Tuesday, November 9, 2010

To Stitch or not to stitch, that is the question.

Perspective.  It is all about perspective.  A mother of one or two kids, runs to the doctor to sew up every little cut.  Now that I am a mother of five, I have seen my fair share of stitches and know when they are necessary and how many they will need.  But here's the thing the older and/or country doctors will tell you that the city/younger ones will not.  Most cuts don't need stitches.  You just need the wound cleaned and kept free from dirt and bacteria (that means $2 in bacitracin and bandaids).  Your body is made to heal itself.  So this is the decision I had to face today.  Should I take Keener to the ER?  Honey is gone, which means all of us would have to go.  It is not a decision to be made lightly.  A trip to the ER  for stitches will cost you 4 hours of frustration, $700, 5 whiney kids, AND whatever disease you happen to catch!!
Keener's forehead got sliced when she fell off of brother Christopher's shoulders onto a gravel driveway. This is 4th time I have seen this head injury in my kids.  This was a"borderline" case.  A country doctor would not sew it up, but a city doctor would.  I decided to save myself the trip, the money, the sanity and the health.  I got Keener all cleaned up, gave her some arnica, and some hugs.  Truly this is all she needed.  The bleeding stopped eventually and she is healing fine.

---and in case you are wondering.  Her hair is that short and crazy.   She keeps cutting her hair.  It is impossible to keep scissors away from her.  So for now, she looks like a boy.  and that's okay with me, I love her to pieces even if she has crazy hair

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Again and again and again!

Not Again!  For the 10th time this year I have gone to start my car and the battery was dead.  Now you might think this is caused by a bad battery.  Wrong!  It is caused by my five little "ducks".  My little ducks are perfectly capable of opening a car door, but apparently closing the door is something they "forget" to do.  Please God, explain to me how you can open a door, still have your hand on it as you climb out of the car and "forget" that you are TOUCHING the door?! The problem is that I do not pass by their side of the car on my way to the house.  Then I might be able to alleviate this problem.
      Now with all this "experience" with dead batteries, I should be working for a car service and jumping cars for a living.  Uh, not quite.  I have a little too much of the "Scarlet Ohara" syndrome.  What is that?  Well, Scarlet is perfectly capable of doing anything she sets her mind to doing, but why do it yourself when you can get someone else to do it right?
     Hmm... right?
     Well of course!  I don't really want to get my hands dirty and stick them into the engine of a car, hoping that I don't electrocute myself or make the car explode.  I know how to set up the jumper cables but have never once done it.  I mean really, why?  Like I said about the flat tire, we have a car service with USAA, I have a Honey, and great neighbors.  But in this case, it was the unlikely but very lovable handyman who came by to give me an estimate for fixing the water infiltration problem in my house.  See what I mean about the Scarlet syndrome?  He barely knows me, yet got tasked with the job because he was "lucky" enough to stop by before my neighbors got home or I had a chance to call USAA.  And he was able to fix the water problem at the house also.   Yeah!

Monday, November 1, 2010

More Halloween.

Here is a picture of the kids from Halloween.
Keener was a Cinderella Princess, of course yesterday at the Navy game, she was an adorable elephant.  Elizabeth was an orange witch, Rolo made the cheapest costume ever (thank you Rolo!!) and was a robot.  It was only $2.50 for the can of spray paint.  Honey says I should add in the case of beer he "had" to drink.  Haha Honey, but no.  You don't get to count the recycled box!    Christopher is a Jedi, but the costume doubles as a monk outfit, so he was a monk for the All-Saints party.
Baby Tybee dressed up as a baby - I know, not very original, but it was COLD out.  So we had to go for practical.
It was a crazy  and busy day; church, lacrosse game, All Saints party with homeschool Group, Halloween Party with neighbors, trick or treating, then Honey left to go to Norfolk, Virginia for his two weeks of Reserve duty.  Needless to say, we were all exhausted and literally fell into bed! One Holiday down, two more to go!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Halloween Message

Pumpkin Carving with the kids last night.  Last year we did not get to do it because of the not so lovely swine flu.  I am very grateful that Elizabeth and Christopher are old enough to carve their own.  That only leaves 3 for Honey and I to do.
Halloween message from the kids.

Maybe we'll pick out some costumes?  We only have a few days left....
Oh time, where do you go?  I always seem to have so little.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Back to reality

After yesterday's blown tire, I prioritized my life and went to get the stand mixer fixed. What?  the mixer?  Well, yeah!  It is annoying to not have waffles in the freezer for the kids when they don't want cereal for breakfast; or be able to make bagels for breakfast, or make a cake!  I really love that stand mixer and it makes cooking so much faster.  I did not grow up with one of these and I wonder why my mother didn't ever get one.  I never have to stand around whipping up eggs or cream. It always seems to take FOREVER to stiffen up egg whites with a hand mixer.   Did you ever wonder who actually figured it out in the first place?  I mean I have no patience to do it with an electric hand mixer, but think about how long it must take with just a fork, Ughhhhhh!!!!!    Anyway, with a full size spare on the car,  what is the rush with fixing the tire?  Well this is coming from the lady whose only care about the car is that it move and have operational A/C.  The sales men always hate me when I go to buy a car.  The first question they ask is what color do I want.  What color?  Who cares?! I just don't want to be living at the repair shop!
So the mixer is at the repair shop and the car will make it there another day.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


I am trying to limit my trips out of the house so that Tybee can get some sleep and be on a somewhat regular schedule, but I am trying to get the rest of the kids out of the house so that they are not stir crazy.  So today we planned a library trip.  I prepared a list of books that I want the kids to read, and they gathered up books to return to the library. Upon arriving in the library parking lot and hopping out of the car, I heard a loud hiss coming from the back end of the car.  It sounded like it was coming from the tire.  As I looked at the tire, it seemed to be deflating.
Not good!!!
Not good at all!
 I told Elizabeth and Rolo to quickly get back in the car.  We needed to get home FAST!  The good Lord knows I DO NOT want to get stranded with a newborn and a feisty 3 year old!  So I safely drove home (notice how I do not say quickly!).  I have this general rule that I'd rather ruin a rim than get stranded or change a tire in traffic.  I parked in front of our house to make it easier for USAA's car service guy to change the tire.  It was pancake flat by the time I got home.   Can I tell you how much I would HATE to change a tire?  I know how to do it, but why would I want to?  I mean we have the motorist assistance, why not use it?  Besides,  I don't have a jack, my jack slipped and broke 2 years ago when my stepdad was changing a flat tire for me (thus the parking on the street and NOT on the sloped driveway).  I know that I can get a replacement jack but again, WHY?  I DO NOT want to change a tire!  Patience is a virtue, and I am willing to wait for the USAA guy.  I also know that it would take me longer to get out a jack, read the directions, jack up the car, get the bolts off and get the tire changed out; than it would for me to make a phone call and wait.  So 45 minutes later, I had my spare tire on and clean hands.  Much nicer!

Friday, August 6, 2010

It's a Girl!

We are very happy to announce that at 8:22 am we now have another beautiful little daughter.
7 lbs 10 oz and 20.5 inches of sweetness!

Since she is our tiebreaker we have been jokingly calling her Tybee.  Now the girls outnumber the boys!
I have been very blessed with easy  & fast labors and this was no exception, I only had 3 hours of labor!  I am very grateful to  my sweet Honey and my good friend Mary for being my birth coaches.  They make all the difference in the world.  And it was Mary's anniversary too!  I hope she liked her present!

The funniest moment occured when we arrived at the hospital.  We happened to arrive when all the scheduled inductions and C-sections were checking in.  When Honey announced (via intercom to the L & D desk) that we needed to check in, they assumed that we were part of the scheduled group and told Honey to have me take a seat in the waiting room.  Honey replied, "YOU WANT my wife to DELIVER in the waiting room?!?!?!?"  The very flustered staff quickly let me through the doors and into a delivery room!  It still makes me laugh because Honey is NOT one to say something rash or raise his voice at people.  He must have been really anxious.

How's this for fate? I got the same labor and delivery room that I was placed in two months ago when I had early contractions! Previous Post

Honey and I with our new little princess.

Big Sister is happy with her new little sister.

Christopher loves his little sister.

Keener is so happy to have someone to boss around!!

My three littlest ones.  So sweet!

Nana and her newest little grandbaby.

Keener's Godmother Mary meets Tybee.

  Our new little princess is healthy and is growing big despite a little jaundice (I think all babies must have jaundice).  Now to just enjoy her and let the other kids love on their new sister.

One last picture from the hospital.
Uh, What day is it?  Shouldn't the birthing center at the hospital at least get this right????
Made me laugh.  Hope it brings you a smile too!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Every single day!

Like every other parent that I know around here, we have had a swim or dive meet every night this week.  Add to that, the morning practices and we basically live at the pool.   Having not grown up in this culture of "Your life revolves around the pool during the summer", I am a little mystified and exhausted.  I would just not bother, but it leaves my kids with no other children to play with.  All the other kids are doing the same thing! And I am not kidding!  I only know of 3 children NOT on a summer swim team.  And honestly for a set daily schedule in the summer and a way to make sure the kids are getting exercise, the price is great. at least it basically sucks up July and leaves August alone. So normally August is very relaxing. (Unless I am silly enough to sign up the kids for football or cheerleading!- Not on your life!  The 6 year olds practice 4 days a week!  Seriously?  Why does a 6 year old need that much practice?)   Thankfully we have friends whose father played football in college and he insists that his boys not play until 6th grade.  Thank you Lord for leading them into my life. I am so grateful that I can have the same rule and "prove" that you can still play football in college if you start 6 years later!  I am so grateful for other parents advice and council.  It is things like this that make it easier for me to be a parent.  Who said you can't use peer pressure against your kids?  Probably the best thing you can do is band together.

***Don't know why this didn't get posted months ago-but this is from July 15th, but posted November 19 2010

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

My little fish swimming-video

I thought I'd try using the imac's imovie and try adding music to this video of Keener swimming (as mentioned on June 25th) at the pool.  Imovie was quite a challenge, but not bad for a first try with 1000 distractions.  She can swim a bit farther but it was quite challenging to be the camera woman and swim coach at the same time.

The music is from Taylor Swift.  I just love her songs.  The song is "">Best Day" from the album Fearless

Monday, July 12, 2010

A nice day.

We are enjoying having N♡-'s sister (L♡♡) visit with us this summer from Spain.  It is hard to believe that it has already been two weeks since we picked her up at the airport.  Since we have been living at the pool with swim and dive team, I have not been able to take her as many places.  I am also a LOT slower this last month and the heat is getting to me.  Of course with 100 degree days, I think the heat is getting to everyone!  So today I made an effort to get L♡♡ to DC to see the White House and the Jefferson Memorial.  We got very lucky with parking-yeah!! yeah!!! yeah!!! My rule is you take 20 minutes of driving around for free or metered parking and after that you go home or pay.

Constitution Hall.  
We got to park here- this is barely a block from the White House.  See what I mean about getting a great parking spot!!
Elizabeth, Christopher, Rolo, Keener and L♡♡.  Thankfully it wasn't crowded.  Notice there is NOONE else in the photo- not a normal thing.
The White House.  
The  1st lady's vegetable garden is off to the left, but not visible in this picture.

Christopher and Elizabeth
Is it just me or are there a TON of fences in DC!

Of Course no matter where you go, all it takes is 
a simple flower to inspire a child. 
It just proves God knows best.

The National Christmas Tree without all the gaudy decorations. 

Crazy Picture of kids at backside of Jefferson Memorial.  

In Front of Memorial

A Memorial can be fun.

and a little "arty" too.

And to make the day even better for me.  They KNEW who Jefferson was, remembered seeing his home last year and that he sent Lewis and Clark off on their expedition.  Ahhh, a little reward for their teacher!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

5 weeks left! Venture to make a guess?

I went to the OB appointment today and the time is coming near for our newest family member to show up.  A very active little one.  I had bruised ribs last week.  I have noticed that if they are active in, then they are active out, so I think I will be running from day 1 with this little one.  Luckily both baby and I are healthy.  I am a LOT like a waddling duck, but it is always worth it.  I am just grateful for our local pool this summer because otherwise I would be miserable in the heat.  It has been difficult to get anything done when it is 100 degrees out.  I do actually like the heat, I say it gets the chill of winter out of my bones.   BUT, there can be too much of a good thing, and I think I have reached that point!  I hope you are keeping cool.
 So, as the countdown begins, I thought I'd share my guess on the sex of the baby since we did not find out.  I am convinced it is a boy. Only time will tell if I am right (probably not!) or wrong.  The Chinese calendar is not on my side and has been correct with 3 of my 4 children.  My OB even said that they once checked 150 women against the calendar and it was 100% correct.  Pretty amazing I have to say.  Feel free to leave a prediction.  I'll even venture a weight guess 8 lbs 1 oz.
Let the guessing begin.

UPDATE:  Now I am frustrated, there is another calendar out there.  Which is the right one.  They are similar, but have small differences,  Of course they would be in the month that makes a difference to me!
Here is the other Chinese calendar #2!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Amusement park

          Elizabeth's Girl Scout Troop decided to go to King's Dominion for the day and camp nearby for the evening.  Since L♡♡ was coming to town and we had tickets for an Orioles game the next day; we decided that it would be better for Elizabeth to just meet up with her troop and enjoy the amusement park, but not camp.  This gave us the opportunity to take L♡♡ to the park.  We hoped that she would enjoy all the rides.  Our previous exchange students have enjoyed going.
  Since I am really big and pregnant and would not be able to ride any of the rides and could not handle all the walking or the heat, I got to stay at home and enjoy the crickets chirping, ... I mean the peace and quiet.  Ahhh....  Quiet, what a stranger you have become, PLEASE visit more often!
  Honey took all the kids and here are a few pictures from his day with them.
Keener & Rolo

Christopher and Keener

It looks like they had a great time.  They were exhausted when they got home.

Unfortunately there are not any pictures of Elizabeth because she spent the day with her troop, but I am glad she enjoyed a day with her friends.

Honey did capture a picture of one little creature that I am glad did not get angry with him.
Yuck!  Those skunks really can leave a bad smell.  

Friday, June 25, 2010


Honey's office has an annual picnic which we like to attend because they have found a good combination of location, timing and food.  The location has just the right amount of shade, which should not be discounted because there is nothing worse than a picnic that is hot and miserable.  It also has a playground, ball field and bathrooms close by.  As any parent of little ones knows, there is nothing worse than a LONG walk to a bathroom.
Here are Honey & Elizabeth enjoying the shade.
We took  L♡♡ with us, event though she arrived just yesterday afternoon.  We have a busy first few days planned for her, but we are so glad that she is here.

Keener seems to be having fun with her already!  Goofy Girl, always making silly faces!

Faking it.

Now that summer has started, I live at the pool almost every day.   With swim team and dive team, it is inevitable that I go every day.  Keener  loves going and most spends a lot of time swimming by herself or with the other 2-4 year olds that hang out near the entry steps into the pool.  The main difference is that she is the only one who is able to swim at the age of 3.  Like Rolo, she is 95% self taught.  I learned a lot from Elizabeth and Christopher about how to teach a child to swim.  The biggest mistake that I (and others) make: showing fear.
  Teaching a kid to swim is all about the fake.  You have to pretend that you are not worried about her drowning.  You have to pretend that when she goes under the water and comes up coughing, that your child must have had a wonderful time doing so.  You need to congratulate her on how much fun she must be having.  Tell her that she did a good job putting her face under the water.  Tell her she is a great swimmer. Why?  because, then she will want to do it again.  So how does this work? You have confused your child.  She is thinking "That wasn't very fun, why is Mommy so excited?" Then she becomes interested in making swimming fun.  She has to figure out a way to find the joy.  She also will start to watch the other kids swim and learn from them.  This is not to say that I do not use other swimming devices (the baby swimming ring, the vest, and a swim noodle) to help my kids learn, but "the fake" is my most effective weapon.
    Right now my only problem is the other parents who keep trying to "save" her.  As if I would not be watching my child in the water!  Oh well, they can enjoy their own clinging child pulling down their bathing suit and scratching them to pieces for a few more years, while I enjoy watching mine swim!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Cherry Pie!

       Last Thursday we went strawberry picking and cherry picking at my favorite "pick your own" farm, Homestead Farm.  I just love their farm. They have the sweetest golden retrievers.  They have such a family friendly set-up and are so nice.  And the produce has always been divine.  I went with my neighbor and her girls (seen here before) and I can not believe how beautiful the weather was.  It was in the low 80's and overcast with no humidity and a slight breeze,  Ahhhhh  what a wonderful day!  

     I didn't get to making the cherry pie before  my "fun Thursday."  So I finally made one today.   Keener and Elizabeth pitted all the cherries, Elizabeth measured and mixed the cherries with sugar and flour, while I made the pie crust and assembled the pie and made dinner.   There is nothing like a fresh pie to make you feel better. Yum! Yum! Yum!  

      I generally use the pie recipes in the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook (As my taped, but still falling apart copy can surely attest to!! )  The nice thing about their fruit pie page is that is only calls for the fruit and some flour and sugar to make the filling.  I prefer pies this way because they depend on the fruit for flavor and not a lot of spices or other fillings.  I find that simplicity is best where pie is concerned.  Go make yourself some fresh pie and enjoy that it is summer with a lots of fresh produce to eat.
*****I decided to update this page and add the recipe:

Simple simple Cherry Pie recipe.
  • For filling; Mix 4 cups pitted cherries, 1 cup sugar, & 1/4 cup flour. Pour into favorite uncooked pie shell- in this case I made one with lard (below) so it would be flakey. Cover with top pie shell and decorate if you want. Cook @375 for 30 minutes covered with foil, then 30 more to brown the pie top and voila' yummy pie.  (I of course forgot to cover it for the 1st thirty minutes; so in my case I covered it for the 2nd half of cooking. It still turns out the same.
  • For Double Pie crust - (I use an electric mixer) Mix 2 cups flour & 1/2 tsp salt, add 2/3 cup lard, beat until it looks like peas, add 6 TBS COLD water. Mix 30 seconds or so until mixed. Divide in 2. Roll out one for the bottom crust, put into pie pan. Roll out second crust and cover pie.


Sunday, June 13, 2010

What a day!

       So now that I have had a few days to recover, I should let you know that Thursday was NOT a good day for me.  Early in the morning, I started having contractions and was generally not feeling well.  It just goes to show what happens when you start  thinking "Wow! my contractions have stopped for almost 3 weeks, maybe I'll get a break for the last trimester......" 
I barely was able to make it through the morning, but luckily I had a movie backup for one of my sick days.  We watched Around the World in 80 days.  During the movie I called Honey to say that he might need to come home early because I was not feeling well and was having pretty bad contractions.  We finished the movie and used it for our daily geography and history discussion.  Then we did our daily scripture readings and were all set to start reading Greek Myths and Aesop's Fables. 
  •  We are using D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths which I simply love.  It has useful illustrations that are detailed and pertinent to the myth.  Each myth leads into the next, so there is a cohesive flow to the book.  The kids really love hearing the myths.  We have already read through Usborne's Greek myths book which was a good introduction, but not even close to the quality of D'Aulaire's. 

     I started to realize that I was not going to be able to read.  I was not able to talk during the contractions, NOT a good sign.   My Bradley Childbirth class (all those years ago...) told us that one of the signs to go to the hospital was when you could not speak through a contraction.   Uh Oh!  I told the kids that school was over and to put things away while I called Honey and told him to come home ASAP.  Then I got on the phone with the doctor, and various friends to make arrangements for the kids.   Then the real fun began!
      I got to ride with a very nervous Honey in rush hour traffic while having contractions.  Scary does not even begin to describe the ride.  
     We get to the hospital and darn it all, but NONE of the contractions are showing up on their monitor.  WHAT?!!!  Here I am having regular contractions and not a bleepity bleep one has the decency to show up on the machine!  After 5 hours in the hospital, a lot of prayers, a lot of patience, and a lot of tests, it turns out that I have an infection.  The infection is irritating the uterus causing me to have "non-productive" contractions.  Great!!!! (said with LOTS of sarcasm.)  I could have saved my uterus the time and told it that I was already non-productive.  It wasn't really necessary to prove it to me!
       So now that I have had a few doses of antibiotics, a few war wounds from being a pincushion, and a few days to rest,  I am feeling a lot better.  I am happy to have left the hospital with my baby still growing inside me,  that was the best part of the whole day!!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Playtime in the water.

       Keener has enjoyed playing in the old sandbox and using it as a pool for the summer.  It makes my afternoons easier to have her occupied.  She has a LOT of energy and has a HUGE personality.  Isn't that such a nice way of saying that my child can be a brat?
Since I love her, I accept the good and the bad?!  She is so strong willed that at times I find it hard to balance.  I want her to be the fiercely independent and adventurous person that she naturally is, but I also need her to learn to be respectful and obedient.  It is those fights for obedience that are difficult.  But hopefully with perseverance, I will be able to achieve a happy medium.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Peonies for me

        I love easy flowers and the Peony is certainly one of them.  Easy to care for, beautiful in bloom and low maintenance.  Despite all the variety of flowers that I have growing in the garden,   I do not have any high maintenance plants.
Who wants that?
Who has the time?
      I have developed basic rules for  my yard and gardening and the first one is to limit weeds at all costs.  That is easier done with mulch than with chemicals.  There can never be enough mulch, well,... almost never .
      The next "rule" would be that edging is so overrated!  I avoid that at all costs.  Again, mulch comes in handy.  I just make the flower beds end in mulch and allow several inches of buffer for the lawn mower  and leave the rest alone.
      My non negotiable rule is that I am unwilling to put up with persnickety plants.  If they need special attention, then I do not need them.  The only plants in my garden that fall into this category are roses, which for some reason like me.  I am just lucky I guess.  I have never had any trouble with them, so they get to stay.  There are so many easy plants but here are a few of my favorites:

  • Azalea
  • Butterfly Bush
  • Iris
  • Gladioles
  • Hosta
  • Lirope
  • Lilly- white Easter and Daylilly
  • Native Virginia Honeysuckle
  • Peony
  • Roses
These make up the core group of plants which I have in my yard.  I hope that you enjoy the sunshine and fresh air as much as I do.  Until then,  Happy Gardening!

Monday, May 31, 2010

So what did you do today?

"So, What did you do today?"

"I built a wall"

           Not to outdo Honey, I built another wall in our yard while he was off watching the lacrosse games.  I am a little tired of the backyard looking a little junky.  I have been spending a lot of Honey's time making it look a lot better.  We've moved several Forsythia and hostas and some impatiens against the back fence to make it look better (Our neighbors behind us need to be a lot more inspired with their yard). The never ending pile of mulch (See this post for a picture) is being used to make them look like more formal flower beds.   I am trying to make the backyard be a play area for the kids, but not look only like a play area for the kids.  Along those lines we have gotten outdoor storage for their toys and are trying to make everything else look a little nicer.
      So I thought that since the last wall was fairly easy, I'd try one more little wall to help finish off the other end of the "trash patio."
      This one is next to our side neighbors with whom we are very good friends.  I planted two blueberry bushes behind the new wall and hopefully next year we can share some blueberry pie with them.  Of course, now I have plans to extend to walkway (from the trash patio) around to the back of the house and connect to the back patio.  Poor Honey, just when he thinks he is done....

Lacrosse, Lacrosse and More Lacrosse

Duke beating ND in Overtime 
for their first NCAA Championship.

I have had the pleasure? this weekend of being a lacrosse widow while Honey went to the NCAA championship games in Baltimore. Three days and five games. Christopher went all three days as well.  My only word for this is Obsession.   But I am glad they had fun.

They had a nice kids zone outside that Christopher got to practice shooting at the goal.  Good thing there weren't any scouts, one shot went over the top into the parking lot. Ooops!  

Elizabeth went to the finals on Monday, she likes the game, but 3 days is a little much for her too.  Rolo went the first day, but I had forgotten to send the camera along so I don't have pictures from that day.

Father H came along on Monday too.   

I'm glad everyone had a good time, but now life can get back to "normal".  Whatever that is supposed to mean?!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Month of Miracles.

          Whew!  I'm through with May!  I called this the "Month of Miracles" because baby's chance of surviving if born any day during the month went from 10% to 85%.  What a dramatic difference 5 weeks makes.  I started the month at 25 weeks and ended at 30 weeks.  Every day made a huge difference in the life of my newest little one.  I am very excited to have 10 weeks left and looking forward to meeting the newest little family member.
      I just hope I can stand the heat of summer.  I love the heat and hate it at the same time.  I try every year to not turn the A/C on until June 1st and so far so good.  It seems silly, but I think that I should try to get myself adjusted to the heat a little bit.  Besides, I do love the fresh air and I love just having the doors open so the kids can run in and out.  It eliminates the "CLOSE THE DOOR!!" rant that I am forced to make when the A/C is on.  I love hearing the birds, squirrels, crickets and  the sweet smells of summer like honeysuckle, lilac, roses, gardenias.  Mmmmm, makes me want a glass of sun tea, a pool and a good book.  I hope your summer is starting off nicely too.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Yard work

           Well, I've put Honey to work in the yard.  It is only fair, he didn't "get" to do anything last year.   As I said in a previous post, he built me a little trash patio for storing our recycling container, trash containers, hoses and such. I am very pleased with the outcome.  It is nice to not have a huge muddy mess to deal with.
This is an updated picture of the Astilbe and Hostas that are beside the side door.  Much better!  

           Since he did such a great job, I decided that my vegetable patch needed to have a little more structure  to it.  I am trying to use the vegetable patch as a small continuous homeschooling science and gardening lesson.  We planted the seeds in little starter trays but the plants were quickly outgrowing their temporary home.  After talking about the terrain and my needs, we decided that a small wall would be ideal.  I went to Home Depot and got the stackable wall "bricks".  Thankfully there were people there to load the cart and the car.  That stuff is HEAVY!
            I am very grateful that Honey is so meticulous about things being level.  It made the wall look great and I am very proud of him.  The bottom row took about an hour to do but it was worth it when the next rows went up so fast.   With the bottom row level the next two rows quickly (10 minutes) were added for a very nice wall for a mere $80.

Elizabeth and I quickly got the plants in and voila' our vegetable garden.  Now we just need to watch it grow!!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Poor Puttycat!

My poor cat is "loved" very much by Keener.  He now does not even bother to run away, although he is getting better at hiding ahead of time.  Along with her siblings, Puttycat is getting the dressed up, riding in the babydoll carriage and made to play with the "other" stuffed animals.

 He also gets carried "child style" (She child carries him around his waist so that half of him is flopping over her arms and the other half is dangling).  I think with all this "love" the cat is earning a faster path to heaven than the rest of us!
I think his eyes say it all.  And Puttycat, I agree!!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

Our Priest printed this in the weekly bulletin, so I cannot take credit for finding it myself, but this is so beautiful that it is the simplest way to say Happy Mother's Day to my wonderful mother and all the other mother's.  May you have a very blessed and happy Mother's day!

The Most Important Person
on earth is a mother. She
cannot claim the honor of
having built Notre Dame
Cathedral. She need not. She
has built something more
magnificent than any
cathedral-a dwelling for an
immortal soul, the tiny
perfection of her baby's
body…The angels have not
 been blessed with such a
grace. They cannot share in
God's creative miracle to bring
new saints to Heaven. Only a
human mother can. Mothers
are closer to God the Creator
than any other creature; God
joins forces with mothers in
performing this act of
creation…What on God's
good earth is more glorious
than this: to be a mother?

-Joseph Cardinal Mindszenty

Friday, May 7, 2010

Rolo becomes a littly "Gappy"

Rolo lost the other of his top teeth and for a little while will have that precious "gappy" look.  I just think it is adorable.

This last tooth was one that did not want to come out, but luckily it finally did.  It's fun to watch the kids go by the milestones and sad at the same time.  You want to savor every day that you have with them and enjoy them being kids for a minute, but too often daily tasks get in the way.  I am going to try to enjoy that sweet smile for the few weeks while it lasts before the new teeth come.  Keep up the smiling Rolo!!!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Pebbles and Pearl

 A good mother.

My neighbor had a pregnant horse named Pebbles (Okay, technically a she's pony; but to me it looks like a horse!)  Pebbles went into labor and my neighbor got stuck at the barn without her cell phone charger, so in anticipation of a long night,  I brought the needed charger out to her late Sunday night.  I am very much a night person, so to me it is not a problem.  Elizabeth (also a night person) went with me.  While I was there Pebbles did not have her foal, but I decided that letting Elizabeth sleep at the barn on "baby watch" could be a learning experience.  Let's be honest, who wouldn't want to see a foal born? So I let Elizabeth sleep at the barn on bales of hay with my neighbor.  Much to poor Elizabeth and my neighbor's dismay, the foal was not born that night,  and they had to come home.  The foal was not born the next night either.  Finally Pearl was born on Tuesday night.   She is a beautiful little foal, and fits her name perfectly.  Elizabeth went to the barn and took the pictures for me.  I have yet to see Pearl.    So thanks Elizabeth for the pictures, I can not wait to see her.  There is something so precious about a baby, human or animal,  it is still amazing what God can create.
        Sweet Pearl 

Mother and baby

Here is a wonderful and famous hymn to remind us of the simple beauty of  creation. (A link is included if you wish to also hear it)

All Things Bright and Beautiful

Text: Cecil Frances Alexander 
 Refrain:   All things bright and beautiful, 
 all creatures great and small, 
 all things wise and wonderful:  
 the Lord God made them all.

1. Each little flower that opens, 
 each little bird that sings, 
 God made their glowing colors, 
 and made their tiny wings.  

2. The purple-headed mountains, 
 the river running by, 
 the sunset and the morning 
 that brightens up the sky.  

3. The cold wind in the winter, 
 the pleasant summer sun, 
 the ripe fruits in the garden:  
 God made them every one.  

4. God gave us eyes to see them, 
 and lips that we might tell 
 how great is God Almighty, 
 who has made all things well.