Showing posts from January, 2013

Garden Prep

We have been reading and learning more about gardening.  We want to do things that will allow us to grow healthy foods.  

This year we decided to try putting paper down, then wood chips.  This will get rid of the grass and weeds and also help the soil.  We'd like to be able to plant without having to till.

Of course the first nice day in a while, was also the windiest.  Not great for trying to place paper down.  But we got a system going.

Here Kyle and Rachel are spreading the wood chips.

Sarah and I both drove the mower today...She and Kyle worked hard - they are champion wood chip spreaders!

We are blessed to have thehardest working man as the head of our family! He went to the township office and brought back three truck loads of wood chips.  He also shoveled them into the barrow and hauled it over to the garden area.

Rachel and Sarah basking in the sunshine...

Here is the whole space seven rows of paper covered in wood chips.   I didn't measure the space so I don't know the d…

My Boy


New Books...

Monday, January 28th, was the 200th anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen's Pride andPrejudice.  Being big fans of Jane's here at the cottage, I have read her books,watched the movies - and have decided opinions about them, and have read many of the prequel or sequel books.

Imagine my surprise this past fallto find outabout a new friend, after she and her family returned to Ireland, that she is not only a Jane Austen scholar but an author of two fantastic books about Mr. Knightley!

These books tell the story of Mr. Knightley, but it is not really Emma from Mr. Knightley's point of view.   These are books that tell his story.

I loved reading about his work as the local magistrate, his care for those in need in the parish of Donwell, his friendships with the new curate at Donwell, as well as his friendships that we already know  from the book Emma.

However, the author Barbara Cornthwaite develops the relationship between John Knightley - who is married to Emma's sist…

Delight Filled Weekend

Image  You Can't Take It With You

Have you ever watched the 1938 film by Frank Capra called 'You Can't Take It With You?'  We watched it Friday night and it set the tone for the weekend!  It was such a fun movie, great for the family!
Saturday we went to our friend Nick's basketball game.

Nick is number 30.  He plays on a homeschool co-op team.  They play against Christian schools. They had a great game, and to celebrate we went out to lunch for pizza.  Then we went back to their house and visited for a while.  We love this family and enjoy fellowship with them on Sundays mostly because they live about 40 minutes away.  While at their home they were talking about wanting to rearrange their living room but weren't sure how to do it.  A few minutes later we had a plan and were moving furniture!  
As you may know, if you have read here for a while, I LOVE doing this!  With their big boys and Tim and their Dad we had moved all the furniture in their small livin…

The Work Of Her Hands

I've grown to love to work with my hands to create usable items when I have a few free moments or when we are watching a movie.  I've noticed that Emma does the same thing - she's always grabbing her knitting.

I'm working on a baby blanket in navy and light blue out of my yarn stash.  I am hoping I have enough.  I like to make small blankets that are easy to use with a carseat.  Just big enough to tuck around them and make those wee babies snug and cozy.  Our church has three little ones due in April and May.  All boys.  I need to work fast!

I also like this stitchery from Rhonda at the Down To Earth blog.  She posted this pattern to use several years ago, and I made it in a smaller version as part of a pillow for my sister in law, and now I am making it for a friend as a wall hanging.

My friend Cheryl gave me a gift of her hands when we visited on Wednesday.  A beautiful homemade table runner for my large table!  It's perfect!  I have been looking for one, but not fi…

Kindred Spirits

What makes some one a kindred spirit?  Is it being exactly alike?  I don't think so.  Anne and Diana were not alike in many ways but they were kindredspirits.  They understood and 'got' each other.

I have always missed having sisters but it has been fun over the years to see the Lord bring sisters into my life.  You all know who you are - the ones who get me, and love me inspite of myself.

Today I got to spend the day with one of these 'sisters'.  Cheryl and I met online last year and it's like we have known each other forever!

We went to her beautiful home and had lunch - fabulous soup and bread! - and ended up having dinner too!  

It was a delight to sit in her home, that until today I've only seen online, sipping tea, laughing, talking, enjoying our daughters together....

Her home is lovely and warm - just like she is herself - and her daughters are sweet!  Oh, and they have the most feminine bedrooms!  Sarah is so inspired and so am I!

Beauty abounds in their…

40 Years

54 Million 
lives lost 
to abortion
in the United States
since 1973.

I pray we will come to value all life.

I'm Dreaming

of a new...

Isn't she a beauty.  Of course this one is very likely just that, a dream, but a new stove is on the list for this year.

We've learned to hold these plans loosely in our hands knowing that the Lord may bring something else as a priority.

We do a lot of cooking and baking our here.  I hear that more and more families hardly use their kitchens, but around here our kitchen, and our stove, are work horses!

We've had it for 18 years now.  The front right burner doesn't always work, but every thing else does.  I am so thankful for this faithful 'servant' to our family.  

Most nights we have 10-12 people eating here.  On Sundays we can have 20+ people eating here - last evening it was 16 people.  

I am wanting to replace the electric with a gas stove as well.  We have propane heat and a gas water heater and a gas clothes dryer, so the next appliance to change over will be the stove.  I grew up in Southern California cooking and heating with natural gas, and I li…

Let's Chat Some More

Well, I finally did it.

I made my own background for my blog!  I kinda like it too.  Vee shared Auntie's tutorial last week and tonight Idid it.  Why did I wait so long?

While I was wallowing in the mess of my 'organizing' this week, our state wide homeschool magazine winter issue arrived.  Inside, is an article that I wrote in the late fall.  The new editor is a gal from our co-op and she contacted meabout writing for them.  I was honored and scared!  I thought that I would just rework an old talk I had given a few years ago, but the Lord changed that.  I wrote about fear!  My kids said "I didn't know you were doing that!"  

Tomorrow we are having visits from two special friends of ours.  One is a gal and her daughters, whose family has moved to New York, and the other is a sweet church friend and her kids. It will be so much fun!

This coming week, the kids and I are headed to Cheryl's home for a day of visiting and fellowship!  We are so excited!

I am gratef…

A Quick Change...

...can make a huge difference!

This morning I was looking at a new feature that Melissa has over on her great home decor blog The Inspired Room.I was looking at posts on small spaces, using your everyday things for decor...that kind of thing - when I was struck with inspiration!  

It wasn't anything earth shattering, but I think it will make a huge difference in the functionality of my kitchen.  Are you ready?  

I switched the items on my kitchen counters!  No, really!  I did! 

I moved the coffee maker, electric kettle, and teas and hot cocoa from the side that had the cooking utensils andknives - to the other side of the sink.  Now they are right under the cupboard where we keep the mugs!  

Genius, right?

The jars holding pasta, rice, flour and oats, are now living happily on the other side of the sink as well!

It's a win, win, win for us all!

There is also now more room for the dishes that get washed by hand everyday.

The big difference is the visual peace I have due to this new arr…

1st Notecard Party

Every month Vee is our hostess for the Note Card Party.  Please join in the fun! This month I decided to show my teacups and what sweet notecards they would make. I drink a lot of tea in the winter and it is a joy to choose between these lovely cups.

Of course, I do use our favorite pottery mugs as well, but ssshhhhh, don't tell the tea cups! Thanks for stopping by!

It's Not My Fault Really...

it's just because I am a Concrete Random, global learner and I have had a hugely busy year in 2012. (Have you ever read Cynthia Tobais' book "The Way They Learn"? You should!  It will help you understand the people in your life.)  I've just been reading it and realized how it has applied to my whole life.

See Concrete Random's are 
quick intuitive curious realistic creative innovative instinctive adventurous
For a dominant Global learner "It is easier to get an organizational system than to keep it."
That's me.  I see the need, I desire to change but it's a challenge.
So how does that translate to a person that has 7 family members your caring for, 2 guests living in your basement, <