Tuesday, November 30, 2010

What are they looking at?

When I am out and about with Q I tend to get a lot of attention.  EJ thinks it is funny.  He wonders what they are noticing...

Is it the wrap I wear my baby in?

Is it the fact that my baby and I are two different colors?

Could it be the weird bottle my baby drinks from?

Is it all of the above?

I know we look a little strange but we are very friendly.  We often have long chats in various stores with complete strangers who want to know our story.  Or maybe they just want one of my baby wraps.  Or maybe they want to know where to get the bottle.

Q and I don't mind the attention.  We think we are pretty cool when we are out and about together.  Heck, we think we are pretty cool all the time.  Hee Hee.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Ode to my Crock Pot

My dear, sweet Crock Pot
I need to thank you a lot

You make this busy momma smile
You work hard when I'm gone a while

Chili, soups, roast, lasagna
The ovens got nothing on ya

BBQ beef, stuffed peppers, teriyaki chicken
You are always welcome on the counter in my kitchen

Chop, measure, season, slice
The ease of preparation is oh so nice

Throw it all in and walk away
You stay here and cook all day

Next thing I know, bada boom bada bing
it's time for the dinner bell to ring

You light up this lady's life
and make everyone think I'm a rockin' wife

So today I'm gonna shout
Thank you Crock Pot for helping me out

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Black Friday

I never do Black Friday shopping.  I usually purchase gifts through the year and put them away.  This year I just didn't get that done.

So I devised a plan.

We stayed overnight at EJ's folks on Thanksgiving night so we could leave our sleeping children in their care.  Then we got up in the 3 o'clock hour in order to make it to Target at 4am. 

I have NEVER seen Target like that.  There were so many people in line that it was outrageous.  When we got there the line was moving so we didn't have to wait long.  When we got through the doors we went for it.  EJ went one way and I went another.  We met up to compare notes and then waited in line to check out.  We were in and out of Target in less than 1 hour. 

Next we were off to Walmart, then Best Buy, then Ace Hardware, then Home Depot, then Verizon, then Breakfast, then World Market, and then back to Target. 


EJ was an awesome Black Friday partner.  I think it was his competitive nature.  He was going to win and that worked well for me!  I just had to make sure his list was specific.

It was sort of like an 8 hour date.  With the kiddos at Papa and Grandma's place we were foot loose and fancy free.  Even if it was at 4am!

The best shopping is 99% complete.  Go team!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Just read this...

Pop and Grammy know that DW and I are doing some major Black Friday shopping this year.  DW does it every year with her sis in law but this will be my first year.  (I have wrangled EJ into going with me).  DW has been coaching me.  "Bring a big carts, etc."  She is a regular Target lady.

Grammy thinks we are crazy.  She doesn't like the crowds and has no desire to Black Friday shop.  So we weren't surprised when we received an e-mail asking us to pick up a few thing.

From Grammy & Pop to DW & I:

"Hey, Chicks! We understand you are braving the black Friday sales…we think you’re crazy but maybe a little brave. Hope it is good fun. We’re hoping we could impose upon you to pick up a couple of items while you are out. There are only two stops (besides what we know you are planning) on our list…maybe EJ wouldn’t mind doing the Gander Mountain Stop? Are you meeting up and going together?

Here’s what is on our list:
Gander Mountain:
· Centurion 20 Gloss Black Gun Safe $549.99
· Pelican Apex 80 Kayak $129.99 – Pop thinks it would be great for the pond!
· Daisy BB rifles…they have pink and regular(Red Rider)…we think it would be great to target shoot with the kids…so at this point, we need 3 pink and 7 regular and 1 box of BBs per family.
· Carbon 15 .223 Rem. Semi-Auto Rifle with Bushnell Red Dot Sight $599.99 (Dad says this price is unbelievable!)
· Backwoods Deer Target $99.99 – we have a great idea for a Christmas Lawn display…we’ll need 8 of these.

Best Buy (opens at 5am) – just one item there:
Panasonic - VIERA / 50" Class / 1080p / 600Hz / Plasma HDTV for $699…that’s a good price, right? We are thinking it might nice to get rid of the entertainment center for a little more floor space downstairs! Not sure if you will need a cart or if EJ can just carry it.

Oh, one more thing…
Dad is tired of fighting his old out-dated MP3 player…so while you are Target, could you go ahead and get the Apple 8GB iPod Nano Bundle With $15 Gift Certificate $145

Let us know if you any questions. Thanks SO much.

Love you!"

DW and I (both busy with kiddos) just skimmed the e-mail at first and went about our day.  That evening I sat down to read it more thoroughly and nearly fell out of my chair.

My heart was starting to palpitate when I read how much money and how big the items were. I was thinking...oh my, Mom is going to have to move money over before I can even get everything on this list. will we fit everything in the car. Can we even buy a gun for someone else. 8 deer...that's like $800! Wow! What does Dad have planned for them? Maybe he is going to make Christmas display and then use them for a practice hunting range. BB guns? Aren't the kiddos still pretty young for that? A kayak? Really? The MP3 Player...that makes sense. But a $550 gun safe? That thing is going to be heavy!

I'm calling DW!

They have to be kidding...but...Mom listed specific items from the black friday ad. Crazy.

Then DW and I devised a plan.  She sent the following e-mail to call their bluff...

"Hey Mom and Dad!

Hope you made it to your destination alright (they were traveling for Dad's work) and that Dad's feeling a bit better!

I talked with Farm Chick and we aren't planning on meeting up to shop, but Doc and I pow wowed and he said he'd help me... here's what we've worked out:

I'll hit Best Buy after my sis in law and I get done at Kohl's (open at 3) and Target (open at 4) 5 will be just about right! I'll pick up the MP3 (Farm Chick, I will call you if they don't have anymore in stock by the time I get to that dept. and you can check the Target on your side of are going there early, right?)

Doc will take the truck and my bro in law said we could borrow his dump trailer. I'll meet up with him after Best Buy and we'll hit Gander Mt. last so that we can just make a delivery to your house after that! (I will sacrifice my no cart rule, this once, to get the TV )

Doc's folks will be over around 4:30 am to watch the kids so Doc can hit Lowe's (open at 5) on his way to meet me at Gander Mt.!

Have a great trip! Be safe and I guess we'll plan to see you mid to late morning for a delivery. Sorry but this Santa will arrive in a dump trailer instead of a sleigh! LOL

Love you!

Then we waited for a response.  Surely they were going to break first.  We knew Mom had been on the computer but no response. 

DW's e-mail to me this morning..."Dude...the longer it takes for her to reply, the more fear grows in my very soul that they were serious. LOL. She even sent out an email last night and didn't reply. Really? Could they be serious? Surely not...they wouldn't ask us to buy a semi automatic weapon for them... LOL"

DW sent another note to Pop and Grammy..."I hadn't heard back on this plan going to work for you guys???"

Finally a response from Pop, "Sounds perfect. Ha"

Pop and Grammy, you are very bad people!  When you get home you are getting the big elbow!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Out with the old, in with the new

I found Mr. Pumpkin with this on his head today.  Perhaps my children are ready for Christmas?  I give them points for creativity.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Processing a Deer

Okay, those of you non-hunter, non-meat eater types might want to skip this post.  (Did you know that Rock Star eats no meat and Pretty Princess eats very little...just a fun fact for you).

Anyway, Pop, Grammy and I worked together to make use of the deer Pop brought home from a recent hunting trip.  Now, I must say that I never saw the deer and I like it that way.  It was already in meat form by the time I had to touch it.  Good work on that Pop.

This is fat and meat.  You have to grind them together to create the sausage and ground venison.  For the sausage, you also add seasoning.

I am a big dork and somehow deleted the picture of Grammy.  I did, however, manage to keep the picture of her hands.  So there you go, proof that Grammy was there putting meat into the grinder.

I told Pop that this doesn't gross me out.  In fact, I find it sort of fun.  It reminds me of the play dough toy I had as a kid.  Remember those?  You put the play dough in and push that lever down and it comes out in different shapes. 

We made 10 pounds of breakfast sausage and 20 pounds of ground venison.

Go Team!

I think Pop and EJ are still on the hunt so we may need to do this again.

Are you totally grossed out or impressed with our skills?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Running Man

Wubba has decided that he does not need a shirt.  He has announced to all of us that he is "Running Man" and therefore will not be wearing a shirt.  He has also decided that he can only wear one pair of shoes...his running shoes.

He has decided that he needs to run a "bunny" race with Daddy.  It took us a while to figure that one out.  Then it donned on us that the medal from EJ's most recent marathon had a rabbit on it.

So...they ran a bunny race together.  I think Wubba won!

I imagine that this little man will indeed run some races with his Daddy.

The down side of this new's getting cold here.  Really cold.  I guess we will see how long Running Man can keep this up.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A family not yet complete

Sometimes I wish I had the ability to read ahead in the story of my life.  Do you know what I mean?  Just a sneak peak to see what is coming next.

I guess that would take all the fun out of it, wouldn't it?

When I was a little girl all I ever wanted to be was a momma.  I adored babies.  I even got kicked out of the church nursery for trying to "help" when I was too young.  Man that hurt my feelings.  How could they not see what a spectacular little momma I could be. 

When EJ and I decided to try for a baby, I can remember the joy and excitement we felt.  We had no idea that things wouldn't go as planned.  The months kept passing us by.  No baby.  After 2 years we still had no baby but what we did have was a lot of sadness.  Man, were we sad.  EJ was still building his career and that kept him busy.  I was working too but it didn't matter.  I was a momma without a baby and it hurt.  I find it hard to describe the feelings that go along with infertility.  It is a deep and personal pain. 

Tests were done, procedures were completed.  We felt like our lives were consumed.  We took a break from treatments for a few months.  During that time, we got the best surprise of our lives.  Little Bubba was on his way.  We were finally pregnant!  We were over the moon for this little miracle that was growing in my tummy.

We held little Bubba in our hands and praised the Lord for the gift of his life!

Just 5 months later, we were shocked to learn I was pregnant again.  We knew the babies would be close but we were okay with that.  After all, we knew every baby was a miracle.  Just 8 weeks into that pregnancy we had to say goodbye.  Our second baby would not be ours here on this earth.  We were so sad but we knew we could trust God with our hearts.

One month after we lost our baby, I had a dream.  In my dream it was clear that I was pregnant.  The next day I took a test and nearly fell over.  I was pregnant.  This time with little Wubba.  As you know, we got to keep him! :)  Once again we rejoiced and praised God!

Wubba is 3 1/2 years old.  Since his birth God has not given us another pregnancy.  What he has given us is a broken heart for orphans. 

We were always moved by stories of adoption.  At one point we thought adoption would be the only way we would become a family.  When time passed with no pregnancy after Wubba we started to wonder if God was telling us it was time to add a baby through adoption.  We started the process and then we waited.  When our little Q was born we could not believe God would give us this incredible gift!

We knew the moment we held Q in our arms that we would adopt again.  It is hard to explain.  Not everyone is called to adopt.  Not everyone knows what it feels like to know in your heart that God has other children out there for you.

So here we are.  A family not yet complete.  It is a weird feeling to know that we have children missing from the picture.  They will come, in His time.  If there is one thing I have learned in our family building years it is that I can trust Him.  His plan is perfect.

Stay tuned.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Grammy's Workout

Since I've been living on the farm, I haven't worked out...okay...actually, I have an aversion to working out at all...much unlike nearly all of the Four Sisters Farm Pop who believes in a consistent workout involving strength training and aerobics like running, EJ who loves to run - a long way - like miles, DW who is training to run farther than she's ever run before, and Farm Chick, Pretty Princess, and Rock Star who faithfully go to the gym to hit the treadmill or eliptical. (shudder)

Today, it occurred to me that although I don't run or go to the gym, I am far from sedentary. I enjoy being outside and working on things. So if I'm outside and working, doesn't that mean I'm working out? It's just semantics really, right?

Anyway...I decided to run you through my workout today. You might want to try it and see if you can keep up. Keep in mind that this was just the morning routine (try not to feel sorry for me).
  • I began with Flexibility Training - I climbed up and down the porch railing to install steel "eyes" on the roof line trim boards for hanging plants, Christmas lights, etc. repeating this up and down process until the entire porch has enough eyes (it's a big porch, okay?).
  • Next I moved on to Strength Training - I loaded firewood into big wagon and drug the wagon to the back door; then carried the wood down the stairs to the fireplace...repeating until the wagon was empty. Next, I grabbed a sledge hammer and pounded the pieces of old damaged firebricks into small pieces in the driveway. (I noticed the dogs backed way off when I started this routine!)
  • Then it was time for Aerobics - I watered all the animals by making trips between the well house and the hydrant. Dogs - check! - 1 and 2 and cats - check! - 3 and 4 and chickens - check! 5 and 6 and ...well you get the idea. I'm just glad we don't have a horse, cow, pig, goat or other livestock yet...I'll have to work up to that but it's good to have goals.
  • Next, I moved on to Step Aerobics - I began in the basement and carried up a load of laundry, washed it, moved it to the dryer, carried up the next load, etc. and when it was all clean, I carried it all back down the steps and put them away. Granted, it's a slow moving kind of step aerobics but it does involve steps.
  • After all that, I went for Advanced Aerobics - I chased the one crazy chicken who "flew the coop" while the water in the chicken watering thing was being replenished. (Note: all the other chickens were being good and patient through this process.)

I think if I keep it up I'll be really fit. Now if I can just "exercise" self-control and limit my portions of Farm Chick's awesome cooking!!

True Confession Time

The kids and I have a theme song we dance to before we do our home school preschool.  We like to get jazzed up and have a good day at school. 

Can you guess what it is? 


Don't worry...after we rock out to our theme song we sit down for prayer time before we begin our lessons. 

Don't judge me.

Life is too short to miss the opportunities to dance with your preschoolers in the kitchen.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Fall Party

2nd Annual Four Sisters Farm Fall Party

Well we did it!  We pulled together another rockin' Fall Party.  The kiddos are starting to really enjoy the event.  It is so fun to watch them get excited about this family event.

The Fall Party includes 28 people in all.  We were missing three so we had 25 people.

This year we missed Pretty Princess (she is in nail tech school and had to be at the salon all day).  We were also missing Romeo's folks.  Hopefully everyone will make it next year.

Pop, Romeo & Grammy

All day, I kept thinking, we need to take a picture of the four sisters together.  Then I would realize that Pretty Princess was missing!  This is not allowed.  I'm glad her Saturday classes won't last forever.

The Unconventionals and Doc's folks

The Farm Hands and EJ's folks.

The Super Heroes and PhoJo's folks.

This was our agenda:
Brunch...yummy stuff including the ever tasty pumpkin-cream cheese muffins
Costume Parade...this is super fun for the kiddos because they have both sets of grandparents to show off for.

This year we had:
Annie Oakley
Olivia (the pig)
Plus: SuperDad, SuperMom and the Flu Bug.

Games: Fishing and Bean Bag Toss...the kiddos get a full size candy bar for each game.  Holla!
Hay Rack Ride...Pop rocks!
Pumpkin Picking...We are still trying to get our pumpkin planting/harvesting right so we have had to "plant" pumpkins again this year.
Pumpkin Painting...The kiddos were super cute working on their pumpkin masterpieces.

I am already thinking about the things we should do next year!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Parenting with EJ

On a recent, VERY LONG, car ride.  Our Bubba was sitting in the way back asking to "hold" the bag of twizzlers he had chosen at the last gas station.  We were trying to explain to him that he could have a few twizzlers but couldn't hold the bag.  (Of course, we knew he would eat them all if he held the bag).

It was a pretty intense discussion (as far as 4 year old discussions go).  Finally a light went off for EJ.

EJ to Bubba:  "When I was a little boy I ate a whole bag of twizzlers and then I got sick!"
Bubba: "What happened Daddy?"
EJ: "I threw up and had naughty poo poos (aka diarrhea...for some reason this is what the kiddos call it)"

EJ quietly so only I could hear: "No I didn't...I ate the whole bag and it was delicious."

I nearly fell out of my seat!

The good news is that Bubba took that as a decent reason to only eat a few twizzlers at a time.

The great news is that I am still laughing!