Catching Up

Since my blog posting has been sporadic over the past year I thought I would do a brief update and catch everyone up on what has been going on here @ home.  I did post more regularly on my Instagram and my Facebook page, I hope you’ll check them out.

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My husband’s cousin and her children.

Last year was really busy with all sorts of things: family, health, home, schooling etc. We had several family members going through various trials, one of the biggest was the loss of hubby’s cousin to ovarian cancer. Such a beautiful woman lost too early to a cancer that there isn’t much awareness for. She had been going to doctors for a year trying to find out what was going on before she was diagnosed. We are heartbroken, continuing to pray for her children and family as they learn to live without her. My own health has been an issue over the past year, mainly my asthma. I have had asthma since I was a young child and this past fall was probably the worst it’s ever been, and making some drastic dietary and supplement changes have helped dramatically. The main change for me was getting serious about eliminating dairy. We have also worked on filtering the air better to help keep the dust down.

Our home has so many projects going on, but when money is tight you have to be selective on what gets done and what gets put off. We still don’t have a working dryer but we took advantage of the mild winter we had used the clothes line when we could. Those times where we couldn’t we could haul laundry to the local laundromat. I don’t mind hanging the clothes up, but the challenge was trying not to trigger an asthma attack while doing it. This summer we are hoping to get some painting done, replace several windows and our doorwall, get our rain barrels going again, and more. We’ll see how the budget shakes out as to how far we get.

Our internet was cut. This was a HUGE adjustment. I didn’t realize how dependent I was on it and that made me uncomfortable. While I do want to be connected, I don’t want to be dependent. I’m not able to keep up with blogs and channels as much as I used to, but I am now spending more time reading real books. Cutting the internet and land line was a big help to our budget. Having the cell phones with limited data has been great overall and I’m not really sure if we’ll go back to having internet.

Noah

Homeschool Senior

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Class of 2017

Homeschooling has been bitter sweet. This is our last year of homeschooling. Our son will graduate shortly. This past year has been full of wrapping up one journey and preparing for another. It’s hard for me to believe that I did it…I homeschooled him from kindergarten right through to graduation. He’s looking forward to pursuing a career in Information Security and I’m excited to see him spread his wings. Bitter sweet. Mama loves her baby.

weedsWe had so much going on last year we never got around to getting the garden started, so we left it fallow. This year it is overgrown and needs a good taming. While we are a little behind in getting that part done, all the raised beds are planted and growing. Not everything is heirloom this year, but I am looking forward to growing, harvesting and preserving what we do grow.

Our Daisy dog is now a year old. What a challenge and a joy she has been. She is such a sweet dog, but she is just full of energy it is hard to keep up. daisyTennis balls are her absolute favorite toy and she loves to have you throw them for her. She still chases the chickens once in a while, but she is learning. Pepper dog is quite protective of them and Daisy is slowly learning from her. Unlike Pepper, we haven’t done a good job of socializing Daisy with people and we do have to work on that. I’m happy to accept any tips for that.

The pantry. Pretty empty. We did stock with some store bought food, but we miss our home canned food. My first canning of the year was some pork we got on sale. I’m hoping to get things like beans done now before things get busy and the weather gets warm.

beadsMy Etsy shop has been opened about a year now and it is nice to have an opportunity to share my hobby with others. I really enjoy doing craft shows and art fairs, but they are a lot of work and take a lot of time. While I miss meeting the people at the shows, it has been fun to send my work off to people far away…even as far as Australia.

Hope you enjoyed this highlight. I’m off to get laundry going. I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to. Feel free to comment and let me know, or share a link to a blog post.

Until next time, grace and peace!

Spring Has Froze

Greetings from cold and snowy Indiana!  Spring is struggling to get going this year and our spring projects are a bit slower than we had planned.  In my cup this morning is regular old coffee with stevia and almond milk.

DSCN3224-webreadyOne of our projects was to build a backyard chicken coop for the chickie babies.  Not so much babies anymore…they are all feathered in now and getting big.  But they are growing fast and outgrowing the dog cage they are in.  We have all the supplies for the coop…just waiting for the weather to cooperate.  So far our diva dog Pepper has been very good with them, so we are hoping she will turn out to be a good protector and not an antagonist.
I had hoped to get the early spring garden in but again, trying to work around the weather has made it a
challenge.  pantryMy seed starting indoors was a
big failure and I haven’t had a chance to redo the heirloom tomatoes and peppers I wanted to start. Are you seeing a pattern?  lol  Even so, God is in control so in His capable hands I will leave it all and just take things one day at a time.

One of the indoor projects that we did finish turning a spare closet into pantry.  Hubby and son work hard and got it finished and I got it filled it up.  It is so nice being able to have everything in one place now…and fairly organized.  They did a great job!  Our washer also sprung a leak and thankfully hubby and son were able to fix that as well saving us from having to buy a new washer.  We are also waiting for better weather to finish the roof.
Another things I’ve been up to is I have been slowly working on restarting my craft business.  I had it going successfully for a long time, then decided to pull the plug grayshawl1when it (and other things) started taking a toll on my health.  Things have changed a lot in the short few years since I stopped and since I want to do this right I am not rushing things.  The most time consuming part for me is taking pictures of everything and listing them.  I have lots to list so taking pictures, editing and listing is a slow process.  Despite that I find myself enjoying this much more than I ever have.

That’s it for now.   I hope all is well where you are, I’d love to hear how your spring is going.   Until next time, grace and peace!

Psalm 51:1-2
Have mercy upon me, O God,
According to Your lovingkindness;
According to the multitude of Your tender mercies,
Blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
And cleanse me from my sin.

 

Favorite Finds Friday, June 12

Here are a few of the most interesting, fun, practical, weird, frivolous, informative, creative, yummy, etc. finds I have found on the internet this week. Let me know what you think!

glutenfreedumpcakeGluten Free Blueberry Dump Cake from Gluten Free on a Shoestring

While I don’t need to be gluten free, my sister-in-law and her two daughters do.  So for holidays and family gatherings, this has to be taken into consideration.  It is nice that we can still have yummy treats and everyone can partake.  And we all love blueberries!  Although this recipe is not dairy free, I would think that using non-dairy milk and oil, and fresh whipped coconut milk whipped cream would work.  This recipe also links a recipe for gluten free vanilla cake mix, which is also not dairy free.   I don’t know a dairy alternative to cultured buttermilk blend powder or whey powder, but the Betty Crocker gluten free yellow cake mix is dairy free.

Achillea_millefolium__Common_YarrowUses for Yarrow from Urban Prepper Chicks Herb of the Week

I have yarrow growing in my garden.  I got it a few years ago because it was an herb and I thought the flower was pretty.  To he honest, I had no idea about what it was or how to use it.  I’ve since researched it and have found that while it doesn’t have a lot of use as a cooking herb, it’s a very useful medicinal herb.

 

 

cucumbersaladGrandma’s Cucumber Salad from Lauren’s Latest

I TOTALLY understand this post.  I have several childhood favorites that my grandmother made and never wrote down the recipe.  I did convince her one time to give me one of her recipes and while she told me what she put in it, she had no idea about measurements because she did it.  Even with her directions I couldn’t make that recipe.  Anyway, I love cucumbers and I think my guys will LOVE this recipe.  I can’t wait to try it once my cucumber plants start producing…I hope.  Last year my cucumber vines grew really well…and not one cucumber.  Not one.

15HerbsforHeadaches15 Herbs for Headaches from The Homestead Garden

I suffer from frequent headaches.  While I used to suffer migraines, I am very thankful that I haven’t had one in several years.  What I mainly suffer from is sinus headaches.  And I’m always on the lookout for something natural that will help.  I am certainly going to check these out.

 Shabby-Chic Inspiration Crochet Doilies from Anabelia Craft Design

These are beautiful.  And the gift package idea is so elegant.  Everything on this blog is beautiful.  Such talent.  There is a link to the pattern toward the end where you can get the PDF.  I can’t wait to try a pattern or two, but I have really enjoyed browsing.  But these doilies are next in line on my project list.  Next after all the other projects that I have yet to finish.  Well, there is always room for one more….

That’s all my finds for this week. More next time! If you come across something you think I might be interested in (or maybe you posted it yourself), leave me a comment and I’ll check it out.

Colossians 3:23 – And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.

Crochet Project – Afghan

I love to do all sorts of hand crafts.  I especially love crochet.

One of the main problems I have is that I spend so much time making things for other people, I don’t always make things for myself.  I made the hat below for a relative that was just diagnosed with cancer and going through chemo.

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One day while I was making the bed, I starting thinking about all the afghans I had made as gifts. And I realized that I haven’t made any afghans for our home. Not for hubby, not for our son, not for me. None. Nada. The big zero. So I sat down and started playing with yarn to try and come up with something. I got nothing. Nada. The big zero. It wasn’t until I had come across a picture of a granny square sampler afghan that had started building my idea. At first I considered making a variety of granny squares, but as I was making them, I didn’t like how they came out. I frogged most of them except for one…the solid granny square.

I liked it. I made up a few more and set them together to see what they would look like. I liked it. But if I wasn’t going to make different squares, I wanted a little something to create a visual contrast. I added an off white border. I liked it.

I made more.  I liked it.

I measured it out, to make an afghan for my bed I need a total of 108 granny squares. I don’t know how I am going to put it all together yet, whether to sew the squares or crochet them.

But I will keep you updated on my progress.  I am also working on another hat for a good friend.  I love to do all sorts of hand crafts.  I especially love crochet.

Proverbs 31:13 – She seeks wool and flax, and willingly works with her hands.