Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Wednesday Morning Run-Down

  • I am hearing...Kaya and Luna as they play with their Calico Critters, complete with little, squeaky animal voices.
  • I am seeing...the sun coming through the windows and that same Chickadee coming by every few minutes to peck at the glass.
  • I am smelling...the woodstove going yet again because it was a chilly 60 degrees in the house this morning.
  • I am thankful for...the fact that we homeschool yet again. This morning I read a heart-breaking story about a little 5 year old boy in Florida who was completely humiliated by his teacher. She had him stand in front of the class as each child said something about him that they didn't like. Then she had the students vote on whether he should be kicked out of the class. By a 14-2 vote, he was voted out of his class. Unbelieveable. You can read about it here: http://www.tcpalm.com/news/2008/may/24/30gtteacher-lets-students-vote-out-classmate-5/ While I know there are some great schools out there, I also know first hand how sometimes seemingly small issues in elementary school can impact a person well into their adult life.
  • I am looking forward to....some warm weather. It is in the 40's outside today and I would love some 70's!

I'll add a few pictures. On Sunday, we were driving when Kaya spotted this goose family from the car window. We pulled over and watched them for a while and they were really cute. Jay has made awesome headway on the yard. I wish I had good before pictures because there is such a big difference! When we first moved in, pretty much everything you see in the these pictures was trees and scrubby brush and thorny bushes. There wasn't much yard to speak of. Jay cut down a few trees, lots of saplings, the thorny bushes and poison ivy. He dug out the stumps and then leveled eveything out. Now, we need to find a place for the leftover pile of dirt and roots and then get some grass seed laid out.







Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Little Video From the Weekend

Here's a video I forgot to upload on Saturday. This is one of Luna's favorite things to do outside. If she starts at one point on our driveway, she can make it quite a distance down the driveway and then down a slight hill in the side yard. Then she asks for help in dragging the bike back up, then down again, over and over. I have to laugh, too, because this little bike has been ridden by both of her older sisters and is still kicking. video

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Our Sunny and Muddy Saturday

We were invited to a picnic party today but Jay was presented with the opportunity to borrow a tractor this weekend to pull out some stumps and do some work on our property. I thought the girls might still want to go, but who wants to pass up playing in HUGE holes in the yard? The call of the dirt and mud kept us home and we ejoyed a great day.




Sunny also enjoyed this sunny day. Our "little" buddy is all grown up now!


I snapped a few pictures of some flowers that have come up in our yard.








Around 1 or 2 in the afternoon, Luna was ready for a nap but was not going to succumb. You can see her tired eyes in this picture, but she stayed up at least another hour before I could get her to come in to sleep.





Who can resist mud?



Finally, I did get Luna to sleep and after dinner the girls had a little friend come over. The cherry on the top of a fun day! The three older girls went for a walk in the woods.


As the sun was setting, two little princesses played fetch with the Royal Dogs.













Please Keep Serenity in Your Prayers

I just found out that one of my online friends discovered that their little 21 month old baby girl has Leukemia. Our Luna Blue is the same age and it just put a pit right in my stomach to read about this. I can't even imagine what it must be like to face this news. Please keep baby Serenity in your prayers.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

A Great Day for Some Painting!

Kaya decided that today was a great day for some painting. She wanted to use the watercolors that Grandma got her. (Thanks, Grandma!!!) I wasn't wanting to have to get Luna into play clothes or run a bath for her this afternoon, so I set her up with the "painting" technique I came up with when Kaya was a toddler. I let her choose some construction paper, put a little bit of water in a bowl and gave her two Q-tips. This is a great, virtually mess-free way for the little ones to practice painting. It is also neat to watch as their artwork disappears when the paper dries. You can use the same sheet of paper over and over again. I thought it was so cute how Luna Blue stuck her tongue out when she painted.





Here are Kaya's two paintings. The first one was using a Waldorf-inspired "wet on wet" technique. If you wet the paper before you start, the colors bleed and blend in interesting ways.









I also have to share my "Cheap Thrills" moment from yesterday. My poor, old Birkestocks were on their last days. The foodbed was all cracked and ripped, the toes were starting to flip and flop when I walked and it was sort of embarassing. I was trying to hold off on buying new shoes right now, but the time was nearing. Yesterday, I had to drop off a bag of outgrown clothes at the little, tiny Thrift Store in town. I don't usually check there often because I haven't had great luck there in the past. But, Nico was needing some pants and I decided to go in. Lo and Behold, I found a brand new pair of Birkenstocks, not even the tiniest scuff mark on the soles or any signs of wear and in MY size! Whoot!! I also found two pairs of jeans for Nico. Total purchase price ~ $1.00!!! :happy dance: Score!!



Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I've Been Tagged!

I was tagged by my friend, Val, who writes the blog Hobbies of a Domestic Goddess. The subject of the tagging is to write 10 reasons why you blog. For me, it would be a stretch to come up with ten reasons, but I will share what I have come up with.
  • Mainly, I blog because I am horrible in keeping up with personal emails and phone calls. I don't get a ton of free, uninterrupted time throughout my days. So, in order to keep friends and family up to date with stories, thoughts and pictures, I figured that keeping a blog would be the best way to go.
  • I like to look back through my own blog and remember the highs and lows of those documented days.
  • I like the idea that I may have informed or inspired others when they read about our homeschooling adventures or alternative lifestyle choices.
  • I like to read other blogs to keep up with my friends and to learn more about subjects I am interested in.

See, I didn't think I would come up with ten, but those that the reasons why I (try to) keep up with our blog.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Eight Years Ago Today

Eight years ago today, I was at a music festival selling costume wings with my best gal pal, Jessica. I had noticed a dreadlocked hottie who was with my drum-making friend, David. They also had a booth and were selling drums and blown glass. I was instantly drawn to him, but feeling a bit shy and overwhelmed with the butterflies I was getting in my stomach when I was around him. Thankfully, Jess served as a go-between and told me that he was interested in me. I sucked it up and calmed myself enough to go and talk to him. Wow, talk about electricity. Even just standing next to him, the voltage that ran through me was incredible. We were pretty much inseperable from that moment on. Later in the day, I was introduced to his chubby little toddler, Nico Sage. She was such a cutie, dancing to the music and loving on her Daddy. That night, Jay and I went back to the campsite and had some good laughs and drinks by the fire. Even though he totally melted my sneakers (while trying to be a gentleman and dry them off as it had rained that day) I still was falling for him. Hard.

The strongest memory I have from that weekend is that it was overcast and rainy. Though, as soon as we were side by side the world seemed to brighten. I remember that the first few times I experienced it, I thought to myself, "Sweet! The sun is going to come out!" but when I looked up it was still grey and cloudy. It was just something about being in Jay's company that brightened everything around me.

Eight years later, I am so thankful for the fact that our paths crossed. I can honestly say that each year that we are together gets better and better and I am looking forward to a lifetime with the man I adore. Happy Anniversary, Jay!
This morning, I was roused from my slumber by a strange noise. It was a random little scratching at my window and I opened my eyes to see a chickadee trying to get in. As I made my morning coffee and and logged on to read my email and blog-roll, he came to the other windows of the house as well. Chickadees are probably my favorite birds, they are so expressive and friendly. I took a few videos as this little guy continued with his odd actions. I am pretty sure he is trying to scare off the other male chickadee he saw in the reflection. He took a break for a while and now he is at it again, pecking and scratching at the windows.

I'll share a few other random pics from the last few days. I couldn't resist when I saw our kitties, Sunny and Pepper, snuggled together on the couch. When we decided to bring another fur-baby into the house, we were initially going to get just one. Then, we thought it might be good to have each of the older girls choose a kitten. I am SO glad we changed our mind and got two. They are so sweet and loving and attached to one another. Just like human siblings, they occasionally pester each other but overall they are true buddies. Aren't they cute?
And lastly, a cute picture of Luna Blue nursing her baby doll. She is really into playing with her babies and it makes me smile to see her loving on them and nursing them.




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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sunday Rundown

  • I am thankful for....the fact that Jay seems to be better today. He slept from early evening and through the night and woke up better. Maybe it is time to admit my cooking skills aren't what they're cracked up to be? *lol*
  • I am listening to...the sound of the Baby Mozart movie Luna is watching as she tries to put one of her diapers (or as she calls them, "boops") on her doll. She was bummed to miss out on church this morning but she still has a few spots on her arm and I didn't want to spread the pox around the church play room.
  • I am smelling...another cup of hazlenut coffee brewing and hints of the fire in the woodstove on this chilly day.
  • Outside my window I see....drizzling rain that is threatening to canel our plans to go to a picnic/concert this afternoon.
  • I am feeling...slightly encouraged by a positive dialog with Nico's bio-mom yesterday and hopeful that there may still be hope to build back the bridge of communication and cooperation.
  • My plans for the day...If we cannot make it to the picnic this afternoon, I hope to do some baking with the girlies and perhaps break out the Yahtzee and Uno for a Family Game Night.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Just a Few Pictures







I took a few pics of some plants and flowers in the yard before the rain came rolling in. I love Columbine!

A Scrambled Saturday

The weather cannot seem to decide exactly what it is going to do. One minute it is sunny and warm, then the clouds and rain come barreling in, then back to sunny and blue skies. It is making it hard to do the yardwork we had planned and for the girls to play outside.

During a break in the rain after dinner, Jay went out to get a little something done and came back in 20 minutes later and looking green. All of a sudden, he started feeling sick to his stomach like he was going to throw up. Gah! Not the tummy virus again!! He's laying down and I hope the sick feeling passes.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

La La La La Laaaaa...

Connect the dots! Luna Blue has Chicken Pox!

I think we're trying to squeeze just as much sickness as we can into this two week span. I was changing Luna's diaper last night and noticed all sorts of pink dots on her belly and her arm, then along her side, then in her armpits. Pox. Poor kid. She went from tummy bug, to crusty eyes and runny nose to the chicken pox. Thankfully she doesn't seem *too* miserable, but enough is enough!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

A Tuesday Morning Run-Down and a Recipe

  • I am feeling....much better and somewhat human after the nasty stomach virus.
  • I am hearing....the sound of Luna's bath running, some classical music on Sirius, the courting calls of the new Orioles that have made our property their home.
  • I am seeing...hummingbirds flitting around outside the window.
  • I am smelling....not much thanks to allergies, but I can faintly make out the scent of my hazlenut coffee.
  • I am thankful for...the fact that Kaya only got a touch of the tummy woes and bounced back in no time.
  • I am planning.... to get a lot done today. After the girls get out of the bath, we will get in some learning, make some granola, go to town to the library and for a walk. I need to do a TON of housework today because I slacked during and after my sickness ~ wash diapers, 3 loads of laundry at least, plus a total clean sweep of the house.
  • I am hoping...to finish up the wedding invite list finally.

Yesterday I picked up the ingredients for my all-time favorite homemade granola and I am going to make a big batch today. Yogurt and granola is one of my favorite breakfasts or sweet snacks, and it is cheaper when you make it at home.

Almond Maple Granola

(Recipe found on Allrecipes.com)

Ingredients

3 cups rolled oats

1 cup blanched slivered almonds

1/4 cup wheat germ

1 (14oz) package flaked coconut

1/3 cup unsalted sunflower seeds (optional)

6 tablespoons pure maple syrup

6 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar

1/4 cup vegetable oil

2 tablespoons of warm water

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 250 degrees and lightly grease a cookie sheet with sides or a large cake pan with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, toss together the oats, almonds, wheat germ, coconut and sunflower seeds. In a separate bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, brown sugar, oil, water and salt. Pour the liquid over the oat mixture and stir until evenly coated. Spread out on the prepared cookie sheet. If you want some chunky bits, squeeze some small handfulls into little clumps.

Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring frequently until evenly toasted. Mix in raisins and store in an airtight container.

***Note, because I am a admitted recipe fiddler, I do have some changes. I cut the maple syrup and brown sugar to about half. I also omit the raisins because I am not a huge fan. Also, the bake time is a bit longer than I usually do and you have to watch the granola like a hawk at the end of baking because it can go from perfect to burnt in the blink of an eye. The great thing about making your own granola is that you can adjust the recipe to suit your tastes and supplies on hand. Don't have wheat germ or sunflower seeds? No problem, just omit them from the recipe and add some more oats! Want more coconut or almonds? Just dump more in! The recipe can be fine tuned.****

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

It's been a while since I updated. Luna and I got taken down by a nasty stomach virus last week. While Luna bounced back fairly quickly, I have been a bit slower to recover. Yuck, no fun at all. I am feeling better every day, though, and hope to be back in the swing of things ASAP.