Monday, September 29, 2008

I love creative people...

A friend sent this to me and I thought it was worth passing along (YAY God!):

A Productive Weekend...

We enjoyed a little old fashioned fun this past weekend when we made our own applesauce and apple butter as a family. Emily also made her first batch of blackberry jam! (It turned out a little thicker than usual because we cooked it a little too long, but it still tasted fantastic!)

Growing up, both Big Daddy and I had our turns helping to put up various canned items with our families and I have been wanting to can some things for us for quite a few years now and never really got around to it. (Well, about 5 or 6 years ago, I made some blackberry jam and cranberry sauce with some extra fruit Grandma Sue had given us but I don't really count that as it was only about 10 jars worth in all.) Being the old fashioned country girl that I am, I have always had dreams of a having a big pantry filled with all sorts of homemade canned goods. (I am the first one to admit that I would really enjoy a "Little House" sort of lifestyle. )

There are so many benefits from canning your own goods. I love being able to know exactly what is in our food, being able to make what I know we use and package it in appropriately sized portions, putting away already prepared food that I can pull out when I am stumped for dinner ideas and helping to support the local farmers in our area.

Everyone took part in the happenings. Here are a few pics for you to browse:

So in the end we put up 5 qts. and 2 pints of (no sugar added) applesauce, 7 pints and 2 half pint jars of apple butter and 5 half pints of blackberry jam. A good start anyway. Next week I think we are going to do some peaches and maybe plums as well as a few more applesauces and Princess B wants to try her hand at a different kind of jam. Meticulous Man thinks he would like to perfect a recipe for chili and try some pressure cooking with me for some soup varieties. I am admittedly a little nervous because pressure canners sort of scare me. Once, when my mom and aunt were canning tomatoes, something went awry and the top of the pressure cooker blew off and smashed a huge hole in my aunt's ceiling. It was pretty scary! Ever since, the idea is a little intimidating, but I am going to press on and try my hand at it anyway. Hopefully, one day there will be a post on here about my large pantry full of homemade things.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Our favorite little friends.....

We adore these little online guys, especially for their hilarious ecards. You can find them on their website at:

We weren't exactly sure which was which for a long time until I googled it to find out for sure. Here is what we learned:
  • Hoops - The more emotional of the two, Hoops is a pink cat that has a tendency to scream as he talks. He hates Mondays as seen on the "It's Monday" e-card and based on others, it's possible that he's not very fond of his current career. He is also the first character to appear in the series originally with a slightly higher-pitched voice. His first e-card appearance was on "No Ordinary 'Hi!'". He states his weight as "depends on a finely-balanced equation of the time of day and the amount of cakes consumed." He stays in shape "by having dance offs with Yoyo" and likes "coffee, doughnuts, laughing, cakes, ice cream, pizza, Tuesdays (as it's treat day) ... TREATS!" He says his worst habit is "talking a LOT!" and he hates nearly everything to do with his job.
  • Yoyo - Unlike Hoops, the green bunny is slightly more playful and energetic with less of an over-sensitive personality. He also seems to actually enjoy his current job. He loves lollipops or "suckers" which Hoops often hides, then blaming the thievery on dingos. Yoyo's first e-card appearance was on "This Day...Your Birthday!" Yoyo wishes "that every day was treat day" and claims his occupation is "to captivate the nation with dazzling dance moves and beat Hoops in doughnut-eating competitions." His favorite pastime is singing, though he doubts Hoops is as good as him, and he stays in shape "by shakin' my groove thing, baby." He likes the same things as Hoops as well as marshmallows and doesn't like not getting the last slice of cake.
Here is our favorite ecard: One Doughnut a Day

Hope you enjoy them as much as we do.

Monday, September 8, 2008


Horray! Hooray! School started today and the excitement was palpable this morning as 3 children bustled about the house gathering new supplies and backpacks together and making lunches and counting the minutes until they were set free to walk (or most likely RUN) to their new schools. I am happily awaiting their breathless return to hear each recount the wonderful newness and details of the first day of school.

Whitewater ahead.......

Big Daddy and Meticulous Man got to go whitewater rafting down the McKenzie river with troop 260 a few Saturdays ago. If you are interested, you can check out the proofs at and see how they did. They are the group in the blue raft. There are 8 pictures of them as they came down the river and though you can only really see them in a couple, they are all really good shots of their group. They really had a blast and the water was COLD!

Blue and Green......

(I found this draft of a post I had begun composing last year and never quite finished. I found the timing of the find interesting in that I came across it at nearly the same time this year as I was writing it last doubt a God-thing. I decided to finish it and post it for you to read.)

Well, it's been a while since I wrote here last. Life slips by so quickly in the shining summer sun as each day is packed with visiting friends and sleepovers and camping trips and birthday parties. At the end of the day I sit still, possibly for the first time, and hear the crickets chirp in the backyard or smell the sweet smell of a summer rain storm coming. Now I can feel the days passing faster as school time approaches and I can almost feel the nip in the air that comes with the harvest.

Last night I was thinking about different aspects of how God designed the relationship between Big Daddy and me. One of these aspects made my consider something I hadn't realized before. His favorite color is blue and mine is green. It often makes my laugh when I ask his opinion about what color he thought something should be because I know the I usually consider all the various shades of green myself and we usually have the "blue vs. green discussion" in which each of us takes a turn playfully arguing the benefits of our particular bent toward our color of choice. After lots of smiles and grinning, we usually agree on some other completely neutral color choice. There have been times where either of us has conceded and allowed the other to enjoy their choice, though they are few and far between.

When pondering how we should celebrate our 11th anniversary on August 21st, the "blue vs. green" talk flitted through my brain and made me smile and wonder about God's sense of humor. He designed us to fit perfectly together. To compliment each other much like blue and green do. All over creation you see those two colors. Blue and green. The Creator God used these together when He made the sea, the mountains, some of the fish in the ocean, shades of them to color our eyes, the sky, water, variations of trees and plants, grasses......and on and on. They compliment each other well. They flow together. I've seen the two so blended together that you could not tell one apart from the other. In places, it was like they were one color. So melded with each other that to separate them would be impossible. I wonder if this is what God meant when He said in Genesis 2: 23-25,
"Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and shall become united
and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh."
Big Daddy and I work hard at becoming one like that. Some days are really hard when we both want to fight for our "right" to be our chosen color and we have to ask for God's grace and help to understand how to fit together, but some days are easy and we occasionally become that one color that is both blue and green at the same time. Through our years together we have chosen to let God blend us together to that beautiful shade and I am looking forward to the day when we are completely and wholly one.

Chickybabe's last Vocal Recital

Chickybabe's last vocal recital for the year was Student's Choice and she went through quite a few songs before she finally settled on one because there were so many choices to choose from.

I wasn't able to attend this recital so Adam did the video. It is tricky and he didn't realize that I don't know how (yet) to turn the video the right way since he recorded it sideways, these might be sideways and a little choppy, but here they are nontheless.
Here she is singing Color of the Wind from Pocahontas (there is a little of the group song "Another Opening" at the beginning of this video):

Here is a small group of the younger vocal students singing "The Fruit that is Rooted in You":

And here is a portion of the finale for the group. It's "Seasons of Love" from Rent:

Voice lessons began again last Wednesday and I am glad to be living in Harrisburg so the drive is substantially shorter. She has grown a lot and learned a ton so we are excited to see how she does this year. Soon it will be time for Brielle to join her. Oh Boy! We can't wait.