Family Fun

Family Fun

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

It has been a little surprise.I am 22 weeks along now with our baby boy,Lucian. He is growing and kicking and it thrills me to feel his strength. At the last ultrasound they had me see a genetic counselor and talked a lot about his heart. It is scary, and I have been battleing the what if's. I am fighting to keep a peace about this, and I go for another ultrasound in a week.
My glorious midwife has asked me to allow her to do my birth for free. This is gut wrenching hard for me...if ever there was someone I wanted to pay it would be her, but we just do not have the funds. I am glad I had something to give her in appreciation that was worth quite a will stay in my head to repay this blessing either forward or back. I am so excited to be birthing at home again though!
My sister and her husband are on again off again. She had purchased a cruise for the two of them and he left so she asked me to go! It was a wonderfully neat experience.I won a Harry Potter trivia game on board the ship. :P We went to Key West, Freeport and Nassaue Bahamas.I would love to go again someday with Brian.
I can't believe the new year is upon us. I have a few things to acomplish this year and I feel really good about them at this point.

Friday, November 4, 2011

It has already been a very busy day and it is only 11:30. I got the chicken coop thoroughly cleaned, which added a full deep wheelbarrow full of stuff to the compost pile. I piled brush to burn in a little is supposed to be slightly less windy than normal until tonight.I did 2 loads of laundry, made breakfast, excersized for 20 minutes.
Bella leaves tomorrow for her new home. We are all pretty happy with where she is going so it isn't too sad that she is leaving.We are really eager to get going with the goats in Spring. Probably Boers, although I really like Kikos. Boers are much easier to get here.
We have taken two deer to be processed and the guys are going to hunt again. I really am not thrilled with hunting every last freakin deer on the property, but I am reminding myself that there are three empty neighbors who are not hunting this year. We will use the meat, I just really enjoy seeing our herd of deer grazing in the back yard in the winter.I still think we will have some, and plan to feed them when hunting season is over.
I am 15 weeks! In 4 weeks we will find out if baby will tie us or make the gap Big for boys and girls. I am definitely thinking girl, but have boy twinges every few days.
Epiphany gets her cast off her arm on Tuesday. I think it is too early, but I am not the Dr. He mentioned a brace but I can't imagine how we will keep that on her. They still see no need for testing, saying her bones are plenty strong. It is very aggravating to hear that and worry about my little climber.
I am excitedly planning Thanksgiving dinner. It is one of the highlights of the year for me!

Friday, October 21, 2011

MMM, a salad of spinach, cucumber, tomato, mozzerella, and slow roasted pork. It tasted so good I really want to make another, but I know I just want to taste it, I am not actually hungry for it.I haven't gained any weight yet and want to keep doing well.Plus we just discovered how AMAZING nutella is and have eaten one and a half jars in less than 24 hrs(granted, that is 9 people eating.)
We(I) rearranged the house a bit again. I took the lego table and bins of legos out of the boys room and returned them to the playroom. I really hope we can keep Pippi out of them, but their room really was too crowded with 4 beds(triple bunk and a twin) and two dressers.It looks clean and simple now. The playroom does not. The boys won legos and star wars action figures, I am not simplifying past that. The little girls have dolls, a play kitchen, Thomas tracks, and wooden blocks. Definately keeping those. The problem is the two bins of play clothes...tutus and capes and silks and such. I heart all of them...but I do not want two bins! I am going to try to weed it down. There is also the easel and bookshelves, the snake cage, the parrot cage full of homeschooling drives me batty but is really all used and there is nowhere else for it. All the rest of the rooms are simple and minimal and I feel good in. This room overwhelms me.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Fall. I love this season so much!
Yesterday one of the roosters got me while I was graining Bella. I don't know how I didn't see or hear him coming up on me but he actually caused my hand to swell. :( We have nine and they will be gone by the end of the week(into the freezer). We are down to 14 hens, but they are great layers and we are swimming in eggs.
Tonight is supposed to be our first freeze. I am going to the thrift store to buy some extra sheets to cover our tomato and pepper plants, and we have bottles to cover our smaller plants. I really hope we can prolong this a bit, the tomato and pepper plants especially are almost ready to give a huge yield!
I am 13 weeks today. Still nauseous at night. My belly is pooched out. My ultrasound is on Nov 29th.
Pip is in a long arm cast again. She broke both her radius and ulna on her right arm. She climbs a lot. I get that. But why will her dr not agree to metabolic testing to see why she has 4 broken bones in 12 months?!?I get the falling thing, but other kids have fallen and they don't break like this?It torments my heart.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Oh thank you Lord for the easing of my morning sickness. I only get very ill about once a day now and am feeling mostly functional again. The house is in good order, we are back to schooling, the animals and outdoor chores are coming on nicely. I so relate to Rabbit from Pooh sometimes...feeling like Fall is a rush to prepare for Winter. I love Fall...easily my favorite season. I have made several pumpkin cheesecakes, and several pumpkin breakfast bundt cakes. Fall is pumpkin, and cocoa, and soup. Stacking wood is one of my fall obsessions. The old goose house is full of firewood, and I am seriously thinking of filling half the chicken coop with deadfall. I am very tempted to use my dutch oven in the fireplace this year, though I really don't think the fireplace is large enough for it. MMM...apples is the dutch oven, with oatmeal. Cider. Crunchy leaves. It makes me content to even think about fall.
Brian is working the State Fair with a fellow from church this year. He comes home to sleep for about 5 hours, then is gone again. It is hard for him, he is covered in bruises(paintball ref), but the money is decent and guaranteed. I will be so thankful when it is done though! He calls when he is on his way home(usually at 1:30) and I scoot out of bed like a hyper mouse and bustle him up some warm grub lol. I chatter at him while he mechanically eats, then he collapses into bed and falls right asleep and I lay down and take a good half hour to fall back to sleep. When his alarm goes off I wait till he is up and showering and force myself to get up and make him some coffee and breakfast sandwiches. He always protests that I needn't wait on him, but I feel like it is one of my few chances to show him my love in a practical way. Then after he is out the door I collapse back into bed with the two little girls.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I had my ultrasound and got to see that glorious heartbeat! I am measuring exactly where I knew I would be(a week later than what the drs are using as my due date, but I know my cycles lol).
I keep reminding myself I am seeing student drs and I should be patient with them as they learn. The problem is they want to do every test imaginable, they have already said they will induce me because I have a history of short labors during my homebirths, and they want to put me on anti seizure meds despite a lack of seizures for a considerable amount of time. So I remain patient but firm and try to show them the beauty of a natural process . :)
I am starting to not be as sick,Praise the Lord!!! It still hits hard at night, but I am functioning during the day much better now. My home is clean and organized again, I am cooking creatively again, I even made laundry soap for the first time. It was easy peasy btw, I will definitely keep that up.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I am 7 weeks now. The queasiness is overwhelming. I made my first appt for the 22nd. It will merely be the nurse visit to get history and all, hopefully I will get an actual appt quickly after that. I hate fearing another missed miscarriage, but it is hard to truly give in to excitement and bond with this baby until I Know there is a baby growing. I know that sounds negative, and I am acyually thrilled to be experiencing the just doesn't seem real that I will hold a new wee one in April/May. Be gone negativity!
The goats head weeds are back. It is so rewarding to see it not grow where we weeded last year. If we stay on top of it each year it should get easier and easier.
There have been no showings of the house. I know it only takes one person at the right time, I do not feel discouraged at all. If we stay here so be it. I do yearn for up north though!
The honey bun cake I baked is done and I am so eager to go eat a nice gooey warm piece!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

5 weeks and so far so good. :) The nausea is kicking in, for which I am glad. I still compulsively check every time I go to the restroom to make sure there is no blood...I truly earnestly strongly pray this one works out. The kidlets are truly strongly earnestly wanting twins. They grill me every day about how twins would we know if they were identical, science of it all, random dreaminess of it. I love that they love babies and kids, and that they desire more siblings instead of dreading them. Big mama sigh.
We are gearing up to get started with the rabbits.I am pretty excited about this, now that we have found chickens to be so easy to butcher I think rabbits will be doable and a better meat. We are also going to get goats in the spring(maybe sooner, but it would have to fall into our laps).
School is going great. This is easily looking like our best year(potentially) and we are all enjoying the workload. I thought the kids might feel overwhelmed with how much more I planned, but they aren't. The extra read alouds are making my jaw hurt, but I have a few teeth that need some attention and I think it is a compound problem.
My dreads are doing amazing. I am at almost 2 months and they are fairly locked! I got some special shampoo on Etsy that has been really good also, although I don't actually like the smell of it. I may get the commercial dread shampoo just for the smell! This one I bought makes my hair smell clean, it just doesn't have a strong peppermint smell that I like. I suppose I could add a few drops of essential oil...we shall see.

Friday, August 26, 2011

I will be leaving in an hour to take Gavin to the audiologist. I am so glad we have a Dr who finally listened to me, but I admit to being nervous about what they will find. In one case...what if they find nothing? How can we fix the issue if there is no issue? On the other hand...there could be something wrong. I have an hour and a half drive to think about this.

Friday, August 19, 2011

I tested again today, at 11dpo and got a seriously dark, good line! I am a little surprised at how much darker the line is in less 28 hours, but happy happy happy. I am feeling very smell sensitive, a little "urpy"(not burps, or gagging, but bubbly and odd). I am praying and yearning for this pregnancy to be viable and strong.
Tomorrow is a women's breakfast at church. I am debating between cinnamon roll pancakes or a bacon,egg, and cheese bread roll. Both are recipes I found on Pinterest and they both look really good, in opposite ways.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

10 DPO and I got a positive this morning!!! I am so excited, but am not saying anything,even to Brian, until I get three more positives over the next week. I will test every two days to make sure the line gets stronger. I am so very hopeful,happy,nervous,anxious,jubilant,elated!!! It only adds to my happiness that my due date will be Epiphany's 3rd birthday.

Monday, August 15, 2011

We started school today. It went wonderfully until Brian called from town and asked me to come pick him up, midway through the day. We had already covered so much that it was not really an issue(back to learning momentum!) . Now the van is fixed, hurrah!
The kids drew self portraits for art and they all kinda impressed me with how far they have come in the last year! Christian especially seems to have some real talent. I am looking into art instruction for him...I want to really help him go where his strength is.
Pip should be getting the all clear on Wednesday and I am so glad. I feel like I have been very disconnected with outside since she has had to stay in. It will be good for both of us to resume walks every night, instead of me sneaking out when I get a chance.
I will test on Wednesday as well. I was looking at my tracking software an I could potentially get a bfp that early. I know our timing was dead on, and I have been having a lot of symptoms. I am so very hopeful.

Friday, August 12, 2011

A man came into the thrift store and donated a ton of stuff from his storage unit. Which is very cool, really, except he gave us 10 bottles of years expired hot sauce and 8 bottles of years expired bbq sauce. Which I brought home because I hate to waste food. It actually tastes fine(umm...vinegar and bourban will do that,no?) He came back today and gave 10 boxes of sourdough mix. Expired in 97. What in the world...I think he is a bona fide hoarder. So I brought them home and substituted fresh yeast and it is cooking up beautifully. The boss man thinks I am nuts, and tried to argue with me to throw it away. He also gave me "rotten" bread for my chickens. I think it was two day old stale bread. It made the MOST tasty triple berry bread pudding ever. I have always thought if I lived in a big city I would be one of those dumpster diving food recyclers.
Pip goes to the ortho on Wednesday to get her cast off. Yay! She just finished ten days of antibiotics and the wound still looks bad to me...I guess we will see what happens.
Thursday Gavin and Griffon are going to the dr for check ups. Gavin has not been to a dr in 10 years. Griffon has only seen a non er dr once and the guy was a putz. I am very much hoping we can have a respectful visit, and get some answers about Griffon's excema and Gavin's hearing/speech delay. Then on Tuesday Trinity and Christian will go in(also haven't been seen for 10 years). Just a check up, no concerns there. The following Tuesday Logan and Jubilee will go in. Logan has never seen a dr(he is 9), and Jubilee has only been seen for her broken arm last year. I want to know if the bags under her eyes are from allergies, and if so I would like allergy testing for her and Griffon both.
I will be testing next Saturday. Timing was great this month, and I feel a lot of symptoms, which is odd being so close to o, but I felt this way last time too. My fingers are crossed.
Next blog post will be chock full of pictures. I have been using my camera phone too much lately and want to get some better pics soon.
I planned 14 weeks of school and we start on Monday. I am very excited for this upcoming year. It should go smoothly, and with 5 kids reading independently I feel like it should be a tad easier.
After record high temps for well over a month we have had some beautiful weather. Rain broke through the drought and is in the forecast for a few more days at least. I pray that it will help farmers get a second harvest of hay, because prices are high and supplies are low. If it gets to the point of not being able to find hay we will have to give Bella(the horse) away, and we really don't want to do that. She has shown no signs of heat since being bred by the neighbors stallion in May...I wonder if we will have a foal in April.Short of taking her to the vet there really aren't any signs or symptoms.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Almond Mango granola is baking. Spaghetti sauce is simmering. A triple batch of dough is rising. My home smells good!
I am working on that dream schedule. The one that allows each child to thrive in our homeschool, and helps us keep the house sparkling, and gives us opportunities outdoors . *Snort* The one that I will make with gusto and despair following because I am NOT a schedule person. I like making them though. It helps a lot to have them also. (I always type a lot as alot, which I am aware is not a word. I love spellcheck!)
Pip's infection is receding, thanks to keflex. Only a couple more weeks of the cast and we should be back to normal.
We caught a juvenile timber rattler last night. I almost stepped on it three days ago. Two days ago we had a hen die from a snake bite. Last night I was watering the tomatoes and there he was again, coiled up on the raised bed. With Brian's help I got him in the critter keeper and we relocated him to a place he can grow without harming people or livestock, and a place where no ranchers should kill him. Honestly, the ranchers kill every snake they come across, no regard for how beneficial a ratsnake can be.
No interest in the house. I am really content either way, so I am not stressing about it. I do wish someone would look at it though. I have lots of plans for it if it doesn't sell...I am remotivated to work this property as much as possible.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Pip's leg is in a boot, as she has a sore from the temp cast that is likely abscessing. If it looks any worse tomorrow I am taking her back in, as it is starting to look streaky red to me, and is hard and spreading. She hates the boot and tries to push it off constantly, and screams and cries that her foot hurts all the time. It is pretty heartbreaking. :(
Tonight was our last ladies meeting for at least a month and a half. We finished the study of James. It was really great and I will miss these Tuesday night meetings for sure. Small groups are starting in Sept and I will be leading one, so hopefully I won't miss the gals too much as I prepare.
My back is pretty sore from holding the baby so much, I will update soon!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Pippi broke her leg. She was playing in Trinity's room and jumped off the bed, landing only on one foot. I heard the snap, so we headed to the ER. Because this was her second break in 10 months we had to make another trip to the DR today so they could look her over. :( Obviously they said she is fine and not abused, but how terrible for her. We will be going to the orthopedic surgeon tomorrow morning to get her permanent cast.
I have not heard any feedback from our showing on Sat, would really like to know if they had anything to say. I got some paint to redo the front of the house a bit.
Tonight I am going to watch Harry Potter 7.2 with my ladies Bible Study group. This is amusing to me because there are definitely those in our church who think anything HP is bad , but my ladies group are far more relaxed.
One of the pastors approached me and asked if I would lead a small group this fall! I am very excited about this, as it will be more like a small home church than a Bible study, and will be comfy and intimate. I will start leadership training on that next month, then the group begins the last week of Aug.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I have been longing for something simpler for some time now. This has led Brian and I to seek out a Realtor and we will see if we can sell the house. If we can we will be moving back to Michigan. We would be leaving the country behind to become suburban or urban growers. I have made a list of homes from what I can see on line. Our new basement would be where we grow year round, the majority of our backyard would be gardened, with a few hens. I don't think we would bring our bees with us, but we would start a new hive up there. The homes I have looked at have a much more Waldorfy feel...lots of original woodwork and coziness.
The Realtor will be coming by on Monday. On the phone she seemed confident that we can do this. I feel my heart flutter with hope that we can. There is also fear, as there are some legal issues Brian will have to resolve. Issues that will take a lawyer and money. Issues that are 16 years old, that we thought were dealt with, that have potential jail time involved. Ugh...I do not want to be afraid, but I also am trying to see this all the way through.
So lots of planning, for a maybe future. If that doesn't happen we are still plowing ahead here. Tuesday we will be butchering 15 roosters. My hens will be forever grateful! We had to pull our squash and cucumber plants because of squash bugs laying their eggs. We burned them, and hope that that is the end of that. The tomatoes are doing great, as is the asparagus. It is so hot that we water twice a day and still worry about how scorched the plants are. Record breaking temps here, and a record month of over 100 degree days. I looked up MI and it is 20 degrees cooler. I should not tease myself like that, but the heat makes me crazy lol!
I need to get ready for church. Tomorrow will be telling.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Brian is taking Trinity and Christian to the first youth bible study. They are starting with John. Christian has been reading diligently for weeks now, and is so excited to be joining the youth group.
I am trying to have the house looking gorgeous by the time Brian gets home. I feel very bad that it has suffered, even though my ridiculous standards are far above what others would call bad. We are used to an immaculate home, and to have it be at all out of order is not good for my mental health. So I am going to try to mop and beautify in 1/2 hour.And fold 2 loads of laundry, and declutter a bit more. The problem with decluttering is that I really do use most of my stuff. It all fits the guideline of being used or being valued for enhancing our area.
I want to sit down and do a good long post on where I am in life right now. I need to actually work right now. I promise to make time to update better.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

I am printing off some roller coaster word searches, and a couple Angelina Ballerina coloring pages for the 6 kidlets who will be home while I am at the store today. Trinity is at Youth Camp with church. The older three boys will go to Kid Camp at the end of the month.
I damaged my hand by walking through a doorway yesterday. :/ Yes, I am that clumsy. I just banged it into the frame just right. That warranted a trip to the VA for an x-ray. I am supposed to ice it, elevate it, and not use it for 2 weeks. *sigh* I actually feel a bit guilty because I have no plans to follow that advice.
We have had soooo many donations lately, and I do not have reliable volunteers so I am trekking to work early to try to sort some of it. I can not abide the mess or disorganization that will result if I throw it all in the back room.
I am really struggling with homeschooling ideals and reality. I don't want to work anymore, I really miss being home for the kids 24 hrs a day. :( Yet I still feel led to keep going, and am going to try waking the kids up earlier in the am so we can do 2 hrs before I leave. I don't know if that is realistic or not yet, just an idea right now.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

My sisters wedding was lovely. She had a great time, the guests had a great time, and everything went off without a hitch. I didn't sit down from 6:30 am until midnight...I had so much to do!!!

My handsome men had to do their James Bond Pose. The boys have never seen a James Bond movie, but they know he is a spy lol.

Trinity was a beautiful bridesmaid.

We bought a travel trailer! And we paid cash for it and got an excellent price. I can't wait to take it out, but we are enjoying it in the driveway right now.

Pippi turned two, and very heartily enjoyed her cupcake. She is talking soooo much now, and is a hoot!
Tomorrow is our Homeschool Promotion Night, and I am supposed to have made a photo slideshow. Problem one...people still have not submitted their photos to me!!! Problem two...well, it is really just problem one.
Sunday we are going back to the Renn Faire. We went last Sunday and had such a good time we felt it warrants a second trip! Going with friends this time, and I will have Riley and Naya(nephew and niece) so 9 kids for me to look after while Brian visits the mead tasting tent(his birthday gift from me lol). I'm glad I enjoyed last week, this week sounds like work. At least it will be work in a fun environment.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

This is our newest pet! Biscuit the bulldog. He is 2 years old, a breeding stud that we get to keep except when his breeder takes him for a weekend. He mostly sleeps and I love him for that!

Easter Bread. It tasted like Hawaiian Sweet Bread and was gone quickly.

My beautiful family on Easter. I felt bad that Christian didn't fit into his dress shirt but the Casual Dressy look works with his hair lol!
My goodness, I am tired. I refuse to let go of my standards for my family just because I am now working outside the home 32 hrs a week.So I get up earlier and stay up later, and count my tiredness as a sacrifice of honor and love. I will make sure my kids have fresh bread, and home cooked breakfast every morning. We will still do school projects, and go to group events, and watch movies with big vats of fresh popped popcorn. (Yeah, I love food and it is part of my every activity). My world is changing, and I am humbled by what I learn. The store heart hurts a bit at what I see. So many young moms needing so much. A new 16 year old with her newborn came by to get a blanket and some food. She didn't have a single blanket other than the one she got at the hospital. A 21 year old having baby number 3 who squealed at the $5 bassinet she bought, and cried at the free bins of clothing available. Little kids who happily munch on the free granola bars and pastries, licking the crumbs out of the wrappers. Car after car of people coming because their friends told them we have free diapers, makeup, food. Most of them don't say thank would be hard to have always lived this way, to not even bat an eye at needing help, it is life. They tell me their stories, I try to memorize their wrinkled faces and names, or their too young faces and names. They do their part and bring in ripped Dollar General bags full of smoke ridden, unwashed and stained clothes their babies have outgrown. I love being able to smile and assure them that someone will be blessed by their giving. We are able to donate those clothes to a third world country where these poor Americans would be rich. I love being a part of a not for profit...every penny goes back to the community. Every brand name outfit I sell puts food into a child's mouth. Every well off person who donates helps, every business(even the dreaded Walmart!!!) who donates enriches lives. I cannot truly say how deeply I am touched.
I am on my first cycle since the miscarriage. I am mostly relieved, feeling like this is good for my body to cleanse. I am so hopeful to get to birth another baby into our family, but I try not to be obsessive. Epiphany turned 2 last week. My children are the brightest light to me! Trinity is growing up so quickly, and maturing beautifully. Christian still plays like a child, though he and Gavin both are starting to show signs of impending puberty. They love Pokemon cards, Yugi Oh cards, drawing ninjas, biking, telling corny knock knock jokes. Logan is slowly becoming a comedian...though he is still so shy. Griffon looks like a sleepy owl...he speaks so fast, and it is the cutest contradiction. Jubilee is a talkative princess. Pip adores everyone. We bought a travel trailer and will pick it up on Monday. I Can't Wait to Sleep in it!!! We paid cash...that was cool.
I am so rambling, but my head is so full I can't spill it all coherently. Oh, and my sisters wedding is next week! I have pics to post for next time.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Ack, it has been awhile now since I posted. I tend to pull way back and stop posting here or on any forums when I am thinking alot lol.
The thrift store/food pantry opened last week. We have handed out alot of food already, and the store is doing pretty well. The residents seem as thrilled about the fact that someone thought they were worth opening a store for as they do about the food. All clothing is $1, and it is nice! I don't put out anything stained or faded...that goes in the free bin which has been going like wildfire. Starbucks donates all their leftovers to us, so people get REALLY good snacks while they are shopping. Lol, I never even ate at starbucks!
The downside is that I see all this cool stuff going out and sometimes I buy it which does not help me declutter! I got a very fun race car bed for Griffon. It is a $250 bed, I bought it for $35. There were two of them and the lady that bought the other one is even more thrilled than I am. I have cleaned out alot of my stuff to take up there. We price everything very cheap and it moves fast. Every dollar that comes in goes to buying food. I am very happy about the whole endeavor.
I am finally starting to see my body slow down after the miscarriage. Actually...I think I ovulated again already, with no period between, so I will be testing in 2 weeks. I would say oops but then that would sound as if I am not happy at the thought. I mean oops that it happened so quickly, but I didn't plan it and couldn't have forseen it. I talked to my midwife and she is fine with it, although she did say a full cycle would be a good idea. She knows we don't prevent though.
My two irl friends who are due the week before I was are finding out the genders now.1 is having a girl and the other is going in next week. It is getting easier not to get a lump when I think of how badly I wanted to be doing all those things too. The store keeps my mind busy, I have been so blessed to open my eyes and do more for the kidlets . It is like this whole thing made me more determined to live each moment. I know that sounds morbid, but I do feel like it brought me to a fuller appreciation of how close death is to us all. I want my babies to have alot of memories of me, all laughter and smiles!

Friday, April 1, 2011

I am so tired. So done with Drs.
I called my dr yesterday. He said that this was now an emergency situation, to go to the ER and get the D and C done. To not leave without having it done. I went. The ER dr agreed that there is retained tissue. He agreed that I warrant a D&C. He called the ob and she is too busy to do it right now. Send me home and she will see me next Thursday. I should try to stay in bed and rest, and they are sorry I can't stand up without blacking out. I am beyond baffled. I didn't want a D&C at first...I wanted this to happen naturally. It started too, but I knew it wasn't right/normal. I went to the Dr, followed advice, keep getting told the same thing. But no one is helping me!!! I am not a person who does well accepting help. I do not like to be weak. I can not even function physically right now. I am not myself. And I am scheduled to "meet" with the dr 2 full weeks after this started. I am too exhausted to know what to do. I believe fully that God will cover my healing, and I am loading up on iron and protein. I had encapsulated my placenta from Epiphany's birth, and am taking one pill per day. That has definitely helped. But...I feel so let down by the drs, by the system. I thought about going to a different hospital, but I am really just too sad and blown away to play this game. Ugh...I hate to whine, and I don't really even know what to say about it all, but it just isn't right.
Brian has been so kind and helpful. He has taken off work twice for this now(and if he doesn't work he doesn't get paid). He went to the store and bought me V8 juices and two roasts lol. He pats my arm or head every time he walks by. Little things that just let me know even more than ever that he loves me.
I will be a mom to a teenager in a week. Trinity is having a sleepover next Friday and she is very excited. She invited all the girls from youth group. I believe most of them are coming! I made plans for the boys to have a sleepover at their friends house that day. Lol...Once again, I am tired, and all the details are tiring. I just need to be back to full strength, like now. ;)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I have a d&c scheduled. My body started the process but there is retained material and I agree with the Dr.s that this is needed at this time. I disagree with the transfusion they wanted to give me, to their discomfort, but I do not think that is needed. I am scared, and sad, but mostly feeling God's peace and a dull calm.
I am having a hard time with the no chocolate(I am abstaining during Lent) and feel that there is external pressure that "Under the circumstances it would be ok" but I am doing my best not to go down that line of thought. For a simple thing to give up this one has had alot of impact, which I am grateful for.
A slight funny. When I was at the Dr today he asked if I am Mennonite. ROFL, I have been asked if I was Catholic, or Mormon, but never Mennonite before.
Jubilee has her first dentist visit on Monday. She is excited and wants her toothbrush to be rainbow. Lol, Poor dear, I don't think they have those color.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Hard , sad day. I went to the ER today and found out that my 9 week pregnancy is over. I am so sad, and the kids are so sad. I know it will all be fine, I know that I am already abundantly blessed. I am still sad. I do have a sense of peace though.
My body still thinks I am pregnant and the dr wants to do a d&c on Monday. I am going to contact my midwife to see what herbs she recommends...I do not want a d&c if I can help it. Cest' la vie. I will be ok.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

I have a big batch of granola in the oven, pizza dough rising. School is mostly done. Laundry is halfway done. I just had to stop and eat a sunny side up egg because the nausea is getting overwhelming.
We have a rat problem. We caught 3 so far. They are huge. I am very unhappy that they are here. One got caught in the trap and dragged the trap down under the house. Brian is not sure how we are going to retrieve that one :( .It must be retrieved though! I can't even imagine the smell that would follow a dead giant rat!
9 weeks tomorrow. I almost have my paperwork filled out for is a small book!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Sooo tired!!! So far today: Went to Walmart and bought 3 trees, 2 plants, curtains for 5 windows, spray paint , and shredded cheese. Came home, moved 60 chicks outdoors, situated them with a heat lamp and food and water(had to carry them 3 at a time, so 20 trips!) My sis showed up to drop off her son and daughter for me to watch during spring break. Made lunch(didn't eat anything) , laid more tile in the bathroom, folded a load of laundry, hung the blanket outside, switched another load to the drier, started another load in the wash. Hung the new curtain rods and curtains, cleaned the old chick cage, and moved the bantams in. planted the trees and plants, weeded. I didn't count how many times I helped wee ones with wee issues...that is second nature and doesn't seem too much like work. I am tired though!And there is so much more to do. I forget each year how much work spring is, and we are trying to refinance the house on top of that so the assessor is coming out this week. We need to get a good appraisal so we can do the won't be worth it if the amount is not high enough to drop the extra insurance.So.
I made salsa last was fantastic! I used an Anaheim pepper instead of a jalapeno and I think I prefer the spice so next time I will switch that, but other than that it was good! Of course I then ate too much and felt sick. Bleh.
Off to do minor upkeep to our house. :)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

7 weeks today! I love moving up day. I am down 5 pounds, am eating very specifically, and feel mostly good. Ok, I have bad nausea every day, but I will take what I get for a healthy baby.
We are almost done building the grow room. I found a mini banana tree, mini tangerine tree, mini lemon tree, and mini lime tree to order. I can't wait to have tropical fruits and plants growing in my home! Also the vanilla and saffron. The grow room looks like a magical elevator right now so the kids love to play in it :P .
The 60 big chicks will be moving outdoors this weekend. Noisy buggers, they are very cute but I will not be sad to move them. Several have figured out how to fly the coop so it is not a surprise to see a chick strut into the kitchen. The bantams will move into the cage and will stay indoors for a few more months, but there are so few of them and they are so small that won't be a problem. Two banties turned out to be red frizzles, which I love, sooo happy.
My daffodils grew up and bloomed and there are bright patches of yellow all over the property. I had planted so many I didn't remember where I put them all and it was such a pleasant treat to just find them. I will definitely plant more this fall.
We have paid down over $9,000 since starting Dave Ramsey. We are almost out of credit card debt, and almost have both vehicles paid for. The closer we get the more inspired I am at the thought of our money being ours, not being owed to someone ever again. I will own the land and house by the time I am 38. The oppurtunities that will afford us overwhelms me!
School has been going wonderfully this week. We started a Lent series and the kids have such a good grasp on it. I so wish I had learned this as a child, but I hope my zest makes up for it. I am loving the stuff I learn as we homeschool as a family.
I made sauce yesterday so pizza is planned for lunch. Which means I must get off here and make some dough. :P

Sunday, February 27, 2011

5 weeks. I have an abdominal separation, hence the obvious bump. I have kept up on eating well and am losing at a safe rate right now. Honestly the pic makes it look more obvious, I think it was holding up the camera. I really don't look THAT huge lol.
All my dreads are out now. I finished last night. Pure torture! Yay for healthy hair though, that I did not have to cut.
I had to stay home from church so I am trying to get the house sparkly before Brian gets back. Just wanted to post that while I had a chance.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Brian is a good man. :P He talked me down last night, we went over why I would all of a sudden want to do a major change to our home school. He asked if I felt overwhelmed(no).We figured out together that I feel under equipped in some ways. I am going to tweak a bit more and we will keep chugging away. The kids are all doing well. I was being reactive to some stuff I read on the Well Trained Mind site. Silly of me really.
Pippi has been wearing leotards over her diaper lately lol. It is the only way to keep her from getting completely naked and peeing on the floor all the time! She is a feisty little darling.
Jubilee is mellowing out finally and is a fun girly girl. She loves anything pink or sparkly. She wants to be a princess.
Griffon lost his first tooth yesterday. He started reading words! He loves Legend of Zelda.
Logan has a bossy streak. We are working on it. He is a really funny boy, with a very dry sense of humor.
Gavin is a sunbeam. Always grinning. He is kind- hearted and sensitive. He cries when he is upset, or if he thinks he disappointed someone. He loves the Lord and wants to be a Pastor.
Christian is methodical and artistic(weird combo). He gets very excited by things and his volume increases exponentially when he is happy/excited. He is sweet.
Trinity is discovering that she likes people and wants to look nice. Not overly made up, but she is taking care to style her hair now, or match her jewelery to her outfit. She has a biting wit and I have to remind her not to take it too far sometimes. She is smart and has her life mapped out. Our discussions about the twists and turns life can take make her more determined to make it work right lol.
Today I want to go to the library, clean the chicken cage, fold and put away 3 loads of laundry, and make a yummy meat dinner since Trinity is at the state youth convention. I need to get my head on straight and plan the rest of the years schoolwork. If it is planned and the photocopies are made I think I will do much better.

Friday, February 25, 2011

I am doing something really odd for me. I don't know why exactly, other than I am always trying to evaluate where we are, but I am looking at doing k-12 for the kids next year. Free curriculum and accountability sound like good things. Government program, secular worldview sound like bad things. I am really conflicted. For now I have only requested the booklet, and scoured the web looking for other testimonies. I really love our curriculum though, and think I would want to try to do both. Hmm...alot to consider.
As shown at this joyful blog there need to be some more mom of many birth stats ;0 . On that note, here we go.
Trinity Lace born 8 April 1998
8lbs2ozs, 21 3/4 in
18hr labor , stadol, forceps,4th degree episiotomy, 200+stitches and 2 collapsed lungs

Christian Matthew born 28 March 1999
7lbs7ozs 21 1/2 in
3day induction, no pain meds, 7 stitches

Gavin Conner born 21 June 2000
6lbs14ozs 21 in
18hr labor, pitocin, mag sulfate, epidural 7 stitches. NICU at birth

Logan Xavier born 5 July 2002
7lbs 19 in
36 wks 4 ds
14 hr labor, hypnobirthing,2 stitches

Griffon Drake born 9 October 2004
8lbs8ozs, 21 3/4 in
40wks(on his due date)
2 hr labor, homebirth, born in the caul

Jubilee Faith born 25 January 2007
7lbs6ozs 21 1/2in
50minutelabor, midwife was here for 9 minutes,dad missed the birth.

Epiphany Grace born 2 May
8lbs 21 1/2 in
39 wks
3 hr labor in the middle of the night. The kids slept through the birth and were thrilled to wake up to a new sister!
I can't wait to see how the next one will go. If I could have it go my way(lol) it would be November 1st, 9 lb baby(I love big babies!!!) and a 2 hr labor. Those fast and furious ones are brutal but fun lol.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

5 weeks today. I am emotional, have to use the restroom all too frequently, and am hungry yet sick. Yay for symptoms!!! It makes it easier to think of this as a healthy pregnancy when I feel like something is going on.
I lost a couple pounds this week. ANother yay! I always lose in the first three months and gain it back with a vengeance later. I am hoping to try not to gain nearly as much this go round. We shall see. I had a bowl of rice and beans for lunch and 2 pancakes for breakfast. I am about to eat some fruit. I haven't planned dinner yet because we aren't even halfway done with schoolwork for the day. Griffon is stretching his first assignment out for 2 hours...grrr. I gave the kids a lecture about how homeschooling does not equal slacking and I expect more from them. They seem to have registered that I am serious.Hopefully.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Some of our hiking pictures from yesterday. It was really nice. I love that it is an activity that we all can not get enough of. We originally wanted to go to Red Bud park but they changed their hours! That is a really cool set of trails with caves. We stopped at Mohawk just to alleviate the let down, and I am so glad we did. We even found a (dead) armadillo.
My headache is gone, thankfullness!!! I had my first bout of STRONG nausea last night and really didn't think I would get to the bathroom fast enough. I ordered some blueberry drops off etsy that will hopefully be here soon. I know Motherhood has preggie drops but I really do not like that store. Yay for Etsy!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I have a killer headache.
We went hiking at Mohawk Park today. It was amazing, I wish we could have left earlier in the day, but we had such a good time for the little while we were there. We are finishing the indoor grow room that will occupy 1/4 of my bedroom! Vanilla beans and saffron will be our first attempts.Very excited.
We got the replacement chickens in the mail today. Only 8 are still alive :( . I don't know who is at fault, Murray McMurray for shipping before President's Day, or the Post Office for leaving them in a cold office overnight, but we lost 12. They didn't die easy either, which makes me ill. The ones that survived seem to be doing well though.
I don't know how to comment to a comment, so I guess I will answer here, but we never did get the riding donkey. I think we are going to put the pony/second riding animal idea on the shelf for a bit. We are getting really close to paying off the debt...I keep trying to realize it is just delayed gratification, not no gratification.
I will have to come back tomorrow to finish, can't see straight. :(

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Okay...I just nursed Pip to sleep and the older 6 are watching tv together. We spent the day going through and pulling down spring/summer clothes. I found 8 sleeper gowns that are gender neutral and put them in my dresser.I am ridiculous, I am. 4 weeks and I got out baby clothes and maternity clothes. Mainly because I got all the storage down and with it down I figured I should go through it lol, but still.
The back of the Great White Van(12 passenger Chevy in youth group white) is crammed with stuff to donate. I hate clutter. I so love that people gift me with hand me downs, but I don't have that many kids! :P So the thrift store will get a good pile of stuff.
We have lost 15 chickens this go round. All the bantams died. Murray McMurray has been wonderful to work with and are reshipping all we lost plus they are filling out the order to 25 with free straight run chicks!I am so glad, the kids were really disappointed that all their special ones died. The remaining chicks look so sweet, but there are so many of them!
The weather took a turn towards beautiful. We drove down to the campground and played on the beach for a bit earlier. Pip ran right into the cold water. Jubilee just ran in circles. It was so nice to be outdoors, and not in the backyard for awhile.
Being as it is tax return time Brian has been nice and busy at work. We needed it after all the work he missed from the snow. We live off his money, my VA disability(my seizure disorder came about from a head injury when I was in the Army.) , and what little bit of homesteading we scratch out. This year we are trying to grow some indoor herbs and sell at the farmer's market. Specifically Vanilla Beans and Saffron. Oh, I got some purple basil I think will do well too. I am so ready for a great year of produce! I am really excited to get our piglets too, I want to call in March, but think we will have to wait until April. I will probably call in March. I have the woman's number in my phone as Kim Piglady. ;)
I wrote to Ruth(my midwife) on facebook and asked her to hold me a spot. She was excited and said she adores our family, which made me feel good. I won't go see her until 4 or 5 months(she says 12 weeks, but I usually just wait a bit longer) but I think there is going to be a baby boom and wanted her to include me in her slots. I am so freakin excited!
I got Large Family Logistics for my birthday and it is as good as everyone said. I obviously don't agree with everything, but it is still chock full of useful ideas and thoughts.
Aubrey, I so wish I lived around you. There don't seem to be many likeminded people here. There are Quiverfull families but they would never associate with heavily tattooed freaks like Brian and I. There are tattoo friends, but they eschew children lol. Our church is wonderful but oddly not as conservative as we are biblically and way more conservative politically. I wish I could gather up the handful of interesting people I have "met" on the net and collect them in a commune!
I am thinking of taking pictures to track this pregnancy, but I hate taking pics of myself. Plus, I am not thin to begin with. So consider yourselves warned...I will probably post icky pics but I will not show my belly until it looks bigger :P

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

There are so many joyous emotions running through me right now. Baby number 8 is due October 28thish! I am so, so happy.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Brian went to work today. It took him 3 hours to get there. Foolish boy! I feel for him, he spent too much time and even some money because the snow chains snapped and he had to buy a new set of bolt cutters to fix them to get to work where he will do no piercings because no sane people are out and about.
We had snow ice cream last good. 8 cups snow, 1 can sweetened condensed milk, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. I mean good as in actually enjoyable, not just good because this is fun. Although it was that too. Today we made it again, only we added our apple cider to it and had apple shakes. Very tasty. We sipped that as we listened to Mrs.Piggle Wiggle on CD in front of the fireplace. The kids are really enjoying that story. Afterwards we started watching the tv version of it on the computer but we all agreed it was rubbish and turned it off after 4 minutes. If one wished to make a tv version of a beloved book then one ought take care to match certain details...just my opinion of course.
I made Pioneer Woman's chocolate sheet cake and her olive bread. Both were fantastic. Brian even ate the cake, and he is not a sweets person.
We made the trek to town yesterday. There were very few people out, and the ones who were all had camo or carharts on lol. Yes, we live amongst ranchers. At Walmart it was almost eerie. The shelves were more bare than not. There was no meat at all, no eggs. Bread was down to a few bags, and milk was fast running out. Thankfully we only went for milk and we like rice milk lol. I didn't want their nasty hormone laced milk anyhow, though I do feel for the families who needed or wanted some and could not get any. We really only went to gauge the roads and to get out of the house. I love being in a car with Brian. We have always enjoyed road trips, even little ones.
Pip is being such a silly girl lately. Every time she sees a camera she scrunches her face up in a rather menacing little grin. If I want to get a good smile I have to show her the scary face picture, then quickly catch her proud smile. When I read to her she turns backwards and walks into my lap to plunk down for her story. Jubilee loves that she gets to climb on my back while Pip is in my lap. It makes it harder to read but my baby girls love it.
Griffon is building a "big fire" in the fire place right now. And he tells me this as if I will be proud and happy. (He is throwing paper airplanes in an existing fire, not actually building a fire).
I have a ton of pics on the camera I need to upload. I will add here when I do of course.

Monday, January 31, 2011

There is supposed to be a monster storm rolling in. Ice and up to 20 inches of snow. The stores are emptied, there are lines for gas. People horrify me with both their lack of general preparedness and their sheeple attitudes. That said I do get the panic that comes up since the ice storm a couple years ago left us without power for 15 very long and cold days. We are all electric here, so no heat,water, or lights. We do have a fireplace and we made good use of it. I have a large pile of wood already in, and more stacked in a dry spot outside. I am baking multiple loaves of bread in case I can't soon. We have the staples we always have, and I can now cook without electric. We have snowchains for both vehicles. I told Brian we could possibly make some money if we drive into town on the bad day and shovel as a family. We could whip out the work and divide the pay. We shall see if it happens.
I made rice pudding twice now, it is sooo easy and amazing. As long as I make it with raw milk I can eat it. I tried some made from store bought milk and within 10 minutes had a gall bladder attack. Yay for raw!!!
I got some great books from the library.I so look forward to sitting and reading and mulling.
I still feel an odd fog over me since my dad died. Like there is a thought lingering just below the surface and I can't think it but I can't make it go away. I am so sad that he is gone. I don't like to talk about it to people. It is a rock and a hard place.
The chickens should be here in 2 weeks. I am very excited to have the little peepers arrive. We also got an email back about the donkey and so far it looks promising.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The second 70 degree day in a row. Thank you Lord!!! I just sent the wee bairns out for the second time today. We got a ton done on the Lebanese report before that, so they are ready to run. When they get back in there will be warm bowls of sweet rice pudding to cement the Lebanese food learning. ;)
I found two interesting prospects on Craigslist that may pass the Brian test :P . One is a kid broke white donkey about the same size as our Cleo. This means she would not be at risk of being bullied, and the kids could ride!!! She is soooo affordable too. I am kinda setting my hopes high on this one. The other idea is a pygmy doe and her two kids. Mouse, and the babies are Ginger and Snap. 3 girls, super sweet. I feel they will sell quickly though, so unless he decides yes quickly we probably won't get them. *Le sigh*

Thursday, January 27, 2011

It is a beautiful day here. The older 5 are out playing with no need for coats. Gavin brought me one of Valentine's(one of our roosters) tail feathers. Looks like he lost a scuffle today. His tail looks odd now, short and stubby. His long feather was really stunning. It is now in the nature basket.
Brian got me 10 books from the library this week. All fiction. There is a reason I don't do that...I love to read and could easily sit and read all day. Now I accomplished little for school the past couple days because I can not abide the thought of a book going back unread and I don't like to keep books more than a week. Bah. The upside is they are all read now and I can get on with my life. I do love this particular author...I grew up reading her works and it is wonderful that she still writes books that I love to curl up with. I tried explaining books to Brian...he would never buy a book ever and be happy. I could never buy most books, but some are truly like old friends to me. This authors books are those friends. Silly, I know, but that is how it is.
I placed my first order with Dharma Trading Co for silk scarves to dye. If they turn out well I will sell some at the Farmer's Market this spring. Either way I look forward to dying them.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

This will have to be quick, as I have 5 loaves of bread about ready to go in the oven. The french bread I have been making is a BIG hit and not nearly as hard the more I make it. I am also making some chocolate cookies. I love baking, especially in the cold of winter.
Our herd of 8 deer are visible most of the days. It is such a joyous thing to me to be able to look outside at any given time and know they are safe in our yard. They are losing their fear of us and stay where they are even when we feed the animals. I have told the kids not to try to get to close as their fear is a safety defense for them.
Mandi gets home tomorrow. I know Riley has missed her. I am thankful for how much better behaved he is than even a year ago. Still, and I hate this, but my rhythm is disrupted when he is here. He is so materialistic(already at 4) and has been trained in the ways of my sister that are the center of any disagreements we have. I don't mind her raising her son her is just hard to have him here, vocally disagreeing with my way and trying to influence the kids. He made no qualms about the fact that Jubilee's cake wasn't as good as what he will get(homemade vs store bought) and that he gets alot more presents . I do so love being his auntie though, and am glad that our relationship is much improved. It will continue to improve, I am determined.
I refined our school schedule again. We start next week with the new schedule. It will help for when we open the store and will be schooling there. I am going to buy Large Family Logistics and am hopeful there will be useful tips in there as well.
We are going to build the solar oven this coming weekend I think. I am also researching a brick oven for the backyard. That will be a summer goal though.
Ok...bread time.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Goodbye to my father

I got that call last night at 12:30. I am still not sure if he passed on the 20th or 21st. My strong dad, the one who instilled the strongest of ethics and a severe drive to always excel, was taken away from us by cancer. He was 54 years old. He loved volleyball. He played for the All Marine team, as well as softball. He married my mom while they were both in the Marine Corps. He was a Staff Sergeant. He then worked at the Post Office for over 20 years. He built so many things. Very much the do it yourself man. He fathered 3 strong kids. We feared him, we wanted to please him, we adored him. Some of my favorite memories are going to his volleyball tournaments. We would wake up early and pack a cooler. Always full of Diet Coke and sandwiches with miracle whip,never mayo. Lots of Little Debbie snack cakes too.We would go all over MI, and there was always a lake to sit next to and dream while he was out sweating and winning. Often I would hear him cussing out a ref. He seldom took second, and when he did it was not a happy trip home.
There were alot of volatile times when I was 16. I was so defiant, I was dating a 21 year old. I ran away alot. He screamed, and punched holes in the wall, shamed me, and even got physical. Yet at my wedding two years later he walked me down the aisle and handed me over. We danced. He came to see me when I had my first baby. He bought her a giant Tigger.While I was trying to figure out motherhood he was on the balcony on the phone, grinning, and being mysterious. He had a girlfriend. When Christian was born he came out again, and I met Val. They made each other very happy and I am so glad he had her. My heart breaks for her now...I don't know how to reach out to her. My dad was our connection and now he is gone. I can't go up for the funeral...financially it just won't happen. Plus I have sick babies here. I think my brother and sister understand. I hope Val does.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

We did end up in the hospital last night to help Jubilee rehydrate. I tried urgent care first but they sent us on, saying she was probably going to be admitted. She looked terrible when we got there but after some fluids in the iv she perked right up. We were able to come home and she crashed hard and slept all night! She is still not feeling well, but she is recovering. We have to follow up in a few days because ," Her labs are off." I wanted a bit more info but all they said was that it isn't the flu(I knew this).
I was reading at Raising Arrows about her breastfeeding/conceiving journey and figured I would write mine.
I was told at 18 that I would not have children. Being 18 I really didn't process that info...children were a long way off and I just didn't focus on what the dr at the Army processing told me. 6 months later I was in the neurologist's office being told the meds he wanted to try me on would cause extreme birth defects so was there any chance I could be pregnant? I said I thought there could be a chance seeing as my husband and I didn't use birth control, but that I was told I couldn't have kids. Dr sent me downstairs for a blood test and Wow!!! I was pregnant.
I had Trinity a couple months after I turned 19. I was surely not going to breastfeed...that seemed far too sexual and gross to me. Then I had a traumatic birth and my child...a creation I didn't even know how badly I needed, was placed in my arms. I instinctively cradled her and put her to my breast and she latched on. It didn't feel sexual. It felt natural.The nurse tried to help me, putting her hands on me and moving the baby. That felt wrong. I was repulsed,actually. Trinity was tongue tied, would only nurse on one side. By her 2 week appt she had gained half a pound. The dr said I was doing good with nursing her! I was amazed...we were completely alone and struggling, but it was working. When she was 4 months old I was sooo tired. I figured the nursing spurts were wearing me down. When I went to a dr appt with her and mentioned how tiring the whole nursing thing was the dr looked at me and said it shouldn't be that bad. I sort of shrugged him off, but he thought we should do bloodwork. I was not very good at not taking orders from authority yet so I meekly obeyed. 10 minutes later I got the news that I was pregnant again! I didn't believe it. I was so tired that all I could think was,"We haven't even been together. Maybe once, but really?!? I was told I couldn't have kids at all, and now I am having two in one year?!?" My due date was Trinity's first birthday. The dr told me my body was working too hard and that I had to wean. Again, I meekly obeyed even though I was deeply saddened. I fell into bottle life and tried to make it fun with all kinds of pretty colors and lots of cuddling. I didn't ever want her to hold her own bottle. That seemed an insult, not a milestone.
Christian's pregnancy was difficult. I was working full time, opposite shifts from Brian so Trinity was only with us. My seizures were out of control and they experimented with 4 different medications, 3 of which I had severe reactions to. I was in and out of the hospital from seizures and falls. I spent my whole 8th month in the hospital, missing my baby girl. Christian was born 3 weeks early. I nursed him for two weeks exclusively, nursing in the bathtub when the afterpains put me out of my mind with pain. I had postpartum depression. I went back to work and struggled to pump even an ounce. WIC recomended I switch to formula. At 4 months he was completely weaned, and we had him on soy formula. I felt like a huge failure, but I was in love with my two babies and felt like motherhood was that thing which I had always wanted but didn't know about. Brian and I bought our first house and during the move we found out that we would be having baby number 3.Christian was 7 months, Trinity was 18 months.
Once again my seizures were out of control. Gavin was born 6 weeks premature. He didn't cry, didn't make a sound for the first 4 months of his life. I nursed him every time he moved, afraid I would miss a cue because he wouldn't cry out of hunger. He grew beautifully. When he was 9 months old I took him to a new dr. She chastised me for exclusively nursing him. He was ahead on his charts, he was thriving...but she explained that it was not good to have a baby dependant only on his mom for food. He needed rice cereal. He needed jarred baby food. Wasn't I on WIC? I was, I just didn't agree. I had started to research these things, form my own opinion. WIth head held high I thanked her for her baseless opinion and marched out. I never went back. To her, or any other ped. I ended well child visits that day. I took a step of faith that I could do what God had created me for.
After Gavin's birth I had reluctantly accepted a shot of birth control...just until I could get my saeizures under control.The day I got the shot I seized 15 times. I ran a fever of 105 for 4 days. I decided that I was not going to ever put hormonal birth control in my body again(that was the one and only time). However...the damage was done. I had my first miscarriage after the birth control wore off. Then another one. I grew desperate. I bought a saliva tester and checked my cervix and drank green tea. I contemplated weaning Gavin. After a couple months I became pregnant with Logan! Then Gavin did something shocking and refused to nurse anymore! I do not think it was because my milk changed, I think it was more due to the appetizing sippy cups laying around from Trinity and Christian. Whatever the cause, at 14 months we were done. My first baby to reach a year, my first baby to never be vaxed, my first baby to be worn. I learned so much that year. And we were a happy family! So I had a 24 month old, a 3 year old, and a 4 year old when Logan was born. He nursed so strongly that I bled. I pumped exclusively for a month to try to heal...usually pumping three full 8 ounce bottles per session. At 1 month he went back to nursing and we nursed for 19 months without a hitch(well, 3 bouts of mastitis, but anyway).I weaned him when I was 2 months pregnant.When I was 3 months I lost that baby. That was a much harder loss for me. It came on the 1 year anniversary of my mom's death. I had been due on my mom's birthday. I was devastated.
I concieved Griffon on the very next cycle after my miscarriage. I actually didn't know it was a cycle...I was bleeding, it stopped for a day and started again the next. Then 4 weeks later I had a positive test. I was so confused I thought maybe I didn't miscarry at all...then I had an u/s that dated the pregnancy and figured it out. Ileft Dr based care and had my first homebirth. Griffon nursed like a champ from day 1. At 20 months I found out I was pregnant and weaned him 2 months later.Jubilee was born at home, nursed beautifully. I never resumed cycles, she nursed alot! I felt that maybe I was done having cycles and all had to mean something. I prayed, alot. I felt stupid and needy for wanting another baby when I was already so completely blessed. I know people who struggle so hard to have one, and they were hateful about all my children. It didn't do to yearn for more. Yet I did. I loved my life with lots of littles and know even some that were bigger. I kept nursing Jubilee and just reached out to God for peace if I wasn't to have more. One day while taking care of the donkeys I was praying, telling God how I wanted another baby but it wasn't even a chance seeing as how I didn't have any signs of ovulation and Jubilee was such a heavy nursling.I heard an audible voice say," But I can do all things!" I literally fell down I was so freaked out. A week later I poas(as I do every month lol) and got quite a shock when it turned blaringly positive.I stumbled out to the garden and showed Brian. He laughed at my dumbstruck expression and at the fact that I have always tried to manage things that are outside my control. Jubilee nursed for a few months longer and self weaned at 24 months. Epiphany was born at home and has nursed like a champ from the get go. She still nurses like a fiend. She is 20 months. I have just resumed cycles. I have learned to quit trying to manage, control, or even guess at His wisdom and grace. I adore my children, I adore nursing them, I adore being a mom. I will be beyond thrilled to have another if I should be so blessed, and I will be okay with being done if that is how it goes.My home is filled with beautiful beings who make the world a better place.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Hospice is finally involved with my dad's care. He is semi comatose at this point, and is vomiting blood. The news continues to get worse and worse. I suppose that cancer is like that, but it is no easy thing to see in action. I continue to pray that his pain be eased and that he be at peace...whether that would mean passing on or being healed is not my decision.
Brian and I went bowling to celebrate Rev's birthday last night. We stopped at Barnes and Noble to get a couple books as a gift first...I love walking around the bookstore! I drooled at the Settlers of Catan game...someday soon. Bowling was fun but my mind was elsewhere. Trinity texted me to let me know Jubilee was complaining of a tummyache. Sure enough the next call was that she threw up. I came home to three vomit puddles to clean up and a miserable baby girl. She has not been able to keep anything down for almost 24 hrs now. Her eyes are getting very weak looking and she staggers when she tries to walk. I am on high alert and thinking of taking her to the hospital if she can't drink soon. It doesn't help that I am home alone with 7 kids and will have to call Brian home from work to go.
In other news:the neighbors burned 5 acres of our land. They set a "controlled" burn on a windy day and it got away from them. Fire department came and set it out quickly. The very next day, also very windy and dry, they reset it! Unfortunately the fire department didn't get here fast enough and it took mere minutes to sweep the back half. The kids and I went back and collected bones the following day. We found a few skulls and even some of Opal's bones. It is amazing the perspective we have now that the brush is gone, and we are working hard to clear some paths before it grows back. We are also going to lay some alfalfa seed. It has made more work, but will be worthwhile. Such is life!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Black beans are cooking in the crockpot. We are eating alot of beans and rice, and it is surprisingly good! I was afraid it would be yuck, but I really enjoy it.
I spent some time looking at solar ovens on youtube today. I am going to try to build one this weekend, and then the goal will be to use it at least once a week. That will lower our electric usage and will be a good life skill for the kids in case we have need.Or if we go camping ;) .
I went and looked at the Dividing Bread building today. It needs some major TLC but it is actually perfect! I am really excited to see this project happen. I still can't believe in two months I should be running a thrift store/food pantry! My space designer is going to put in a school room for me too, that will be really helpful! I am thinking that being in a space specifically for school and with the incentive of being able to go to the park across the street if they get done will help keep them focused.
The neighbor boys came over today and told me their dog killed one of our hens. :( Then they asked if we had extra gas so their dad could go to town. I am all about helping people, but this is the 3rd time this week and the 20th time or so in a year. I am not made of money any more than they are. Plus it was 30 degrees and both boys had no coats on. So sad. I took them a gallon of milk and a gallon of apple juice because I know they don't eat enough.They should eat their dumb dog!
I ordered the McMurray chickens. 61 birds due in February 14th. Yay! I am contemplating making a lightweight chicken tractor for the fryers to be out on the back 5 acres to improve the land a bit, but the critters are worse there...I am not sure I trust chicken wire to keep a hungry coyote out. I have been watching videos and reading about the most efficient way to harvest the birds without a chicken plucker and even though I like the benefit of full skin chicken I think I am going to just skin them instead of scalding and plucking.We will have the pigs by then so we can just thow the skins to them...
My cycle seems to be getting on a 35 day rythem. Yay...except I hate having a cycle because that means I am not pregnant. Hopefully soon.
I am going to try to do 20 minutes of the Gazelle and a pilates workout. I am so tired, but I don't want to skip it. I really want to look better by my birthday!

Monday, January 10, 2011

I am making a big change this week. I started brushing my dreads out on Saturday. After a year and a half they are taking a LOT of work to remove, but willpower and conditioner are making it happen. I have about half my head done so far and the hair is very healthy. I am a little regretful and a little relieved. I think it is a good time to do it, but I did love having them.
We got snow yesterday! We took the kids to the giant hill in town and Brian and them had a blast sledding for an hour. Brian wants to go out again in the morning lol!
I am very ready for Spring. I am making plans and every time I go outside I am assessing what can be done in that corner, and what can I plant there? I am looking forward to a productive year in so many ways.
We have reduced our debt from $10,000 credit card to $5,300 since starting the Dave Ramsey FPU. It is such an amazing thought that we can eliminate these payments from our lives forever and we can do it this year!!!Early next year we will have both vehicles payed off as well, and then it will only be a few years to pay off the house. I really can't wrap my head around having disposable income...that the money we bring in will not be going straight to bills. That I could go to a store and buy something beautiful with no guilt. That we can send our children off to their adult lives with a little starter savings. That we could travel!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The boys doing Math U See

God's Design for Science: joints.
Read Aloud:Detective Zach

Trinity reading in her comfy bed.

Frescoes in the tin to go with Story of the World Medieval India.
Monster pictures colored during the read aloud.

The younger set enjoying juice and crackers. Griffon, Jubilee, Epiphany, and Riley.

It was a productive day. I wrote my goals on the dry erase board and checked them off as we got done. The kids responded really well to that, and I felt like I had a visual motivation. We had homemade pizza with homemade sauce, spinach, cheese, and bacon(Trinity had her own vegetarian version) for lunch. Breakfast was pancakes and oranges. I am still thinking about dinner. It is time to go do the outside night chores. I spent too much time looking at Murray McMurray chickens, but Brian and I agreed on numbers and breeds and will order tomorrow to hopefully receive the birds in Feb. We are changing it up this year and getting meat birds as well...we have butchered in the past and honestly aren't looking forward to it, but I won't eat commercial meat anymore and I do like chicken! 3 hogs are in the plans, and we are probably going to order a half cow sometime soon. That is Brian's idea...I think we have more than enough meat to last until the next pigs are done. Almost, anyhow. Steaks on the grill sound good too. Heh, you can tell it is dinnertime, I am obsessing about food.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Brian trying out his new longboard in the kitchen with Pip in arms and Jubilee along for the ride.

I thought about using this for our cards this year but we ended up not sending any!
Trinity 12,Christian 11, Gavin 10, Logan 8, Griffon 6, Jubilee 3, and Epiphany 1

1 of the 8 deer that visits every day.

Doing a final check on the bees. They are set for winter.

Our first day back to school in 2011 is a great success. We got science and a cooking lesson before lunch, read a 102 page book during lunch that got a 5 from 4 of the kids, and are gearing up for history. The house is fairly clean, the kids are receptive, and the sun is shining.
The "Seven Silly Eaters" cake was very tasty and the kidlets loved making and baking it. It is going into my breakfast recipes.
We set a live trap outside the chicken coop yesterday as there is a Huge rat living under the coop. It has destroyed our Christmas decorations, chewed clothesline, and eats our garden. I put a huge chunk of bread in the trap and this morning...the bread was gone but the trap wasn't sprung! Not happy.I am going to try again in a few hours...I have to make more bread first lol!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

My father has several brain tumors now. There is little to is a bleak outlook and he is afraid and hurting. I can barely speak of it without crying and tend to come off as callous for being quiet about it. I want to be there physically for him, but there is no financial way for me to do so.
I swallowed my blackstrap molasses with less of a grimace as I thought of the fact that it helps keep a hostile environment for cancer. I am not over the top, but I do not want to go through this, nor do I want my kids to experience this.
Today was a major book score at the thrift store. I found the book . It immediately warmed my heart. Seven picky eaters bring their quirks together to bond and nourish...oh my. The children loved it, and we are making the cake tomorrow! The pictures were almost better than the story.
I also got 3 Charlie Brown science books that match my dictionary set, a Justice League book, a Pokemon book, and a read aloud prospect called Franny K Stein about a mad scientist. There was a stick horse that I picked up for Jubilee's birthday but the squirmy girl found it before I could hide it and has been loving it ever since. I can not believe she will be 4 in 3 weeks.
I have made several Pioneer Woman recipes since Christmas and I Love them! They are real food, hearty food, and they are scrumptious.
Tomorrow starts our new school session. I am really looking forward to it. We took all of December to do only Bible and copywork and it was balm for the soul. Now we are ready to integrate history ,science, and math back in.
I am getting ready to go to Bible Study. There is a possibility that I will be opening a food pantry/thrift store as a second branch of one of the other women. Tonight we will share with our other ladies for prayer. I am very very excited about this.
Brian got Nanny McPhee 2 from the library and he and the wee ones will watch while I am gone. The I will watch it tomorrow with them lol. It really doesn't look as good as the 1st, but I may be surprised.