What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Soapbox on Scheduling...feel free to put me in my place...

A few weeks ago at church, Michelle asked about opinions on scheduling. Unfortunately, the time between morning and afternoon service is minimal so we didn’t have time to have a thorough discussion. So I thought, maybe we could start the ‘discussion’ here and see what comes of it. This is MY point of view. I realize, it is different than many peoples, and I look forward to hearing the other points of view. So-without further ado…

I feel schedules are SO important for children and children really THRIVE on them. Kids like to know what is going to happen next, it makes them feel like they have some control on their lives to know what will happen next.
In the case of newborns... I like to get my babies on a schedule within a month or so of them being born. I don’t starve them until they get on a schedule but kind of go along with the schedule they follow. Of course, the first few weeks-a baby has such a mixed up schedule (yes-babies DO have schedules! They sleep during the day and are awake at night…and eat whenever they want…) Newborns shouldn’t be forced into a rigorous schedule-they continuously got their nourishment in the womb-just feeling HUNGER is a new thing to them. They need the nourishment as much as they can get it at first. Within a few weeks though-you will see them start to develop their own pattern. Look for it-and encourage it. When the baby starts to fuss, hold her and play with her instead of feeding her right away. Postpone it as long as you can (even just five or ten minutes). Then feed her. The next time, do it again. If you continue to do that-you will go from incessant feedings to 4 or 5, to 3 or 4. They will be BIGGER and longer feedings-but further and farther between. Not all babies can handle a lot in their tummy at once-sometimes smaller feedings are better for those with sensitive stomachs or for children with stomach problems. You are the parent. You know what is best for your child. It is MY opinion, however, that children without problems, who are fed less but more (meaning less often but more per sitting) are often more content, more easily transition to scheduled table food sittings, sleep better and are healthier. Why? Because children who are fed on demand eat LESS…making them hungry more often. Their little bellies do not have that full feeling for very long…because they metabolize the food so much more quickly. They get uncomfortable and hungry more often because they feel HUNGRY making them upset and even waking them up frequently, they don’t gain weight as easily-because the food is metabolized so quickly, and they are not put into any routine at all-making the transition to table food and weaning that much more difficult. On a side note-babies who are demand fed, often get food when they are hurt. Comforting should not be associated with food. Babies should find comfort in soothing, loving, hugging, kissing, and rocking-not with food. UNLESS the discomfort they are feeling is that of hunger. It always makes me nervous because it may encourage ‘food for comfort’ later in life-not a healthy habit AT ALL. Food should not be a comforter. Parents should. Love should.
I realize, as I said, every mother has her own soapbox knows the best about nursing/bottle feeding, demand/scheduled feeding, etc. This post is coming across that way too, even though I don’t want it to. Once again I say-this is my OPINION and you are welcome to your own.
Once your child becomes a toddler and is on table food alone, this comes into play even more so. Toddlers all the way up to teenagers need to be taught healthy eating habits-not just WHAT to eat, but when to eat it. I am a firm believer in three meals a day plus one snack. I don’t agree with people letting their kids graze throughout the day. (Which is probably why I like having my babies get on schedule, when they appear to be ready.) It is not healthy for adults to just eat and eat and eat all throughout the day. Especially since, most foods that you just nibble on or graze are unhealthy-the things you don’t have to prepare. Chips. Cookies. Junk. So why should we allow our kids to do so?
Children are MUCH more active than adults and so still need snacks. But I always make SURE that meals are EATEN. If we encourage lots of snacks-we encourage the not-so-healthy foods versus the wholesome good foods at mealtime. If children know that they will get any food they want, even if they don’t eat their suppers, which do you think they will choose? It is important to give your kids breakfast, lunch, and dinner-REAL foods. Then, when they eat all that, if they are still hungry, between meals, give them healthy snacks! Corynn has begun is to complain about being hungry ALL hours of the day. Even after just having had meals- (that she didn’t finish, might I add!) It frustrates me to no end-but I will not give her snack foods to satisfy her hunger if she refuses to finish her meals. She will eventually learn that she must eat all of her food to get snacks. Once she eats all of her food, she won’t need snacks, I am sure. But lately, she wants the crackers instead of the soup or the grapes instead of the chicken. I would encourage you (and myself because I NEED it!) to skip the snacks all together if they refuse to eat real food and DEFINITELY desserts...not that we have THOSE all that often! We want our children growing up with a well balanced diet. Not one accustomed to crackers, cookies, and other snack foods.

The way I see it, we are raising our children with the goal of their becoming adults and so we should encourage them in adult habits. And
eating three meals a day is HEALTHY and a REALISTIC thing for adults to do-and therefore kids should follow suite. Now adjustments must be made…if they are STILL hungry after eating all their meals-they must need some more. Don’t starve your kids…just don’t let them fool you with their “I’m hungry…” meaning I don’t want dinner…I want CANDY!

Scheduling is also important in the way of sleep…but that subject is for another day! This post is already entirely too long and will probably enflame entirely too many people. :-)

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Better get a Cocoa-these pictures do go on!

Matt's costume was voted 'best costume' and for that I am proud. Because I made it out of a graduation gown I had bought at Salvation Army. When he told me he wanted to be a Master and Commander, I wasn't sure how I was going to pull that off...but it turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself. Posted by Picasa

Defending his country, his family, his honor, and....his toes, it looks like. Posted by Picasa

I am a masquerade peacock. Thanks to Abby for planting a seed. Unfortunately, you can't see the peacock feathers in my hair... Posted by Picasa

Corynn looking remarkably like Corynn. No lion head or painted nose or nothing-man can she be stubborn! That face right there proves it. Posted by Picasa

Nate and Julie....Nate lost his maracas when the kids caught wind he had some..but he is always a good sport. Posted by Picasa

Elizabeth the gypsy-of course, by the time I had gotten to take their picture, she had wiped off the moon and stars on her cheeks. Bob was one of several costume fuddy-duddies. He was dressed as "Bob" with a gun... Posted by Picasa

Jailbird......it was either this or "Cider Monster" covering himself with the sheet they used to make cider. I liked this one. :-) Posted by Picasa

Dave and Michelle. Dave reminded me of Matt because Matt makes that same face when I point the camera at him. Dave at least had an excuse-I don't know much about the military, but I know enough to know not to show a goofy grin while standing at attention. Notice the leaves is Michelle's hair-that was the best touch. Posted by Picasa

The Valentine Hippies...they tye dyed the shirts with food coloring. Posted by Picasa

I decorated the house with $6.00. Black and Orange crepe paper: $1.00 (actually .48 cents each...) Candles (2).....$1.00 A Faux pumpkin $2.00 and A string of orange lights $1.99 You can see here, the candles are standing upright in dirt with spiked red leaves keeping them company...a vrey inexpensive way to get the autumn look. Posted by Picasa

While cropping this picture would have made it nicer looking, then you would have missed seeing my protruding belly competing for the focus. Posted by Picasa

Our Night in Costume....

The weekend was busy busy busy...but now that it is over, I am bored! On Friday night, Matt came home from work totally stressed out and decided he wanted to go to his parents' house. He took Corynn so that she could see Grandma and Grandpa whom she hadn't seen in a few weeks. They spent the night-which was the first night I was away from Corynn. I didn't want to go to bed without Matt so I stayed up until midnight, then finally sleep came. The one opportunity I had to sleep in without a bouncy two year old running into my bed as I was fast asleep and saying, an inch from my face, "Good Mornin!" I ruined with thoughts about her not being here. I ended up waking up earlier than if she WAS here. I had no one but myself to make breakfast, no one but myself to get dressed, no one but myself to worry about-and I hated every minute of it! Saturday was the party-and I spent most of Saturday preparing for it. I planned on taking some pictures of the decorations and the food-they were pretty cool if I do say so myself....and even more pictures of everyone playing games-but being a hostess has so many responsibilities-I was able to snap pictures of all the costumed couples and that was IT. We had lots of creative people-from gypsies to pumpkins-to hippies. Unfortunately, I didn't get any pictures of the kids but among them were a half-dressed lion (that was Corynn), a gorilla, a crocodile, a fireman, cowboys and cowgirls, a soldier, a bunny, a brave knight, a skunk, a cow, a dog, Clifford: THE big red dog!

Lots of fun stuff was on the food and drink table. There was putrid punch-with gummy worms frozen inside ice cubes. I made these hideous and grotesque looking soft pretzel ladies' fingers to dip in a double decker pizza dip (I really wanted to get a picture of those-they were truly more disgusting to make than anything I had ever made before...and I almost lost my stomach contents several times in the process), a chicken BBQ dip, we had apples with caramal dip, pumpkin crisp squares, and popcorn balls-not to mention a chocolate cake Samantha made, sloppy joe stuff Elizabeth brought, and a veggie platter from Wendy. There was plenty of food-but what always surprises me-is that no matter how much food is made-it is also always consumed without leftovers.

It was really funny getting Corynn dressed up. I had dressed up as my masquerade Peacock while she was napping-so she was amazed to see my face all painted when she awoke. Then she wanted hers done too. Because she was a lion, I colored her nose in with black, made lion lips and whiskers and had her looking so cute-all the while she was facing me and giggling in eager anticipation. Then, she turned around, looked in the mirror and started screaming..."TOWEL MAMA! TOWEL! NO!!!" She wanted her face PRETTY with glitter and everything-and was thoroughly offended that I had done such a horrific thing to her face. I had to quickly wipe it off, then she took the lion hat off-refusing to wear it again the rest of the night. So-she looked a pretty sad lion. Hopefully, I can convince her to put the hat on this weekend so I can get some good photos.

The night of the party was the first night we had turned on the heat-and I don't know if it is coincidence or what-but now I have a horrible cold! I have probably used up two boxes of tissues in two days. And I am on to the throat losenges now.

Anyway-enjoy the photos..there are LOTS!

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Fast asleep, snuggled up with her book. Sights like this just make my heart swell so big I wonder how it can even fit in my body. Parenting is filled with such sweetness... Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Getting in the SPIRIT of things...... :-)

Yesterday we transplanted the marigolds from the garden to our front yard to add some nice oranges and yellows for the season. I started these from seeds and as you can see-they flourished. I put another bunch on the other side of the porch too. When I was done, Corynn sat on her pumpkin and said "Cheese! Cheese! cheese!" I didn't know what she meant at first, then I figured out, she wanted me to take her picture on "Bob's Big Pump Kin" as she calls it. Posted by Picasa

Corynn??? Posted by Picasa

Nope...here she is kissing her new little friend.  Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

One More Thing.....

Matt decided that we will turn off the internet. I think we will have until the end of the month of October, since we pay per month. I hope so anyway-because this weekend I am going to have lots of new pictures to post!

I am hosting a costume party at our house for some friends of ours! My friend Wendy planned to do it, but wasn't able to at the last minute. Well, by that time, she had teased me with the idea and I had gotten so excited about dressing up, that I decided to take on the task myself. I am VERY excited-call me a kid, but I think dressing up is FUN.

The party starts at 6 on Saturday and kids and adults will dress up for it. Our church has game-nights several times a year, so it will be very much like that, except everyone will be dressed up. We will probably play Cranium (a Newman Fave), Taboo, or sherades. So now, I am racking my brains for some creative and INEXPENSIVE ways to decorate the house, fun snacks to serve, and how to make Matt's costume. It is proving to be harder than I had first thought. But he REALLY wants to be this certain thing-so I am REALLY going to have to try harder. I won't say what we will be, but Corynn is going to be a lion. I bought the costume this year-instead of making it. The Salvation Army was selling it for $2.00 and you can't make a costume for that price. Anyway-any wonderful ideas would be appreciated.

Matt made his first batch of Apple Cider this past week-he made two gallons and a wine bottle worth. It is gone now. But he has since picked 3 or 4 more bushels of apples to make more. We will serve some at the party, and he will make some into Hard Cider. You can see him here, proud as a peacock. He also got another deer hide to work with this year-so he is brushing out the cobwebs on that process too.

Also-I decided to cancel the craft show for this Saturday. The amount of stuff I had done, even if I sold EVERYTHING, would hardly cover the cost of the table-and so it is not worth my time. Which is a HUGE burden off of my back. Now I can focus on the party-and after that, I will have a few weeks to finish my crafts before I have to worry about another show. Phew! What a relief!

Good stuff is happening........

Wealth and Prosperity Part 2

Where is fancy bred? In the heart or in the head?

This is a long time coming and is the second part of a thought process I had been (as my husband would say) chewing on for a while now. The first part can be viewed here for those who missed it. I had intended writing the second part soon after the first, but-priorities. Hopefully I will have continuity of thought. While the first post dealt with the ‘secrets’ to success, this post will hopefully convey the practicality of finances for the ‘here and now’.

We are promised time after time after time that we will be blessed if we are children of God. If we obey Him, trust Him, work hard for Him, and be wise IN Him-we are promised not only that he will care for us as He has cared for the sparrows or the lilies in the field-but how much more? He will give us EXCEEDING riches, rooms will be FILLED with precious jewels, blessings will ABOUND, we will not ONLY not LACK but be made RICH!

But, not all of us own fancy houses and are free from financial worry. Each of us are in our own place and quite often, we are in a place that we want to get OUT of. We want to have pretty things, we want to have our own homes, we want to not have to worry about where the money will come from to buy groceries, clothes for our children, heat for our homes. These are all dreams though, and often seem far off because these concerns are the realities we face every day. So-what do we do in the meantime? What are the secrets to ‘success’ while we WAIT for the Lord to make us prosperous? I would submit that, just as there are ways to have wealth God’s way-there are also ways to deal righteously with the riches we already have.

Of course, each one of us at times, is reminded just how blessed we are. We are already quite wealthy compared to others around the world. We soon forget that having actual beds to sleep on is something many people around the world lack. It slips our mind that radio, internet, and/or TV’s are not in every single home much less, every room. We have become gluttons for food yet claim starvation. We have electricity, running water, toilets, carpets, cars (sometimes more than one), books, a variety of clothes to wear. It was not so long ago that people had to trek in the bitter cold darkness to go to the outhouse. Having one GOOD outfit-for Sunday’s and special occasions was more than enough for families even just 30 or 40 years ago yet this would make people today cringe in embarrassment. People washed their clothes by hand, hauled water for everything from baths to dishes to cooking, and didn’t have the convenience foods of today. And truly, the most precious gift of all is one that we can not even yet fathom-though we know it is there. The gift of a clean soul, the forgiveness of our countless sins, the blessing of eternal life! Yes-there is no doubt about it. When we take our eyes away from others and rid ourselves of self-pity, we will see that we are ALREADY abundantly blessed. As we continue to look at things we can do ‘in the meantime’, we must realize that this is the most important thing to remember and strive to do.
By realizing our many blessings, we are able to praise God and thank Him for His provision. Of course, the Lord WANTS to be praised and He WANTS our eyes to be opened. So, if we are to do this-we must also look at the flip side and see what NOT to do.
We must give Him the glory-but we can not do that if we think he is not worthy. By overlooking our blessings and becoming discontent, we are bringing shame to God. We do not praise Him for the things that we have-we are cursing His name with our ‘needs’ and lack thereof. It is like saying, “God, what you have given to me is not enough-I want more!” As if sending His son to die an excruciating death in both physical pain, but more than that, a pain so great the very depths of the sinless soul cries out in anguish over the separation from the Father-all for the sake of our measly unworthy little souls; as if that were not enough to please us. We have more than the richest men on earth right NOW if we have Christ. How greedy we can be! How selfish! How FOOLISH!
We fall into the very same trap when we become proud and arrogant of our meager lives and exaggerate our situations into pauperhood. Does this not happen? We make our situation pitiable, hoping to appear more pious, to win respect and the occasional ‘Wow! Look at so-and-so, they have it SO hard yet are always smiling…”, maybe even doing so in eager anticipation to be given hand outs. We are not only overlooking our blessings, we are spitting on the hands of God. We are liars and hypocrites of the worst sort. We are lying to God and about God. It is a dangerous game to be played and one that we ought not participate in.
Those are the negatives-so here is the positive and the practical. And here is where my soapbox begins (and you thought I was already on one! hehehe) While this is true for men and women alike, I am speaking mainly to wives-this is OUR job and one we should not take for granted. Our husbands go to work each day for us, and so all we have is by his hand (which was of course, given by the Lord’s hand). Whatever we have, we are blessed with and should be grateful for it. Being grateful for things is not simply a thank-you and we’re done. Being grateful for things is a constant act-one that requires respect and care. That means, practically, appearances count. If you respect and care for yourself-you will be clean. In the same way, if you respect the things you have-you will keep them in good order. If we have furniture-be grateful for it-take CARE of it. Make it last longer by keeping it clean, keep children from making a trampoline out of it. (This will, by the way, make it last longer thus saving money in having to replace it and so practically, we are becoming more wealthy by the minute! ) Keep your home swept and cleaned. Do the dishes and keep the stove cleaned. Keep laundry at bay. Keep things orderly and organized. While you may not have much money, ANYONE can use a broom-even a child. It does not matter if it was bought brand new-or bought at a yard sale…the things you have will last longer, be more beautiful, and be more appreciated if you take CARE of it.
Our appearance, both physically and within the home, reflect our attitudes to the world. If our homes are disorderly, dirty, and not welcoming we are sending a very clear message that what we have isn’t WORTH taking care of. When our families appear unkempt, we are giving the wrong impression of what Christians should look like. Christians should WANT to appear respectable and clean. After all, we are made in God’s image-we should be proud of that. D. Wilson wrote something that I liked very much-unfortunately, I can’t remember the exact quote…but VERY loosely, he said, “Men go off to work each day. Their line of work is their expertise, whether a dairy farmer or a top executive in a prestigious law firm. Women work at home and their homes and their families are their line of expertise.” This is also your job, women! We need to look nice, we must make sure our children look nice, and our husbands as well. That means lots of different things-mending worn out clothing so they appear well cared for (this too, will have the added benefit of saving money!), keeping their hair nice (most every woman I know does well at this, showing her husband and children she loves them by cutting their hair themselves (this too-saves money!), teaching them to be polite and courteous (husbands sometimes need to be taught too.) These are just to name a few. Cherishing the gifts we have been given-in our family and in our homes, is really a large job but so very important. By doing so, each day we reflect the attitude of true gratefulness. Not only to God-but to our husbands too-for working hard each day to care for us. And they need to be thanked also.

Finally, it can be hard to see the vast beauty in other peoples’ homes that have matched suites of furniture in each room, beautiful china sets, and all the finery and then come home to yours-that is brimming with mismatched furniture from yard sales and random mismatched dishes that make up your dinner table. I struggle with this just as many others do. But this is what I always remind myself. Anyone can make a home beautiful if given the money to do so-that is not impressive. You don’t need any creative flair or decorating genius outside of money. What is a far greater compliment, is to be told, “You have made such a lovely home with what you have!” or “You have done so much to the place!” And honestly, it is a much more FUN and exciting way to live. It is a challenge to make a home homey, comfortable, and welcoming with limited resources…but I do love a good challenge!

If you are constantly stepping up to the challenge of making your home more welcoming and comfortable for your husband and guests, if you are continually keeping up with what you have-keeping your home and possessions clean and well-kept, you will find that you will appreciate the many things that you have been blessed with-and becoming wealthy no longer is something that you are waiting for, but something that you are glorying in every day.

~For more on this topic, read the book My Life for Yours by Douglas Wilson. I could have written quote after quote from that book, except I am loaning it out to someone right now. It is just as well, for fear of plagiarism!  He says things so much better than me. It is an excellent book and an excellent reminder of the many opportunities we have all throughout our home and lives to be a beacon of God’s love and character. I HIGHLY recommend it.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

A VERY Yummy Recipe and the Holiday Spirit...


Today, despite every dish we own being dirty and awaiting a wash in the kitchen, my house is spotless-dusted, tidied, de-spiderwebbed, laundry caught-up, cleaned, swept, and organized. we had company over last night-Matt's parents came over and brought with them 'Gram'-Matt's Grandma. She had never been here before so I wanted it all to be perfect. I made a Pork Roast with Sauerkraut, some homemade Oatmeal bread with cinnamon-honey butter (yep-I tried to make it myself this time Bob!), sweet peas, homemade applesauce, and pumpkin pie still warm from the oven and ice cream for dessert. The meal was so delicious that I am going to post the recipe for the main dish here. It is sweetened by a sugary applejuice broth so it is TASTY!


4-53 pork roast
1 T. cornstarch
1/4 t. salt
1 T. lemon juice
1 1/2 c. chopped apples
1 T. brown sugar
2 c. apple juice, divided
1 (32 oz.) jar or bag of saurkraut, drained and rinsed
1/2 c. shredded carrots

Place Pork in a roasting pan. Roast at 350 degrees for one hour. While that is roasting, in a med. saucepan, combine brown sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Stir in 1 1/2 c. apple juice. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened. Set aside. Cut up apples. When roast is done, spoon combines sauerkraut, apples, carrot, and remaining apple juice around roast. Pour apple juice mixture over the roast and sauerkraut in the roaster. Cover and Roast 30 minutes longer-until meat thermometer reads 155-160 degrees.


Once I spend the morning cleaning the kitchen-I will have nothing else to hinder me from focusing on my crafts. Which NEED to get done! I keep saying that...so why haven't I done anything about it?!?!?!

In other news:
~My sister has started a blog. You can check it here...though be patient. She has just started and is just learning all the cool tricks to it.

~We got another two bushels of apples from Matt's parents' house. Matt and Nathan (his bro.) are going to make apple cider tonight. That will be fun. I will probably stay home and work on crafts-who knows how long it will take and Corynn won't need to be hauled around for all hours.

~Tomorrow we are going to MY parents' house to spend the night so Matt can help my dad with some projects. I am taking the other pie I baked with me to their house. I hope to get out to the library out there-it is the best library anywhere around these parts. The best library I have BEEN to, actually. Every time I go out there, I leave with 20-30 books. That will be fun.

~ I am a traitor by all rights. I have already begun listening to Christmas music. GASP! DOUBLE GASP!

Have a good weekend.

Monday, October 10, 2005

The pantied pair...Corynn has stayed dry for long periods of time, and so it was time to bring out the big girl panties again. She has been doing some interesting role-playing with her doll...and so her dolly needed panties too. Posted by Picasa

Still here, perhaps not for long.

I haven’t posted in a while. (Thanks for noticing and caring, Brenda!) I AM okay-but not great. This last week has been filled only with my sniffles, snuffles, and pain. I have had seriously painful headaches all week-the kind that make it difficult even to stand up. As I type, I am inwardly screaming because, though I feel somewhat better today, Corynn found her recorder and is now blowing in it with all her might. It is taking ALL my strength to keep typing and not grab that stupid thing and crush it into bits with a hammer. Anywho! :-) Headaches, coupled with sick stomach, are the ‘excuse’ for me not doing very much last week. This is a tougher pregnancy than the first. I just have to keep bucking up.

The house is FREEZING these days. I have been so tempted to turn on the heat but we just can’t. Not this early. I wish I had a temperature gauge for the inside of the house, it would be interesting to see, just for curiosities sake. It has been rainy and damp for a few days now, if you were to stop by, you would most likely see me curled up with a book with a nice hot mug of hot cocoa (and marshmellows, of course!) I just finished reading the book Shiloh Autumn by Bodie and Brock Theone. It was very good. Reminded me how GOOD we really have it. These people were in the depression and at the very end, had ONLY guinea hens to eat. No bread. Nothing else but guinea hens for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But that was something to be thankful for. They almost didn’t have those! I have started on another book from our church library called The Family Worship Book. So far, so good.

With the weather as it has been, I have been tempted to do some knitting-but haven’t gotten that out yet. It is the perfect weather for it. I am also planning on making a fleece shawl/coat for Corynn to wear to church this winter. I will use some cream fleece that I bought to make baby buntings and will purchase some fur when it goes on sale. I may even make a fur muff for her hands. I love the Victorian look-but as they get older, it is harder to come by! My first craft show is in TWO weeks-and the count down has begun. I still have NOTHING made except a few buntings so I REALLY need to get cracking on them! I hate the last minute rush but I know, once THIS show is over, the pressure will be off a LITTLE bit. After all-you never sell ALL your merchadise at a show. The dining rom table is USUALLY FULL of my painting stuff, and if not full, the supplies are shoved to the side so we can sit and eat at it too. I dream of someday having a craft room…wouldn’t it be GRAND?!?!

Matt and I are looking into cutting costs this winter. We are going to look at a house for rent that has a woodstove. If we could get into that-it might just help us save on fuel oil. We are also contemplating cutting off the internet. It is only $20.00 a month-but that is $240 dollars a year we would save. Of course, Matt would not be affected by this, since he has internet at work. But I would have to go to the library to do anything with this blog or on ebay or whatever. I don’t like the idea, but it may be good too-since I find myself on the internet for about 30 minutes everyday-or more. That is time that could be spent doing more productive things.

This week looks like it will be pretty busy for us. We hope to take a load of apples to a friend of ours’ house to make cider. Matt also wants to see about getting another batch of beer brewed-which is a good thing, since we have more bottles than I can stand around here now! I have my garden to clear out-and fertilize with rabbit pellets getting ready for next year-if we are even here. I have to clean out our mudroom-which you can hardly walk through anymore. I have to get these crafts done! I have to take stuff down to the basement. Laundry. Dusting. Mopping. All sorts of stuff.

On a side note-I am proud of myself for sticking with an exercise program for the last week despite my feeling ill. My belly may grow to unfathonable widths, my arms, legs and (hopefully!) my face will stay fit. To reward myself, I took special time this weekend to ‘pamper’ myself. I painted my nails-but not just regular painting. Since taking my prenatal vitamins again, my nails have really grown-so much so that they were long enough for me to paint them in a way that they look french manicured. It is simple to do with strips of sticky paper, and white and clear nail polish-but it makes me feel so…sophisticated and elegant. I needed that.

Anyway. Time to go. Hope I didn’t bore anyone with my mundane update…

A pacakge of cardboard and clothes-made our week. When the book was revealed, Corynn gasped with delight! Corynn is wearing one of the outfits in this picture. Many thanks to a caring clan in computerland! Posted by Picasa

Checking out the new duds...Each item she held up to inspect, held it up to herself to see if it would fit, then held it away from herself to look at it (as in the picture) and exclaimed. "ooooooh!" There were about 20 things in that box-so it was sounding like a ghost filled haunted house for a while! Posted by Picasa

My 'professionally' done nails... Posted by Picasa

Monday, October 03, 2005

Ranting and Raving...

I have a huge list of things to do today…and several of them are projects that require a LOT of work. This week I want to start focusing on crafting for my upcoming shows, but before that, I wanted to have the house completely finished so I wouldn’t get behind. Not this time, I guess. I decided to ditch the list today, because all night last night and so far this morning, my stomach has been aching in a way that I don’t remember ever feeling before. I can’t, in good conscience, overwork myself and possibly cause harm to Peanut. So-I am going to do what I can realistically, and not worry about it otherwise. Yesterday, at the close of church service, I suddenly felt like I was going to throw up, then I saw stars before it turned black. I sat down just as I couldn’t see anymore. It is a weird feeling, almost passing out. I wonder, how can you feel like the room is spinning if you can only see black? That happened once to me while I was pregnant with Corynn but I was 7 or 8 months pregnant at the time. It was at a store, and I was able to fall into a chair instead of on the floor. That was cutting it REALLY close-because I was BLIND for a seemingly long time-my mom had to guide me to a chair (thankfully, we were in the furniture section of the store) before the last phase-of actually passing out, started. Who knows why these things are happening. Don’t know. I am not worried about it, just erring on the side of caution.

As for Peanut. He/She is doing remarkably well. Despite the unpleasantries of an initial pregnancy visit with an OB/GYN (namely, all those intrusive exams and blood tests etc.) I had a great time on Thursday. The doctor was SUPER nice-I like him A LOT. (He is AWFUL short, which made me feel VERY awkward as we walked down the hall together…) He did give us an ultrasound and took his time with it, and really let us revel in the glory of our wee one. Corynn’s first ultrasound , she looked more like a little jelly bean with arm stumps. Peanuts’, though, was amazing! It was taken several weeks later, and as you will see, looks VERY much like a baby-if you look closely, you can even see the mouth ! I LOVE ultrasounds…just love them. I am SO glad Doctors do them more frequently now. I have been pouring over books-tracking the development of Peanut each week, I have started the baby journal for him/her, I think about it ALL the time, but NOTHING-nothing at all can make it MORE real than to see you child within you, moving it’s little arms or legs-or in Peanuts’ case, the WHOLE body! Matt is sure that it is a boy since it was moving around like it was.

Wanted to boast-just a little bit. In one day last week…well, the day I posted the apple question, I was able to make 13 jars of Apple Butter, 15 quarts of Applesauce, and some Spagetti Sauce also. I did ALL of that in ONE day. Not peeling the apples was the only reason I could-and what accomplishment I felt! After spending the day at it, I stayed up until nearly midnight. I got a sudden energy boost, so I washed, dried and put away all the dishes, bleached the sinks, cleaned the counters, swept and cleaned the floor, took out the garbage, and organized everything until the kitchen was positively GLEAMING. It occurred to me, how blessed we are as I sat there looking at all I had done. How many people who rent have access to so many free berries, apples, and such? How many people take an interest in canning? How many people want to can but can’t? The Good Lord gave us all that we needed-willing hearts, able hands, and the means to do it. And now we are well stocked!

We got our family pictures done-and boy am I disappointed! The lady was a putz and Corynn was not cooperating. Needless to say, I am not impressed. I am not even sure I want to give anyone these pictures. grrrrrrr. I am actually toying with the idea of just taking one with my camera and making copies-but then we will have wasted money. I don’t know.

My little bro. Cameron was rushed to the emergency room last night because he fell in a weird way while playing outside and actually broke his elbow very seriously. They had to do surgery on him and put a pin in his arm. He is only four years old. I hope I never have to deal with that, but I know that I will. Especially with my children having the father that they have. It’s inevitable. Cameron is doing well now though and is actually home from the hospital.

Well, that is the update on my life. Matt is gone and hasn’t called to tell me where he is, if he got there safely, or what. I am half expecting a cop to show up at my door. Last night, my dreams were filled with the reality of him dying. Ah yes. My mind is screwed up-but he ought to know that by now, and act accordingly. I hope to see him soon. I hate being away from him. Another great mystery for me is, how can you miss someone SO much that you just saw? I saw him yesterday, but now I am just filled with that empty ache like I haven’t seen him in ages.

Here is our baby #2...a bit over 2 1/2 inches long-he/she is just perfect! If you can't see the 'baby' (I can't imagine why not-it is clear as day to me...) but the top round thing is the head with the pointy little chin. The whitish area is the mouth. Then there is the body and arms on the sides. You could kindof make out some eyes if you squint, tip your head to the left, and cross your eyes.  Posted by Picasa

Here is hedgehog Corynn with her most treasured new slippers. She fits in with the slippered Newman family quite nicely. Posted by Picasa

Here is some of what I made. I have given a few away. The very red jars of applesauce are funky-I dissolved cinnamon candies in them. My mom made applesauce this way. Posted by Picasa