Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Working Today.

I worked all day today on the schoolroom/studio. Very pleasant work I must say. As I cleaned and scrubbed, and went through books and threw away  used workbooks and notebooks. I had kept every thing that all six of my kids did for twenty five years. Remember I started homeschooling in the dark ages when you went to jail for being a home educator. I have filled up three trash cans. Am I a pack rat? Not normally, but my thinking was if I was ever approached by the authorities along with my records I would give them work for each student. No one ever asked. :) I cleaned out drawers and drawers of crayons, pencils, colored pencils, colored markers, and dry erase markers. Lots and lots of flotsam and jetsam. The hard part was when I would run across a old photo of when they were all small.

I ran across my favorite kinds of children's literature. I started putting all of my Meindert DeJong books together. Books I love like Wheel on the School, or Along Came a Dog. ( which is really about a hen whose  feet freeze off.) The House of Sixty Fathers. Those are his most famous. I thought it might be nice to sit and read him this summer. I am thinking of reading all of the Melendy books by Elisabeth Enright. She is such a beautiful writer it is almost like reading prose. The quartet of Melendy books are The Saturdays, The Four Story Mistake, Then There Were Five ( My favorite) and Spiderweb for Two. She wrote Gone Away Lake and Return to Gone away Lake which I just loved.

 All of these books remind me of hot summer afternoons, sitting in my reading tree and watching the clouds sail by in the blue, blue sky, and listening to the sound of the wind in the trees. As the days grew hotter the leaves would start to smell of dirt and crunchy, hot, green. Sitting in a tree reading a book was one of my favorite past times as a child. Sitting and dreaming of how life would be someday.

I ran across all of the Walter Farly books that we have. How many afternoons did I spend reading those over and over and dreaming of riding a horse all summer long. I think when I finally did get a horse and lived on horse back in the summer then there would be the lovely pace of going down a dirt road and seeing where it went. I have always been sad that my children didn't have the luxury of running down a dirt road with powdery dirt squishing up between their bare toes, because who ever wore shoes in the summer?

I found all of the Albert Payson Terhune dog books today. I loved those as much. My favorite of that one being Gray Dawn. I always have been a big fan of horse books and dog books.
It is a big job going through boxes and boxes of books but it is a wonderful job too. I get to look at old friends and touch their lovely spines and know that this summer, I will make time to go inside their covers and remember all of the good things the authors wrote. I guess the reason I love books is because it is not just meeting old friends, but it is listening to really good story tellers enrich my life through their words.

 Thank you for stopping by today.
 I am so thankful for all of you who stop by to read
my blog. You enrich my life every day.

Blessings to you all,

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Today on Tuesday

This morning I went out to take pictures because it is a perfect beach day. I was trying to wake up because last night at 2:15 we had a skunk after the chickens. We got him out of the yard and blocked the hole he came in through and tried to go back to sleep. I put in ear plugs because of the loud mockingbird that is living in the tree right outside my bedroom, so I didn't hear when the skunk came back. It was carnage and I am just sick.

My white rooster had his comb chewed off and he is so rattled I can't get close to him to see what else. The skunk killed one of my white silkie hens. The skunk tried to kill one of my Cuckoo Marans. She must have been able to get away because she is torn up but she will heal.

Thankfully after the last one got in the coop, we had made the chick coop like fort Knox. Well I thought we did, I thought my big coop was pretty safe but the skunk had bitten through the wire and made a hole to get in. I know it is one of the perils of raising animals. Predictors just come, it also comes from thinking I had a safe coop. We are making plans to build a new one it will be a safe one you can bet on it. I am so glad it didn't get any chicks.
  I am also very, very thankful I have so many silkie chicks. On other news. I wanted to show you my husband's area that he built this weekend for his little trees that have grafts.

He is going to build a work bench out here and a place to keep his Japanese Maples out of the direct sun. We really aren't in the zone for the kind he wants to grow and use as Bonsai specimens so he needs this to keep them out of direct sun. It is very nice. We sat and had coffee and the breeze is very nice from the prevailing winds.

I also wanted to show you a picture of the loft. It really has a lot of room. I just never noticed how much because of all of the things that were in it.

I guess you could say it is a before picture. The books will have to be packed away and I just moved
some furniture out here so it didn't look too bare. I love how it looks in the early morning sun. My son's 18th birthday is on Thursday he wanted to go furniture shopping for his birthday. While we are shopping I will be looking for that perfect chair for up here. It seems like it takes me so long to think up ways to decorate. I am just not a fast thinker.

It should be a nice week. All in all. Well except for that skunk, who is going to have a really bad future.

Have a great last week of May.


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Hooking and Sewing...Finally

Today is a beautiful day. I got up this morning and it seemed like a great day to bake, so I made cranberry-oatmeal muffins and blueberry muffins. It has been so long since I just puttered around the kitchen.

I have my first commission rug to do. I have never had one of those so I am super excited. It is a cow pattern.

It is going to be a black and white cow. So tell me all of you that have Holsteins. Are they black with white spots or white with black spots? I am in sort of a quandary. I never looked at cows with that in mind of picking wool for the colors.

I hooked yesterday. I worked on this rug. I was so nice to pick up my hook again.

I will reverse hook that orange stripe. It just shouts to loudly with the rest of the pattern. I have my other rugs to work on but I am feeling the need to buckle down and get something finished.

I also sat and sewed yesterday.

I love doing letters. For some reason it is just so relaxing to me. I continue to play house getting things back in order. I fixed this on my front porch.

Last week, my two boys who shared a room got to take Emilie's room when she moved out. The boys have been redoing their rooms and making each one into their own. It has been nice seeing their personalities in the way they decorate.
Which leaves the loft now that school is over to be empty. No more school in there. Ron said, I could turn it into my studio if I wanted. I have been happily planning in my mind what I will do. The first thing is I am going to move the bookcases that are in my bedroom up to the loft. It would be so nice to have all of my sewing things in one place rather than spread all over the house in all kinds of places. It sounds like a fun way to start summer vacation. I love rearranging and cleaning things.

Lots of possibilities to dream about. I am so tempted to get some pumpkin seeds and just plant pumpkins. But maybe I will just play house all summer. Goodness knows it has been awhile.

Have a lovely three day weekend. I am really enjoying mine so far.


Friday, May 24, 2013

Removing The Teacher Hat.

Yesterday, I shut my books and removed my teacher hat. I am finished with home schooling. Twenty Five years and it was all over in a blink of an eye. Peter kept asking, " Mom, what are you going to do?" I think it was harder on him. It was rather anti-climatic. Just the sound of the closing of a book. When I started, I only did it for one year. I never meant to like it nor did I expect for it to change me. Some things I learned looking back were simple.

1. Teach to the students strengths. A boy is never going to sit very long. So do a little school and then let them climb trees, and run and make bows and arrows and build adobe bricks and make movies and play with Legos.

2. Teaching at home means, the house is never going to be perfect, laundry is going to pile up and next to buying books, the food bill just keeps growing because kids at home eat three meals a day with snacks. All day.

3. Never compare yourself to others. Teaching at home is going to be what fits your style and your personality. To compare yourself is like shooting yourself in the foot. What works for someone who had two kids isn't going to work if you have six. If you have boys and your friend has girls you will go crazy because girls like to sit and boys like to climb. Or at least it was in my house.

4. We took lots of camping trips. Because we could get the kids away by themselves. We could hike and explore and at night when everyone was in sleeping bags we could talk.

5. Talking. There were some days when all we did at school was talk. It is still that way. Listening and talking is very important. I think sometime more important than the curriculum I  used

.Teaching at home meant long hours with children. Date night was the most important day of the week to me.
It is easy to forget your marriage when you are busy with young children. After our sixth was born, we hit that wall. We both had been going off in our own directions and we had grown apart without realizing we had. I woke up one day and knew that my life was in shambles, my husband would rather work than be home and I wanted to be a good wife and a good mother and teacher. I was none of them. I began my journey back by getting on my knees begging God to change me. We hired a babysitter who came once a week, and we began dating. We fell in love all over again and thankfully, putting my marriage before kids and homeschooling was the best decision I ever made. Home schooling made me see that I couldn't teach without God first, or without my husband and marriage next and then teaching became so much easier. The kids became more secure and life began to work.

I don't know what new doors God will open for me. I feel like a person just learning to walk. I will take one step at a time and I will look around at the scenery for awhile. But like every thing else I am sure it will be quite a ride full of surprises all along the path. Today, begins my summer vacation.

Thank you for coming along,

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


As I look back on the wedding, I realize that I took snapshots but not with a camera. Sweet little things that happened in a blink but come back to me when I am sitting thinking. Like when my daughter arrived and my grandson got out of the car and I ran down the driveway to him and grabbed him and he begins telling me how much he has missed me.

Or the men building the dance floor and we girls with all of the children sitting in the yard watching. All of the people I love most, working together and then everyone having dinner together afterwards.

Or on Saturday morning as I was walking around trying to get photos while it was still quiet as the sun was coming over the mountain and my sister who had arrived late Friday night, came running to the me and we hugged and cried because we haven't seen each other since my Mom was sick. Having my sister here was one of the best memories, no matter how tired I was she would make me laugh, or she would cry with me when things just seemed so out of control.

My closest friend getting here and finding me, wearing a beautiful red hat. I think one of the things that is so special are the people who have been my friends through happiness, and tears and joy and pain and the bond is so strong and in those moments thankfulness just seems to wash over me.

One of my favorites snapshots was after the sound system was set up, Ron came in and wanted me to see it. We walked outside and he had his I Pod with him so he put it on and we have this song we both like. No one was around so he asked me to dance. So out in the yard under that tree with Greenback Boogie playing in the background, we danced together. We had our time alone, all of the work finished, all that we had done was accomplished. To dance and be with him was one of the best snap shots because after all we are the ones who started this whole thing.

Finally, after everyone was gone out of the room, and it was just me and Emilie. We stood and looked at each other. It was time for her to go with her Dad. She went out my bed room door to my son's waiting car and they drove around to the gate she was going to come through when the wedding started. She went through the door, to a new life. I turned and went through the other door into my life. Life changes that fast, as fast as walking through a doorway.

All of this would not have been possible without the talents of our kids and family. For me though, yesterday my lovely sweet Megan sent me a text telling me that they started reading the book of Ruth for school and she told me that I was her Naomi. I have always thought of her as my Ruth. What better gift can I ever have than that. This really is a wonderful life.

So just a few thoughts today, God gave me the Martha, Martha verse this morning so it is time to stop and try to be Mary today. I will be praying for the Midwest and no more tornadoes.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Chats on The Farmhouse Porch

Since I am trying to get back to normal, I thought it would be nice to do a Chat on The Farmhouse Porch with Patrice. My porch still looks pretty. I want to thank Patrice for the Chats and for being so faithful to do them each week.

Everyday Ruralty


 1.   Are you a heavy sleep, light sleeper, or somewhere in between?

I used to be a heavy sleeper but lately I wake up at the least little sound.

 2.   Are you currently reading anything interesting?

No, not a thing to speak of, I am ready though to find a good book and settle down.

3.    Do you like to enter contests?

No, not a fan of contests.

4.    Are you good about taking time to do things you enjoy?
I used to be, after I get my work done of course. :) I am looking forward to getting back to it.

5.    What's your favorite food to cook on the grill, or enjoy at a BBQ?

Every thing! I love to BBQ and I would love to cook every thing out there. I am going to do pizza this summer.

Thank you for stopping by today. I am sending prayers for Oklahoma today.


Monday, May 20, 2013

A New Normal

Well I am now in the new normal. Sort of I am still trying to give things back and clean things up and I have been doing this since the wedding was over on Saturday. We have had company so I have sat and talked a lot and laughed and really tried not to get choked up. On Sunday they were supposed to leave for their honeymoon, but they had to come back twice to get things they forgot.

It was a beautiful wedding. I will post pictures when the photographer gets done with them  I had good intentions but I only got a few pictures before every thing got crazy.

Early on Saturday Morning, this was how the yard looked.

Emilie did all of the flowers herself and made all of the bouquets, and boutonnieres. The top photo is the bridesmaids bouquet.

This was her bouquet.
The flowers for the tables.

Of course, I have a picture of the bride and bridesmaids getting ready.

She was so happy. I think my favorite part was as she was getting ready to leave she ran in the house to get some things and she told her Dad and my sister in law and my sister that " This was the funnest wedding she had ever been too in her life! " I knew we did good. It was worth it.

This would not have been possible without the hard work of our family and friends. The best thing I think though, was Megan's Dad let us use his sound system. What a sound system! The speakers were five feet tall and the sound board is what bands use in concerts. Emilie and Nik had picked play lists for the music they wanted.
I danced with my kids and my grandson to Johnny Be Good. ( I was so tired by Saturday night, I didn't get embarrassed.) We had dinner and then they cut the cake, then I served ice cream floats. Lots and lots of floats. The funnest part was Emilie wanted glow sticks as favors at her wedding and they were big necklace kind and handed them out so that made the dancing lots of fun. My favorite part was the music that played as they were leaving was from Back to the Future. Back in Time. Nik's uncle had an old car from the 40s that they got drove away in and we stood with glow sticks as they ran down the side walk with that music playing.
You would have thought we planned it but of course we didn't, it just happened so that made it fun.

I will have to show you our pasture when I get that picture. There were so many people here they parked all the way to the back trees in our pasture. The whole entire pasture was filled with cars.

This is a long post so I will stop. It was a beautiful day and I am very, very thankful for every single bit.

Thank you so much for coming along for this ride.

~ Almost back to normal~

Friday, May 17, 2013

Almost There

We are almost there. Now the fun part begins. Yesterday was nice and very busy but good. I got a few photos.

Yesterday they got the posts in for the lights. She wanted a circus tent without the tent. The tables will all be under it.
We called it our own personal Stonehenge.

Our grandsons were in high spirits watching Grandpa dig post holes with the tractor. The did get to help him measure where to put the post holes and I wish I had got a picture of them helping and holding the tape measure.

Cutest baby in the world. 

 The kids loved playing in the pillows I made. He is a cute little mister.

Lots of climbing trees got accomplished. That is always important at Grandma's house. They won't be delivering the tables and things until late this afternoon. So it is a little bit of quiet before the storm. 

Almost there, the bride is doing pretty good I think. 

She was arranging all of the flowers. By late afternoon there was no room for anything on the counter tops. 

Today the weather is beautiful. My oldest daughter and her family arrived late afternoon, so all of the cousins played and played. They are so excited because they get spend three days together.

Well, should go now,
I guess it is a change of plans, the truck with
  the tables is here now. 
Have a great Friday!!


Thursday, May 16, 2013

Thursday Morning

You know that saying, " Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most." In a nutshell that is me. I have lists now that tell me what I should be doing. Today, I will go shopping for the water and the ice and all of the stuff that will be needed to pull this thing off. My son Ben came by last night with three arches for us that he had made. When I get them up I will take pictures so you can see what nice work he does. Megan will be here getting the vases ready for flowers on Saturday morning. Today the bridal bouquets will have to be made.

The dance floor will be going in and post holes dug for the lights to go on and we will be putting lights in all of the trees in the front yard and I keep loosing count of how many shepherd's hooks have to go in today. I have laundry to do and my oldest daughter and her family will be getting in today. Silly me, I was thinking of cooking dinner for 20 tonight and decided well maybe since my sons work at a pizza place maybe I will just have them bring pizza home for dinner.

This evening, though, I will be a happy camper. All of my kids will be home, all of my grand kids will be here.
All of the people I love will be together and it will be so good and filled with memories and lots and lots of laughter. Today, all of the ideas and the planning and the dreaming will finally be taking place. Tonight when I fall into bed, I know that I have been given more good than I of all people deserve. I am thankful for a strong back, and strong hands and when people thought we were out of our mind to keep having babies, I am thankful for a large family who steps in and helps us pull things like this off. Tired beyond tired we are but oh, so blessed and full of joy.

Have a wonderful day,


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Halfway to The Finish Line

We are almost there. My house looks like a disaster area. I have boxes of lights, chafing dishes and vases and bundles of birch and in my office a Korg is on the couch with a amp in the corner.( A Korg is a very nice electric piano) I expect tomorrow for it to look even crazier. My son will becoming with his machine he made that bends metal to make some arches for me and to help his Dad build the dance floor. The other boys will be digging post holes for lights and putting in all of the shepherd's hooks.

I wanted to tell you though about my little miracle. I have been watching the extended weather forecast. The weather always said that on May 18th it would be 103 or it would be raining. With an outside wedding, both seemed like a huge obstacle in my mind. I decided that instead of wringing my hands and worrying, I would just pray about it. Last week when we had 100+ temps I really started praying. Today this is the weather report for the next few days.


    Today Sunny, with a high near 90. Light and variable wind becoming west northwest 5 to 10 mph in the afternoon.
    Tonight Mostly clear, with a low around 57. West northwest wind 5 to 10 mph becoming southeast after midnight.
    Thursday Mostly sunny, with a high near 84. Light and variable wind becoming northwest 5 to 10 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 15 mph.
    Thursday Night Partly cloudy, with a low around 58. Northwest wind 10 to 15 mph becoming light in the evening.
    Friday Sunny, with a high near 81. West northwest wind around 5 mph.
    Friday Night Mostly clear, with a low around 57. West northwest wind 5 to 10 mph becoming southeast in the evening.
    Saturday Sunny, with a high near 80. East southeast wind around 5 mph becoming west in the morning.    Saturday Night Mostly clear, with a low around 60. West northwest wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east southeast in the evening.
    Sunday Sunny, with a high near 89. East southeast wind around 5 mph becoming west in the morning.
    Sunday Night Mostly clear, with a low around 60. Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east southeast in the evening.
    Monday Sunny, with a high near 94. East southeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the morning.
    Monday Night Mostly clear, with a low around 63. Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east southeast in the evening.
    Tuesday Sunny, with a high near 94. East southeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the morning.
Isn't that a huge miracle? Well, it is for me. Perfect temperature for a perfect day.

I continue to be overwhelmed at the kindness and all of the hard work so many people are doing on our behalf. Above my kitchen sink I have a sign that says, " It's a Wonderful Life." I have another one that says,
" Fairy Tales Do Come True." I have to say that even though I am more tired than I have ever been. Even the tops of my toes ache, who knew? But deep inside is such joy and as God continues to go before us, I am just amazed at every turn.

Well, off to clean my  chicken house. I decided today they had to have some attention their nest boxes are completely empty of hay and the spiders think they have a new home.

Have a lovely day, I feel like a bad blogger because I am so behind on your posts. I will be back soon like normal. What ever that is, Thank you for your comments they make me laugh and smile and pick me up.

Thank you,