Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Do you know where your food comes from?

I have always tried to eat fairly healthy. In my younger years it was more in an effort to stay thin. Once I had children though, my thoughts turned more to what was healthy. It has been a learning process. I remember when I was pregnant for the first time, my idea of "healthy" was buying whole wheat bread! Now, we grind our own grains and make everything ourselves. Because our family members and most of our friends pretty much do things the way we do, I take for granted that a lot of people don't have a clue about what they are eating. We recently watched the movie "Food Inc." In my opinion, every American should watch that movie. It will make you want to grow as much of your own food as you can, and to buy things locally. Some people get grossed out at the thought of eating a "yard egg", but if they knew what a battery chicken (which is where the eggs at the store come from) looked like they would quickly change their mind. We look at the meat at the grocery store in it's clean little package having no idea where that meat has come from. The industries answer to the E-coli problem (which is because of the horrible conditions in feed lots) is to wash the meat with ammonia. Do you really want to feed your family meat that had to be washed in ammonia!?

We have a long way to go, but we are attemtping to become as self-sufficient or buying local as much as we can. We try to expand our gardening a little each year. We have our own eggs and with the help of our friends from church we have even butchered our own hens! We have wanted to have our own milk source for a long time. That dream has finally come true with McKenzie's goat giving birth last week. We now have our own fresh goats milk each day! We have had access to raw cows milk for years, but there is something about knowing exactly what the animal is eating and how everything is handled. Maybe one day we can have a milk cow! :>) Another thing we do is buy our beef from local farmers. We have several sources around us for grass fed beef. It is a good feeling when you have a freezer full of good, clean meat!

Thankful for very busy hens this spring!

Our fig trees show promise of a plentiful year!

Little "Daisy" taking her bottle. McKenzie milks her mama and the baby takes it from a bottle. We are getting a little over half a gallon a day for us to use. That has been so much fun!
"You shall have enough goats milk for your food, For the food of your household," Proverbs 27:27

The weather has finally turned warm and it has been a glorious week! Everything is bursting open and there is green everywhere. I love spring!
I would love to hear from you if you watch the movie. Now, go find out where your food comes from!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Spring is my favorite time of year. It has been kind of a cool spring so far, but we are still busy doing spring-like things. I always get motivated to get more organized and to clean out during the spring. Pictures... for those of you that like to take lots of pictures, how do you keep them organized? Do you print them and put them in albums? Do you save everything on discs? I have always printed everything and put them in albums. I have gotten behind on it, and now I am printing my favorites, labeling the envelope and storing them in a basket. I have everything uploaded to and then I delete it off our computer. If I continued to put them in albums, I would have to have a whole room just to store them in! My goal for when school winds down is to organize my pictures and my recipes. I had that goal last summer too, but I was pregnant and didn't have the energy to get it done! We'll see if it gets done this year...

McKenzie took some pictures of Madeline to capture her turning 11. It was storming one afternoon and she took some of her on the porch. The second picture she snapped after a clap of thunder.

Then she took some more on a sunny day.

Myles turned six months old!

Pillsbury dough boy!

Madeline and Mariah

Myles is like a toy to McKenzie. If she is holding him in public most people think he is hers!

Mariah was in dress up clothes and McKenzie took pictures of her outside. She got some really funny ones that I am sure she will put on her blog.

Ok, another question for you moms out there. Have you used a Johnny Jump Up with your babies and what do you think about them? This is the first time we have used one and it makes me nervous! He slumps down in it sometimes to where his neck is right at the edge. Yesterday he had his head in between the two straps on the side.

Matthew had his broken tooth fixed. I haven't taken the "after" picture yet. I will post those later! :>) The brier came out of Malachi's knee about a week after the ordeal. It was huge. It is no wonder why he wouldn't walk and why his knee swelled up.

I love getting ideas from other mom's blogs. So, I thought I would share this. Maybe everyone else already knows about this, but it was new to me. Whenever I order something on line I always search for free shipping codes. I discovered a new website that has tons of promotional codes on it. It is called I found free shipping for Kohls with 30% off too. We also ordered from Lands End the other day and got free shipping plus 25% off swimsuits. They have a pretty good selection of modest swimwear. At Christmas I ordered from Christian Book Distributors. You can always find free shipping for them. Ok- that was all for my "helpful hints" today!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Look Who is Sitting up!

These were actually taken two weeks ago. I realized that Myles would sit for a few minutes at a time. Because he is such a chunk, I didn't think he could do it yet! :>)

He was so proud of himself!

Starting to get a little tired...
"Ok, I have had it!"

I LOVE those chunky legs!

Update on our weekend saga:
We had an appointment with our pediatrician this morning. Malachi was still not walking at all when he got up and had swelling at his knee. He also still had the black "spot" on his knee. About the time that we were going to head to the doctor he started to walk on it. We called and cancelled his appointment and took him to our chiropractor. He did an adjustment on him, but said his knee appeared to be lined up and fine. He thought from what we were telling him that he got in the briers and twisted or fell on his knee. I think the black thing is a brier. Malachi screams if you go near it. There is still a little bit of swelling, but he is walking fine. That was what concerned me the most. So, at least for Malachi things are better.
Matthew has an appointment with the dentist Thursday. Poor guy will have to go to Scouts with his broken tooth. He has a pretty good attitude about it. Homeschooling makes that part a little easier. :>) Also helps that there isn't any pain. I took a picture of him to show "before and after". After the wreck I couldn't make myself take a picture of him (now I kind of wish that I had.) It was just too hard when all I wanted to do was cry when I looked at him! This was a whole lot less dramatic!

Going to bed!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Where does a mother go to resign?

It is late. I should go to bed, but I feel the need to ramble. What better place to vent than my blog!

Anyone that knows me or has read this blog for very long knows what kind of a year we had last year. Besides our precious, little Myles, I would just assume forget about 2009. I was really counting on 2010 being a quiet year. So far, it has not been quiet.

My mom continues to battle health problems. It started with a "simple" hand surgery in January that landed her in the hospital with MRSA. She goes from doctor to doctor trying to get help, but the only help they offer is more medicine. I am not anti-doctor, but so many of them are nothing more than "pill pushers". She was in the hospital for over six weeks. She is at home now, but still having problems.

This weekend has been full of "excitement" too. Matthew got swords for Christmas from Vision Forum. They really should sell helmets with them! He and his daddy were sword fighting Saturday evening and now Matthew has a broken front tooth. He had two broken teeth from the wreck last fall. No, this is a different one! I told him he was going to look like a hockey player if he kept this up! I don't think I was cut out to be the mother of boys! They scare me!

Today we decided to stay home from church because Madeline and Mariah were both coughing. It was a good thing that we did because Myles had a fever today. That stressed me out. It was his first sickness, and I have never had a baby this young to get sick. Everyone spent most of the day outside. Madeline took Malachi out to play in the woods. He later mentioned to me while pointing to his knee that his "foot" hurt. I didn't pay much attention other than to point out that that was his knee not his foot. We took him for a long wagon ride and when we got home he was crying and wouldn't walk on it. I gave him a bath and noticed his knee looked a little swollen. I sat him on his floor and saw two spots on his knee. They looked to be the perfect space to be snake fang marks. My heart started racing and I screamed for Marc to come look at it. He thought the same thing, or maybe a spider bite. Malachi was screaming and my head was pounding. I called our pediatricians after hours office. They told me what to look for and assured me that if it had been a snake bite we would have already known it. After looking at it some more we thought it looked more like a splinter type thing was in one of the holes and that the other spot was more like a surface scratch. Madeline told us that he did get tangled in some briers while they were in the woods. We put him back in the tub to soak with Epsom salt. It didn't seem to change the spot at all. We decided to put him to bed and wait until morning so he can see his own doctor. After he fell asleep I went to really get a good look at his knee. Looking at it closely now, it seems the spots might not be much of anything, that it is more of the swollen knee/ not walking on it that is the issue. I don't know if he twisted it or what. So, in the morning I guess I will be calling the dentist and the pediatrician. Not the way I like to start a new week.

I realize I have a lot to be thankful for. I look at what some people have to go through and I have no reason to complain. I am tired though! I just want some "down" time! I heard a song the other day that had a line in it that said, "Trusting you Lord, doesn't come easy to me....." That is where I am. Sounds really spiritual doesn't it? I am being honest though. I had a good cry while Marc preached a sermon to me. (No, he didn't really. He very sweetly read some Bible passages to me.) He read the first two chapters of Job. He read the story of Abraham and Isaac. He talked about trust. He asked me, "Do you trust God with your mother?" "Do you trust God with your children?" It is easy to say I trust God, but when tough times come do I really? After the wreck when I was really struggling, my pastor encouraged me to quote scripture every time I had a negative or fearful thought. There have been times that I feel paralyzed with fear. When I would pray or quote verses I had so much more peace. When I frantically try to do things in my own strength is when I feel the worst. Maybe one day I will learn to fully trust Him! In the meantime, I need to go to bed!

"But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like Eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint." Isaiah 40:31

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A day in the life of Malachi...

While folding laundry in my room this afternoon I heard a strange noise coming from the kitchen. I knew Malachi was somewhere in that direction. I called to him and asked him what he was doing and he said "nuffing". This was his "nuffing". He had dumped wheat berries all over the floor. When I went in there he was trying to pick them up and put them in his bowl.

Notice the sword in the back of his shorts. He told me it was his tail. Also notice that he still smiles for pictures even when he has been naughty! I guess it could be worse, he could be a grumpy, naughty boy! :>)

I decided to let him try to clean it up, so he could take responsibility for the mess he had made. A few minutes later he came into my room making odd noises with his nose. My heart sunk........ yes, he did. He had filled one of his nostrils full of wheat berries. Once upon a time I would have panicked over this. I guess I am getting good at this "mommy hood" thing. I very calmly plugged the empty side and told him to blow hard. Wheat berries shot all over my bedroom floor. I decided it was time to occupy his little mind. You know the saying, "Idle hands are the devils workshop"? So, I sat him at the table with a bowl full of water, a measuring cup and a gallon pickle jar. I told him I needed his help getting the water into the jar.

Later in the evening I put him in my bathtub. I decided to leave him in there a few minutes to play. While he was in the tub I found Myles sitting in his swing with this necklace on. (I have a feeling his 7 year old sister was responsible for that!)

While I was busy snapping pictures of Myles I got this sick feeling that Malachi was up to something. He has dumped countless bottles of shampoo into the tub with him over his little lifetime. I ran to my bathroom and rounded the corner to find this.
He told me he was cold!

I am going to bed!!!!

Monday, March 8, 2010


Wear me out!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Happy Birthday Madeline!

Well, I am a few days late with this post. Life has been a whirlwind lately and I am beginning to think that is just the way things are going to be right now. Our sweet, little Madeline turned 11 on March 3rd! I know every mama can relate to how fast the years slip by once you have children. It seems like just yesterday I was walking through the neighborhood in labor with her. Marc and I took a walk and picked a bunch of daffodils. That has become "Madeline's flower", so now we always have a vase of them on her birthday. Mariah went for a walk with me and picked these on the side of the road. She was so proud to present them to Madeline for her birthday!
Madeline has always been easy. She was a content baby and is still a sweet child. She is such an encourager and never says a negative word about anyone.
She is the only one of our school aged children that has a birthday that falls during the school year. She gets the day off of school (which the others think is just not fair!:>) She spent her day reading, knitting and watching movies.
She requested cheesecake with cherry topping for her birthday. I found the easiest recipe on the Taste of Home website, and it was VERY good. Here are some of my helpers licking the bowl!
Another tradition we do on birthdays is to let the birthday child plan the dinner. Madeline picked a very rich casserole, but we did have steamed broccoli with it! :>)

Singing to Madeline. (I think Marc was "directing" us.)

A sweet card made by her big brother.
McKenzie made her a pillow. I wish I had had a video going when she opened it. Her reaction was so sweet. She was very proud of her "old-fashioned" pillow.

Each birthday I have several things that I do. I always weigh and measure them and write it in their baby books. I have journals that I write in occasionally for each child. The younger years I always trace their hand in it and get a handwriting sample (when they are really little they scribble in it for me!) We usually pull out old pictures and look at them too. Here are some of my favorites of her.
Madeline was our smallest baby so far and the baldest. When she was six weeks old we went somewhere. I had her in a pink outfit, pink hat and a pink blanket. This older lady asked how old "he" was. Why is it if a baby has hair it is assumed it is a girl, and if it is bald they think it is a boy? Myles looks a lot like Madeline did and he doesn't have a whole lot of hair either!

Here she is at 18 months. She was getting some hair, it was just snow white!

The evening of her birthday each family member spoke a blessing to Madeline. Marc wrote one for her to keep and read it out loud that night. It was a very sweet time.
It is always sad to me at the end of the day on their birthdays. Another year gone......
Happy birthday sweet girl!