Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Recently during Bible time when I was asking for their prayer request here is what they said. Josiah said to pray for baby Hailee (an 18m old from our church that is in the hospital). Robert said to pray for a bigger van and for us to have more kids to fill it. He still wants a boy baby! Abby wanted to pray for everyone to have more babies. .
Later that day at lunch time I went around the table asking them what they wanted to plant in the garden next spring. Robert said, "Carrots and corn." Abby said, "I want peas and watermelon." Josiah quickly added, "Spam and eggs!"
Saturday, December 26, 2009
It may be a while before I blog again. I feel like I have nothing interesting to share and I should be busy with the kids and housework instead of wasting time on the computer.
Saturday, November 28, 2009
We stretched our celebration out over three days. Wednesday I cooked a big meal while the guys (Gabe and Rueben) were at work, and the kids were coloring turkeys or playing computer games (after finishing their chores). We ate our thanksgiving meal Wednesday evening before going to church. We have done it this way for several years, and I really like it. In past years we have done different projects or gone hiking, if the weather is good.
Thursday we had a nice home cooked breakfast and then headed out to the Bisti Wilderness to go hiking. The weather was cool, but when hiking in the wilderness that is a very good thing. The sun was very bright and the kids soon took off their coats. The kids hiked for about two hours, and Gabe and Rueben went a little further before returning to the van. We had dinner at Gabe's mom's house, then came home and played games like Dutch blitz.
Friday we went in to town to check out some of the black Friday deals, but soon gave up, too many people for my liking. After lunch of turkey sandwiches we went to the Four Corners. We had read about it in a library book, and the kids wanted to see it.
Friday, November 6, 2009
A few months ago my husband pointed out that the toys were taking over the house. He was right. They would take out all their toys at the beginning of each day and then whine and complain when it came time to clean up. My husband wanted to get rid of the toys. That thought crossed my mind a few times, but I resisted the urge to throw everything away. I do purge the toys from time to time. I also have noticed the most popular toy is usually new or the one that they haven't played with for a long time.
I attacked the problem with an idea I got from “Managers of their Home” by Steve and Teri Maxwell, which I purchased from Titus2.com. It was suggested to get out only one kind of toy for a certain length of time. I sorted all the toys one day during nap/quiet time, and then put the containers up high, very high – Abby likes to climb up to get things.
I get down one box for them to play with at a time. Sometimes I let the one who finished his/her chores first chose the toy for the day. If they come and say they want a different toy, I make them clean up all the pieces to what they have out, then I put it up and get a different one down. They learn quickly. They now come and tell me, “We picked up all the cars. Can we have the people?”
This has greatly cut back on the toy clutter. We still have some toys through out the house, but it is much easier to pick up since they are not ALL out.
I am constantly looking for ideas to better organize my home and my life. I get so much more done when things are in order.
Let all things be done decently and in order. - 1 Corinthians 14:40
Monday, October 26, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Having so many chicks has been a real experience to say the least. Last year I had five chicks at one time. But there has been several problems with having 33 chicks (I think it was 33. It is hard to count that many fluffy chicks). Everything went well during the first few weeks. Two of the 33 chicks died – not sure why, but by the time I discovered that they weren’t acting right, it was too late for them. Then I gave about a dozen to a friend, and had plans to give a few to a neighbor girl who has several animals. However, before I got to go see her, dogs attacked.
The first time was when we weren’t here on a Sunday, killed my rooster and two hens. The second time they came on a day I was home, they killed my last hen, then they chewed through the chicken wire and got into the chicks and killed 12 chicks before I intervened. I was mad and frustrated. All the work we had put into building a coop, feeding, and caring for them gone in a few short moments. The owner of the dogs says he will pay for the chicks and damages, but no money, yet. We covered the wire on the current coop with stronger wire. For a few days my remaining seven chicks didn’t want to leave the house part of the coop.
In between the dog attacks I put the chicks in with the remaining hen. She did not like that and killed my smallest chick in the batch. It was a extra chick that the company threw in when they sent the order. I was looking forward to what kind it would become. I then removed her and set up temporary housing for her beside the coop with the chicks, and inside the chicken's yard. I let her run in the chicken's yard even though I was worried about dogs returning. We had fixed where they broke through, but they found a different way in.
Then my friend who I gave the dozen chicks to has returned them. At first I didn't want to take them back. I had planned from the beginning to give her some, but her hens were picking on them and a bantam hen that she was given. She didn’t have a cage that the chicks would stay in so they were wondering loose in her yard. It is amazing that dogs didn’t get them!
Currently I have 18 chickens. Most of the chickens are red star, which will lay large brown eggs! I miss my fresh eggs. One is the bantam hen (given to me with the chicks) and is smaller than some of the chicks. Another one is a black chick that hatched in my friend’s incubator. She had one out of fifty eggs that hatched and lived. Only three hatched. I’m not sure I want to try incubating again. One is a buff Orpington that may set (sit on eggs and hatch them). I love the idea of having baby chicks, but I think the hen will make a much better mother than I do to the chicks.
We have plans to build a bigger coop. The current one is too small for 18 chickens. We also need to put a fence around our acre of land to keep out the dogs!! Rueben also wants to get a gun to shoot dogs that are on our property. It is not going to break my heart to see a dog die especially if it is killing my chickens.
These photos were taken this week a day after adding back the chicks from my friend.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
After getting home and unloading the groceries, Abby asked for a banana. She pretended to be talking on the banana "phone". Then she brought the banana to me pointed to a section toward the top of the banana and said "Look mom, I got a text message." What an imagination and so funny!
Thursday, October 1, 2009
At 5:15 I sat down to eat breakfast with my husband before he left for work. After he left at 5:30 I tried to read the Bible and pray in between Abby’s questions (Can I play the computer? Is it Thursday? When can I go to Heaven? Can I eat a cookie? on and on). Next, I was interrupted by Josiah who woke up at his usual 6am, and asked for his usual peanut butter & “yelly” sandwich. Then Abby wanted one. Somewhere in all this confusion Beth was nursed and went back to sleep. Josiah took his sandwich to his usual spot on the recliner, curled up and ate it quietly (sometimes he goes back to sleep). Abby took two bites of her sandwich, left it on the table and went to sit on the sofa. She asked if she could go back to sleep. My answer, “YES!” I peacefully read another chapter of the Bible, took laundry out of the dryer, hung up items that needed hanging, and was thinking about sleeping again myself. It is about 6:45-7:00, Beth woke so I nursed her and napped a bit, Josiah crawled in bed and began playing with Beth (my napping was over). Then Abby woke up and pucked all over the sofa – YUCK. I feel her head; she has a fever. I clean her up, change her clothes, and clean the sofa. After laying down a towel and getting her a bucket in case it happens again, she went back to sleep. I started the washer full of pucked on stuff, left Beth and Josiah in the play room, told Rueben to keep and ear out of trouble (he was awake, but not out of bed), and went to care for the chickens.
I lost three chickens Sunday to dogs while we were at church. I put the month old chicks in with the remaining hen, Red. So they were all in the same cage I was keeping and eye on her because she seemed to pick on them a lot. Yesterday I had let her out to roam in the usual chicken yard, but I can’t let the chicks out. We have a hawk around here that last year came and sat on my chicken coop. I’m sure he would love chick for lunch.
Anyway, I cared for the chickens, and told myself that I should let Red loose later so she doesn’t pick on the chicks too much. I hurried back into the house knowing that Rueben wouldn’t do much if the kids were getting into trouble. Washed my hands and checked on the kids. Everyone was fine so and Robert was up and playing too. I then loaded the dishwasher. At 8 am I did our usual Bible time with just the boys. You should hear Josiah quote scripture. I marvel that a two year old can memorize like he does, but then he is a little sponge and is soaking everything up that I do with the older two. Next I fed the boys their breakfast, set Beth in the high chair, cut up a banana for her to eat (she refuses to eat anything mushy like baby food and she doesn’t like anyone putting food in her mouth), and I cleaned up more of the kitchen mess since I had already eaten.
Rueben needed help with his school work today. After a few weeks of his “Dynamic Bible Living” subject, we have switched what we are doing. I don’t like what they are trying to teach him on how to live a Christian life. The book makes it confusing and hard. The final straw was a sentence that said memorizing the Bible was not meditating on the Bible. "Memorizing generally is sounding or saying words and then forgetting them." I would like to know how you forget something you memorized. They are trying to teach some strange knowledge process that he is to use to learn how to have a "dynamic Christian life". So instead of doing the complicated, confussing work in the book I have him listening to preaching from this site and writing what he learned from the sermons (two per week). I listened to the sermons with him (while folding laundry, making woopie pies - a promise I made yesterday, fixing lunch, checking on sick one, nursing Beth…), so we could discuss what is taught and help him write down points. If I had to sit still and listen to the sermons, I would have fallen asleep. I love the preaching, but my body goes to sleep if not doing something, especially when waking up at 4 am. I have the same problem on Sunday mornings. That is why I help my husband in children's church where I can stand, more around and stay awake.
After lunch I looked out my window at the sink and noticed that there was a problem at the chicken coop. I had forgotten about Red! I rushed out of the house and left the kids in Rueben’s care to check on Red. She had killed the smallest chick. The one I got that was going to set (hatch eggs) and my favorite.
Right now is quiet/nap time, but since Abby has been sleeping off and on all morning she is awake and fussy. I am not going to get a nap myself, so I will continue drinking tea, and other things with caffeine to keep myself going. I will try giving Abby a ginger-bath. I tried earlier, but discovered that the hot water heater needed to be relit. By the time the water was hot again, I had forgotten and Abby was back to sleep.
Thanks for listening to my ramblings and complaints. I love being a mother. It is much, much better than being a single school teacher. However, there are days that I would love to have two of me to get more done. I am blessed with four great children, a great step son and a hardworking, wonderful husband. What more could any woman want?
In case you are wondering, I did not write this all at the same time. It has been written over the past few hours in between other tasks, but I just had to “tell” someone. My friend, who has five children under five, lost her cell phone (it is on vibrate so she can't find it by calling it), so I can’t call her to share problems. Some how “telling” makes me feel a bit better about the things that didn’t go my way today. No day ever goes completely the way I want it, but that is part of life. I’m not the one in control. God is. So I should get off the computer and go get more things done instead of sitting here ignoring them because they make me feel so overwhelmed some days. I will never get everything done, but I will keep trying to.
Abby is feeling better now that she finished her ginger-bath (1 Tbsp of ginger added to bath water). She is eating, asking questions and being her normal self – except for her cough. Hopefully the food will stay down.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
We canned nectarines and jam. I got them on sale at a local orchard, and one of our bus riders came over to help. I froze green beans (from my garden) and green chili’s. The kids helped out some. I am happy to see them old enough to start helping with things like this. Some of my favorite childhood memories are of canning week when Grandma came to help us can and freeze. I love the way canned foods look in the pantry.
Friday, September 4, 2009
We now have 30+ chicks in my laundry room! They arrived yesterday. The majority are Red Star, the two black ones are Buff Orpingtons, and a few rare chicks that they added for free. The kids are all excited, and I am, too. I enjoy raising animals and my gardening. I used to tell my parents I wanted to live on a farm. My dad, who grew up on a farm, told me it was too much work and that I wouldn't like it. He is probably right. The animals and garden that I have now take enough of my time. I don't think I want much more right now. Here are pictures of the cute little fur balls.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
The other book making a big splash around here is Drawing with Children by Mona Brookes. I love the way this book breaks down the drawing process into easy to understand elements. I didn't think I could teach my kids how to draw, but this book makes it all very easy to understand and teach. My curriculum schedules art once a week, but my kids are asking for more art time. I love the quiet as they are busy drawing. I am looking forward to teaching this.
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Now I need to wash up dirty kids and get them to bed.