Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Ephesians 4:29
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths,
but only what is helpful for building others up
according to their needs,
that it may benefit those who listen
I've been working with the kids lately
on using words
build each other up
As usual
I need more work than anyone.
Lily just told me,
"I'm getting frus-ter-a-ted with you."
she didn't just
'learn it up'
all by herself.
Matthew 12:35-36
(emphasis mine)
The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him,
and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.
But I tell you that
men will have to give account on the day of judgment
for every careless word they have spoken.
Create in me a pure heart, O God

Monday, June 29, 2009

more bounty

from the dairy
this time
Lana kept the middle kids
while Tony and Lexi went with me to Claremore.
Let's just say that we were all 3 glad
that the girls didn't go with when the guys went to Florida...
I'm also glad that Tyler is usually the one to drive.
I'm pretty good with directions
I'm great with a map
but I'm not always so hot
with printed out google directions.
my little mishap
that added 30 minutes onto our trip
turned up a treasure;
a Fabric Mill Outlet.
and I just drove right on by...
I had some precious cargo to get home
I am so thankful to have a fridge full of goodness!
' course
sometimes not-so-good-for-you goodies
occasionally find their way in the fridge, too.
Thank-you, Lord
for the abundance in my kitchen right now

Sunday, June 28, 2009

garden bounty

21.75 lbs of cukes and yellow squash
Sadly, our squash plants are mostly dead
I don't know what it is about us and squash...
But our cukes?
look fabulous!!
hundreds of blossoms still.
I am so excited;
we will,
for the first time ever,
be able to share
from our garden
We have one cantaloupe vine;
I was bummed, because that was all I could get.
One measly plant.
But the thing is massive;
it covers at least an 8x10 ft area
and there are probably
30 - 40 cantaloupes in varying stages out there
all we needed was a bit a poo
and God's blessing

Thursday, June 25, 2009


It was unmistakable.
The first time,
when she said it to Brandon a few days ago,
I wasn't 100% positive;
last night
there was no doubt.
TJ stopped by the house for a bit
and when Lexi saw him
she smiled expectantly, her arms all twitchy
like Tabby's tail,
waiting for him to acknowledge her.
And then she said it.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

unbelievably light whole wheat cake

using this recipe as a starting point
I made a cake
so fluffy
that had I not run the grain through the grinder myself
I would not have believed it was a whole wheat cake.
I used Tammy's method
but made her fairly healthy cake
downright good for ya
4 eggs, separated
1/4 c. xylitol*
1 c. + 2 Tbs whole wheat flour
1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. water
1/4 c. honey
1/2 tsp vanilla
Using an electric mixer on high speed
beat the eggs whites till frothy.
Continue mixing on high
and add 1/2 the xylitol.
Add the rest of the xylitol
still beating those egg whites.
Continue mixing till egg whites stand in stiff peaks
(or you think, "Surely I have mixed this long enough.")
In another bowl,
use the mixer to quickly combine the remaining ingredients.
Using a rubber spatula
gently fold the flour mixture
into the beaten egg whites until completely blended
Pour into a greased and sugared (or xylitoled) 8x8 pan
and bake at 325 for about 40 minutes.
(cake will sink slightly)
top with berries and lightly sweetened whipped cream
* may use sugar instead of Xylitol

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


You're finally going to let me try it??

lemme help


I'm working on it

oh yeah, baby!!
that brings the total of summer-squash lovers in our family

perhaps I am the only one amazed by this...

She's barely two
Daddy says we need to get more beads
and set her up with a business!
Wonder how many people would want to buy jewelry
made by a toddler??

the downside of a loving family

One gets sick;
all get sick.

thievin' varmit

was stealing my chicken eggs

I don't think so!

Tony got him with a 22
(I'm all for gun safety; but I think we're being a little too safe.
it took about 3 minutes
for Tony to get out to the barn with gun & ammo)

I was going to chop him up and feed him to the chickens
- you know -
as a warning to all other snakes
with dreams of eggs for breakfast
but there wasn't much meat on him
so I had Tony
throw his body to the buzzards

Monday, June 22, 2009

packing away

baby clothes
for the last time.
makes me sad.
(sweet Lily, always observant, just ceased her chanting of
"can you get me a vitamin C and an acidophilus?"
and came and hugged my arm.
We are so blessed to have this girl!!)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

we love our Papa

(Lily's present to Papa, made all by herself)
Thank you, Lord
for Tyler!
strengthen him and give him courage
as he leads our family in following You.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

some favorites

Lana and Algie's first photo shoot
23 wks
(after which, Mimi was rewarded with a high five!)

and so it begins again II

We've been here before;
at the beginning stages of fulfilling a dream.
This time
it isn't our dream, but our children's.
How thankful I am that we can be a part
of making their dreams
The guys will be putting in 12 long very hot hours
of demolition work today.
before the real 'doing'
can begin.
Luke & Lana bought paint several weeks ago
in anticipation of this day.
well, yesterday, actually.
The day work on the house would begin.
at that time
we didn't know we'd have to re-do
of the electrical
we'd have a tree downed by a storm
before the purchase became final
leaving us with many hours
(and dollars!!)
of extra work needing to be done
before we can even begin to think about painting.
Of course
I say 'we' loosely.
Once again
I am at home with little ones
while everyone else gets to do the real work.
At least this time around
some of the little ones
are now big enough
to be helpers
at home

Friday, June 19, 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Way back
several years before we began homeschooling
TJ wrote a paper
on who he thought would make a great teacher.
He choose me.
"because she has great storms,"
he said.
This threw me a bit.
I read 'storms' as 'stories'
and thought
I don't do stories - Tyler tells the stories.
So I asked him about it.
now I get it......
today's brainstorm
(I still get 'em)
Tony and Brandon could make strawberry jam
the cooked kind - it's more like 'real jellies'
all by themselves!
It'd be great fun
they'd learn a new skill
they'd create wonderful memories
and be so proud of themselves!
So far
the jam boiled over
(and I mean boiled over!)
and covered the burner
setting off the smoke alarm.
They've both managed to burn themselves,
they don't like making jams and jellies
one bit,
and I've got at least an hour's work
in cleaning that burner
In their defense
I hadn't provided them with a big enough pot
and the same mess would have happened to me
but then
they wouldn't have this fabulous memory
some storms
are better
from a distance

chicken berry salad

Jeremiah took one look at the salad I'd served for dinner
and announced he wouldn't be eating his salad this evening.
So I told him,
"Goodnight ~ 'cause that salad is dinner."
He ate it
and lived.
I ate and enjoyed.
Lily enjoyed it, too.
I'm not sure about anyone else...
I made the blueberry poppyseed dressing
by mixing in the food processor:
1 c. blueberries
1/2 c. olive oil
1/2 c. water
1/3 c. vinegar (half apple cider, half white)
1 TBS honey
1 TBS poppy seeds
1/2 TBS mustard
salt & pepper
I fixed the salads:
lots of leafy greens
thinly sliced chicken* (cooled slightly)
strawberry rounds
slivered onions
and just perfect for a summer meal
I didn't do my usual 'smother it in Cavendars'
for the chicken;
the flavor would have been all wrong.
Instead, I soaked a few breasts in a brine
made of warm water, salt, brown sugar, honey and pepper
before cooking in a hot skillet with a lid for 9 minutes
for more ideas and recipes
using summer bounty
see here
speaking of cooking chicken in 9 minutes
(which is actually 2 minutes longer than usual, since I hadn't butterflied it)
I bought Lily a couple of frozen dinners for while the guys were gone.
I was worried she'd be hungry
and I wouldn't be able to fix her anything....
She liked the mac & cheese
but really
a dollar
for a tiny serving of mac & cheese
that took 5 1/2 minutes
Then there was the little chicken nuggets
with smiley face potatoes.
I pulled them out to put them in the microwave
and the package says it's best cooked in a conventional oven!
15 minutes to heat the oven & another 15 to cook
is the appeal??
One could cook real chicken
and microwave a baked potato
in less time than that
make extras for other meals.
I went with the less desirable microwaving.
Lily ate them just fine
'Til I sat down with a plate of guacamole and chips
and she said, "Guacamole! I love guacamole!"
and fed those smiley taters
to the dog.

Monday, June 15, 2009

a boost to my ego

"So, what do they call you?"
he asked
as Lexi and I sat in his office.
I looked at him
"Nana? Granny? Mimi?"
he offers.
I suddenly,
decrepit old thing that I am,
realized what he was saying.
I said with a smile as I smooched my daughter.
to add insult to injury
he says,
Lexi and her old momma after a long hot day

I actually kinda like 'Mimi' though
Papa & Mimi ~ whatdya think?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

how's that??

Thanks to Kung Fu Panda
and a tiny misunderstanding
Jeremiah and Josiah have taken to referring to their
er - privates
as 'tenders'
The other day
one of them asked what was for dinner.
I answered,
"____________ (I forget what it was) and chicken tenders."
Then we heard Josiah,
"You know. Chicken p*nises"

more on good tools

Tony came in the room with a big grin
bouncing up and down on his toes
like he does when he's excited.

"Can I cut the grass?"
a little note to any sewing friends:
save up $10 and go buy a rolled hem foot.
I wasn't even sure there was such a thing;
I know of serged 'rolled hems', but not sewn ones.
We'd actually gone to the sewing center yesterday
to buy an invisible zipper foot;
I can't seem to find 'my' (Briggs) capris anywhere,
and I really need another pair or two
so I've decided to take apart a pair and make some myself.
While there,
I figured, what the hey, I'll ask.
They do make a metallic primer, after all...
So I asked.
"Is there a foot that sort of folds the fabric for you
so you can do a narrow hem ?"
Not only is there one - there are several!
I only bought one.
she ended up giving me the wrong size,
so I'll need to go back and get the one I originally wanted.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

learn something new every day

Tyler took me to the sewing machine shop today.
"I'll just be a few minutes,"
I told him.
I really did intend to be just a few minutes....
the people in there are so helpful
and I have so much to learn
that I usually end up taking longer than I think I will.
I learned that when you are working with a thin / soft fabric
if you spray it with starch and run the iron over it
you'll be able to handle it more easily.
That'll come in handy when I'm using my new
rolled hem foot
(thanks, Love!)
I also learned that they have a really nifty tool /toy
for the bargain price of $3,300
and I'd best start saving my pennies

Thursday, June 11, 2009

just for fun

The girls and I were
more than a bit
As much as I prefer to be home
I thought a change of scenery might do us some good.
I needed a few things for bow-making
and I was hoping a little shopping trip
would work as a 'reset' button for the girls.
It worked.
sort of.
They were good while we were gone.
It didn't hurt any
that they were so darn cute
the ladies were especially friendly to them.
(those greens are the same color in real life. hmm )

since we were heading to town
I thought it'd be a perfect opportunity to finally go to the
Just For Fun fabric store.
Such lovely fabrics!
They actually didn't have a ton
that called out to me to bring them home
(I didn't even buy anything
'course that's probably more
because everything was $8.50 - $10.00 per yard)
but the quality of the fabrics...
I just kept walking around feeling them.
And Lily was walking around
looking at the store - not the fabric.
Silly Lily.
She wandered back to an area where they do classes.
her little eyes were squinty from her smile
and she leaned to one side like she does,
"Look at the iron. That is a nice iron."
"Oooh, look, scissors."
"Oh! Look at the beautiful ceiling"
It was ceiling tiles.
To each her own, I guess...
While we were there
a lady was in buying fabric for a quilt back.
It was a big quilt;
she needed 7 1/2 yards.
The lady at the store, Kim,
double checked the math for her
to see if she could get by with less.
She couldn't.
Can you imagine?
She spent at least $63.75
for the back of her quilt
I hope I don't become a fabric snob.....
I think I'm safe, though;
I bought some fun
but not nearly so soft
fabric at Hancock's
to make Lily & I matching summer purses.
Never mind that I don't carry a purse
and she just got one.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

I so enjoy

making diapers!

I don't know why I often put it off
as if it's a dreaded chore;
I suppose it's because
the creating of diapers
quite a bit of mess.
Poor Lexi has already worn more paper diapers
than Lily's worn in her whole life,
so my goal this week
besides keeping girls and animals fed and happy
was getting Lexi back in cloth.
I redid the elastic on Lily's old dypes
along with 6 new ones
ought to do it for awhile.
I need to make Lily some pull-ups....

can't get enough

of these cheeks!!

Monday, June 8, 2009

my little sunburnt sweetie

you make me smile a lot
Oh, I miss them!!
Is it really still only Monday?!?
you do realize what this means?
all by myself
without any help from my kids
figured out
how to get a picture
from my e-mail
my blog
thanks, Papa for the picture

on the bookshelf

I thought I might like to look back sometime and see
what I was reading
had just read
was going to read soon
in early summer 2009

that wasn't very helpful.

Maybe I ought to straighten things a bit
on my shelf
next to my nursing chair

much better.


This selection is a pretty good picture
(oh, I am so punny)
of who I am right now
I think


my Bible, of course
a thinline NIV
I think I would really enjoy an ESV
there's an Above Rubies magazine
although, this particular issue didn't really speak to me...
my Beeyoutiful catalog
I want way too many things I can not afford to use regularly;
they make everything seem so necessary...
(but, I suppose, that is exactly the point of a catalog)
a couple of books on natural remedies
so much to learn...
some books on nutrition
this one would have been much better
with fewer photos.
I'd pass on a book with this cover
and I'm not into diets - but rather healthy living
(which really is what the book is about, in spite of its name)
it was only $1.36 with free shipping.
'nuff said.
I am really enjoying the Mother Food book
and highly recommend it.
Foxe's Book of Martyrs
the rest are parenting / education books
I have several other early education books on a nearby shelf
that I will be re-reading soon
there's also
There's a Sheep in my Bathtub.
Tyler rarely buys me books
(which, now that I think of it
is odd
because I love books
but, then
I already buy as many as we can safely afford...)
he bought me this one.
I think it was because of the Mongolian humor.
He has decided I must be part Mongolian.
He said the book was guaranteed to make me laugh
and cry
or he'd get his money back
so he figured - either way it'd be worth it.
I did both.
(but not 'til the second half...)
and last but not least
there's a piece of paper with verses
that I use when disciplining the children
there you have it
I'm a
Mongolian mission-minded
without a sewing / quilting book

Sunday, June 7, 2009


Pre-pregnant weight!!
From Lexi
not my original pre-pregnant weight;
I'll never see that again.....
Seeing as how I generally gain weight while breastfeeding
I'm pretty pleased.
but pleased
(I gotta figure out how to put a smiley here! kids??)

busy beavers we are

When Lexi went down for her late morning nap
Lily and I got busy
nine pints
(plus a tiny bit for tasting)
strawberry jam


total cost (tax included)
45 minutes of pleasant 'work' with my girl

144 oz of our regular jelly
costs $34.13

there goes my everything

most of 'em anyways.
My guys are on their way to the family reunion
in Destin
(not exactly where I'd prefer my gentlemen to be in the summer....)
Too long of a trip for a nursing 4 month old
so the girls stayed home.
is not going to be happy
when she wakes up!
love you, my men
'specially you, my man
I hope you all have a wonderful time!

Friday, June 5, 2009

tools and toys

I was telling Tyler just the other day
that a good tool
also doubles
a toy

or was it
a good toy doubles as a tool?
I forget

I feel like I should give him my phone....

I needed a new phone;
mine up and died.
Tyler really didn't want to get me this one;
It's what I needed, but he didn't think it was girly enough for me.
For some reason
it doesn't come in pink...
It's a military phone.
I'm like
- hello -
it's basically indestructable
what could be more suitable for my job?!

plumb tuckered out

blueberries for breakfast

"Is it stupid to try
should I go?"
It's blueberry season
and we try to go picking at least once a week
till they're gone.
doesn't always happen
Trying to get this gang ready for vacation is a huge chore
I'm so glad I'm not having to get ready to go, too!
my angel-baby
hasn't been such an angel this week.
To add in a 2-3 hour early morning blueberry-picking trip
might be just the thing to put us all over the edge.
the only way to have berries in January
to pick them in June.
was the Picker of the Week.
We actually had to remind him
to eat some blueberries!
Never had to do that before;
usually it's
"one in the bucket, then one in your mouth"
over and over
Thanks, guys for all your diligent work
Thank-you, God
for giving us such delicious nutritious food

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

smoothie in a bag

The boy is just like his Papa!
"You know, Mom,
it'd be a lot easier to make smoothies
if we just froze everything together."
why didn't I think of that?
here ya go
smoothies in a bag.
Just add milk or yogurt
of course
fresh spinach
strawberries are $ .88 at Aldi this week
bananas $ .45/lb
it's a bargain
a real bargain

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


6 sketchbooks
4 shirts
3 camis
1 dress
Tyler has grounded me from my sewing machine
until they leave
I don't even mind.
'reading the pattern'
takes on a whole new meaning
when you make your patterns
out of newspaper