has a young red maple and a young silver maple to take, both are potted.
We're leaving fairly early in the morning, so we can get a good set up spot on the main midway. Plan to load up the van tonight so that we can just get in and go in the morning.
It's going to be a pretty busy weekend for us, starting this evening with a special delivery! More details to come later!
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
The animal yards are muddy messes. Grass is green, though!
I would say the growing season is here, but the rain has put everything into growth over drive! Grass sprouts up 6 inches overnight, and makes it near impossible to plant anything in the garden.
We do have potatoes, onions, and garlic planted.
Still have A LOT more to get out there, though!
The beginning of the week, when we had a short lull in the rains, we did manage to get th e garden tilled.
Waiting to go in the ground we have tomatoes (already started), corn, green beans, lettuce (already started), cucumbers, and bell peppers (already started).
Last year, we had potato plants knee high by May 12. Not so this year. Our garden is way behind thanks to the onslaught of earth fluid.
The fruit trees are doing well, with the exception of 1 peach tree that has a blight. We've bought the stuff to treat it, but can't apply it until this rain lets up.
Strawberries are coming along nicely, rhubarb came back from last year, the asparagus patch is taking off, and my blueberry bushes look wonderful!
On Saturday we managed to get some cute 22 week belly pics. I may share those later, but I have to find the cord to my camera first. It was lost in the moving from the old trailer to the new.
Speaking of the old trailer, it's nearly all down! I have pics of the process to share, too, again, as soon as I find the camera cord! LOL
We have saved all the trusses and 2x3's out of walls of the old trailer to build turkey coops! If things continue to go as they are, we should have at least 3 breeds of turkeys by next year - hoping for 4 though! Right now we have Royal Palm Poults and Bourbon Red Poults. This weekend we're getting Narragansett eggs and maybe some Black Spanish eggs.
Have a happy week everyone, and try to stay dry!
Friday, May 13, 2011
Except I'm not having much to post about.
I am feeling Baby Girl moving a lot more. I was worried about that for awhile, because it just seems like I felt the others moving a lot earlier than I felt her. I blame it on the extra padding - all that extra weight I hadn't lost after the others. I hadn't felt any movement until the night before our 20 week ultrasound. I was actually 19 weeks and 5 days, but close enough. She was very active during the sonogram, and her heartbeat has been consistently in the 160's, so I don't know why I've been so worried.
I've been filling my mind with all the cute little girly things there are out there to buy. Big bows for her hair (hoping she has some!) and baby hairbands with big bows and flowers on them, dresses, and I found the cutest chocolate and pink butterfly stuff at Walmart.com.
The kids are so excited to be getting a baby sister. They prayed for one every night before our sonogram, and now they give prayers of thanks every night. And our youngest son, who will be 3 on July 21, put his hand on my stomach today and said, "Mommy, I'm petting the baby in your belly!"
It was just too cute!
Thursday, April 28, 2011
The important parts!! LOL
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
I don't dare tell my husband, but I so wish we lived in town, closer to jobs, stores, hospitals, doctors, other people!
I really have nothing to complain about, though. I am just tired of the whole animal stuff I think. Or just tired. But, there's no mortgage, no land payment, no car payment - no real debts. Just monthly utitlities and property taxes.
So why am I not content with what we have?
I'm tired of mucking out nasty chicken coops, tired of chasing the kids pony when it gets loose, tired of begging lazy hens to just give me ONE egg...
It was supposed to be better once we had the water hooked up. Life was supposed to get easier once we no longer had to haul water. We haven't had to haul water since November, but that doesn't mean the farming got easier.
I feel "tied down". And I don't mean because I'm married. Funny, my husband and kids don't make me feel tied down - I enjoy THEM and the work that comes with having my family, but the feeling tied to the homestead and the animals is very nearly driving me insane.
In a few weeks, when my chicks are hatching and I'm selling eggs or when we get the garden planted and then are harvesting - I'll remember why. I'll remember how nice it is to do all this for ourself, to not have to spend out extra money to have the luxuries of "homegrown". I'll remember joy in what we're doing, the joy in not having that mortgage or car payment...the joy of just being able to sit in the backyard and whatching the chickens pecking at bugs and seeds - and yes, probably even find some joy in the gander biting my knee - and I know I'll kick this what ever it is once warm weather is here, school is out, and we can be outside DOING instead of cooped up in the house.
I'd kill for a nice big ice cream right now. On a hot summer day. Or even a Caramel Frappe - which is as close to a Caramel Macchiato that I can get with the closests Starbucks being a near hour away!
I feel so cooped up right now. I wonder if this is how the hen's feel when I keep them penned in all winter.
Thursday, March 10, 2011
I lost 3 pounds in two weeks. I was dancing a gig, doc cautioned me against dieting - to which I replied, "Dieting? I'm not dieting! I've increased my veggies!" she laughed and said that was good.
She talked to us honestly about how we felt about this pregnancy - and we answered her honestly. We told her that we went through a tumult of emotions: shocked, upset, thought of adoption for a minute, shocked, disbelief, tremendous amount of tears after the first test, shock after the second test, and fear to tell anyone. Did I mention shocked?
She said everything we'd been feeling was perfectly normal, and since we also explained the stress we had been under in the weeks prior to discovering our pregnancy, and how often things just do NOT happen (TMI?), she replied, "Well, this baby was meant to be."
I do not get to VBAC. Insurance and hospital policy doesn't allow it. The plan right now is to take the baby on the Monday closest to my due date (which is September 12, 2011) but because I had placenta previa with my last baby, she said I'm high risk to have it again this pregnancy, so they will be monitoring me closely for that she said - and if it happens this pregnany, they will take baby at 37 weeks - which is August 30.
She said she will pray with us again this time, like she did last time with baby boy, before we go to the ER and I am welcome to have our Pastor come in to pray, too.
The entire staff was very supportive, and not a bit judgemental when we honest told them that at first we didn't want this baby.
Don't freak out on us! We want her NOW! We just had to get used to the idea...
We got to hear the heartbeat - it was in the 160's! Doc had a hard time at first, because she found baby, and then baby wiggled away, so she had to move around the doppler thingy to find baby again - and that took half of forever! But baby finally cooperated and we got to hear her (or his, but I'm stubbornly saying her for now until told different!) heartbeat.
Even that didn't make me feel pregnant. I mean, I know I'm pregnant, and I've had morning sickness, nausea, dizzy spells, etc., but I still don't feel pregnant.
And, most of my clothes (except button jeans) still fit.
They did move my due date up one day - September 16 - so I'm officially 13 weeks tomorrow, and into my second trimester.
Should have my gender telling ultrasound Mid - End of April. Praying selfishly for a girl, but will be happy with a healthy baby no matter gender!
Monday, February 14, 2011
Lots of things have changed since my last posting here. We moved into a new house (same property, just new abode), we had our well put in, a root cellar dug, and we downsized some animals and added others (a Halflinger and the kids got a pony for Christmas!)
Our biggest news of 2011 - We're Expecting! It completely caught us by surprise. We were not trying to have another baby, and it was really the furthest thing from our minds. We had a rough start to the year, and January was a very stressful month. A friend of mine had said when bad things happen, God sends us a blessing. God's idea of a blessing this time is a baby!
The kids are all hoping for a baby sister. I think the boys just don't want to share their room with another brother, and our daughter is tired of being the only girl. :)
We're not due until September, and we don't see the doctor for the first time for three more weeks. Hoping it goes fast!
I wanted to be surprised this time around, but Ernie thinks we should find out. We've never been surprised, so I was hoping to be this time. I doubt that I'll win on not finding out!