Welcome to my blog!

This is the first post of my blog.  I wish to dedicate this blog to the honor and glory of the Lord. I am a stay-at-home mom of three very active boys. My husband and I have been married for 14 years, this past July. My husband and I have been urged by the Lord to homeschool our children. This makes for quite an adventure! We live in rural Indiana and enjoy the oppurtunity to raise our children where the corn grows tall and the black top ends! The Lord has truly blessed us with healthy boys, a place to watch them grow and learn, and that I am able to stay at home with them.

The Lord has blessed me with the oppurtunity to release some creativity through making jewelry. I started making some necklaces about 2 years ago. I have since then progressed, and am now making earrings and some bracelets. I would love to be able to make watch “bands” some day. I enjoy making each one and each one is one of a kind. I don’t want to “mass produce” them, as this makes it less enjoyable for me. When making a necklace, I want it to stand out to me more than the last one I made. And I love hearing that someone really enjoys their necklace/jewelry.

On this blog, I will be sharing my everyday life, and the joys that come with raising this family and making jewelry.

Wow! Been a long time…

I haven’t posted in such a long time, I’m not sure where to begin! We are in the midst of planting season, though we are going through some rainy weather. Actually there has been some major storms roaring through the Midwest. I am very thankful for the safety that the Lord has blessed my family, even while my husband was out on the road. We think, though, on the loved ones lost to their families through the devastation of these storms. All of nature groans from the effects of sin.

On a lighter note, we have been enjoying lettuce and spinach and a few broccoli florets from the raised beds! So good! We’ve even been able to give bagfuls to the neighbors.🙂

I also have planted 26 tomatoes, red cabbage, pole beans, lima beans, carrots, sweet peppers, onions, basil, mint and parsley. I already had spearmint, but wanted some peppermint. Mmmm, smells so good!

I practice companion planting, and also planting marigolds in among the plants. Oh, I also have potatoes. These I plant in big flower pots, in layers. They are doing very well, also.

I haven’t decided on what to plant in the beds that had lettuce and spinach, though I really want to cucumbers. So I’m guessing I’ll be planting them in there.

Seeds ordered and received!!!

I bought my seeds online from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds. Love this place and the catalog really is a work of art! Thought I would make a list of what I ordered. Mind you, this is just what I ordered. I already have many seeds saved from last year. I’ll post these later.

Rattlesnake Pole Beans, King of the Garden Lima Beans, Long Island Improved Brussels Sprouts, Longfellow Flint corn, Early White Vienna Kohlrabi, Lincoln Garden Pea, Tam Jalapeno Pepper, Zucchini Gray Squash, Rouge Vif D’ Etampes Pumpkin, Seminole Pumpkin, Winter Luxury Pie Pumpkin, Five Color Silverbeet Chard, Break O Day Tomato, Gold Medal Tomato, Yellow Mortgage Lifter Tomato, Basil-Genovese, Celosia-Flamingo Feather, Mixed Colors Love-In-A-Mist, Kilimanjaro White Marigold, Red Cherry Marigold, Lilac PomPom Poppy, Giant White-seeded Sunflower, Bird’s Eyes.

I am going to order two apple trees, though I’m not sure from whom. I am considering Gurney’s, though I got a recommendation for Stark Bros. The price is the same.

I am hoping to share my seeds with some friends. Or swap some seeds for other seeds. As soon as I receive the mini-greenhouse I ordered, I will be starting my tomato and pepper seeds, maybe even some marigolds for keeping beetles at bay.

Of course, none of this will work, unless the Lord blesses the seeds and the work that will go into all of this.🙂

Library, gardening, and good news

Had good news about a friend of hubby’s. He has been going through a whole lot of stuff at home and with extended family and ex-wife. Hubby listens when this guy needs an ear, yet he won’t let this other guy off if something happened due to an untimely word or action. Hubby has been inviting him to church on and off. This guy told hubby that he will be coming to church with us tomorrow.🙂 I am praying that the Lord will work in this man’s heart and that he will find many at church that he can talk to. To find more friends. Good apples, so to speak, instead of the bad apples he’s exposed to daily.

I have been doing lots of reading up on herbs to grow this summer. I’ve also been studying up on Stevia and how to grow/harvest it. I’ve also been trying to pick the kinds of tomatoes, beans, etc to grow in the garden this year. So many varieties to choose from. It’s hard not to pick too many. Or to become overwhelmed. I definitely have found that I need more garden space/beds.

I cleaned up the back yard from when the boys played in the snow a few weeks back. I also took a look around the yard looking at the raspberry canes (looks like we’ll have some raspberries this year!!!) and the blackberries. They aren’t doing as well or growing as fast as the raspberries, but they are healthy-looking. I would really like to plant another cherry tree and some dwarf apple trees. I’m still looking into dwarf as opposed to regular-sized apple trees. I am looking forward to the bush cherries doing well this summer.

Through reading a book about herbs, I have learned that chives and carrots are companions in the garden. If grown in close appoximity, the carrots grow larger. And they do overwinter inside in pots, so I’ll be growing some in pots and placed near the carrots in the raised beds.

I found an offer for a set of shelves with a greenhouse cover with $25 off. I would really like to get this (hubby is all for it) and set it up on the southern part of the patio. This way I could start tomato seeds early and anything else for the summer.

Went to the library with the kids last week and we came home with an armload of books. The twins picked out a movie and a book about steam locomotives. I picked out books about Indians, early American history, slow cooker cookbook, gardening books, early Indiana history, and oldest son picked out a book about space travel. We have all been enjoying the books and movies. Found some books to read to all the boys about George Washington, American Indians, and pioneer Indiana. The twins love anything about George Washington and Benjamin Franklin. I am planning on going to Mounds State Park in the spring as a school trip.

Been AWOL for awhile, but I’m back

It’s been busy. The harvest of the garden was better than I thought. Looking back at the notes I kept showed that the Lord blessed us mightily and we are so thankful. It was a bad year for tomatoes, but ours did well anyway. I can’t imagine what they would have done if it had been a great year.🙂 For the first time, I logged the canned veggies and fruits in the pantry:           

Canned tomatoes: Puree in quarts: 6       in pints: 15       Juice in quarts: 14    Stewed in quarts: 3

Canned apple sauce: in quarts: 5       in pints: 7

Canned green beans:  in quarts: 24

Canned bread and butter pickles: in pints: 17

Canned bread and butter veggies: in quarts: 1      in pints: 7

Homeschooling is doing well. The twins are progressing in reading and math. They love science and history. They really love anything about Benjamin Franklin and George Washington. And space. One of the twins still loves trains. It hasn’t turned out to be a passing fad, but he really is infatuated with them. #1 son is doing well, too, though I want to pull out my hair at times. He has learned things in grammar,  but forgets to apply them.😛 But he really enjoys math, science (Botany this year), and history.

Beading has been doing well. I haven’t had any more parties, but orders do come in steadily. Most of the older necklaces, the ones that I don’t wear all the time, I’ve taken apart for the beads to use in other things.

Hubby stays busy, though at times it looks as if it will be very slow, but then the Lord always provides a load.

No more piles or stacks!!!

Last week sometime, I was having a conversation with my husband via the cell phone. I was talking about how it seemed I was always trying to find a place for everything. Then my wonderful hubby (he really is, though at this time I didn’t think so) said that he didn’t think the house was too little, that we had too much junk and it was really a matter of lifestyle! I was offended, though I didn’t let on. How could he say that! We have 5 people living in a little house that is less than 1,000 square feet. And I homeschool the kids, so yes, we do have a lot of stuff, but a “lifestyle”. Then, I looked around. I started to see the piles and stacks of my papers and stuff. Yes, some of this stuff was mine and I was determined to get rid of it by the time my hubby came home for the weekend. Well, it took determination and will power, but I got it done, and amazingly, I didn’t need all those clippings, articles, etc, that I thought I needed. I did do some filing of things, but all piles are gone! It is rather freeing to see all my (and the kids’) stuff is put away. However, my hubby’s desk and dresser are a different story. But, hey, my stuff is put away or thrown away!

I have one part of the cabinets that is full of recipes, clippings, etc. that will be dealt with this coming winter, when it’s too cold to go outside and all the canning/freezing is done. I am also getting rid of all the cooking magazines that have been stockpiled in there as well. I have great intentions on some things, and that’s as far as it gets. I read somewhere that creative people have a really hard time getting organized, cleaning out their stuff, simplifying their lives. For example, they (I) don’t see just a sock that has no partner. They (I) see a would-be puppet, duster, etc.

On Sunday, I had a conversation with another mom who is feeling overwhelmed with the stuff in her house. I told her what I did and how great it is to see no piles/stacks. She was going to try to do the same with her house this week, while her husband is gone. I encouraged her to attack the small piles first, and keep the larger, out of sight ones for a later date. I hope she is doing well, poor girl!

canning/freezing veggies

The Lord has blessed us with a bountiful harvest this year and I am trying to put up every little bit that I can, except what we eat. Sometimes, though, fruit flies detect a bad tomato or cuke, sooner than I can do something with them. I am in the process of canning bread and butter pickles and a concoction of bread and butter brine, but used with a variety of veggies. Looks real pretty in the jar and mom-in-law says “tastes really good”. Of course, I won’t know until about 4 weeks from now. (That’s how long it takes for the contents of each jar get “good and tasty”.)

I’ve also been shredding (for baking), slicing and chopping (for stir-fry) zucchini and summer squash. THis I put into the freezer. I’ve also helped mom-in-law with sweet corn, which she then gave me all of last year’s frozen sweet corn for my freezer. She also taught me how to use a pressure cooker and we canned 24 quarts of green beans for our pantry. (We did much more for her pantry.) I also have been blanching and freezing any beans that have come out of our garden.

The peas are doing well and should be seeing the pods filling out soon. More green beans are on the way. The butternut squash and pumpkins are doing well. So are the spaghetti squash. I think the yellow squash are done. More cukes are ready to pick about every day. I am so thankful that it doesn’t come on all at once! Oh, yes, the tomatoes are doing well, even during the worst “blight” years seen for awhile. Tomatoes like it hot and dry, and it hasn’t been either of those this summer. (So much for global warming!)

The Lord truly is gracious and merciful to His children, who are so weak and helpless without Him.

lean, mean, corn-shucking machine

This past weekend, we received sweet corn from my hubby’s parents. #3 son was so excited to help shuck it. He’s helped me in the past and loves to help, anyway. But his favorite is shucking corn. As he told his other brother, “It’s like opening a present!”. Too cute! This time, however, after every ear was shucked, he would dance around in a circle, singing his own song about how good of a helper he is!🙂 Makes my heart glad to see one of the boys loving to help and work.

On Sunday morning, #3 son was holding the door open for a lady. She looked at him and told him thankyou and called him by his name. He looked up at her and said, “Thank you for calling me by my name”. I know that they do get tired of being called by each other’s names, and by other generalized names.

This has been (and hasn’t been) #3 son’s weekend. Sunday afternoon, while I was telling hubby goodbye for the week (he had to leave early), I guess there was catastophre erupting in the house. Lady (our not-so-lady-like dog) had jumped up to the table and grabbed the pan of brownies and was devouring up what she could. #3 son went down to save the brownies (his words) when Lady growled and got mean (his words again). She nipped him on the face. When I came in and heard the story, I grabbed a paddle and whacked Lady on the rear end, then sent her out on the chain in the front yard. Then the kids were concerned that I was going to kill Lady, at which time I told them that she was being punished and, no, I was NOT going to kill Lady. Later, that evening, #3 son and Lady was running and playing with each other. I believe that #3 son will not try to “save” any other food from Lady, no matter what it is, from now on! Poor guy. By the way, his face is fine, though if Lady had got his eye or nose or mouth or ear, we would have to start looking for another dog, for Lady would be “pushing up daisies” in the back yard! There is definitely seldom a dull moment in this family. But I wouldn’t trade my family for any other family!

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