Sorry and yet not sorry.

Yep, I did it again. I took way to long to post. To say that our lives have been busy is a complete understatement. I am sorry that this is not always a priority but at the same time I have made a summer with my daughter a priority that has take most of my days time. This has been a summer of memories that I will cherish for years to come.
We have spent our days in the pool, working in the garden, and playing hide and seek with every moment we can spare. We camped in the hottest part of the summer and enjoyed the rains on the porch on the coolest days. We added too many ducks to our flock and, if that wasn’t enough, added the funniest turkey, Leroy.

This has been a summer filled with lots of love and laughter that I have needed more than anything. I still miss my granny more than I can even talk about, and with missing her I miss all the ones that have gone home before her. I love that the Bible reminds us that we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, so that I know they are just in another place waiting and watching.

Our household has experienced a few changes over the months. We recently started having a weekly bible study with two of my aunts. This has been a huge blessing in our lives and we look forward to every week. I can say with certainty that I know more about the book of Daniel than I did last year. The Lord has also moved us in churches. We have started attending a new church that we have been enjoying. It is still early but we are excited about where we are headed in God.

This week I have been super busy working on all the preparations for school to start back. I will be attending online classes and my daughter will start her homeschooling. She is only doing preschool but we will have a few hours every day that will direct her learning. She is exceptionally smart and I really look forward to watching her learn.

Well, I just wanted to post a quick update and I promise that I will be posting much more in the weeks to come!

I pray that your week is filled to overflowing with God’s love, grace, and provision!

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Birthday Week

This has been an eventful week. I celebrated a birthday yesterday and believe me it was always the same as every other year. It always seems to be a day that some type of weather happens. One year there was a tornado and two different years there was an ice storm. This year was no exception, so there was a scare for a moderate ice storm. Thankfully, there was little ice and damage so we will survive another birthday.

I have ordered and received my early crops for the garden but just about the time I start to till the garden area there is a cold snap and I have to wait a few days. Hopefully, I will be able to get the ground ready and the seeds planted by this weekend. I have my work cut out for me. This has been a fun time of planning for this years garden. I also appear to be on track with the planting schedule if I am planting with the almanac.

I have also been hard at work getting my daughter started on preschool homeschool work. I am hoping to have her started next week on a schedule that will happen every day. We have a really good schedule that she has adapted to very well and one that I am comfortable with. This is just going to be an addition to what she already has everyday.

I am working on my last semester at a 2 year university to get ready for the next step at a 4 year university before completing my masters degree later on. I pray that this will help me to be the stay-at-home mom that I so desperately want to be. This is not just a past time but rather a passion that I have always had. I love living and working on a farm and I believe that i am doing what I need to be for my family.

We have also started having a weekly bible study at our home with two of my aunts on monday nights. I love the fellowship that I have with them and the time spent reading, discussing, and absorbing the living Word of God. I would encourage everyone to find this type of fellowship and embrace this time of learning the Word.

That’s all for this week! I look forward to the update that I will have on the preschool work and on the garden. I hope to have some pictures to show and have something else to add to the week!

Summer news and potty training blues

We have had a very busy summer that has included camping, swimming, school breaks, gardens, and the dreaded start to potty training. 

We did camp this year before our big family camp trip so we were moderately prepared for the whole trip. However, we were not ready for the change of venue. We have always camped on the same creek for the last 84 years and this year we had to break tradition and moved to a public camping area in the national forest. It was sad to see the tradition change, but the current up holders of the tradition were glad for the change. 

This was the first year in a couple of years that we decided to have a pool in the yard. The funniest part is that it has been a little on the cold side for the months of May and June so we didn’t swim till July. My daughter did swim in her play area a great deal. 

The garden was late this year going in the ground so we are just now reaping the harvest of our plants. There is nothing better than fresh veggies from your own garden. 

But the hardest part of the summer has been the animals. We have had a hard time dealing with the loss of our beloved kitty, Wonka. He was a constant in our crazy, mixed up world and we are all pretty lost without him. We thank the Lord each day for the gift of the love of good pets. We also lost our male duck and I truly have been the saddest about his loss from our flock. 

We have had a hard summer of heartache and, I for one, am just ready for the Fall!

There has also been the beginning of potty training for the little one. She is so smart and she just almost has it. I am hoping to have this down by the fall.

So that is a catch-up of all the goings on with our household this summer! 

I hope that there will be way less time in between this update and the next. I hope you will pray for our family during all these happenings!

Setting Hens

Well, we now have a new hen that has been added to the flock. I would like to introduce you to Matilda. She was a hen that my in-laws had and they no longer wanted her so she came to be a part of our hen house! She was very timid and shy at first but I think she has settled in quite nicely!

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We also have two hens that have decided to brood (raise a baby) and we have them sitting on one egg each until we figure out if they will hatch an egg or not. They are Bertha and Martha, the last two of the bantams. We just love these two and wish them the best of luck with their babies!

Now, the family is on a very heavy health food diet because we are all needing to shed some holiday pounds. My mother and I have been cooking very healthy meals and in a week and a half have dropped 5 pounds each! The latest food that we have made is some awesome granola for our homemade parfaits.

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We are already getting geared up for our garden and thankfully we had the one snow so far that we desperately needed for the garden soil. Unfortunately, there was a cold in the house and no one got to go play in the snow (bummer). We are hoping to visit some family up north and play in the snow later on this winter.

We are also looking for new ideas for ways to do both an indoor and an outdoor herb garden. I have been using fresh herbs in my infused water and I would like to not have to buy the herbs but grow them myself. The same goes for compost. I want to do better about the waste that we have after we prepare meals and I am on the hunt for a good way to compost.

Keep watching for updates on the great hatching of the chicks and hopefully we will have some little ones soon!

Christmas

Well, I know I am late to posting this but I wanted to share a little about our family Christmas. We had a tougher year this year because of missing family members but we did get some of the usual decorations up.

We made some new traditions this year but we kept one of my favorite traditions alive which is make cookies for some of the families around the community. This is a massive cookie baking that we did and I only got a few pictures because we ran short on time to get these done and delivered.dscf1649

We did start a new dinner tradition that consisted of home cooked prime rib! My mom and dad do not like their steaks red at all but they loved the prime rib and ate tons! We were surrounded by friend that have become family and could not ask for a better day!

We missed the ones that were not with us so the decorations came down the day after because it was just too hard on our hearts to see the decorations up. We know that God has a plan to bring those that have gone astray back to us and we are waiting for him to do what only he can do to change the hearts of our loved ones.changes

We are geared up for the new year and I have been reading on social media about a word for the new year and I would have to say mine is “change.” I know that this is an old hat but I feel the waves of change crashing in on my family and I believe that these changes will be so awesome and all for God’s glory!

What is your word for 2017? What do you expect for God to do in this coming year?

Well, that is all I have to say for now! Have a blessed New Year and seek God in this time of new beginnings!

Chickens

Well this is all the chickens that we have now! Hopefully we will add some in the spring but these are the whole flock! They have been dealing with the colder weather changes this week so we had to purchase a new red bulb and heating lamp to keep them warm this winter. They also got new feed and they love meal worms! That is the snack they are having in these pictures. We are hoping to get more eggs than we have been but we are averaging 2-3 eggs a day.

We also were able to enjoy some wonderful deer meat for supper the other night. My husband killed 2 deer and we had them locally processed, which was such a blessing! We love the meat and just in case you were wondering, deer meat is extremely healthy for you! This was our plate of food from dinner!

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Now you will notice my cup sitting there and I am wondering if anyone can tell me where the photo on my cup is from? Have fun!

Thanksgiving

Well, the prep work has begun! Not only the shopping but the cleaning and all the things in between. We are expecting 6 new faces this year to our table so we have all the food to go with those additions to our table. Now, don’t get me started on all the cleaning that I still have left to do before Thursday gets here.

Not only are we preparing for the big dinner that always is a hit, we are getting geared up for Black Friday shopping! I am so looking forward to the deals this year because it is a huge help with kids Christmas presents. Yes, I know I am crazy for subjecting myself to the must have deals of the season, but I have had years of practice and this happens to be a family tradition of shopping!

I am of the old school tradition of not putting my Christmas tree up till after Thanksgiving and it is truly about to kill me. I love my tree and all the memories that it brings up and I love to have it up for as long as possible. I am not sure how I am going to keep the cats and my girl out of the tree but I am always open to suggestions!

We will also be taking family pictures soon for Thanksgiving and Christmas and I hope to try some of my camera skills out. Don’t worry, I will post those along with pictures of the tree, chickens, etc. very soon!

I always take time during this holiday to think of all the things I am thankful for and I won’t bore you with a list a mile long but I will say that family is always at the top. I am most thankful for God and the relationship that I depend on so much with him. So when you sit down to your plate of food and you have family and friends all around, be reminded of what to truly be thankful for and who all the thanks is due.

Don’t worry, we will have pictures for all to see of the dinner and the family!

“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. Psalm 136:1 NLT”

 

Begin Again

Hello again, coming from the Ozarks! So, I need to first off say that I am so sorry that it has been as long as it has since I have posted. To be honest with you, I have had to take some time and try to get through some things and create some new places in my day to day life. This has been a growing season for me and for my family that has taken my full attention. Thankfully, I am back! I look forward to this new season and all that I feel I have to share with you!

Now it is time to catch you up! My beautiful baby girl is a full 1 year old and is a walking, talking mess! It has been such a miracle to watch her grow and become her own person. She is learning new things by leaps and bounds and I think that she will potty train early. Her favorite food is hands down bananas and she loves nothing more than to be outside with the chickens and the dogs.

Speaking of the chickens, we have lost a total of 3 to various wildlife around the land but we still have our 10 that are doing wonderful. We have 2 roosters that go by Shanticlare and Tyson, our three black sex-links names are the Twisted Sisters, our 3 Bantums go by Bertha, Gussie, and Martha, and last but not least our Easter Eggers are Perdida and Tiger Lily. We absolutely love these chickens!

I have been in school, for the second time in my life, since August. This alone has taken most of my time, since this has been a huge adjustment for my family. The best thing though is that I love my classes. Thankfully they have not been too hard but I am going to take it a little slower than I had originally planned. My husband is set to graduate in the spring and I could not be more proud of him!

The family as a whole has been doing wonderful and we are looking forward to the holidays that are coming up. There is nothing we value more than time spent with family.

Now, for the very core of my existence, I have to say that God has been doing some changing in my life over the last few months. I have dedicated more of my time to the things of him and more of my time has been spent in his word and listening to his workers teaching. I encourage you to add even more time spent with God to your day, it will make such a difference in your life.

Well, that is all I am going to say for now but keep watch for pictures to come and more of our funny life stories! Be blessed and keep God close to you today!

 

Days gone by….

I am sitting here today with so much change happening!

I am watching my beautiful garden growing and producing, even though I haven’t ate anything out of it yet. There will be plenty of produce for me to preserve, though! I am looking for recipes for canning things such as pickles, peppers, relish, and anything else I can find. I am always open to new ideas.

My chickens are growing and should be laying soon, so we will be eating fresh eggs before long. I have increased my flock by 3 Easter eggers. They are such cute little boogers! My dad is about to go crazy with letting them out every day and making sure that the big chickens don’t “bully” the little chicks. He is a little bit crazy about them.

I love that it is fully blown summer in the Ozarks! The grass is so green and the creeks and rivers are full and so very inviting! We are already planning all the aspects of our family camp trip that happens this 4th of July weekend. We found out that this is a tradition that has lasted 83 years in our family. My dad is very involved in planning a scavenger hunt for the family to compete in and my cousin is getting herself ready to be the family therapist. We all have such a good time and we love being around each other.

I am also getting ready for the many changes that come with my husband finishing his last year in school. He is so smart and has done so well! I cannot wait to watch him succeed. He is looking into what to do about the job he wants and he gets so stressed about it but I just remind him to trust in the Lord. He has never left us!

We have made it to snake season. I am not one to just hate animals for no reason but I really don’t like snakes. It was not as big as I have seen but it was still big enough.

There always seems to be change and I am working hard on letting it come and enjoying all the changes but it is hard. I am so glad that God never changes!

Changing Times

This has been a crazy month with so many things happening. First, my brother nearly died and I was busy taking care of him. On the up side he is better, so we are relieved. Next, we went on our vacation to the gulf, which was much needed on my part. Lastly, a cousin on my dad’s side of my family died and we have been grieving with the family for the last 1 1/2 weeks. Crazy times!

There have been many things happen in that amount of time. My daughter has started to pull up and will be walking any day now! I thought my life had changed when she was born but it is nothing like how it will change when she starts to walk! My husband has finished college till the fall so he is working some odd jobs for the summer till classes resumes in the fall. He is doing wonderful in college and only has one year left till he gets his degree.

Our garden is growing by leaps and bounds! I am so excited to watch it grow and know that it will provide for our family! I am already gearing up for canning this fall and I can’t wait till the veggies start to fill my table! My chickens are huge now and hopefully in the next month or so we will have plenty of eggs. I will be posting pictures of both the garden and the chickens soon!

My family is gearing up for 2 summer traditions that hold a special place in our hearts. The first to come is the towns homecoming. This will be my daughters first year to attend and my dad is crazy excited. There will be people from all over in attendance and we look forward to the games, food, and fellowship that this weekend offers. The next tradition is our annual camp trip to the creek. My mom’s side of the family has been camping like this for the last 85 years on the same weekend. The last few years has been low in attendance but this year promises to be one of the best because of the boost in the people that are planning to camp. We actually have to take everything that we need and there will be no cell service for the whole trip. We sleep on the gravel bar and eat s’mores till we are sick. My husband thinks this is the best tradition and he looks forward to it every year. He is even in charge of making sure we have our “beacon of light”, which is actually just a tiki torch! There will be many stories to tell when we return, so keep a watch out.

I have started to feel like I am not happy with where I am and all the things that I have been doing for the Lord. I have always known that there was a calling on my life to be in the youth ministry and for many years I served somewhat in our church doing that very thing. Then I fell away from the Lord for a time and ran from the calling that he has on my life. Since the birth of my daughter, I have worked very hard to bring my life totally back to the Lord. Things have been changing and I have started to mend some fences and to heal some broken relationships. This past Sunday I have even made sure to be a part of our churches “Bible School”. I am so thankful that the Lord has forgiven and restored me to him. I miss ministry and I know that he is working that out in his time for me to be a part of his work again.

I will leave you with this verse to think on.

Romans 8:28New King James Version (NKJV)

28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

“Father, I thank you for your love. I thank you for making all things good, even when we mess up and have to be pulled out of our mess. You don’t take everything away and leave us with no hurts but you promise us that we will see good in our struggles. I have my beautiful daughter because of the choices that I made and I wouldn’t trade her for anything. I am ready for the new season that you are bringing in my life and I pray that I have the strength to hold on for the answers to my deepest prayers. I love you, Lord of my life! May those that read this see your heart in my words and may they be brought closer to you. In your most precious name, sweet Jesus. Amen”