Wednesday, July 11, 2012

This and That

It's that time again..that time when lots of life has been happening and there needs to be an update.  So, here we go.

A couple of weeks ago, Tom bought the kids a couple of  recurve bows.  We took them out into the forest, set up some bails of straw (not hay, ha, ha...that's for my honey), and let them shoot.  They all had lots of fun.  We brought the bails back home with us and set them up in our back yard.  Hopefully we'll get time to go out and do some more shooting.  So far we've restricted their shooting to just the target, but Ben was very eager to go hunt him a rabbit.  "Hit the target first, Bubba, my son, than you may kill us a rabbit."

Somebody spiked Jon's hair before we left...kinda looks a little '50's.




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Livvy and her neighbor friend Taylor set up a lemonade stand a couple of Saturdays ago.  For weeks Livvy had been wanting to set one up to raise money for the Hope Cottage, a shelter for battered women and their children.  We made oatmeal scotchies, rice crispy treats, and, of course, lemonade.  While they waited for cars to drive by, they worked on stringing together bead necklaces and bracelets to put into bags they intend to put together for the kids that are living there.

Being that our neighborhood is on the quiet side as far as traffic goes (which we love!), the girls had to get creative to drum up business.  They knocked on neighbor's doors and stood in the street pointing to their signs, waiving bags of cookies at any and all cars that happened by.  They raised a total of $42.71 for their charity.  Now we have to call Hope Cottage up, find out their needs, and do some shopping.  So proud of my Livvy-girl!


Oh, and Tom grabbed some scrap this and that and put together a pretty nice sign for the event.  What a honey!!


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Our garden is doing well, now.  We've replanted almost everything.  All of the original peas died, all but four corn failed to even show their little green heads, along with pretty much everything else that we planted.  There was a late freeze to blame for the poor showing.  That late freeze, by the way, turned all of our baby apples to mush - no apples this year.  Bah, hum bug!  

Now we have lots of things poking their heads up and starting to grow.  We've planted corn, squash, pumpkin, beans, sugar snap peas, a couple tomatoes, carrots, watermelon, lettuce, and cucumbers.  We'll either have feast or famine.  


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Taking the lessons that we're learning from our garden, I'm creating our own Bible curriculum for the summer.  I've titled it The Garden of Our Hearts.  Ha.  Ya like that?  Careful that you don't give me too much credit.

I'm trying to get the kids to think about their actions and attitudes - what kind of seeds they are planting and watering in their hearts (trying being the key word).  Are they planting weeds of the flesh that will grow up thorns and thistles with nothing good to eat?  Or, are they planting fruits of the Spirit that will yield a crop of a sweet, God-honoring fruit?  So far it's given us some good things to talk about, especially when we're in the midst of a bad attitude.  I'm not sure, however, if there's any good fruit come of it yet.

Here's one of my ideas to encourage planting fruits of the Spirit.  I had them paint half of an 18-count egg carton brown for their garden.  I then traced their hands, cut them out of green paper, glued them to popsicle sticks, and wrote a fruit of the Spirit on each.  Every time I see them displaying one of the fruits, they get to plant that plant in their garden.  When their garden is full, there will be a reward.  I'm not sure what this should be yet, hopefully I'll come up with something before somebody's garden is filled.  Any suggestions?





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Lately I've been trying my hand at all sorts of healthier and cheaper food options than what's available in the stores.  So far I've tried making our own yogurt, bread, jams, granola and dill pickles.  All of which, I can honestly say, was pretty easy.  The yogurt is supper tasty.  We've added honey, vanilla, fruit, and/or granola to make it a super tasty breakfast.  For snacks I've made a yogurt smoothie with spinach and then put them in the freezer to make frozen yogurt pops.  The kids love them (and so do we)!!




I'm still trying to find the perfect sandwich bread recipe.  I'd like to find one that requires little to no kneading, does well at high altitudes, and doesn't have a lot of ingredients.  Is that asking too much?


The pickles are delicious!  They are so much better than what we've bought at the store.   




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Just a random thought:
I love looking around online and reading all the homeschooling, homemaking blogs.  All of those women are super talented, creative-genius, super-mom, and got-it-altogether types.  They are always doing crafty things, incorporating math, English, world history, and Beethoven into everything they do.  

I have to be very careful not to read them too much.  Even though they might be doing something way cool that I should/could be doing too, I start to compare and...the fall is great.  In their attempts to show all the way-cool stuff they're doing, they leave out the real parts of life (or maybe, they really do have it altogether... hmmm).

Anyway, I'm so not there.  I think we do some pretty fun things, but there's lots of real life happening around here.  For some reason our kids are very opinionated, stubborn, loud, and...well, I don't want to reveal too much about Tom and I.


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Jonathan finally got his first tooth!!  Yes, he's 15 months old and he just got his first tooth.  Livvy was the same age when her first came in.  He's still not walking, but at least he's got a tooth.  

That's chocolate from fondue on his face - he loved it!


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Last, but not least, some quotable quotes:

Sammy to Oma:
S: Can I have a yard stick?
O: Sure.  This one is a more than a yard though.
S: Huh? The front yard or the back yard?  That's not as big as our yard.


Ben to me (while nursing Jon):
B:  Jon-Jon likes nursing, huh?
M:  Yes, he really does.
B:  He gets milk from that one and orange juice from the other one.


That's all for now.  'Til next time.