Thursday, February 26, 2009

Outdoor blogging!

I am composing this particular blog post from the comfort of my front porch rocking chair!  What a way to spend an afternoon.  Eden brought her little rocker out and she is currently sitting next to me sharing her snack of pretzels and singing me a song with words that go something like this... "I dropped my dish, I dropped my dish, in the tree, it fell in the tree..."  The song is because she (surprise, surprise) dropped her dish that was holding her pretzels off the edge of the porch into the azalea bush.  Fortunately this did not upset her and she can sing about it!

Winter has wreaked havoc on my home's curb appeal and I can't wait to get out here and do some heavy-duty clean-up of the flower beds.  Anyone need any vinca vine?  I have lots of daffodils coming up and some with buds on them.  My daylilies are peeking up through the ground as are my iris.  No signs of the dutch iris, yet.  Those are my favorite!  Looking at the grass, the wild onion has shot up all over the place and it could stand to be cut!  I won't point this out to Brandon.  He insists on waiting until one of the neighbors cuts theirs first...

Unfortunately this little glimpse of Spring is going to be short-lived and we will have Winter back by the weekend.  It's time to head in and get supper going.  Hope you got outside today!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Total $$ Makeover update!

BABY STEP #1:  Save $1,000 in an emergency fund.  DONE!
BABY STEP #2:  The Debt Snowball!  Pay off all debts (except the home mortgage).
Debt #1:  DONE!
Debt #2:  DONE!
Debt #3:  DONE!

As of right now, we have 4 debts left including school loans, our home equity line of credit and an auto loan.  The Lord has really blessed our efforts to pay this stuff off!  Brandon received a bonus from work that has allowed us to take care of some much-needed truck repairs, get the dog vaccines up to date, replace my broken crock-pot, pay off a significant debt and a few other much-needed things!  Praise the Lord for his faithfulness and the grace He gives us to keep doing the right thing!

We will do our taxes this weekend and with any luck, we will get a little back to add to our debt "snowball!"  I am confident, at least, that we will not owe...

I'm off to (pay cash at) the chiropractor and to Kroger to pick up the items they were out of Monday night ($.99/lb grapes to be specific).  Have a wonderful day!  I will!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

This week...

I haven't blogged in about a week.  I have been struggling with the pelvic pain off and on (though, it has been nothing like last week) and have seen the chiropractor twice now.  I will continue seeing her for now as I am getting some relief.

Brandon was Super-Dad this weekend.  He worked hard and did a wonderful job of being me while I sat around and rested.  He got meals together, cleaned up toys, did most of the potty duty, took Eden to the pet store, and much more!  My hero!

So, since I have been somewhat better, I made a few plans for the week.  Yesterday, Eden and I went to our Sewing Bee.  I was uncomfortable by the end of the day, but not miserable!  Today, we will take it easy and try to get some domestic tasks accomplished!  Tomorrow, I have a chiropractor appointment and  Pioneer Girls in the evening.  Thursday, Eden has a playdate in the morning and I have girls night!  I haven't been in a while since my classes are on Thursday nights.  This just happens to be my week off between classes, so I get to go!  I haven't thought much past that, but it is a start!

There is a massive stack of coupons sitting on my living room floor... I need to cut them and purge my expired ones.  Kroger has tomatoes for $.99/ lb this week, so I can have my favorite thing in the whole world (at least this week)!  I have been loving tomato salad!  The particular version the baby likes is tomatoes, green olives, cheese, ranch dressing and sunflower seeds.  Lots of sunflower seeds!  So, a trip to Kroger is in order sometime before lunch this morning!!

I'm off to be domestic!  ;)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I'm back! Well, sort-of...

I have been out of commission for the past few days.  Still online, but that was about it.  I have Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction.  I had it toward the end (38 weeks) of my pregnancy with Eden, but it was uncomfortable, not debilitating.  It came on quite a bit earlier (17 weeks) this time and this past weekend became much worse.  Monday and Tuesday this week, I could hardly walk and I even cried!  I admit, I am a "crier," but not about pain.  I think the emotional weight of not being able to care for Eden coupled with the knowledge that 20 more weeks of pregnancy is a LONG time wore me down.  

So, yesterday I saw our chiropractor, Dr. Anna Madland.  She did an adjustment and warned me I would feel worse before I feel better.  She spoke in truth.  Last night was bad.  This morning, though, I can walk!  I am still having some pain, and I will go back for another adjustment on Friday morning, but I can walk!!  Praise the Lord!  

There is a chicken in the oven and bread baking, as well!  Brandon will appreciate that, I'm sure, since I haven't cooked in a couple of days.  I have a lunch date with my mama (aka, Nanny) and then I hope to put the girl down for a nap and stitch up a maternity apron I cut out this morning.  My other aprons are looking a little weird and not covering my lap anymore since I have to tie the waist up above my big belly!  Back to being domestic...  I pray the pain holds off!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Spring Plans?

Our little family lives in a precious little house on 1/3 acre.  I really like the house, I like the area and the neighbors aren't bad.  Many of you are aware that I really want to move.  You may wonder why.  1/3 acre is plenty of room for a garden, a bee hive and a small flock of chickens!  Well, part of the reason I am unhappy with our current living arrangement is our total lack of sunlight.  This lack of light is responsible for my lack of garden.  I have tried to grow things in the areas with the most light and have never had any luck except for some pretty decent luck with herbs and some beautiful flowers.

Last year we had pretty good success with sugar snap peas and a couple of varieties of tomatoes.  I planted them in containers and put them at the very edge of our front yard by the road.  While not a gorgeous solution, I got no complaints from the neighbors and we don't  live in a neighborhood, so no association to worry about!  My large tomatoes did not do well as, I believe, the containers were too small.  I had 2 varieties that thrived, though.  I grew heirloom varieties of a cherry tomato called Mexico Midget (Purchased from Seed Savers HERE) and a beautiful little pear tomato called Beam's Yellow Pear (also purchased from Seed Savers HERE).  Because they did so well, I plan to quadruple my efforts with these varieties this year.  

My Mexico Midgets on the vine.

I also plan to try a different planter for another attempt at a larger tomato variety.  Check out these self-contained gardening systems!  I hope to build 2.  These are supposed to be able to support up to 4 tomato plants.  I may try lettuce in the boxes before tomato season arrives.  I may do a couple of bush beans in the second box.  We'll see how it all goes.  It has been disheartening to try to grow things and year after year have little success.  

A tomato horn worm I found stripping my tomato leaves last year.

I feel like I may be getting somewhere with the man.  He finally understands that I am serious about having a small flock (4-6 hens, no rooster) of chickens.  I think he thought I was kidding for a while.  It won't happen this year, though.  Maybe we'll re-visit the chicken thing once the baby arrives.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

A Nice Time at Mema's

The family all went over to Mema's (my maternal grandma) for lunch yestersay.  She has lived for the past 3 years in a retirement community.  She didn't alwas live an apartment life, though.  She moved from her home of 50 years in 2006.  She loves flowers and plants and kept a large garden for many years.  She grew up on a farm in a still-rural part of the state (Fife, VA in Goochland County).  

I had so much fun yesterday, remembering her mother's house with her.  My memories of that house are very different form hers.  I remember the house, my great-grandma (AKA Little Grandma), her BIG garden, the barn, the porch swing, the wood cook stove that Little Grandma still preferred using long after electricity took over the world, the ice house with the deep hole that had long been used as a shed rather than cold storage.  Mema's memories are much deeper than mine.  She remembered things like her dad building that ice house!  How she loved helping him with things around the farm and he liked it too because she was good at it!  She remembers her mom buying 100 laying hens so she could sell the eggs and have "mad money" for herself!

I love listening to the memories of the older generations!  There is so much to glean and it is just fun to hear how simple and fulfilling life can be when you practice clean living!  If you have someone in your life who has lived life, talk to them about it!  I am sure they would love to share some memories with you! 

Friday, February 6, 2009

An interesting read.

Some of you know that Brandon and I hope to move some day to a more rural setting.  We want some land and to be more self-sufficient.  I want chickens and maybe a couple of goats and a big garden.  I tend to follow the blogs of folks I want to be like, so homesteading blogs are my internet reading of choice!

One of my favorites is The Deliberate Agrarian.  You should check him out!  Anyway, his latest post got me thinking!  I have never heard anyone point out that Biblically we are commanded to be agrarian!  Maybe because we have departed so far from that type of lifestyle.   

Check it out and let me know what you think!

You ain’t no kind of man if you ain’t got land!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Check me out!

I am not really one for New Year's resolutions.  I believe that, especially as Christians, we should always be seeking to make changes that stretch us and grow us (not just once a year and then forget about it).  A while back I joined a site called 43Things.  It is really good to see your goals written out.  It holds me accountable and reminds me of the things I want to get done.  You can see my 43 Things on the far-right side bar!

One of my goals is to blog regularly.  You obviously know I am blogging here, but check me out HERE at The Sewing Bee and HERE at Eden's Garden (my work website).

Now, I'm off to try a new sandwich bread recipe!