Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Morning

After what has seemed like an extraordinarily long winter, it felt so good to have breakfast on the east porch once again.   Warm air, fruit trees in bloom.  Grass greening up.  Blue skies with fluffy white clouds.  French music playing on the iPod.  This is just the kind of slow and easy morning I needed.  The rest of the day plans on being a busy one, but for now, for this moment in time, I am embracing the slow pace.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Tree Trimming

This past Sunday, Emery and I set to work using the High Limb Rope Saw to cut some large branches off the nearly dead, leaning more each year, Cottonwood tree on our land.  We love the tree, its held swings, provided shade for picnics, and soothed us with the sound of its leaves in the wind.  We all love the tree, so the thoughts of bringing it down, is painful.  But, it has reached the point of being dangerous.  A wet spring or a strong storm will bring it crashing down.  We could call out a tree service company to take it down, but we are talking close to $1,000 for that and to be honest, we kind of want to take it down limb by limb, seeing if we can hold onto this tree for another year or so, but taking off the dead limbs and making it safer if it did come crashing down.  My crows love this tree, as does the great horned owl that hoots loudly from it most nights.    Its just one of those trees the entire family loves, due to the memories we have from enjoying its shade on hot summer days.    Emery and I set to work sawing away the limbs that had to come down.  Its a good work out for sure, very cardio intensive !   The wood will be split into kindling, for that hot, fast, first fire.  Nothing will be lost from it.  Tonight after Emery gets home from work, we will attempt another limb.  Throwing the weighted rope to just the right spot, is a bit of a challenge at times but with some patience, Emery finds just the right angle to throw.  Its all part of our chosen life style.  Simple living, and doing things for ourselves.  We sure sleep well at night.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Diaper Sewing

Making those new fangled, fancy cloth diapers that are all the rage these days.   Cloth diapering has come a long way since my day.  No more pins, and no rubber pants to pull on.  Its all one piece.  They are pretty costy in the stores so I volunteered to make them for Axel.  What fun I am having sewing them.  I am using some old fashioned prefolds for some of the diaper part that snaps into the cover.  I had them on hand from the other grandbabies so rather than just let them lay around in the closet, I attached snaps and will use them as inserts.  I love all the outer shell fabrics they have available for these diapers and really love how you can make them for so much cheaper than buying them ready made.    Using some organic hemp fabric and some organic bamboo for the "doublers" .  Hoping to have 36 diapers made by next weekend.  Its so much fun having another baby in the family !!!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Our Personal Success

This morning, over breakfast, Emery and I had a rather profound discussion.  It was about personal successes in life and we both agreed that our lives have been very successful on a deep and meaningful level.   I have always had a bit of a "Thoreau" sort of mindset.  Marching happily through life to the drum beat I hear.  A bit of a hippie.  Certainly liberal in politics,  not much into materialism, but seeing family as the most precious jewel in life.  When we married, I was an Earth shoe, flannel shirt and jeans sort of girl.  Long hair, braided.  Tee shirts that said something about what was important to me, my husband fell madly in love with me for who I was, and we both had goals of living our lives with purpose, with intention, non of which had anything to do with status or with what was deemed success by the worlds standards.  We wanted land, food we could grow on our own.  Children that eat healthy food, and played in the great outdoors.  Our fun would be in observing nature, in hikes, in discovery of the marvels of creation.  We wanted our children to know that material wealth was not real wealth and that things were just that, things.   We wanted to live simply, deliberately.    We wanted our children to know how to learn, not just how to be taught.  We wanted them to be joyful in learning, not afraid of making mistakes.    We wanted to have our children blossom into compassionate adults that saw everyone as deserving of goodness.    This morning, we took a long look at our life so far, we are both Senior Citizens, aging Americans and taking stock of where we have been, what we have created for our lives, what we have accomplished and what goals we have reached and what is next for us.  Exciting stuff to think about.   Now I fully understand, that our goals, our dreams our successes are not what everyone would consider high on the lists of success, but for us, we are seeing all our dreams come true.   I am so thrilled to watch my girls feed their little families healthy foods and see my little grandblessings choose an apple over candy and love vegetables.  I love watching my girls value the things money cannot buy and care about the world around them and have compassion for the underdogs in our society.  I love watching our new grandbaby be diapered with cloth diapers.  I love that my girls understand the importance of breast feeding.  I love that they understand the importance of spending more time with the little ones, than in having a house that is in perfect shape.  We feel so blessed to have a closeness with our children that goes deep.   These are the things we count as successes.  Not in how much we own, or what we wear, but in what is in our hearts.  Life is good.

Its Spring Time !

Today is the day it becomes official, Spring Arrives  !  Its been an unusual winter for us.  Colder than normal, and then just a roller coaster of temperatures.  The plum tree budded out beautifully and the next day was the coldest we had seen it in years.  There went the plum crop for us.   The beautiful blossoms were brown by morning.   Most years I am happily pruning my rose bushes the first week in February, not so this year.  Some are still waiting to be done.   The garden was planted with the frost hardy plants a full month later than any other year.   I have yet to find a bird nest like the one in the photo that was taken a couple of years ago.  But today, I feel hopeful, that we have turned the corner towards warmer weather.  Our little chicks are growing like weeds and soon will be too big for the brooder, they are all feathered out and ready for the next move, and we can move them, provided winter does not show his face again.
We have all had bronchitis, colds and coughs for months it seems and are so ready for short sleeves and no need of jackets.   Now, don't get me wrong, I love the cold, I love winter, but I also like normal !  I like the seasons to arrive on time for us.   
Spring is a busy time for us, planting, cleaning up after winter, new farm animals to care for and what seems like a never ending list of things to be done.  I actually like this busy-ness.  Its as exciting to me as when we have to prepare for winter cold.   
Its time for me to get out to the garden, dig in the rich brown soil and plant more of out Heirloom seeds.  All organic, no GMO's.   I like that.  
Yesterday, I planted 14 Elderberry Bushes thanks to the kindness of a blog reader that sent me a box of cuttings.  I am so excited to have our own little Elderberry patch.    The older we get, the bigger the garden gets.  Life is good. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Sweater Set

A few pictures of Axel in the sweater, hat and booties I made for him.  It was a fun knitting project and this sweet little guy is such a sweet baby 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Great Joy

It is with great joy, we announce the arrival of our new grandson, Axel.   First child to our daughter Melissa and our son in law James.  He arrived last night weighing in at 7lbs 14 oz.  He is 20 inches long.  Healthy and beautiful !  All went well and we are just as proud as can be.  God is so good, so very good.

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Urgent Prayer Request

Mei-Ling was rushed to Childrens Hospital her ammonia levels out of the ball park.  She is in ICU and not doing well at all.  Please keep her in your prayers.  

Sunday, March 02, 2014

Roller Coaster Ride Weather

The roller coaster of temperatures continues.  Yesterday, it was 80 F, with the plum tree full of blossoms and today, its 26 F and dropping by the hour, with ice and sleet.   The chicks are staying warm in their brooder on the porch, its covered by plastic and for extra measure, I added a quilt.   They seem quite content and warm.  

A New Year

It is a silent sort of morning, sitting next to the wood stove in my rocker, watching the birds outside my windo...