Us

Us

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Elsie is now taking over the blog!!!

What happened?!


Oh what's happened?!?!






I (Elsie) am taking over our family blog!!! We have become kinda busy and getting ready for X-mas and everything, so right now...and for a long time, I will be doing the blog. :) As you know, my Mom was the one who did the posts...but right now everything has been super busy!!!






Ginger


First of all you might want to know what's been going on around Mt. Promise Land Farm. We've been getting ready for Christmas first of all. This time of year is always so very busy!




A few months ago, I was BEGGING my daddy for a horse. I was totally bothered by the thought of maybe I would never get a horse. I wanted to feel that rush of riding a horse and the blue sky above you and the white fluffy clouds passing. I wanted the thrill of galloping across the
pasture and feeling the wind whip my hair. But all I could do was pray. I would have never thought this, but I was texting my friend one day about a horse, and she said that she and her Mom wanted to give their stubborn horse, Ginger away. What could I do? Ask Dad? Good idea. Next day I bothered Dad BAD about Ginger. "It's for FREE!" I would whine. "Nothing's for free. What about your job?" Dad was right. I had been working on a farm for some of our family friends early that year, but they didn't have much work for me to do, so I hadn't worked in a few months. I prayed for a job. I prayed every night about Ginger. Ginger...she was awesome! We drove down to her stable and I got the feel of riding her. She was a pure Quarter horse, about 15.2 hand high and sound as a bell...plus 15 years old! No health problems or nothing!!! She rode pretty well, even though I knew she was a little rough and stubborn sometimes.




Ginger, my 15 year old Quarter Horse. That's me on her.
Now, rewind a few months and guess what I did? I gave away Pancake, our adorable little pony because Dad said, "Get rid of the pony and we'll get a horse." I was all in. We did that and I just couldn't wait until that perfect horse came around my corner.






We waited for Dad's answer. The day after visiting Ginger, we went to our favorite buffet and  a man whom we didn't even know, at another table asked Dad, "Where do you preach at?" We were all shocked! How we know Dad ministered? Dad went over to the man's table and they talked for a little bit. We found out later that the man had told dad, "Let me show you what I bought my daughter." WHAT WAS IT?! A HORSE. Dad always said it was like lightning between the eyes, and to all of us it was definitely God telling us that Ginger should be ours.






Monday Dad made the decision that we could get Ginger. "But what about my job to pay for her feed and stuff?" I asked worriedly. "We may know of a job you can get," Dad said mysteriously. And what a shock it was! About 2 weeks later I started working for my mysterious boss...MY SWEET AUNT!!!




We picked up Ginger exactly a week after we went and visited her. And now I ride her all the time and we chase our calf across the pasture and imagine ourselves in the rodeo. Another blessing? Katie (my friend who gave me Ginger) gave me her English saddle and her bridle for Ginger. I now have 3 saddles from two different people that were given to me!!!



















































































Our living room
What's the house look like around Christmas?


We have never done any lights on the outside of the house, but this year we did them up our front porch, and got some mini Christmas trees with lights to set by the front door. :) Our cozy and welcoming living room is freshened up this year and I never remember seeing it this festive before! You can notice our poodle, Lily in her doggie sweater in front of the fireplace. We almost NEVER light a fire in this fireplace, because we have a wood burning stove in our basement which gives off a LOT of heat!!!



The front porch
































The 18th Annual Cookie Bake!!!




Mary and her Gingerbread reindeer
Me
Us ladies, we do an annual Cookie Bake, and this has been the 17th year my mom has done it with my Grandma and Aunt Michelle, but this is my 6th year...and so I believe this is actually the 18th year that the cookie bake has been done!!! This is the first year my sister Mary has done it. This year I made buckeyes (You can find this recipe on my Pinterest board "Food, Drink and Recipes". My board to my recipes on Pinterest.), my famous Peanut Butter fudge recipe  that I make every year (found on Allrecipes.com), some Eggnog Cookies (also on my Pinterest. See the link above) and some Chocolate Chip Cookie dough truffles. Click here for recipe. 

All of these recipes turned out great for me...and quite yummy!!!


















Closing

And so, this is how our farm is...happy and healthy and getting ready for this grand season! And so, our Christmas starts tomorrow. Thank you for reading and I promise...posts will be more often.


-Elsie and the family



















































Thursday, September 4, 2014

I "Fell Off the Wagon"

Yep, I fell off the wagon....or so Buck says. My whole 30 only ended up being a whole 17....lol. Buck brought home a yucky sickness and I couldn't hang. Then to make me "feel better" He brought home Oreos, Peanut butter M&Ms, cheese dip and chips, and Gatorade.....ugh.....I was doomed. I'm a little disappointed, but I'm not willing to go through the exhaustion again that I had in the beginning. Maybe when the baby gets a little bigger and I'm not already sleep deprived. I do have to say that this diet didn't affect my milk supply at all, so that was good. I am still doing the diet loosely.....when Buck and the kids have a bowl of ice cream before bed, I have a smoothie. And I get salad dressing on my salad!!! And I'm not having mac and cheese with the kids....I have salmon and a sweet potato.

I do know that when I do this diet again, I need a partner, so we can hold each other accountable and be one another's "cheerleader"!!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

My thrill of Six Flags: By Elsie

I recently went to Six Flags with my good friend. :) We had such a blast and I'd like to share our good times! 


It all started when my friend, (we will call her DLF) asked me to go to Six Flags with her. My dad said it wasn't a good idea to go alone without him, so my DLF and her family kindly provided 2 "get in for $9.99 tickets". We have literally been planning this since May, and we were going in August. 

Finally, the day came and after driving my friend CRAZY about going, we went. Traffic was fair, until we entered where I-85 turned down to two lanesAll I could pray as for the traffic to pick up so we could make it on time. And it did. The lanes came back up to 4 and we rolled there nicely. We stopped at a Wendy's to wait for DLF and her family, since we got there about 45 minutes early. ;) Dad likes to be on time. And rather be much earlier than later. 

 Dad and I had some burritos while we waited, and then dad fooled around with the GPS in the car, trying to figure a faster route home. The Wendy's was just like 2 blocks from Six Flags, and I must say it was very clean, the bathrooms, excellent except for being a little small. In a quick amount of time, DLF arrived and we got ready to head on over to Six Flags. 

 We parked in the middle of the parking lot, and walked where a "tram" would pick you up and take you to the park. From the park entrance to the parking lot of where WE were located, it was about... I'd say 1/4 of a mile. After signing in and entering into the park, I was ready for some rides. One roller coaster seemed a little daring for me and I decided that one wasn't a "first time trip one". I don't remember what it was called, but DLF said sometimes it gets stuck at the top and it takes about half an hour to get down. :O

ACROPHOBIA
The first one we tried was the "Acrophobia". The line wait was about half an hour I think. The Acrophobia takes you up 20 stories, and then drops you at (I believe) 62 miles an hour straight down. Now, this one is probably the scariest in the park.That's not including roller coasters though. We finally got to go and I buckled myself in and breathed deeply. DLF tried calming me, but I was beyond that. "I don't know..." I hesitated. 'No...I don't wanna go." But I couldn't look like a sissy in front of my friend, so I bravely let them harness me in. Dad took a picture, and up we went. The horror of going up that high and being dropped, polluted my mind. When we were at the top, the worst part was the workers would lean your seat out some, so you were looking almost straight down. I shut my eyes and could feel the ride slowly turning to let you see the view. The girl next to me was laughing, and DLF was telling me to open my eyes. "Shutting them makes it worse," I heard her say. "No it doesn't!" Is all this half 14 year old could say. I heard the workers on the microphone saying, "we are going down in 15,14,13." I clenched my harness...and that's when the people said,"12,11" and WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOSSSSSSHHHHHHHHHHH.  Dropped us. I screamed  loud, but all the pressure of the air coming past you , makes it where you can't scream as good. I have never had such a rush in my life, and probably will never again. It was horrifying! You don't know how overjoyed I was for my feet to touch the ground after the ride was over! If you plan on doing some scary rides at Six Flags...I recommend doing this one FIRST, because you feel as if you can conquer anything! Dad also did this one and the look on his face was so red I couldn't describe it. Even he said that was the biggest rush of his life and now he felt like he could do anything.

MINING CART
(Roller coaster)

The mining cart is meant for little children, but this is your first time being to Six Flags...and you're freaked out about every little thing. Next...we tried the mining cart. DLF has done every ride their, so she said, 'Oh, it's just a little kid 'baby' ride." Ok, DLF. Whatever you say. The wait was probably about 20 minutes...not bad. We got on the train and it started to go. Fun. A little excitement. Fresh air. Ahhhhhh. The speed picked up and I screamed a little as went around a sharp turn. "Elsie! Come on." DLF said laughing. 'Baby ride' Ha! The speed picked up and we went around shard turns again and again. Then...DLF exclaimed,"It's the scary part!" Scary? No way. This whole thing is scary. The car went into a dark tunnel and turned VERY sharp. I screamed as loud as I possibly could scream in DLF's ear. I giggle thinking about it! We then got out at the stop and I was shaky. yes, a little kid ride. It wasn't that bad. Was it? No. It was fine. 


SCREAM MACHINE

We wanted to do the "old timey cars" but all of them were broke down, so we decided that the "Scream machine" would be our next approach. This was really a thrill, and I think the oldest, most rickety roller coaster there. The wait was only about 25 minutes. Now we got into our seats. Me and DLF in one and her brothers behind us. It started out slow, but then once we got to the hill, "whhhooooossshhhh!" You are swept almost straight down and thrown all over the place. The turns are sharp, and I really couldn't handle it. Halfway through, I went limp. I guess I decided to not move at all and just stay motionless throughout the ride. I may have even blacked out, but don't remember. I do remember DLF saying, "Oh my goodness! Elsie!!! Did you pass out?" "I don't know," is all I could say. I heard her telling her brother she thought I had passed out, but I'm not sure if I did or not. Soon the ride slowed down and I weakly and wobbled with them over to the next ride. "Superman".


Superman 
(very exciting, scary, and breath taking and my personal FAVORITE!!!)

Next we decided Superman was next. I made a promise to my brothers to try it out, but I hadn't imagined this. When you get onto the ride, you sit down, and then the seats go backwards and up, you really feel like your flying. The wait was about an hour and 20 minutes. Standing in line was the only thing that bothered me...so far. Listening to some people using foul language and talking about things I could barely stand listening to. DLF's older sister (we'll call her ummmm....Blondie) was hesitant about riding this one, since she had only done it once...but we talked her into it.
We were about to get into our seats when 3 people...who (we think) came out of NOWHERE dropped down into our seats. Blondie was furious. We all were. "They just got off the ride," Blondie said. "I saw them!" I shrugged my shoulders. DLF almost said something to the employee when I jumped in. "It's fine DLF. Let it go. We can wait one more time." And so we did. I knew those people would get kicked out of the park, and we noticed they didn't have flashpasses, but oh well. I didn't want to ruin their day, just because they did something they shouldn't have. We all make mistakes. 

We got into our seats,on the next round
and since only 3 of us rode, their was an extra seat which me gladly gave to another teen behind us. DLF warned him that he's probably be deaf by the time we got done because two of us would scream our heads off, and she was right. The ride started going and I said, "I don't know DLF. This looks scary." "Too late now Elsie! No going back now!" Now the ride was about to go upsidedownish. LOL. It doesn't exactly go upside down, but it sure feels like it! Down we went and I promised DLF I wouldn't close my eyes...and I didn't. I just screamed at the end when you literally go about 3 feet close to the ground. I screamed right in DLF's ear, "get me off this thing" over and over. "There's nothing I can do about it!" She screamed back.
Yeah, she's right. Nothing anyone could do about it.


THE REST OF THE DAY

We had a yummy lunch at like 3:00 p.m. due to the Superman wait, but other than this, everyone was happy. 


We spent the rest of the day until 5:00 swimming in the wave pool. Lots of fun! But extremely crowded. I am serious...there were literally 500 people in that pool! And it was hard to move around without bumping into someone. Then we re-dressed and headed home. :) It was a lot of fun and I think it would make a great family fun day!  
I have tried adding pictures to this blog post, but sometimes it's hard to upload them...so in that case, we'll get some pics on here later! xD






Tuesday, August 19, 2014

My Whole 30....day 11


I started the "whole 30" journey to cleanse/detox my body from all the garbage I put in it. It's 30 days of only eating......
~ unprocessed meat (uncured, no preservatives, preferably organic)
~ seafood
~ veggies (except corn and potatoes)
~ fruit
~ high quality coconut products (coconut oil, milk, butter, etc)
~ eggs
~ And certain tree nuts

And do without eating.....

~ dairy
~ grains
~ legumes
~ all sweeteners (including honey)
~ alcohol (even for cooking)

3 meals a day, no snacking (except pregnant and nursing moms...yes, that's me!)

Buck and I started the program, but he only did it 6 days (that was his goal). We were both amazed at the withdrawls we went through. They have a timeline on the whole 30 website here that talks about the detox side effects....too bad I didn't find that page until day 5.  On day 2, Buck was having crazy dizzy spells and just a plain fuzzy head. Of course the next day I started feeling the same way. I was very relieved to find out all the things were completely normal. I didn't know the worst was yet to come......complete exhaustion!!! I felt worse than when I was pregnant....with any of my children....at any stage. It was really odd to feel so tired. I'm sure me getting up in the night with a new baby made it worse, but I was happy to read that the tiredness only lasts a few days. I wouldn't have been able to last much longer. It was very hard to manage my house and children with a foggy tired body. After about 5 days I was back to normal. I also read that days 12-15 your likely to have "food dreams". I thought that was kind of silly and would only happen to the people that are really craving certain things and constantly daydreaming about the food they miss. And I haven't been doing that, so I figured that it wouldn't happen to me....lol...I was wrong. I had 3 "food dreams" about carrot cake, popcorn, and a birthday cake. Each dream I was in the middle of eating a "no-no" and realized I was on this diet....then I would wake up and discover it was just a dream. Of course, if it hadn't been a dream I could have broke the diet and be eating real mayo again. I was a little ahead of schedule and had the food dreams starting day 7.

All in all I'm enjoying the cleanse/detox. I realize that I don't have to eat the way I have been eating and it isn't that hard to go through the Mickey Ds drive-thru for my hubby and not buy anything for myself (yes, he did ask me to do the unthinkable). It's all downhill from here....no more bad side effects.  I honestly don't mind eating like this and will continue some of it after the 30 days. Now I'm just waiting on the boost of energy.

I did do one no-no....I weighed myself 7 days in.....I had lost 6 pds!!! I'm not in it for the weight loss, but I was very surprised.

Here's a recipe that I have been really enjoying....
Turkey Blueberry Muffins

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Crystal Anniversary

The B&B
Months before our 15th Anniversary we talked about something special we could do....with a newborn in tow. So, that knocked off skydiving....darn. Last year we went to a water park with my brother and his fiance (that was fun), but that worked because I wasn't pregnant or nursing at the time...I know, I know... rare. We finally settled on going to a Bed and Breakfast in Blue Ridge, Ga. Blue Ridge isn't too far from us and the B&B was right downtown (I didn't realize how much I would love this). We had never spent the night away from the children, so that was a new experience. But, my mother was "holding down the fort" and with Elsie second in command we were at ease.

Mmmm, the coffee shop
We stayed at Blue Ridge Bed & Breakfast, which was a very nice historic home. But since we had the baby, we stayed in an add on the house instead the historic part. That was kind of a bummer, but I understood and I would have hated for the baby to wake someone up in the middle of the night. The place a great innkeeper and she made us a wonderful breakfast.

Downtown there was an awesome, awesome....did I mention yummy....coffee shop named L&L Beanery. We ate there for lunch upon arriving in Blue Ridge. Their Chicken Salad was delicious. And their coffee drinks were tasty too.....I would have went there everyday. I'm hoping when we go apple picking we can swing by there for lunch :)

The shopping downtown was a lot of fun, too. There was quite a few antique stores and lots for sweet shops (both our favorites). Being that everything was downtown, I could put the baby in my sling and we could stay out all day. Instead of having to get him in and out of the carseat at every stop. I can even nurse in it.

But, one of the main reasons we chose Blue Ridge was because to a scenic railroad they have. You get on the train in downtown (yay) Blue Ridge and ride it an hour north to the double city of McCaysville, Ga/ Copperhill, TN where you can have lunch and shop for 2 hrs before getting back on the train for a return trip. We brought our lunch from L&L Beanery, so we wouldn't have to fight the hundreds of people to a restaurant.....that was a great decision. We enjoyed walking around the town, but the ride was even better. We followed along side the Toccoa river....what a beautiful trip. It would be a great view in the fall.

Did I get any crystal for my "year for crystal" anniversary? No, I got something even better.....a birdhouse i really wanted :)

The bright panoramic (no historical) mirrors in our B&B room.
 Not good for a postpartum mama...lol 
It was a very relaxing trip and I would love to go back with the kids. I'm so blessed to have someone to share my life with.....he really is my soulmate.
On the train....oh look....he's out of the sling!!!
And he has his "angry eyebrows" on :)

Our Anniversary restaurant (baby in the sling)

shopping (baby in sling)

Oh, look....the baby's in the sling



This was a cupcake shop that won "cupcake wars" on Food Network.
Their cupcakes were very good.

Tackling the 8 Armed Octopus

Yep, now I'm Octo-mom....8 children clinging to me with every tentacle....lol. Everyone has been asking how I'm handling the new addition to the brood and all is going well. He's now a month old....where does time go?! The baby has such a sweet temperament and sleeps way better than Little Young did at this age. I'm still up 3-5x a night, but hey, this is motherhood and I'm happy. Before I know it this chapter in my life will be over and I'll have to wait A LONG TIME (to any of my children reading this) before I get to rock grandchildren.

We started back to school last week, so my sanity was a little shaky, but we're nailing out a schedule pretty well. This is the first year we've tried "Switched on Schoolhouse" for math. So far I feel like there isn't enough practice on a skill before quizzes, but only time will tell if we like it. Elsie is now in high school (at home). It doesn't seem possible. She's such a sweet girl......so excited about life....I can't wait to see what she does with hers.

We also celebrated our 15th wedding Anniversary by going to a bed and breakfast in Blue Ridge, Ga. That was so fun. I'll do a  separate blog post for that.

And most recently, we started the "whole30" detox/diet. You can search online for more info, but you eliminate all sweeteners, grains, dairy, legumes, soy ....almost everything (that's what Buck says) from your diet for 30 days. We are only eating: meat, veggies, fruits, some nuts, and coconut/olive oil. In turn your body detoxes and reboots. I'm really enjoying it...just knowing I'm doing something good for my body. Buck is enjoying it.....not so much. He eats a ton of sugar, so he has been going through withdrawals, but today he's doing much better. I hope to have time to blog about this journey, too.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Abigail and her calf

I was very surprised that Abigail didn't give birth before me! It seemed she would have the calf "any day now" for months. Then 4 days after our little one made his debut.....we woke up to a cute wet calf laying in the field. Its a bull, so he's a bit darker than his mother....So we settled on "Snickers" for a name. Snickers had a very difficult first few days and we were unsure if he was going to make it. It was over 95 degrees when he was born and he laid out in the heat while we were at church. Thankfully Buck was home to bottle feed him for a couple days. Now he is full of energy and back to normal.

We've made ice cream and butter....mmmm.....I sure did miss that fresh milk. We're making up for lost time...lol.
Abigail and wet Snickers

Snickers

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

My Birth Story

I promised an update and here it is :) Sorry it took so long. Little Man is one week old today!

At about 5:30 on Tuesday, July 8th, I started feeling stronger contractions and when Buck got home I went to our bedroom to focus. After timing for a little while, I realized that I wasn't getting a break in between contractions....they weren't super strong yet. So, I called my midwife and she asked if I would go to the hospital to be checked out....she feared my placenta may have been failing. I agreed, but was a little afraid they wouldn't let me go home once I was there.
Once at the hospital (7:30pm), they monitored me for about 20-30 minutes and said everything was fine and my uterus was contracting normally again.  Whats really funny is all my contractions stopped as soon as I walked through the hospital doors and picked back up again. My contractions were 3-4 minutes apart, but my midwife said I could go home and come back when I was ready...yay!!!  I was so relieved to be headed home :)
As soon as we got home (8:45), things really picked up and I decided to eat a Salmon Patty while I still had the chance.(I didn't eat earlier....only cooked...lol) The contractions stayed about 3-4 minutes apart and I went from the tub to the bed a few times. Nothing was soothing me....I was just trying to let the contractions do their job. I'm not going to lie, contractions are uncomfortable, but it's more like these huge powerful rushes that come and take over your body. You can fight it, but everything works so much smoother if you just let them take over. Normally Buck rubbing my back is all I need to make it through the waves of contractions, but for some reason that just wasn't doing it this time, even Elsie tried. All the sudden I was very vocal and Buck kept telling to to be quiet or I may wake the kids....lol. Sorry, can't help it....lol. I asked to get back in the tub and Buck knew it was time to head to the hospital. I DID NOT want to leave, I was afraid that I wasn't very dilated and I'd have to finish laboring at the hospital, but Buck said I had no choice ....in a loving way :)We grabbed a couple last minute things and hobbled to the truck. Elsie called my SIL, Michelle, and my Mother....both wanted to be at the birth.
(12:30am)I laid on the back seat with Elsie at my feet. Buck did his best to go slow down our bumpy driveway and off we went down all the curvy roads. The contractions were spreading out a bit, but I was getting a little worried that it may be close to pushing. Poor Elsie was down by my legs and I feared she may get soaked if my water broke. She rubbed my feet and legs while we were flying down the roads and it felt so good....why had we not tried that earlier!!! As we got onto the Highway, I started feeling like I had to go to the bathroom. Then all the sudden I realized.....I had drank that castor oil!!! What if this was the castor oil kicking in?!?! I really didn't want to have an accident in the car! With every contraction my body was pushing (I thought is was a BM, but it was the baby), it was uncontrollable!!! I kept telling Buck that I had to go to the bathroom and just kept yelling "Don't push, don't push". We were about 20 minutes from the hospital, but he managed to get us there in 10.(1:05am) My SIL was there waiting at the hospital door with a wheelchair....she's so awesome! Michelle ran ahead and pushed the elevator button and Elsie pushed me.....I don't think I have ever seen artwork fly past so quickly....lol. We got to the room and my midwife checked me ...."Complete, time to push", she said. I didn't expect to be ready to push, I kept telling them I just had to use the bathroom....lol. My waterbag was intact, so she broke it and I pushed. Once the head was out, I wanted the rest of him out too....I heard my midwife explaining to Buck how to hook under the arm and ease the shoulders out.....I started yelling "You should have talked about this earlier.....get him out of me!!!" Then, he was born and I was soooo relieved. You really just can not explain what a release and peace you get when all the contractions stop and you have control over you body again. Little Man was 7lb 3oz and 20"long....born at 1:22am....17 minutes after arriving! Buck handed me my sweetie and my midwife said to put him on my skin (to keep him warm). I delivered in one of my maxi dresses ( second time I delivered in my clothes), so that was a lot of fabric to list up....lol. As I put him close to my chest, he latched on and started nursing....before the cord was even cut....lol. Michelle was taking pictures and is always so helpful and encouraging. Elsie did great but, got a little faint when I delivered the placenta and there was a good bit of blood. She thought the delivery was "nice", but my yelling was "different"....lol. But where Oh, where was my mother when all this was going on? Well, when she got to the hospital, she was disappointed that she missed the birth, but she had to take a shower!!! (It was her birthday after all) And made some coffee....lol. She probably needed the coffee to stay awake, though. So, Little Man and my mother share the same birthday....yay! After everything slowed down, I kept thinking...if Buck hadn't forced me to leave the house, this little guy's birth certificate may have said...Place of Birth: Red Ford F-250 Truck....lol!

Fast forward a week, we are all doing well and enjoying the new baby. He's a sweet little guy and we can't wait to see who he looks like, as he gets older. We're also enjoying Buck being home, for 2 weeks....boy I really needed his help this past week. He's so awesome....I haven't cooked once and I've had a nap everyday. We are beyond blessed!!!!

Oh, and I beat Abigail (the cow) woohoo!!!
Me while I was being monitored earlier..
notice the smile? Obviously not in active labor :) 
My midwife and Buck catching

Knot in the cord...first time for that

Mom and her "birthday buddy"




Elsie....how does she not look tired?!?! 

Me after delivery....there's no pics of me and the baby that are "appropriate"
Sorry....lol

Little Man and his bonnet Elsie made him...Aww
Sucking his thumb

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Quick Baby Update

Here's a quick update for anyone who doesn't already know....


My due date was July 5 (midwifes guess) or July 7 (my guess)...obviously its  only a guess, because he still isn't here....lol.


 I'm 2cm dilated....which I've been for a week +. Today my Mom and I had Eggplant Parm (has helped induce twice in the past or was just a coincidence) and I just tried the dreaded.......CASTOR OIL!!!! I had to get Elsie to mix it up for me.....yuck. I feel kind of queasy, but other than that I'm fine. I am not going to be induced, if I can help it.


And tomorrow is Mom's birthday, so he has to come....right? LOL


I'll update when I get a chance.



Around the Farm

Elsie and Mary with our last lettuce harvest
Everything has been very, very busy around the farm. The garden is in full swing with ripe cucumbers, tomatoes, green beans, and squash. We just finished harvesting the last of the carrots, lettuce, and turnips. Which means we are enjoying lots of fresh produce and trying to put some up for the winter. There is nothing like fresh from the garden. We don't put anything on our plants, so we can just go out and eat cherry tomatoes. We learned our lesson with pesticides....now we have settled with the fact that the pests will get half and we'll get the rest :) With our lettuce, the Romaine did the best and the Red Romaine did the worst.


We are also expecting a calf any day now. Abigail, our heifer is due to calf her first and everyone is waiting patiently (or at least trying). We are all looking forward to that fresh milk and homemade ice cream again! We are all excited to see who will go into labor first...lol....I'm betting the cow!


The geese have been outside since our trip to Texas and have gotten huge!!! They are almost full grown, except the runt, which we call "Franny". They are so beautiful out in the green field and it is so peaceful watching them swim and play in the pond.




Then, there's the chickens and ducks..... I think everyone of them on the entire farm were trying to be  mothers. We were getting 2+ dz eggs day from the farm and after we came back from Texas, there were days we got none! The Blue Fawn call ducks hatched out 7, Whites hatched 8, Magpies hatched 5, and the poor Buffs hatched 0....I guess the male wasn't doing his job. It was so sad for the 2 female ducks to sit on eggs for a month and hatch nothing while all the ducks around them had hatched ducklings. So, they laid another nest and they're trying again! I candled a few and they are developing this time. The chickens did well and hatched a ton of chicks. Thankfully we have NO broodies and we are starting to get eggs again. We also have some Silkie chicks in the basement to replace some of the ones that the dogs killed. They should be the tamest chickens ever with Posie handling them everyday :)



Abigail

Chuck and one of his carrots. He got some seeds for his
birthday and this is some of his harvest
geese...see Franny in the front?

Posie and Gus gus with Silkie chicks in the basement


These are a Few of My Favorite (pregnancy) Things

Thought I'd do a short list of my favorite pregnancy/baby things.


FAVORITE:


clothing item- long maxi skirts or dresses. I prefer the skirts, but dresses are so nice....you put them on and you have an outfit :) They are both soooo comfy and they last your entire pregnancy. I'm not a "name brand snob", but I won a few maxi skirts on ebay and the most comfortable, soft skirt is GAP brand.


meal- I haven't had a ton of food cravings this time, but if I had to pick one thing it would be meat.....yes, meat. Steak, Salmon, Fajitas....if it has meat in it it's gone. I haven't been eating nearly enough fruit and veges compared to the meat. We tried Sushi for the first time  a couple months ago and it is great (didn't have the raw things since I'm preggo)


snacks- my stand by snack is....sardines in olive oil, with buffalo flavor pretzel crisps....mmm (see...more meat)


ice cream- Talenti Carribean Coconut. Not too sweet and sooo creamy. I also have went to TCBY a couple times this pregnancy and tried some international frozen yogurt.....mmm...I'm going to miss my prenatal appts by myself.
dessert- Tiramisu....Olive Garden has the best....IMO. Not too sweet and full of flavor.
pregnancy/birth method book- "Bradley Method". There are 2 books, one is for the coach/husband and the one for the mother. They are both wonderful to read and get familiar with every pregnancy if you want to have a natural/drug free childbirth.
childbirth book- Ina Mays Guide to Childbirth...awesome book filled with birth stories and info on how a women's body works during labor.


baby wash- Burts Bees baby bar soap. It smells great and lasts forever....plus, it doesn't have SLS in it, which my children have had trouble with in the past.
diapers- Pampers Swaddlers!!! With baby #5 the cheap diapers were chaffing and rubbing her belly raw, so we went back to these diapers. They are very soft...almost like cloth. Now after this little one is born, I can try out all my cloth diapers and have another opinion.
baby blanket- Aden and Anais...they are super soft blankets made from muslin and are awesome for swaddling. Plus they're light weight, so perfect for summer babies or great layered for winter babies. My friend introduced these to me....thanks Robin!!!


~I'll probably add to this list once I get rid of "pregnancy brain", which I'm hoping is soon~

Thursday, June 26, 2014

What's in Your Hospital Bag?!?!

Well, over the years I have simplified my hospital bag ,but everyone's will vary quite a bit. My bag isn't huge, so I just bring what I need for about 1-2 days.


FOR YOU
~ Nightgown or 2 piece pj set for me (makes for much better pics than the hospital gown)
~ Going home outfit for me
~ 2 nursing bras
~ panties
~ socks
~ flip flops (they are easy to get on and off while getting in and out of the bed. I always buy a new pair to go in my bag and then I can use them afterward)
~ hair clips and pony holders
~ hair brush
~ face wash/ moisturizer
~ shampoo, cond, soap, razor
~ deodorant
~toothbrush/ paste ( I buy a new brush and put it in the bag and after birth swap out my old one)
~ chap stick
~ lip gloss and any other light makeup you may want
~ contact solution and case
~ sanitary pads ( the hospital provides them, but sometimes they don't work that great)
MY NURSING STASH:
~ nursing pads ( I recommend the "Lansinoh" brand, they don't stick to sore breasts or fuzz everywhere)
~ nipple cream
~ nursing cover-up


FOR BABY
~ 2 outfits for baby ( 1 for going home and 1 extra)
~ socks
~ 2 burp clothes
~ hat (or bonnet!)
~ 2 light blankets (I use Muslin blankets)
~ baby book
~ soap for first bath (hospital proves this, but we like our own)
~ lotion or cream (overdue babies are very dry)


Ok, and I have a small list of things that need to be grabbed on the way out the door...
~glasses
~contacts
~ pillow ( I like my own and I need it for while laboring in the car)
~ cell phone and charger




We have about a week and a half until my due date and I just completed the bag.....not everyone should wait this long...I'm just a slacker.  Hopefully the bag doesn't sit too long un-used :)

Beautiful Bonnets Elsie made for the Baby!!!

The little one is going to wear the cream one while in the hospital
and the blue on the way home.
Elsie does such a wonderful job crocheting that it just blows my mind. Anytime I crochet, I always have to ask for her advice....very humbling...lol.  So, when I was shopping on Etsy for a bonnet pattern she was right there with me helping pick. We knew we wanted something very open, since the baby will be born in the heat of summer and a pattern that wasn't too difficult...or girly :) We settled on this pattern Etsy Bonnet Pattern and it turned out perfect. (we added "Sari Silk Ribbon" from this seller here for the ties) I'm always in awe watching Elsie's fingers fly not missing a beat. She's so talented and has here whole life ahead of her to improve.


Now, I tried 4 times to make the same bonnet she just had success with.....I failed :( I just couldn't get the tension right. My stitches were either too small or too large. So, I gave up and let Elsie make the second one too.


It is really special knowing that the little guy will be wearing something that Elsie made for him....just priceless!







Friday, June 20, 2014

37 wk belly shot

Last week, Buck took a pic of me before we went out together, so I thought I'd share.

Crystal Mobile Mom and I made

I found an awesome mobile for the baby's room on pinterest (says quietly so hubby doesn't hear). And it looked soooo easy and cute,so I had to try it! Here's the blog...God Bless Our Nest- Blog....she gives great, detailed instructions.


Mom came up this past weekend and she was more than willing to help me tie all those beautiful crystals onto fishing line....50 crystals to be exact :) We watched "Pride and  Prejudice" while we worked and got done in time before the ending. It turned out soooo sweet! Thanks Mom!


Supplies:


Metal wreath: Hobby Lobby less than $2 with coupon
Cream spray paint: about $2
Muslin ruffle: less than $1
Crystals: I ordered on ebay...$3 (could have used more than 50, but I think it looks fine)
Fishing line: My dad supplied this....lol. Bucks line was green :)

Refinishing My Crib and Changing Table

I have been so busy getting baby things ready and we have a produce explosion in the garden....lol. But I just have to share about my "projects" :)


I bought a "new to me" crib while pregnant with snail. So, the crib and changing table have never matched. This didn't really bother me until I realized I could do something about it. So, this pregnancy I decided to refinish/ antique both.....


I started with the changing table, since Little Young was still in the crib. I used the same technique as the shelf I distressed (prettyhandygirl blog).....paint, lightly brush on stain with a dry paintbrush, rub off some of the stain. Then, I went back and added stress marks on corners and edges, but didn't wipe them. Finally, Buck went over everything with polyurethane.


The changing table was originally a dark cherry, so 1 coat of paint took me 2.5 hrs. I just kept looking at it thinking "one coat looks good...maybe not the best, but good". Anytime I hit a little bump like this I always ask Buck for his opinion. I asked, "Honey, what do you think? One coat looks fine, right?" He said, "Well, if that's the look you were going for then, I guess it looks fine, but I would do another coat".  Thank God he tells me what I need to hear instead of what I want to hear. So, I did a second coat and everything turned out perfect.


Now, the crib was lighter in color, but was little bit more difficult because of the slates and it being all taken apart. (I would have loved  to have left it together, but it wouldn't fit through the door). So, I had to be very careful what I leaned the pieces against or the paint came off....this happened several times. I finally got smart and put rags in between all the pieces. What's funny is, I don't think the side pieces and the end pieces of the crib ever went together....they're not even the same color. But now you would never know!


I really enjoyed refinishing the crib and changing table AND I love even more enjoying looking at the finished product. I never thought it would come out so well. Little bit of advice.....start a project like this when your baby bump isn't quit so big, my poor little guy hated being squished while I painted....lol. Oh, and if you are expecting, paint and stain outside....you to have that fresh air.


Paint color I used: Vanilla Custard:Beur paint
Stain color: Early American




This is the color difference in the sides and ends of the crib...before




changing table before
After my first coat (when I wanted to quit)
Finished Product
Add caption

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

7 Children, 1 Tired Hubby, and 1 Huge Preggo= Our Trip to Texas

I haven't blogged about our trip yet, because I needed time to recover from the traveling. I am fully aware that I always push myself to the max, but I thought it was no big deal to ride/drive 18 hours one way (13 hrs if we didn't stop for gas, food, or sleep) in the car being 34 wks pregnant.....boy did my body think otherwise!


I drove the first 2-3 hrs of the trip. We left in the late afternoon, so we stopped on the other side of Tallapoosa, AL for supper. If you have never eaten at a "Newk's" restaurant, it's worth a trip. Newk's reminds me of a "Panara Bread" with an Italian flare. We ate at the Newk's chain while we were at a chicken show in Newnan, Ga and thought it would be a great idea to eat there again on this trip. Buck had a Roast Beef sandwich and I had a Shrimp Po'Boy with Lobster/Crab Bisque.....mmmm. I was so full from the sandwich that I saved my soup for a midnight snack on the road. We stopped once, to sleep on the way, but just imagine a pregnant women trying to sleep with her feet up on the dash. By the time we arrived in Spring, Tx, Buck and I were exhausted. I even told Buck's aunt that I was going to stay in Texas and have the baby, then fly back.....I just couldn't imagine getting back in that car and torturing myself again.


Our stay in Texas was great! We stayed with Buck's aunt and uncle, his grandmother also lives with them. They're not really use to having kids around all the time, especially 7, but they were great with the kids. They also had 3 Pug dogs, that the children really enjoyed. I was a little worried that his aunt would think I was a crazy health food person, but it turns out she's a health nut too...lol.  They have an inground pool, so the kids were wrinkled prunes most of the trip...lol. Oddly enough, it was cooler in Texas than it was in Georgia while we were there, so they turned the pool heater on for the kids....sooo sweet! One day we went to a boardwalk full of shops and rides, in a small town named Kemah. We all had a great time and the kids rode a ton of rides. Most of the children had never been on any carnival rides, so it was a real treat. We also went to a historic town named Old Town Spring. It was the cutest little town full of shops and food. We found it by chance while I was looking for a place to buy a teacup ( I buy a teacup from all the different places we visit). By the time we started looking around most of the shops were closing :( We still managed to buy a couple souvenirs for Buck's parents (they took care of the farm....bless them), some dutch licorice, 2 teacups (the second one was too cute to pass up), and a birthday present for my mother.

On the Boardwalk
The last day we said goodbye to Buck's family and went to visit my uncle and aunt, a little over an hour away. We were so busy talking and visiting that we forgot to take pictures!!! I'm so bummed about that. My aunt whom is almost 80 has a huge garden and canned over 400 quart jars of food last year!!! We got to sample some of that harvest and it was mmmmm good....my favorite was her pickled okra...Oh, and some thin sliced garlic pickles (sorry a pregnant women can't pick one favorite pickled item). And my uncle who is 81, looks like he hasn't aged at all in the past 15 yrs...they both don't look ....or act...their age. I wish we could have stayed longer, they are so full of knowledge and just plain awesome people to be around.
The drive home was manageable, but poor Buck wanted me to drive, so he could get a break, but my legs and feet were so swollen that I couldn't. By the time we got home I had no visible ankles or veins in my feet. Even some of the children had swollen feet. We made it back and I learned a very valuable lesson....Don't push yourself farther than you can happily deal with. The kids did great on the trip....it was Buck and I that were grumpy.


To leave you on a positive note....
You want to know something very interesting about Texas? They have a donut shop  every block. And I don't mean these chain places like DDonut and KKreme....I'm talking about "Grandma woke up at the crack of dawn to make these awesome donuts!" They were delicious, not like a piece of cake that makes you feel yucky for hours, but a light homemade yummy yum don
ut. And Texans eat them all the time. There were some waiting on us at Buck's aunt's house when we arrived (I had an awesome cake donut) and my aunt sent my uncle out for some as a "snack" when we got to their house (the best apple fritters you ever put in your mouth).

Mary on carousel


Buck and Little Young


Buck's Aunt, Grandma, Uncle and Me


Back- Elsie, Little Young, and Mary....Front- Chuck and Gus gus


Aunt, Grandma, Uncle, and Buck


Me, Snail, and Posie