Saturday, December 31, 2011

My Pinterest Fun in 2011

Thank you for the ........

Parmesan lids for my canning jars

Egg skelter to keep my husband happy. Never want to use "old" eggs, right?

Organizing my spice drawer with chalkboard paint and mason jelly jars.

The  PVC chicken feeder for dispensing crushed oyster shells for my ladies's daily calcium.

My bunnies are very happy with their electric water bottles this winter. No frozen blocks of ice!

A stick star craft on Thanksgiving was enjoyed.

Place cards for Thanksgiving.

Sip cup for my sis for Christmas

Fleece loopy flowers for fun

Reinbeers for the Uncles at Christmas.

Corkboard inside my cupboard doors.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Vitamin K and I

Vitamin K is something I watch in my diet more than I do carbs, sugar, fat, cholesterol, etc. I started taking coumadin in 2008 to protect my shiny, new, noisy, heart valve. I will take it the rest of my life. Vitamin K and Coumadin interact and make the coumadin ineffective. Coumadin thins your blood so that it's not so sticky. Vitamin K thickens your blood making it really sticky.

"Don't eat greens." And, "Eat the same amount of greens daily," The nutritionists at the hospital advised.

And when things aren't in balance, "WHAT have you been eating?!"

Over the years I've found a few unexpected, not green, sources for Vitamin K that have befuddled and messed with the status quo. Cabbage & Cauliflower were the beginning. Cabbage in any form is not to be over indulged. Coleslaw on Sunday can mean 2-3 days of lovenox shots until things therapeutic levels are reached.  Oye.

And then there was the time I decided to make Black eyed peas for New Year's. A new family tradition, right? Well that tradition is way too expensive. A week of those $100 each lovenox shots and way too many trips to the hospital for blood tests. Of course, I wasn't eating greens. I was only eating the left over beans! Oye, Black eyed peas a very high in Vitamin K.

Then summer came along and I switched from coffee to iced tea. Lots of iced tea because it was hot and we were trying to save money by not running the air. Oye. Black tea, green tea, it all comes from a plant and is high in Vitamin K. At least the electricity bill met the new budget standards.

Eating the same amounts every day? Yes. that would fix things. But iced tea in the winter isn't my thing. And seriously, have you ever thought that eating the same thing day in, day out is realistic? You pick your 5 favorite meals and eat only that for the next month. I dare you.

Fish, seriously? Who knew! Liver, lentils, pickles, chili powder, curry, paprika, cayenne, prunes and onions are on the list too I recently discovered on a recent visit to a new nutritionist.  THEY AREN'T EVEN GREEN for Pete's sake!


Monday, December 26, 2011

Who Laid That Egg?

Christmas Eve one of our chickens laid this huge egg. 

The carton won't even close! 

It's a double yolked egg. 

There was another one for us on Christmas morning. Today it wasn't hard to find someone to do the chicken chores. Everyone wants to find the third gianormous egg. But alas, it wasn't to be. We're hoping to eventually figure out which chicken lady left us these fun gifts.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Snowy Sunday

 The "backyard."
 Do you see the guineas? Yes, that's the pole barn on the left.  
 The weeds in the chicken yard look better this way. 
 Snowy chicken wire. 
 Do you spy the chickens? They don't like snow.  
 Clothes line & propane tank (the most expensive way to heat a house). PTL for pellet stoves. 
 I spy a kitty! 
We've been getting Tufted Titmouses, Finches, Cardinals, 
Downey Woodpeckers and Chickadees visiting our bird feeders. 
The grainery and a view up the East valley. 
Walking to the barn is an aerobic workout. :)) 

My glorious Elm tree. 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Turkey or Chicken?

This is the second year we've served chicken instead of turkey for the Thanksgiving feast. Why? Yes, it was the rising cost of turkey. And because that year Mom's home grown chickens had gotten really really big! Two chickens were just about the size of one turkey.

No one missed the turkey. The chicken meat was moist, the dressing tasted even better than ever, and because they actually fit in the roaster there was crispy chicken skin.

Best of all, there were four drumsticks and four wings!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Deer Hunting

The 2011 Deer Hunting Season started today at 6 a.m.

It's Himself's first season. He was excited to get up and go. My Dad is mentoring him. They saw a deer but Himself felt it was too far away to take a shot.

My Dad & my hunter husband showing off their orange at 6 a.m. too early for quality photography. :))

Little Sister Locs

Little Sister went first. 

Friday, November 18, 2011


Second oldest daughter has asked for locs.

I knew this was coming. So I've been studying up on it.

They're really tiny little braids or twists all over her head. We'll do braids since her hair won't hold the twists at the ends with all the swimming she does weekly. The idea/plan is that you don't ever take them out. Dreadlocks is another name they're called.

The biggest reason she wants them is so that she can manage her hair mostly on her own, forever. Except for the once a month tightening sessions, which can be done in stages, she'll be able to style her hair herself and change it frequently. Pony tails, barrettes, buns, head bands, braids whatever she desires!

Last year she sort of test drove this hair style when we put in genie locs or yarn braids. It was really adorable! And she loved the freedom. She's been talking longingly about that hair style all year. But she was reluctant to sit the 8 hours it takes to put them in again.

If she ever changes her mind about locs we know what to do too. Let the new growth grow until it's 2-3 inches long and then cut off the each loc. She looks cute too in a short afro and her hair grows quickly!

I'll post picture when it's done.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Chasing Chickens

It's an expression. It's an experience.

Personally I prefer the expression. The experience of chasing chickens has become irritating. Just as the sun is going down and things are settling in for the evening I'm out in the yard literally chasing chickens.

We're getting better at rounding them up. We circle around them and hold out our arms and walk slowly in the direction we want them to go. The plan is that they'll saunter towards the gate to the chicken yard and through it. Mostly though they run crazy, squacking like Godzilla's after them. Then they veer in the wrong direction--not towards the gate. And then we start all over again.

Most of the chickens are well behaved and know the nightly drill. They go back into the coop where there's food, water, and perch. But we recently got 5 chickens from my folks. They had too many chickens for one coop and they didn't want to run two coops all winter long. Three of those are finding our coop and chicken yard agreeable. Two still prefer the woods.

I haven't been able to spy their forest hideaway. Hopefully the foxes and coyotes won't either.

Chasing Chickens Nightly,
Me & my kid crew

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Warming Trends

It's snowing!

The first snow fall of the year has succeeded in waking my children at 6 a.m. Actually it was my 4 year old's sleepy exclamation, "It's snowing!" that woke the rest of the troops.

Indoors though we're experiencing a warming trend. Yesterday our pellet stove was installed. We snagged a second-hand one through a local store 3 weeks ago. Another family was moving to Florida and they won't need their stove or their year's order of pellets. It was quite a find! We've been waiting impatiently for it to be installed.

This house is a 50 year old farm house. The original floor plan was a four room house. Since then it's had 4 additions. When the attic was remodeled into two bedrooms and a WC it wasn't ducted for heat.  Someone did put in electric heat base boards. But running those baseboards is expensive! And there's the risk of fire if one of the kids blankets accidently gets pushed against.  

But it's a drafty farm house.  The attic bedrooms, while chilly, haven't ever gotten lower than 50 degrees. Indeed we've all been adjusting to a lower setting on the thermostat after Himself paid the bill to have the propane tank filled. The furnace, water heater, stove, and dryer all run off gas. In the country that gas is from the propane tank out back. Propane, we've discovered, is the most expensive way to heat a house. So it's been a cool 62 degrees indoors. And we've a new friendship with our slippers, bathrobes, sweatshirts and socks.

The pellet stove was installed in the basement. Although we were assured that this stove is capable of heating 2000 sq. ft. we were dubious. But the heat in the whole house began to rise. It rose to a toasty 70 degrees! And upstairs in the attic bedrooms warmed to 62 degrees. Oh it felt so wonderful. My toes thawed. My nose was warmed. The kids slept soundly. Not so the pooches, whose floor-beds were suddenly too warm, they panted all night long in the "heat wave."

But it's snowing!

And inside it's toasty.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

What does a mom do in her spare time?

In my free time I have become a chauffeur.  My friends who have teens all said this would come. It has arrived. Swim team is the newest addition to our schedule. Or I might say, we've added it back. The oldest children have done this before and they loved it. I love the energy it consumes and the calm it brings to our home in between practices. A whole hour of laps 4 times a week!

The trade off is all the extra driving.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Family Work Day!

Wait, wasn't it play? 
Cleaning up branches at my folk's place.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

DYI Chicken Silo

So after looking at many DYI chicken feeders we settled on this one. It's made from 4 inch PVC pipe, cap and elbow joins. The idea is that it will cut down on wasted feed. And that my hens won't run out of feed. I had a half a 5 gallon pail of feed and it only half filled the pipe. Now there'll be no excuse for no eggs, right?!


Saturday, October 8, 2011

Walnuts For Sale

There was an ad in the newspaper last week, 
"Wanted to Buy: Walnuts for Reforestation." 

Our son was thrilled. 
Allowances have been discontinued since May. 
So the prospect of making some money motivated.  
We had been dismayed by all the walnuts 
that rained on the recent windy days. 
And we were happy to have a child who worked cheerfully to help pick them up. 
Today the gentleman is coming to pick up his walnuts. 

He worked very very hard for many hours to get this many! 
So proud of his accomplishment. 

We have eggs!

First eggs from my chickens. 

Chickens :)) 
They're Polish & White Orpingtons. There are 18. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

The Hen House

The people door and entrance to the chicken yard. 

View of the chicken yard. 
Those are wild grape vines on the fence. Yummy grape jelly.  

Chicken doors into the chicken yard. 

Inside nesting boxes and perch. And me. :)) 

My birds arrived tonight but I'll have to wait to post pictures of them until morning. 
The light's not working in there yet. 

The Swing Set Saga

I wouldn't leave it behind.
I couldn't.
There were still too many swings to be swung,
Many more slides to be slid. 
It HAD to journey with us to the Cheese Land. 
Himself was distraught, "Have you seen the monstrosity? How shall it ever fit? It can't be done!" 
But fit it did, in pieces.
Oh so many pieces that I despaired it should never be rebuilt.
But it was resurrected! 
And now it sits beneath the grand walnut tree. 
Aye, even it has been swung & slid, with much joy, here in our new land!  

So many men & women contributed to the success of this mission... Ed, Mark, Nancy, Tom, Rocco, Steve, (another) Tom, Todd, and Granpapa. And Himself who wouldn't disappoint. My sincere gratitude for the future hours of play for my children.  

Wednesday, October 5, 2011



What kind of spider is this?
 It's HUGE!
(and juicy, according to Himself who bravely smooshed it)
Almost had to cancel our lesson. It was sitting on the top of the pile of papers. 
Now that it's getting cold they're all coming indoors. 

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Here are a couple pictures to help ya'll visualize where we're at. 

 Home. This is the hill the kids like to roll down. 
The red shed is "The Grainery" or "The Kitty Barn.
To the left of the photograher is the garden, barn, and valley. 

The big tree is a glorious Elm.
It's the only one left in the area. 
The rest were cut down because of Dutch Elm disease years ago. 

 This is the other side of the hill from the first photo. 
Taken from the bottom of the driveway looking up. 
You can see the house and the front porch. 
Love that porch! 
Looking down the driveway from the top at the garage & road 
Yes, scooters are still packed. 
Our two youngest amused the movers 
by riding those furniture dollies down the driveway.
And I watched my baby jump off her bike 
halfway down 
when she realized she didn't know how to break. 
Helmets are now enforced. 
Can you see my granny smith apple tress? 

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Thursday, September 22, 2011


The novelty of rolling down the hill hasn't worn off. 
The kids are looking forward to sledding down this hill in the winter. 
Love that hill. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Making Apple Cider

Yesterday afternoon my folks stopped by, "To pick up the older kids to help Grandpa make cider."

They'd picked bushels of apples at our farm on Saturday and Grandpa was ready to press them. He'd even brought along the first gallon on fresh juice for them to sample.

They're aren't any pictures of this event, yet. But it was the first pressing of apples this season. There will be more. The machine on the press is an open fly wheel and the real concern was for that my littles might stick their fingers in it and get hurt. So the littles and I stayed home and unpacked a few more boxes. (I found my warmer clothing!)

They made 12 gallons of cider!

Our hobby farm has several apple trees. The trees aren't a known variety of apples because they are "volunteers." They were planted where animals dropped the seeds.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Warmer, please.

You can tell it's fall. My 4 year old daughter has added to her skimpy, preferred, wardrobe. She now wears panties AND socks! :))

The change of season has caught the rest of us dressed for another time of year. We arrived with summer clothing in our suitcases. The warmer stuff is somewhere packed in a cardboard box either in the garage or on the back porch. Washing out the seven sweatshirts & pairs of blue jeans has become a daily evening job. I'm thankful that the dryer is now installed and works, mostly. The sensor dry feature no longer works. But the timed dry does!

Living in this 50 year old farm house is going to change our sleeping habits. The thermostat may say 66, but it still feels much colder in the bedrooms. Warmer jammies. And I think slippers are actually going to be used.

I'll be checking out the local resale shops for flannel or fleece jammies. Especially for my daughters. Their bedroom is in the former attic which isn't connected to the furnace. There are base board heaters in their room so they won't freeze. The controls to these need to be repaired though so they're experiencing the change of season the most.

Today's unpacking "To Do," Find the winter clothing(!), And put shelving back in the pantry and fill it up with food.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

We now have a few of these. 
(Lucky & Simba)

And their job is to do this.
(dead mouse)

Maybe next time they can eat it 
instead of letting it sit by the door. 

Friday, September 9, 2011


"Who said, Snake!" I ran out the front door. My 6 year old son was shrieking and running towards me. He was yelling in one of those hoarse voices choked with fear, "Snake! Snake! Snake! Snake!"

I wanted to scoop him up and run into the house but I knew that I needed to know exactly what kind of snake it was for the future. So I walked carefully in the direction he pointed. Sure enough, there was a 3 foot black snake leisurely slithering through the front yard. I kept my eyes on the snake while I directed (screamed) for the older girls to open the garage door & grab the shovel, and to bring me my cell phone. My plan was to bring the edge of the shovel down and sever it's head. Nope, didn't work. Instead I found myself pushing the shovel into the thick grass just holding it in one place. It squirmed and really was quite strong as it attempted to push the shovel off of it.

I punched in the numbers on my cell one handed and called my mother who was just a mile down the road. "SNAKE!" Where she says? Is it rattling? I'll be right there.

Rattling? No, it wasn't but does that mean rattle snakes aren't unlikey? I wanted to faint. But there are 5 (screaming) children to be brave for and protect.

My mother arrives and pronounces the snake, "Beneficial." She scooped it up and put it in the bushes at the end of the driveway. A bull snake she thinks. It will eat mice in the yard.

I shooed all the kids indoors. Enough outdoor adventure for the day. Time for some good old suburban normal. And I flipped on the switch of the portable DVD player and poured myself another cup of coffee.

Where was my husband? He was taking 200 lbs of garbage to the dump. Garbage service in the country isn't what it used to be...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Paperless Towels

Have you heard of these? The new homestead is my excuse for buying something new for the kitchen. And perhaps the fact that my kitchen towels aren't so nice any longer.

I bought these off Etsy. They're super light. And I thought they might not hold up constant use here. But they truly are wonderful!
 I toss them into a pretty basket on my counter so they're handy for everyday use!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Funny Kid Comment

Five year old son says, "Mom, will we have a backyard at the farm?"

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Greek Yogurt at Aldi!

I was there today and saw it in the refrigerator section with the regular yogurt. If it's not there check in the speciality section.

My Aldi grocer says that they just started carrying it two weeks ago.  It's not a special buy. But it's still expensive at $0.89 per single serving cup. Hopefully they'll soon add the tubs. But for now we get to choose from strawberry, blueberry and plain.

Yay! This makes me happy. :))

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Part 2, She LIVES to Wash Another Load!

Yes, we did it. The new water pump only took 2 hours to successfully install.
It wasn't difficult. We followed these google directions and voila, a working washing machine.

Of course, I didn't have to get my fingers stinky. I supervised and ran back & forth to read the directions & give instructions.

Thanks to google we didn't have to spend the $100 for a diagnostic appointment with the repairman and further $$$ for the parts & installation.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Kid's Say the Funniest Things!

My 8 year old son says, "Hey Mom, I ate a noun for dinner."


He smiles, "Yup, Fish. It's a Pacific thing."

Monday, August 1, 2011

LG Washing Machine Repair 101, part 1

Did you know that you're supposed to wash out the water pump filter on your machine periodically? This weekend my washing machine started flashing me OE errors and dying mid-cycle. Sunday the emotional chaos here had died down enough for me to take on one more and I took a deep breath and started googling.

OE errors mean something's up with the water pump filter. Generally a good cleaning and ever thing's good to go again. Here's a good video tutorial. It's a yucky job. And you ought to do it more than once ever 5 years. :)) Our filter yielded slimy lint, a cork, polly pocket parts, rocks, candy wrappers and the missing key to the filing cabinet!

HURRAY, the machine ran a short cycle (empty) successfully. Happily I loaded it with the stinky towels from the slimy procedure above and walked away. I made dinner. I made a phone call to my mom bragging about my ability to get the machine fixed. I heard the awful ding ding of the machine erroring out, again.

 BOO! It stopped half way through again. It won't respond to all efforts to revive it. And it developed an awful "rar rar rarrring" sound. The water pump is deceased.

The shock of a $$$ service call inspired me to google again. Of course our warranty ran out in February. But I found parts. I'm overnighting those parts. I have a tutorial online to help supervise the Mister installing those parts. :))  Tomorrow.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Interview Update

So Friday's interview was a bust. Pretty much not going to happen. But still waiting for the "Dear John" letter. Very disappointing.

But there's another interview this week with another company.

So it continues.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Good bye Grandma Great

Grandma Great Louise passed away last night. She was 97 years old.

I remember her best for her handmade blankets and kitchen items that she gifted me & my husband when we got married. Every year we'd get a new batch of crocheted warshrags and scrubbies. They were simple gifts that were greatly appreciated and enjoyed.

When she stopped making them because her hands hurt too much there was fiber craft revival amongst the daughters and daughters-in-laws. No one wanted to be without these wonderful items that made kitchen duties more pleasant. She shared her patterns and admired our results.

We love you Grandma Louise. rest in peace.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Connecting....Connecting ....Connecting!

4H is on the schedule for this fall! I'm so excited. I was worried about finding a group of homeschooler to connect with in our new home. I know they're a lot of homeschoolers in our new area, but it's sometimes like trying a game of clue to figure out who, what and where.

There's now 4H. Science is now full of possibilities for hands-on activities. And the group is large, 60 kids!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Making Tarn!

Lots of our old tshirts aren't making it into the garbage! Instead they're getting recycled into t-shirt yarn, or tarn. The best method, easiest way to make tarn is North Jersey Mom's way.

I'm using my tarn to make a Mason Dixon Dizzy Rug.
3 more loops to get it to the size I need. And several more t-shirts are required. A very easy pattern so far.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

How Many Pounds of Stuff do YOU Have?

How much are you willing to pay to move your stuff from here to there? $0.50?  $0.35?


We've only lived here 3 years and I can't believe how much things have accumulated.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Interviewing Progress

The 3rd interview is done. And it doesn't appear this job is for him.

And another application was received yesterday, and submitted, from a new prospective employee.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Last year right after doing the kid's school physicals we joined Shaklee. Primarily it was because of my son's blood test results. His IG results were 5000.

We've known since he was 9 months old that chemicals in products gave him migraines. The poor little dude's forehead was scratched bloody that his pediatrician and I were brainstorming what else we could do for him. In addition to having him on Nutramigen formula (we're an adoptive family) and donor breast milk  it was suggested switch to cloth diaper & use hypoallergenic laundry soaps & household cleaners. It was November and I remember groaning because this would mean starting this month long experiment over the holiday travel season. I called my mother or the down-low on cloth diapering. And I joined Melaleluca. After a month it was so obvious our little fellow was feeling much better. He slept better, his forehead healed, and he actually smiled.

Fast forward to last year. We were no longer we part of Melaleuca because of the mandatory monthly minimum orders were so costly. And my stockpile of soaps I'd ordered to fill those monthly orders had run out. His blood test results also indicated that the store bought organic, hypo-allergenic free laundry soaps & household cleaners weren't helping.  I needed to do something and quick.

Fortunately my friend Liz was a Shaklee distributor and there was a promotional for the Shaklee Get-Clean starter kit. We decided to give it a one year test. We threw out all the old cleaning products and started using Shaklee exclusively. We also started all our children on Incredivites & the Optiflora Probiotics. And we started hearing encouraging feedback about our son from family and friends. He has become remarkably light hearted, smiling, friendly, social, and interactive!

His blood test was yesterday. I'm impatient to see the results. I know it will be better because I can see it in him. There will probably be more changes we'll have to do to bring his results even closer to normal. So far our experiment has been successful in that we see a huge improvement in his overall well-being.

Update! His IG score this year was 3263! That's a 1700 change for the better.
Yes, this improvement is directly and solely because we started using Shaklee cleaning products. We'll have done more allergy testing to get to the bottom of the rest since this number is still very high. We do know how that he's also highly allergic to grass, weeds, tree, mold. Mildly allergic to cats, dogs, and dust mites.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Modern Inconveniences

We just, just, got our electricity restored after Monday's very brief and very powerful storm. Yes it's Friday night. Five very long and intermittently hot days.

I couldn't wash clothes. So I went to the laundromat. I did 15 loads of laundry one evening. Ugh. I haven't used a laundromat in 18 years. It hasn't changed much.

I discovered that washing dishes by hand isn't so bad. In fact I think I'm going to keep that habit going because I like not having dishes pile up in the sink. Smile.

I enjoyed getting to know our neighbors better. It's amazing that we live so close to each other and yet have so little contact. We shared our generator with the neighbor's on one side. And lent another generator to their neighbor. Yes we're geekly that with with generators. The Mister has two. I will never again tease him. His generator saved my year's supply of organic chickens.

It isn't necessary to have a large screen TV. The little portable dvd player did an admirable job of entertaining my crew of five, at least until the battery died.

I learned that I should probably always make sure my cell phone has charged at least once in the past day. That way when power goes out and the generator's not yet fueled and running I won't have to sit with the hand-crank emergency radio charging it. It takes for-never to charge  that way.

Hot water is possible no matter the power loss when you have a gas water heater. Yay!

Water is possible if you're not on your own well. We had a hose running over the fence for our neighbors behind us since they live in unincorporated and have a well.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Today's Funniest Moments

We're having a garage sale and I'm chatting with a lady who walked by pushing a stroller with her baby. My 4 yo comes out and starts bopping around while this lady and I are chatting. The lady's baby starts to cry. The lady turns to leave. 

And then dd says loudly to me, "WOW! That was the scariest baby I've ever seen!" 

A little while later another lady with a 2 yo is standing there and my same dd comes up to him and starts chatting. The 2 yo says something to her. She look at me totally astonished, "He can talk!" We fostered a little 2 yo boy this year for 10 months and he couldn't talk yet so that's where that came from.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Family Funnies

During a recent trip to Walmart with just the two youngest children, Cupcake age 4 & Mountaineer age 6. While careening the cart around the corner on 2 wheels fighting to hold the 100 pounds of kid upright while  looking for smore fixings for the 4th, Cupcake comments, "Mommy you are so silly!"

Mountaineer pipes up, "Cupcake, you musn't call Mommy silly! Here's how you talk to Mommies." And then in his most cherubic-like voice, "Mom, you are SO beautiful!"


And  yes, I finally did find the graham crackers which weren't on the end cap with the 'mellows & chocolate.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


The Mister starts a six week internship today with a local financial crisis planning company. It's a very different field than his previous project management job in telecommunications.  Finance has been a huge interest for him, a hobby of sorts, for years. It has the potential to be an interesting job.

Internship = no money. But he's still getting his severance so it's all good. Why an internship? The president of the company and my husband will be working together to see if his skills and financial savvy are a mutual fit. At least that's all I understand at the moment.

They know we're moving in 8 weeks and they're interested in my husband telecommuting from our new location and expanding their business into that area.  Right now out of state/country clients skype into the office for their consultations.

It's was a weird morning here to see the going-to-work routine again. I'm glad though for the opportunity for him to work. Unemployment really does a number on a guy's confidence and self-esteem.

There was a job application last week to Edward Jones that he's excited about too. If there's an interview from that we'll be thrilled.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Thinking Hard About Making Money

Hubby's unemployment has all the rest of us thinking of ways to make money to help. It's really a two-pronged approach, making money where we're at and how to make money in the future from the farm. These ideas aren't to replace Dear Hubby's income. He's faithfully still searching and applying for jobs daily.

Next weekend we're having a huge garage sale. Each of our 5 kids wants to sell some of their own stuff too and make a bit of cash. We'll use colored stickers to keep straight who sold how much so they get their money.

Craigslist for selling bigger items has been wonderful. So far we've been able to sell furniture, baby items, and dusty exercise equipment.

It's far more fun to plan for "when we're at the farm." :) My parents & I like to dream. Farmer's marketing, bee keeping, teaching classes on preserving garden produce, and u-pick raspberry & blackberry &  blueberry patch are a few of the ideas we've spent not too little time discussing.

One of Dear Hubby's job applications this past week was very exciting to him. It would be a supreme fit. Please pray.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Farm Funnies

My daughter and I drove to Grandpa's farm Friday. Late that night we were woken up to a horrendous caterwaulering in the barnyard.

"WHAT is that? Is it a coyote?"

Nope, it's a couple of barnyard cats mating. 

"Oh. That sounds painful!" 

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Packing Up

Packing up for a move is is overwhelming. But with a tip from Susan in KY on The Well-Trained Mind Forums  perhaps chaos won't rule. She suggested using different colored duct tape for each room/area so that when things come off the truck they go to the right spot. How clever!

I never knew there were so many colors and patterns to choose from in duct tape! The kids really got into the choosing the different colors. And although the actual move is 10 weeks away they were jazzed to start packing now.

We picked our colors based on which room they'll go into at our farm house.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011


We're headed to our Cherith, or Elijah's brook. Other's have preached sermons on this time in the prophet Elijah's life more eloquently than I will ever be able to summarize. But I will try to here to put down some of our journey and how it began.

It was last Sunday my husband and I were in a new church who's pastor preached on this subject. We entered the building physically. But our hearts and minds were fully occupied with our personal life and the many questions and doubts caused by my husband's  unemployment. So many hard discussions we'd had about options. But which option to take? None of them without out the twists and turns that make it impossible to see which is best.

It was a divine appointment last Sunday. I don't think I've ever heard about Cherith before. It's a place to which God brought Elijah for three years to sit by the brook. It was a maturing time during which God asked Elijah to set aside his current life to allow God to prepare him for future events and ministry.

It was encouraging to hear the pastor's words. We have been praying that God would intervene in our decisions if they should be in conflict with His will. We have prayed for direction and feel that we have received it. For now God's provision our family is North.

"We are pressed on every side by troubles, but not broken. We are perplexed because we don't know why things happen as they do, but we don't give up and quit. (2 Cor. 4:8).

"Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you." 1 Peter 5:7

Here's a more complete sermon on Elijah's time by the brook Cherith.