Thursday, June 30, 2011

off visiting

i took the kids, 10 chickens & a big bag full of cucumbers, and animal shears to clip the cats fur to Jennys today. this was her post about our visit. Levi enjoyed himself because he got to taste cantaloupe for the first time.  it was a fun time. it was good to see Gabriel & Alei as Gabriel has been in Colorado for the last year & Alei went to Uganda & has been away. They are so mature & grown up. It's hard to see them so grown up & not feel old as I remember Gabriel as a little wild boy & Alei as a baby with the thickest head of black hair i had ever seen. It was good to see all of the other children too. Abigail loves it there so much she asked to spend the night & if you know Abigail she doesnt ask to spend the night away from mama - so that is a compliment to Mrs. Jenny. Please read her post & see the cute pictures of Alei & Levi.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

.......and the beat goes on....

not only did asher get a black eye on sunday but yesterday he stepped on a rusty nail. he is fine but it seems he is all boy - which i knew that...but he is acting all boy!!! today when rachel was calling him to come put his lunch plate in the sink & clean up his area he ran into my bedroom & hid under the bed. i saw him hide. rachel came down the hallway asking where asher was. i didnt give him up. he was so cute. i was impressed when he slid all his little boy maleness under the bed with such ease - without thinking it seemed like - effortless. and he had such a wonderful little grin on his face. but when rachel finished her search i made him go put his plate in the sink. i still never gave his hiding spot away. and i wont - ever. he will always & forever have his own hiding spot in my heart.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

he lost!

asher was in a "fight" today with my bedroom door knob & lost. i had asked him to go do something for me. instead of going immediately to do what i had asked of him, he decided to keep his eyes on the tv rather than watching where he was going. mind you, CBS Sunday Morning was on so i dont believe it was all that fascinating for a 4 year old. anyway, he ran right into the door knob & gave himself a black eye.

Monday, June 20, 2011

everything is meaningless

i am constantly amazed how the Bible can always sum up exactly how I am feeling on any given day.
yep i think i need an increase on my meds. its that or either i need the people in my life to realize i have to be proactive with what i feel is important to God & my calling in Him. if i am not allowed to act on what i know we are suppose to do, then everything is meaningless - or at least it feels that way. i realize that my day to day is  not meaningless if my children love God & serve Him all their days....i just feel like there is more....there is more outside the walls of my home that i can be doing....there are more children that need to see God's love by our actions - not just children - more people. anyway...i'm just talking.

Everything Is Meaningless

"The words of the Teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem:
“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.”
What do people gain from all their labors at which they toil under the sun?
Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever.
The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises.
The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course.
All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full.
To the place the streams come from, there they return again.
All things are wearisome, more than one can say.
The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing.
What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.

Is there anything of which one can say, “Look! This is something new”?
It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time.
No one members the former generations, and even those yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow them.

I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem. I applied my mind to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under the heavens. What a heavy burden God has laid on mankind! I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

What is crooked cannot be straightened; what is lacking cannot be counted.

I said to myself, “Look, I have increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge.” Then I applied myself to the understanding of wisdom, and also of madness and folly, but I learned that this, too, is a chasing after the wind.

For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief."
Ecclesiates Chapter 1

and because no post is really that much fun without a is a random one that was taken yesterday.  i tried to get a shot of all the kids together...can you tell who wouldnt cooperate??!!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

happy father's day

this is my mom & dad. This picture is almost 2 years old but it was the easiest to get to on my computer. happy father's day Daddy! i love you & miss you & hope you had a good day today!
it sounds like my family all got together at Mom (Memeer) & Dad's (Papa's) house. it is also my oldest sister, Lisa's, birthday - but i wont say how old she is - because i'm not that far behind her!

3 things i love about my dad:
1. he accepts people at face value
2. he doesnt ever put on a mask...he is who he is, take him or leave him
3. he has a great laugh.

in this picture i think i was 8 or 9 years old.
i'm the snotty looking girl on the far left in the back.

and this picture was 2 years ago also when we all went to the beach together. esther was about 3 mths old.

and now for a picture of Clay with all the kids, liberty & flash.  it was a good day. i made potato salad, grilled steak & shrimp & we had ice cream cake. Clay (the whole family really) got a bluray dvd player so we can stream netflix & youtube, the Bourne Trilogy on bluray & some kind of Skil utility cutter, mini saw kind of thing. we also went & bought 12 fish for our pond. the $.27 kind of goldfish. needless to say we have lost 2 or 3 already - they didnt even make it out of the bag!

Happy Father's Day!

"Father! - to God himself we cannot give a holier name." ~William Wordsworth

Friday, June 17, 2011

poetry in motion

She Walks in Beauty
By Lord Byron (George Gordon)
She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
Thus mellowed to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impaired the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o’er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express,
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

And on that cheek, and o’er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

life these days

breathing treatments - LOTS of breathing treatments (we have 2 nebulizers & have had 5 out of the 6 kids on breathing treatments this last week - not fun)

our house guest moved out so the boys are in the boys' room & the little girls are in the girls' room. esther is now in a big girl bed & levi is in the crib.

boys' room (notice the free bunkbeds & the crib)

girls' room (notice the pink walls & barbies all over the floor.)

painted fingernails & got fingernails done. you might not can see them well in the picture but rachel babysat the other night for clay & i and she wanted payment in the form of getting her nails done again. i took her yesterday afternoon. and of course abigail needed to have her fingernails painted.

held a sick baby. we have all taken turns holding our sweet sick little levi. he enjoys it & has taken to crying if he isnt in - mainly his mother's arms - but at different times any arms will do as long as he is being held!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

what if it were Asher?

this is what i am chewing on these days

make sure you pause the music player at the bottom of the page.


i really stepped into the world of food processing/canning last summer. i enjoyed it immensely. i got such a sense of accomplishment from all the tomatoes & salsa i put up. i also froze some peas & lima beans. this year i want to do peaches & apples. I also am going to try to make some blackberry jam considering i missed out on the strawberries. but i have been reading up on it to refresh my memory & everything i am reading suggest using a pressure canner/cooker. it scares me to try new things like that. what if i spend all that money & just fail. not that a pressure canner/cooker is greatly expensive - it's roughly $100. i can swing that. i just dont want to fail or buy it & not use it. but i did some research & it seems that Presto makes a good one that is just like the "one Grandma used". it has an excellent consumer rating. & I got it at Wal-mart.
it seems the best way to put up lima beans & peas is to use a pressure cooker. Also the pressure cooker processes them faster. oh & corn! i want to do a lot of corn this year. we will see. i tried pickles & they just sucked big time. it also does does everything. & i can use it for cooking ribs & roast quicker also which is a plus. wish me luck!

Presto 01781 23 Quart Aluminum Canner

Saturday, June 4, 2011


i found this on one of the blogs i read - ......she has a "square a day for May" that she did that i'm contemplating crocheting...a granny square to be made every day for the next 30 days & then i will have a blanket. maybe....hmmmmmm.

anyway, here is some info about me. if you want to...copy & paste it in a comment box & leave me your info. i like this kind of thing about people i know. sometimes we learn something about our friends that we possibly didnt already know. i know it's probably silly, but i like it.

A. Age: 40
B. Bed size: Queen, but we starting the pricing for a king size sleep number bed.
C. Chore that you hate: All of them but mostly washing windows and folding laundry!
D. Dogs: I love Yorkshire Terriers.
E. Essential start to your day: Nursing Levi.
F. Favourite color: Green.
G. Gold or Silver: White Gold.
H. Height: 5'2"
I. Instruments you play: Minimal piano, barely violin, few notes on the flute.
J. Job title: Wife/Mother
K. Kids: 6 & I would have more if I could
L. Live: Chesapeake, Virginia
M. Mother's name: Marion
N. Nicknames: none
O. Overnight hospital stays: 5 - for baby deliveries.
P. Pet peeve: dont even get me started....the list is way tooo long!
Q. Quote from a movie: "you are to stupid to insult."
R. Right or left handed: Right.
S. Siblings: 3 sisters
T. Time you wake up: well...officially around & 7:30 - 8...but usually i'm awake through out the night with Levi.
U. Underwear: bikinis
V. Vegetable you hate: turnips, radishes
W. What makes you run late: lack of preparation
X. X-Rays you've had: when i fractured my arm, a few times for pneumonia, when Esther was born thinking I had blood clot in my lungs.
Y. Yummy food that you make: Scalloped potatoes, baked Mac n' Cheese, Vegetable Stew w/beef
Z. Zoo animal: Giraffes
so maybe you learned something about me.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

the garden so far

this is picture heavy so beware! it's of the garden so far & some other shots!
this is the front of the garden - the beginning of it when we come out of the house. if you click on the picture it will enlarge it & you can see all the way to the back lot with the other smaller garden plot on it. it's so pretty & green. i'm so proud. it's all growing so well. God is so good to grow it if we are dutiful to plant.

this is the 2 rows of sweet baby & crimson sweet watermelons & a row of pinkeye purple hull field peas (best peas every!!!)

4 rows of tomato plants. 1 row (first row) is all cherry tomatoes & patio tomatoes. the second row is all heirloom Homestead tomatoes & Mariglobe tomatoes. the 3rd row is all heirloom Lemon Boys, Mortgage Lifters, Bonnie Originals, German Johnson & Brandywines. the 4th row is all heirloom Brandywine, Beefsteak, & Rutgers. on Monday (Memorial Day) instead of going to a cook out i spent the day weeding & Clay & i spent the afternoon making about 50 tomato cages out of rebar that goes in cement when they lay it.

this is 2 rows of peppers & 2 rows of cucumbers. the 1st row of peppers is sweet peppers (with 2 rutger tomato plants on it). the peppers are a variety of Yellow, California Wonder, Big Red Early Girl, Purple Beauty (which is black actually), Super Heavy Weight Yellow/Green, Big Bertha Green. the 2nd row of peppers are all hot peppers. their variety consist of Hungarian Wax, Jalapeno, Long Red Cayenne, Pepperoncini, & Anaheim Chili peppers. The 2 rows of cucumbers are mainly Heirloom Sumter pickling cucumbers. Then there are a few Straight Eight cucumber plants, Tendergreen cucumber plants & Marketmore Cucumber plants. We like cucumbers here as well as tomatoes!!

this is 8 rows of vegetables. the first 3 rows are Silver Queen Corn & on the 1st row of corn right beside it is planted a row of Kentucky Wonder Pole Beans to climb the stalks of corn. then the 4th row is Kentucky Wonder Bush Green Pole Beans. the 5th row is Silver Queen Corn. the 6th row is Henderson Lima Beans. the 7th row is Silver Queen Corn & the 8th row is Okra from Georgia (Clay didnt know the name for my book - i am keeping a meticulous log). also on monday on rows 2, 3, 5, & 7 i went down right beside the rows & replanted some How Sweet It Is corn as we didnt get a good stand the of the first time i laid out the corn. So this corn will come up behind it & we wont have corn coming out of our ears all at once.

this is a closer picture of the row of Okra again. also there are 3 more pickling cucumber plants in that 2nd row there. 3 Spanish, Sweet White Onions & 2 more Lemon Boy Tomato plants. then there are 2 honeydew melon plants in that bit of pine straw there all by itself.

this is 4 rows of potatoes & onions mainly. the first row is red potatoes from Southern States. those are so pretty when they come up. So lush & waxy looking & they produce like crazy. the 2nd row is a row of Yellow Onions. I bought 1 set from Southern States. It's our first year ever doing onions but i'm way excited. the 3rd row is a row of sweet potatoes. we saved some of our sweet potatoes from last year & just let them grow eyes & planted them. they are coming up like gangbusters! so excited. the last row is a row of Basil & 2 Big Max Pumpkin plants.

this is 2 rows of squash & if you look close i will have a mess of squash to fry up tonight!! also 1 row of zucchini.

this is 5 rows of canteloupe. some Ambrosia, some Burpee Hybrid Muskmelons, some just homegrown from last year seeds & some storebought melon seeds. but we have about 20 plants total. those always do well & the kids love them.

this is just a fun row. we plant a few rows of Indian Corn. it's for decoration & we feed the animals the Indian Corn. We also plant some Mammouth & Double Sun Golden Sunflowers. Those grow wild almost.
then in the 3 tires are some store bought red tomatoes that had started to grow eyes & a lot of them so i cut the eyes off with a bit of the potato left on them & gave them to Clay. he planted them & there you go....more red potatoes. those would be my only raised beds (i am so laughing. Jenny i know JD would be mortified!!).

this is the kids treehouse. Clay has put a lot of time & effort into making them a treehouse & they love it. it is a big hit when we have the youth group over - or any kids for that matter. there are big rope swings that swing out over a huge ditch. Also if you look hard above the ladder is a hanging hand rail that you hold onto when you do the zipline that goes out about 100ft from the tree house. the kids LOVE that. Clay is trying to figure out how to attach that big slide to the treehouse - but he hasnt had the energy to put his engineering hat on lately to figure it out.

this is our big patch of blackberry bushes. this started out about 5 years ago as 5 little plants...that were basically sticks. i had no hope of them ever producing, but produce they do. they grow wilder & wilder every year. we have been able to give them away as well. they grow the best blackberries - the only drawback is the thorns...but its still worth the picking.

these are our grapes. there are a few shots. it's three grape plants on a small grape arbor. Clay needs to put the other side of it up but for now this is working. we are just tickled that grapes are growing. Asher is beside himself with delight. they are "his" grapes & he always says "God knows i love grapes so he is letting them grow." We will have grapes by the end of the month.

when i went out to take pictures i had a few companions with me. readen is turning out to be a really good dog. she stays right with us & is fun & affectionate. we all love her to pieces.

here is a shot of my chickens. i have 3 teenager chickens in a cage back there so the big chickens will get use to them. if we didnt give them time to get use to the juveniles they would peck them to death. it's pretty gruesome actually. the "teenagers" are my White Leghorns....i cant wait to see them full grown!

this is our little Houdan/Ameracauna mix rooster. He is the King of the Coop! He is sweet & little. He's a keeper. & so far he is the only rooster we have & i would like to keep it that way.

these are Lily's flowers coming up. we buried her out near the chicken coop because she chased them mercilessly & planted lilies on her grave. they have come back & multiplied. it's bittersweet.

this is Ferb. he has 1 green eye & 1 blue eye. he is the nicest cat. i love him immensely. i think i'm the only one though. the kids still say he is "freaky". 

and this is my other companions as i was taking pictures - Esther & Flash. couldnt ask for 2 cuter companions. As you can see from Esther's face it  was quite warm & only 10:30 today. It's already 92 degrees.