Wednesday, December 19, 2007

So when we got back from our vacation, it seemed like a Christmas dream that I had conceived while down there. Yep, I'm pregnant. Unfortunately, I'm at risk for a miscarriage due to lower than normal hcg levels, spotting, clotting, and all sorts of other great stuff I'm sure you'd all like to know about! Last Saturday night we went into the ER because I was feeling symptoms of ectopic pregnancy and my doc said I should go.

So they did an ultrasound and the baby is where it's supposed to be and there's a heartbeat of 141. The ER doc did come back and tell me I had a little bit of bleeding in my lower uterus and that it's not uncommon to see that. She said it's quite likely I'll go on to have a normal pregnancy, but that it does put me at risk of a miscarriage. But at least I know where the spotting and clots are coming from, otherwise I'd be freaking out. I have another ultrasound this friday to check on things again, and hopefully everything will be progressing as normal. I'll be about 7 weeks along this next Saturday. (The doctors determine it from the first day of the last period). Keep me in your prayers. I'm going to need it for this one!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

So we got back from our Christmas/Thanksgiving/2 birthday celebration/vacation and it was fun! Noel and I decided to save money and go down in our pop-up camper and I brought food for us so we wouldn't have to eat out.

We went down hwy 93 through Nevada and started out at 4 in the morning. McKenna slept until about 7:30am in the car and we had breakfast in Twin Falls.... stopped off in Jackpot to stretch legs and made it into Caliente, NV (narrowly missing some deer) for the first night. Noel was particularly cranky which didn't help my mood but we got through it all right.

The next day we headed out and went through north Las Vegas and south on Hwy 95 in Cali back into Arizona and Quartzsite where Noel Sr. lives... we stayed there 3 nights and McKenna got to know her Grampa. We also met a bunch of other people living in that trailer park (snowbirds) who are pretty neat. More rough talk then I'm used to, but heck - one womans shirt said "Quartzsite - trailer trash" or something to that effect. She was really cool and of course, these people are no trailer trash! McKenna got to know the next door neighbors who had a green frog that would 'ribbit' everytime someone walked past, so she was always asking to go over there and play with it. Noel Sr. also put out some vegetable trimmings and seed and every night we'd watch as the little bunny rabbits came in to feed... not more than 5 to 15 feet from his trailer... one night there were at least 15 of them, I'd say. McKenna loved watching them, but wanted to chase them even more, so it wasn't until after she was in bed that we could sit out and watch them.

We checked out the 'main event' as they call it, kind of like a permanent summer swap meet, and we looked for butter-making paraphanalia... I found one butter paddle for squeezing the water out of the butter, but the little butter churns I found were too expensive.

So after Quartzsite, we left and headed into Phoenix and stayed with Mom and Dad. I immediately went in to drool over her new long-arm machine and I'm so envious of Tish that she's so close to that thing and I'm so far! Anyway, I got to drive it and use pantographs and it was an experience, let me tell you.

The first 'holiday' we did was Thanksgiving, which my brother Dwight actually wasn't there for, but he got there the next day and by then Sherri and Mark were back from the Grand Canyon, so EVERYONE was there and that was cool. We did pasta the next night, I think and that was my thing... I made the dough and rolled it out and then mom stuffed and made the raviolis... we had pasta everywhere let me tell you and I even had leftover dough, so I made fettucine and had it hanging over the backs of chairs and wherever I could to start it drying. Dwight walked in and said something about how it looked, and his daughter Deanna was taking pictures of it (as I recall). Anyway, without the fettucine, we probably would have been short on food for everyone. People were coming back for seconds, and we had to make sure there was enough for the guys because THAT was the day the water heater went out and they were all back there, 3 cooks in the kitchen so to speak, getting it put in. Noel described himself later as 'head grunt' who did all the work, Dwight as the guy offering advice and Mark was the joke teller. Of course, I came out at one point and overheard a joke my brother was telling (Dwight, not Ethan) about Homer Simpsons beard and didn't do out there again! lol
So we ended up getting this homemade pasta dinner together with no running water, but it came on shortly before people finished eating so we at least managed to get the dishes cleaned up!

We did mom's birthday next day I think (Wednesday, at any rate) and she got some gift certificates from JoAnnes and some other stuff I can't remember. She didn't want people to make too big a fuss since it was mostly to be about dad. Tish did mom's birthday dinner at her house and did homemade pizza, which was really good. We all hung out there (actually this was before Dwight, Debbie, Jenny and Deanna showed up, so I know I've got my days mixed up, oh well) and I got to see Tish's garden which was REALLY cute, much nicer than my butt ugly one... lol McKenna played on the swing set with Logan while Ashlynn tossed cheerios around, (at least that's what I think they were ;)

So for dad's birthday everyone gathered at the dining table and he opened gifts that he expressly said he didn't want anyone to get him, but heck it's his 75th, what are we going to do, take him literally?? He got some Civil war stuff from Sherri, a book on Ancient Europe from me, and can't remember the other things. He was moved to tears though to have everyone there. I mean, it's been at least 15 or more years since the whole families been together. At least, I can't remember the last time.

So the next day we did the Christmas swap, where there's 3 rounds and people get to steal a gift they want. Everyone brought a couple of gifts to swap and there was lots of good stuff... a drill, lotions, a small drive for a computer, a hand carved wooden bowl, a beautiful painting (which I stole from mom, who was the one to open it origionally) and I brough a handmade red bag with seeds I collected from my garden and some candles. There was more stuff, but I can't remember everything. I know the gift I brought ended up getting split, which was fine. Jenny got the bag, Tish the seeds, and Tish and Sherri split the candles which were very yummy smelling, I might add! Everyone had a great time.....

So when we left, we headed north to see Gene and Cathy, who are friends of Noel and his dad. Gene is a homeopathic doctor and Cathy suffers from fibromyalgia. While we were there Gene gave me an 'exam', which consisted of touching me in various places while asking me to hold my arm straight out from my side and resist his arm as he pushed down on it. The verdict was I had allergy, headache, adreanal, and ovary problems and the latter is causing the first three issues. He said I have low estrogen and prescribed some herbs for me to take. I tell you, it was a different experince. I have to admit I was skeptical even though he was dead on about issues I was having ( although he already knew about the fertility and allergy issues from previous conversation) It was my first encounter with anything other than your classic western medicine. I'm holding onto the script since I want to research homeopathy more before just driving out to my handy compound pharmacist to get this filled... lol I've made an appointment anyway with my OB/gyn to talk about fertility treatments in early January and I want to see what comes of that first. Of course there's the next few days to get through to see if I'm pregnant this month. I'm not holding my breath! ;)

Anyway, the trip was fun. I got to see Carrie and she's due in January I believe. We chatted for quite awhile, and got some quality time in! I didn't get to see Ashley since she's in WA, but Noel and I are tentatively talking about a trip to the coast next summer, and we'd see her then if that works out financially.

So the verdict is that McKenna had a blast, the camper was comfy, we saw family and dad got to show us all off in church that Sunday. When he asked us to stand up and two whole pews did (13 people), I heard a lot of gasps and such, so that was kind of fun... and dad was proud.

Okay, enough for now... gotta run and get the little one ready to face the day! Love to all!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

It's been ages since I've posted! We've been pretty busy this summer. We all went up to Stanley to visit mom and dad and had lots of fun. We had a great mouse escapade. Field mice kept getting into the trailer, so we bought some traps and got about 5 mice. Mom had found 2 drowned in the dogs water bowl (severe drought up there) before we got there. Noel caulked under their trailer to prevent the mice getting in and that seemed to fix the problem. We did some fishing and swimming but the lake is pretty deep. You walk out about 5 steps and you're up to your neck. McKenna didn't swim in this one........ don't blame her. The water was pretty cold, too.
I was pretty sad to see the damage up there, though. The pine bark beetle has damaged about half the trees and so there's tons of dead trees up there. They've just started letting the logging companies go in and take out the dead trees.

So we also went and stayed at a cabin in Garden Valley with our friends Patty and Joe and their 2 kids Joey and Christy. It was a pretty nice spot, basically on a jutting piece of land between two rivers that connected a bit farther down. So if you wanted the colder faster water to do some fishing in, you walked a hundred yards or so one way, and if you wanted to wade the shallows and ride a tube down the river, you walked the other way. Once we managed to keep the kids away from the drop off that's right outside the cabin, it was a pretty relaxed time. The kids LOVED wading in that river and wanted to ride our backs down on the tubes... we'd go almost to where it connected to the larger, main river and then haul our tubes back up to do it again. Mucho fun, gotta say. We'll probably do it again next year and maybe make a tradition of it if we can swing it.

Patty and I then went and stayed in Cascade in a motel for a few days and did a bunch of stuff. Mom was in the RV park during that time, so we had some meals with her and did the flea market and a lunch with her also... then Patty and I went to McCall the next day and did a craft fair, lunch, and some window shopping. The craft fair was really fun, but smaller than we thought. Patty got some homemade soap that smelled fantastic. You could tell the lady was really talented. I purchased a shell necklace that had dried flowers in it was an acrylic or laquer of some sort over it... Anyway, we had a great time.

Then I was up in Cascade again to stay with mom for a week with McKenna. I made a few pairs of earrings and we did a lot of reading. McKenna went to the playground every day to swing, and they were good swings, not like the plastic swings that most are made out of now. We had a surly neighbor who came over to scream at me and mom about the dogs barking, but everytime they barked, we'd bring them in so I don't see what his problem was. Anyway, he was an ass and we got a formal notice from the park saying if we couldn't shut the dogs up we'd have to leave the park. So we drove to McCall for a 'correction' collar for Heather, the scottie, since she was the big barker. Mom was on the verge of tears and was REALLY upset that she was doing this to her baby. But the collar, once it was positioned properly, did it's job and she hardly barks now. Mom takes it off when they're in the trailer and at night.

Noel and I are selling our Saturn and Chevy and with the money we make off those two are going to put it towards a 2004 Chevy Trailblazer, extended version with 3 rows of seats. (I personally don't think we need the third row, but he wants to be prepared for visitors that fly out and some more kids coming our way.... ANYWHO, I'm just going with it. So we listed the truck already and we'll see if we get some nibbles. The trailblazer is nice. We test drove one and I feel a bit loose and rattley in it but I imagine it's because I'm used to the 'snugness' of the Saturn.

McKenna can say phrases now..... 'I want up/down/out' and of course food items and stuff. She's getting very voluble and I'm glad to hear her stringing sentences together. Can't wait to see family in December!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

We're holding our breath over the lay-offs at Micron. With 10 to 15% going, some productive people are going to lose their jobs. Noel's pretty new to his department so we're crossing our fingers. We've already been talking about him looking for another job in the area if he loses his job and the possibility of us having to move to another state for work. Washington is high on the list since it has a good tech industry. But it's restrictions on homeschooling are stricter, so that would be a downside. It would be cool to be closer to Ashley, but then we'd be farther from our friends Patty and Joe and their kids, whom McKenna has become close with. Noel's group is supposed to start cuts tomorrow, Monday, so we're thinking we may know tomorrow morning after he gets to work. He's currently shaving up in case he needs to go out tomorrow looking for a job! Wish us luck!

Friday, July 06, 2007

McKenna did her first poo in the potty yesterday! We are so excited for her! And another one today, although she asked me for the first time to put a pull-up on her (after the poo) so who knows whats going on with that!

We had a great 4th of July party and I'll get pictures posted soon. Our friends Patty and Joe and their kids made it, although the others invited didn't, for various reasons! The kids did their sparklers and McKenna liked most of that. We'd put one in her hand and she'd start walking towards the street while watching her sparkler... we kept having to herd her back. On the cul-de-sac towards the front of our subdivision they had a few really big ones that went up. Those were nice, too. I think next year I want to go to the big show at the Idaho center a few days before the 4th, as well as do our party the night of.........I miss the big shows!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Well, we visited a herdshare in Caldwell to see about raw milk. It looks promising! Laura has 3 cows right now. One is dry, due to calve on the 5th of this month, one is a heifer and the other is currently giving out a couple of gallons of milk. She does lack pasture right now, but has the irrigation all set to flood her pasture area and has seed ready to go, so by the time we find out if Noel will keep his job, she may even have some grass started.

Speaking of jobs, Micron is going through a lay-off period right now and Noel is waiting to find out if he'll retain his job. I have a good feeling, as I expect he's pretty much in demand by his boss... he's the one who's asked to do lots of special projects so that can only be good, right? We'll know within the next two weeks if we need to make a major life-style change! Although we're determined that I stay at home with McKenna and not have to go get a job. I'm thinking if we did need extra money I could always start teaching piano again. 5 kids each week would get me about $200. a month, which could only help if Noel had to take a lower-paying job.

So enough of this depressing talk. I made my first sourdough loaf of bread from the 170 year old starter that Noel brought home for me and it is quite yummy. With a little artichoke and parmesan cheese dip it's to die for! I'm going to cut up some of the bread and serve it with the dip for tomorrows party. Now I need to try a loaf with my own starter that will be a year old in a couple of months. I know it makes fantastic pancakes, but haven't used it in anything else! Oh, and McKenna had some of the sourdough loaf and ate a little and spit the rest out. The sour flavour might have to grow on her! LOL

I hit the Boise Co-op today and picked up the dip I mentioned as well as some duck eggs to try and some pasture-fed, free range chicken breasts...........EXPENSIVE!! Four breasts cost me almost $25.00!! I also picked up some free range ground lamb to try. I've never had it so we'll give it a whirl. Also got some artisan cheese that was hand-made locally called flagship cheese. I had a sliver and it was really tangy, not really sharp though. Very nice, but again, a bit too much for McKenna... I would love to try making cheese, but I think I'd need to pick up a humidor for cigars and rig it to accept cheese at the right temp and humidity. Who'll make for some fun experiments!

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Did a bit more research on buying locally. I have a number for a family farm in Caldwell that has chickens......I'm going to see them in a couple days to see if the chickens are free range, with proper housing and all, but I'm thinking they will be fine. And they might have eggs too, although the ones we've been getting at the Karcher Ranch Market are great and also from a family farm.

I've looked into CSA's, which are Community Supported Agriculture and you basically buy a share of a farm and get a portion of whatever they produce (eggs, fruits/vegetables, etc) and it's fresh and in season. If I can't get my vegetable garden to produce much we might do that. We'd also get more variety than I could get from mine. It's interesting what's out there when you look. I hate factory farming and CAFO's and although a lot of vegetarians and vegans use them as excuses to not eat meat and dairy, I'd be happy eating meat and dairy as long as it came from TRULY happy cows, chickens, beef, etc......

If anyones interested has links to local farmers where you can get lots of fresh stuff.

The more I think about it, the less I want big corporate farming groups to control what I eat. That may sound a bit radical to some people, but with all the loss of topsoil and the pesticides I think it's a good cause to take up. Course it won't happen overnight. We probably won't get our grass-finished beef until next year due to lack of funds, but that won't stop me from getting our chicken and milk now.
We saw Sawyer Brown in concert last night at the Idaho Center. For those of you who don't know, he's a country singer and I'd never heard of him or seen him... the groups been together since the mid-eighties, I guess. So, it was an outdoor concert and we were invited by a co-worker of Noel's... I was sitting on the grass (we arrived early) in the HOT sun, and the whole time I guess we were keeping an eye out for them (actually, Noel was because I'd only met them once) and they ended up sitting down right in front of us, only half-recognizing me (Noel was getting food) and I only half recognized them, so it wasn't until Noel got back that I realized who they were.......ANYWAY! Sawyer Brown came out and I, having no clue who he was saw a kid in army fatigues and a blue t-shirt and a kind of cowboy hat and really thought he was like early 20's tops. He moved his feet and legs like only a really flexible kid could, I thought! So then he says that his groups been together 25 years and I had to go home and look him up on the internet because I needed to see what this really energetic guy looked like. From his photos, he looks like he's early 30's, but he's 43. Lucky guy. Anyway, great energy and everyone loved him. His songs were really good. Rodney Atkins also sang and I did recognize one of his songs...... both were really good performers. We had a really good time......could've taken McKenna, I guess but it was really loud and hot for most of the time and I think she would've been pretty grouchy the whole time.

Monday, June 25, 2007

An excellent link on raw and pasteurized milk for those interested!
So, we finally got our raw milk and it's really good! Thicker, and a little sweeter. I haven't given any to McKenna yet - guess it will take awhile to work through that fear that she'll drop dead the instant she has some. I'm not planning to give her any of this batch, anyway. I probably won't get anymore milk from this girl at the Karcher ranch market, either. Her mom has their cows on hay year round and I'm really looking for cows that are on pasture a good part of the time. I may have been given incorrect information about cows milk being legal to sell in Idaho. Another source I've found says it's actually illegal to sell and only people that own their owns cows can drink the milk. Although, I've yet to find any info anywhere that says I'd be arrested for being caught red-handed with a raw milk mustache! lol

Anyway, I've found a herdshare in Caldwell that looks affordable and sounds as though it may be what we're looking for. The Jersey cows are on pasture part of the time and get good hay in the winter months. There's 3 of them right now and the owner is a home-schooling mom who's interests (according to her web page) seem to be aligned with mine. It costs $25. for start-up and then $10.76 a month for milk (which is about what we pay now) ranging from a quart to a gallon per week depending on production.

I am interested in possibly making my own cheese, butter and yogurt if we sign up for this. I recently read "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" by Barbara Kingsolver and it was basically about subsistence farming... the family tried an experiment to eat only what they could produce on their farm for one year, or to buy locally if they absolutely had to. The book really opened my eyes to whats happening with our food supply in this country, from the billions of dollars spent on pesticides to the loss of top soil. I came across a statistic that said that currently the typical 4 person family needs about 4 acres of land in order to survive, and that by 2020 there will only be about .6 acres per family. In my opinion, the more I can do to buy locally from farmers that are using organic practices, the better! The foods yummier, too!

Another thing I came across is a study that showed that currently our milk, pre-pasteurization has lots of bacteria in it, including salmonella, listeria and e-coli, but because we pasteurize the milk, the corporations running these huge dairy operations don't bother with cleanliness. They also give their cows antibiotics on a regular basis so that they don't get sick in these conditions. On the other end of the spectrum, an organic dairy farm in California, I believe (I'll have to find the link to the article!) tested their milk, every batch that went through, and found no traces of these harmful bacteria in their milk. Their cows were fed properly, got lots of sunshine and fresh air and green grass and the people milking were careful to keep everything very clean and the milk properly stored at the right temperature. From what I understand raw milk does contain e.coli, but it's normally a benign microorganism. The most likely source of the new strains of virulent E. coli is genetically engineered soy, fed to cows in large commercial dairies. If there is any type of milk likely to harbor these virulent breeds, it is commercial pasteurized milk.

Time to go... McKenna's down for quiet time and I think I'll take a nap too!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I've been into buying locally now for awhile... since it's summertime I'm visiting the farmers market every saturday and buying local, healthy, yummy stuff from the farmers. Since I didn't get a lot of peas this year in my garden I'll probably buy a bunch and can/freeze them. I also looked into raw milk and found it's legal to sell but not advertise in this state. A girl I met at the Karcher ranch market is bringing me some milk from her family's small operation tomorrow. Sounds like a good farm from everything she told me and they've all drank the milk since she remembers. Found a lot of pro and con info out there on it, but I'm particularly interested in the possibility that it could help reduce the histimine levels in my blood that cause my allergies. I'd like to avoid allergy shots or a steroid shot this year! Cheers!
McKenna is doing very well with potty training! She's been going every day, some days only once and some days more. In addition to her star chart, she gets to wash her hands with "Nemo" soap that are pretty colors of the rainbow. She's feeling very proud of herself. She'll come get me when she pees and will say "PEE"!! And we go in and I give her some toilet paper to wipe with and then she helps me empty the potty into the big toilet. We then wash our hands with Nemo and she gets a star for her chart. Did I mention that she's really proud of herself!? :D And we are VERY proud of her! She would love calls from friends and family to tell them all about it!

Friday, June 08, 2007

WOOHOO!!! McKenna peed in the potty (for real) for the first time today!! She was running around naked and started squirming and hand her hands down there so I said, 'do you have to pee? Go sit on the potty" so she went in and next thing I know, I hear running water so I run in and she's got a big smile on her face and I said, 'did you pee-pee?' and she stood up and there was like a cup of pee in the potty!!!! She got to wipe with toilet paper and got a sticker on her chart! We were all on a high for like half and hour!

Monday, May 28, 2007

Why is it that whenever I want to do anything on the laptop I end up with a kid and a cat in my lap? I've yet to figure it out, but I'm open to suggestions! LOL

Well, I ordered a kentia palm off of ebay. I've been wanting something to put next to my piano ever since I moved McKenna's little bookshelf into the other room. I'd also like to get a corn plant, also known as Draceana. They are nice upright, tall plants that work well in a narrow space. Ever since I've started having luck getting things to grow, I just can't seem to stop picking up plants! At least, after summers over I won't have a lack of things to do! I've already rooted some epicsia suckers and will soon (hopefully) have 3 new "Chocolate Velour" epicsia's hanging around! Also picked up a spider plant, one of the hardier looking varieties and it gets morning and evening sun and seems to be doing really well..........I've added a compact fluorescent to my nepenthes miranda as it still has only the pitcher it made while in my terrarium. It's getting 16 hours of light a day, which is a healthy amount for that plant. I've placed my wandering jew outside because the stems and leaves are looking a little lank. I think it'll beef up with more sun.

Noel and I took McKenna to Boondocks yesterday. We played a round of miniature golf with her, which was really interesting! She liked to go grab the balls and throw them in the holes. Needless to say we didn't keep score! After that we did the bumber boats. Noel had McKenna and it's a good thing because he got me soaked with those squirters and his aim was deadly. McKenna would have gotten really wet and mad, but she was safe with him. I couldn't seem to get the stream of water low enough to hit him! Anyway, that was fun and then we went back in the the kids area where she could go in and play... it's a maze almost with swings and slides and ladders and trap doors and tunnels. And it's free! You just come in and set the kids loose and there's netting everywhere so that they can't really fall and hurt themselves. She had a blast in there. Afterwards, it was back home and lunch and a nap. She was falling asleep in her pb&j!!

Today, if it warms up a little and the wind quits, we may go to the Boise Botanical Gardens. I'll post again if we go. It should be a good time of year to go. Noel finished homework and a test yesterday after Boondocks (on leadership skills) so he shouldn't have any excuses for not going! :)

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Our gate blew off in the wind a couple of days ago, so Noel's trying to get it fixed. Didn't seem all that windy, but there were some good gusts. He's off to home depot. I just listed our king mattress on craigslist with a pic so hope to get some nibbles. I've been wanting to clear that room out a little. If the king sells, we'll put the single in there. I found the cat beds in the garage and cleaned them up and set them in on the bed, and they're actually sleeping in them! So I'll move them to the twin when we get it in there. Luckily the mattress looks in good condition. No smells, stains or anything gross like that. And we only slept on it a few years before we got our other bed, so for being 8 years old, it's in good shape.

I purchased a kohleria and it's now blooming! Beautiful orangey-red blooms to brighten up my terrarium alongside the orchid. Noel and I also purchased a gorgeous rocking chair for $10. that we saw on craigslist. It's really old-fashioned looking and only needed some screws tightened and added. We have it in the living room for the moment, but when the next kiddo comes we'll probably put our glider-rocker up in the bedroom for him/her and just keep this new one down here. It's a medium wood color with burgandy cushions. I'm really pleased with it. It fits in with the decor nicely. Well, got a new pic of McKenna up on the main page of my blog, but so far having problems getting the others on my webshots so I'll keep trying. Well, gotta come up with something for dinner. Later!

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Ok, this is kind of gross, but McKenna's been constipated. I gave her a little bit of mineral oil and some dried apricots and we're just now in the bath... I was reading and heard her say 'poo-poo' and looked and saw a nice big turd floating in the water with her. She almost freaked out, but I calmed her down and fished it out. (Not with my hands, thank you!) Anyway, I have a feeling she'll be feeling much better now! LOL Ah, the joys of mommy-hood! :)

Friday, May 04, 2007

Looks like my nasturtiums are poking their heads up out of the soil around the tree in the front yard. McKenna helped me pick grass from around them. Unfortunately the tree roots are really shallow and I can't really dig the grass up too well without damaging them. So I dumped some potting soil around the tree (not too deep) and planted the seeds and of course the grass is poking up through. Don't know what I'll do... anyone have any good ideas? :)

Got a guy coming by to look at our dryer. We really wanted to sell them as a set, but I said he could take the dryer by itself, so of course we need to get at least $100. for it. Crossing my fingers! After he's gone, it's back to the garden I go. I've got a few bucks set aside - I'm tempted to go pick up some plants at Zamzows. I'm so impatient for everything else I have to start growing! My larkspur and delphinium are just coming up out of the soil. Don't know if I'll get any blooms from them, but the delphinium are perennials, so I can always mulch and divide next spring and hopefully get some good healthy plants. I've got cosmos, bachelor buttons and four o'clocks started from seed and they are looking good so far. The four o'clocks are almost ready for hardening off, but only two seeds sprouted, so I might have to plant some more. I did divide my chrysanthemums (sp?) and put them in my new flower bed, and that's where I'll probably try my four o'clocks and my cosmos. The bachelor buttons I'll save for my main bed and they'll be in the front, with my established yellow snapdragons behind. Okay, everyones probably sick of hearing of plants already. Oh!! My iris are in bloom... I'll have to try to take a pic and get it on my blog. My white ones in back and the purple/white ones in the front that my neighbor Shirley gave me. They are looking fantastic! And my sweet william is starting to bloom. I also bought 3 pink geraniums to put in pots and hang on my front porch rail. It sound like a lot, but my flower beds are really bare looking since I'm waiting for plants from seed to be ready to go. Ah well, I'm loving it and McKenna is loving helping me, and we're getting sun so we're happy!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Well, the weather has been most excellent around here..... 70's low 80's... I've been outside in my garden most of the time. I've got plants started from seed that I'm going to plant in another week or so and I got a new flower bed added onto the end of my porch. I plan to put in another one across from it on the other side of my gate. McKenna has been a big help. She'll hold a bag while I dump old mulch in it, or help me rake the leaves out of the beds. We've got the pool up in the backyard and she went in for a swim yesterday for the first time.

I was saying goodbye to Noel yesterday as he was leaving for work and I said 'have a good day' and she mimicked me! Sounded darn good, too. It had Noel turning around and praising her. We're still working of potty training. She'll sit on the potty but not do anything. Ah well, it'll come.

Noel has been experiencing tired eyes and headaches more often, so went into the eye doctor. Turns out he needed a prescription for glasses. He picked them up a couple of days ago and they look really good on him. He says he's still getting used to them, but his eye-strain at work has disappeared.

Today is overcast with rain expected so I'm doing laundry and baking. Made breakfast muffins (cheese, onion, bacon) banana bread, and a loaf of regular sandwich bread. Read up on some ways to save money. Noel just got a raise, which is nice (over $2.00 extra an hour) but if gas prices keep climbing, we're not going to see any of it! I've lost my last piano student (temporarily, it sounds like) so no extra cash for spending money, but if we can save some money on groceries, I might get a little for my garden. We've also put up our old washer and dryer as well as a birdcage for sale. If we sell both for what we want, we'll get almost $500. which will help out. Anyway, life is pretty good at the moment. McKenna and I are enjoying being outside more often and I'm enjoying the nice tan I'm developing! Still working on the next kiddo, but a lot more relaxed about it. Stress-wise, anyway! That's it for now, time to play with the kiddo.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Well, I saw McKenna on the sofa the other day opening and shutting her hands, and she was saying 'open' , 'shut' (we do a song about this!) and it was so neat! Her vocab is expanding so rapidly now!

Unfortunately, she's picked up a bug again. Just a cold, I think. We were at the library lap-sit on Thursday and I heard a wet cough while I was there and remember thinking, 'uh-oh'........ looks like she might have picked it up! I'm hoping it passes off quickly!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

We went looking at yard sales yesterday. There was a community yardsale (over 10) in the subdivision next door to us. I went to a few, but Noel dropped us off because McKenna had spilled orange juice all down her front. (We were coming from Elmers) We ended up with a nice 3-tiered plant shelf for me, and Noel brought home a very nice area rug (6' by 9' I'm thinking) that we now have down in the living room. Got it for $30. bucks.

Today we're working on the garden. We brought in a bunch of compost and that's been dumped in the garden plot. Noel's going to rototill it into the soil and he also picked up some wood to edge the garden with so we can increase it's height. If the weathers nice he may get the rebar on the wood and get the border set up. Who knows how it'll work out. Okay, time to go - McKenna wants to paint or do a craft.

Oh, last night right before going up to bed she said, Bye Bye Diablo! Cute... but Diablo could've cared less!! :)

Friday, April 13, 2007

McKenna and I sowed some seeds out front in the front flowerbed today. It's a little early, but the warm weather has me optimistic. We did delphinium and some other tall variety like that as well. Larkspur, I think. Also dug up some orange flowers my neighbor Carolyn said I could have. They're a perennial and will bloom this summer. This weekend I think we'll rototill the garden in back and get it prepped for planting. We want it to be a raised bed. I have peppers and tomatoes in my windowsill gaining height every day and will need to go in the ground in the next couple of weeks. I picked up an orchid and ordered some gesneriads (african violet family) and they are now in my terrarium battling for prime position. LOL

McKenna can say "I see you" and "Diablo" Probably some more, but I can't think of them right now. She's been on nap strike for the last week, but I still take her upstairs for "quiet time". It saves on mommy's sanity! :D Mommy and Daddy are still working on making her a little brother or sister but still no luck. I've totally chilled this month and am much less stressed. I figure it'll happen when it's meant to, and all my worrying about it will just give me an ulcer! Enough for now. :)

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Well, I figured out that McKenna's allergy was due to peanut butter, because the red patches totally faded after about 5 days. So, I'm thinking that that was the issue.

I mentioned that McKenna can blow her nose, but for the first time today she asked for a napkin and then blew her nose herself! Not very neatly, as I had to wipe snot off her eyebrow, but still she did it herself without me helping! We're both feeling better now, and it appears that Noel has missed the sick boat completely.

Nothing new, except I'm still reading up on scam baits on and loving the stories! Noel can't wait for my fascination to end and the home-cooked meals to begin again! LOL

Gotta go!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

McKenna appears to be getting sick. Runny nose and all. Some red patches under her mouth have faded over the last couple days, and I think it may have been an allergy to peanut butter, as she hasn't had any in 4 days. (I was giving Pb&J sandwiches every other day or so) So hopefully, that's the problem, and I hope McKenna's runny nose doesn't last long. Good news is that as of approximately 4 months or so ago, she learned how to blow her nose. Yay!!

Other than that, not much going on. After watching datelines, "To Catch a Con Man" I looked up reverse scams and scam-baiting and discovered a world of people who pretend to be victims and try to keep the scammer engaged as long as they can. It wastes their time and prevents them from working on someone that might be a REAL victim! It's very cool! I've been reading completed scam-baits on and most of them are HILARIOUS!! I've never laughed so hard in my life!! (Ashley, you know what I mean!) My stomach was literally sore from laughing so hard. It's amazing what these scammers will believe and/or do just for the hopes of scoring some cash!

K, that's all for now. Gotta make some dinner. Grilled cheese and tomato soup. We're going high-style tonight!! LOL

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

McKenna's favorite show is "It's a big, big world" on PBS. Check it out at:
Very cool - my neighbor Carolyn dropped off a ton of seeds, both vegetable and flower, that she got at "Heritage Day" at her church. I guess I can't complain of lack of variety anymore! I started some cherry and regular tomato, as well as some pepper. I think I want to plant those as well as some corn, pickling cucumbers, and one squash plant. LOL - They get huge! I'll probably try to do beans, peas, and strawberries... oh, and onions!

Okay, gotta get lunch!
Well, today is the third day I've refused McKenna her num num... weaning I'd say is currently on, or I guess I could say she's fully weaned now (since I plan not to nurse her anymore). She hardly seems traumatized! LOL Although she asks for it every morning when I'm putting her clothes on and I say no very nicely. Actually we detour straight to breakfast and that seems acceptable to her. Now, let's see how fast I get pregnant!

Noel has me addicted to Need for Speed "Most Wanted". It's a PC racing game, if you hadn't figured it out. It's so much fun, but I know I'll burn out on it sooner or later! Well, McKenna is up and I need to get up there. Later.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to let you all know that Noel and I are starting to become concerned about the level of care and health given to farm animals that we get our meat and eggs/dairy from. I've decided to start using soy powder as a substitute for egg in baking (can't taste any difference) and organic certified eggs in other uses. Evidently "cage-free" and "free-range" labels aren't followed up on or regulated, unlike "organic". A good site on the state of chickens in factory farms is:

And another that goes over lots of different animals is:

This second site is quite graphic, so don't go clicking on the cute little kittens unless you're prepared. I'm appalled at how the U.S. has hardly any regulations on the quality of care these animals get. I know eventually we'll eat them, but wouldn't it be nice to know that these animals had decent, even 'normal' lives before we ate them? Noel and I are going to be purchasing "grass-fed" beef in the near future, as well. We'll keep you posted on how it goes!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

So, I helped Patty get some irises and tulips planted in her flower beds at her house. They're selling and are trying to perk up the front a bit. We divided a bunch of her irises and tulips and created another bed around her tree in front. It looked pretty good overall after we were finished. McKenna played the whole time with Christi and was exhausted that night. Slept til ten the next morning!

Today, Noel aereated and de-thatched our front and back yard. We split the cost with two other neighbors who also aereated. Just finished maybe an hour ago and all we have to do now is rake up what thatch the mower didn't get. I'm hopeful that the yard will turn out looking better this summer than before. We really need the irrigation turned on, though. It's been dry and hot (75 today) and the grass is greening up everywhere, we just need to get water on it. I guess it's supposed to rain on Tuesday so maybe that will help.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Well, we had our friends Ben and Terah and their little boy Hayden (age 2) over for dinner and games tonight. We had a lot of fun! Hayden is a bit louder and more active than McKenna so after a period a acclimatizing, we had a fantastic evening! I have to remember that McKenna is pretty quiet for her age group and count myself lucky! The next one might not be so easy going! LOL

So we had stew, rolls, a salad that Terah brought, and Cheesecake for dessert. We played Battle of the Sexes since we'd had so much fun playing with Patty and Joe and had just as much fun with Terah and Ben. It went really well, and I hope we can get together more often with them, in fact, I'll try to make it a priority. Terah and I will probably get our kids together for play dates as soon as summer rolls around.

Anyway, we had a great time tonight. I'm surprised at how quickly I got the kitchen cleaned up, so now I'm going to relax and play some online pool at Yahoo games. If anyone ever wants to look me up there I play under "Sundewlilly", "Sakmet", and "Ocintu"


Thursday, March 08, 2007

Almost 70 degrees today! At least it felt like it! McKenna and I were out so much we got a touch of sun. I cleaned up her bike and lowered the seat, and put her on it and showed her how to use the pedals. I ended up pushing her most of the time, but occasionally she would try to pedal with her feet. I had her little helmet on and with her training wheels, we just went up and down the street. Went out again around 6pm and chatted with the neighbors. Sam had a unicycle that he let me try out and lets just say my attempt was quite laughable!! McKenna had fun with Chloe and we finally went back into the house right before Noel got home. Little miss kicked a huge fuss when we got inside as she was having fun and did NOT want to come in. LOL Poor kid.

Oh yeah, we had our first attempt at a nap today with the toddler bed. She laid in it for 20 minutes, part of the time reading, and then I was hearing thumps and bumps so I went up to check and she was looking out the door over the baby gate at me. I asked her to get back in bed and you would've thought I'd announced that I was leaving and abandoning her! Talk about some waterworks! I decided that I won't make it mandatory that she stay in her bed, but just that she stays in her room and has some quiet time. I think that will work out best, because I don't want to put her in her crib for naps and the bed for bedtime - that would be confusing for her.

McKenna and I baked some molasses cookies today and she helped put the sugar on top. They got a little too much, but hey it was a gals afternoon.

Nothing else new, except some juicy stuff that if I shared with you I'd surely hear about it! LOL

Everyone keep your fingers crossed for us in the baby-making department. We're still working diligently in that area!! :)
McKenna passed her first night in her toddler bed. Noel took her up last night, put her to bed and she got right in, and didn't try to get out once! She slept right through, and she woke up about 15 minutes ago and has been lying in her bed. It's fabulous! I'm going to get her right after this post.
I'm crossing my fingers that it will be smooth sailing the rest of the way, as well! I'm so proud of her.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

I was pleasantly surprised today to find that my zebra prayer plant has flowered. I had seen what I assumed was a new tightly rolled up leaf emerging... turns out it was a flower stalk! I looked up the requirements of this plant (as I had just thrown it in my terrarium with everything else) and found that it liked high humidity, temps between 60 and 70, and bright indirect light. And what do you know? I've got all that! I'll post a pic as soon as I can figure out why bloggers not taking some of them.

McKenna and I went to the library today. Picked out some books on horses and Raggedy Ann - we also moved her toddler bed into position and since I can't get the crib through the door, it's sitting next to her bed.

We were outside on the swing set today (it's like 65 out - beautiful!) and I was showing her how to back into the swing and then pull herself up onto the seat. She almost did it herself, but needs a bit more practice.

On another note, the car wouldn't start for me. I had to take the truck to the library, which ran just fine for me, thank you! Okay, time to see what the kiddo's up to. She's upstairs in her newly arranged bedroom. She likes lying on her new bed!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Noel set up McKenna's toddler bed last night and we have it up in her room up on end. I'll have to lay it down maybe where the dresser is so she can see it and get used to it. Only thing is, I only have one mattress, so I guess I'll switch it back and forth so she can see what the bed is supposed to look like!

He came home with a bunch of watercolor paint supplies for her too... new tubes of finger paints, those little paint rounds in a plastic case, and some other paints in small plastic cups. Also some nice watercolor paper - which was TOO nice, he said. We'll have to keep an eye out for cheaper stuff. Well, it's time for coffee!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Ugh, woke up at 2:30am - thought I heard McKenna, but went in to check and she was sleeping sweetly. Laid awake for 1-1/2 hours, and now I'm downstairs at 4:30 playing pool on yahoo games. Last night we went out to eat at Red Robin, and I stuffed myself with the mushroom burger. McKenna was the best behaved little 2-year-old you would have seen there! Drew with her crayons, ate all but a couple pieces of her macaroni and was quiet and engaged with all the activity around her. We were blown away by how good she was... hopefully, we didn't jinx anything by commenting on it!

We stopped at Kmart on the way home to pick up a toddler bed. I think she's ready and we'll get it set up and get her used to it before asking her to sleep in it. Noel will set it up this morning. We watched Saw 3 last night, and if any of you have seen these movies (horror) you know what I'm talking about when I say that the last one was the best and worst. It kept me up for an hour at least before I fell asleep, and when I woke up started thinking about it again. Fascinating movies, but I don't watch much horror these days, so I probably should have worked up to it! Anywho, guess I should try to go back to sleep. There's not much activity in the pool hall this early! :)

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Today was interesting - Noel sat in front of the home theater PC all day today trying to install Linux - guess it was giving him some problems, because he's still there! LOL I did, however, ask him to take a break and we went to Red Robin for dinner and then hit Kmart and picked up a toddler bed for McKenna. It's cute, and I hope it will be an easy transition for her. I think we'll set it up early tomorrow and let her see it and get on it and in general become used to it before asking her to sleep on it. Naptimes might become a thing of the past, but we'll see how it works out.

My book, The Savage Garden finally arrived yesterday and I finished it a couple hours ago. It's pretty durn good! :) All on carnivorous plants. Speaking of which, McKenna and I trapped a couple of gnat/flies hanging around between the screen and glass window in her bedroom and fed them to the traps. She thought that was pretty cool.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

It snowed non-stop today! Enough covered the ground that I got McKenna bundled up in her snow suit and we went out and made snow angels and threw snowballs. After that it was in to sip some hot coco and watch "It's a big, big world" on PBS. Her favorite show right now! Later it was art time and she did a bunch of finger paints (and I used expensive photo paper that worked awesome - but Noel was miffed) and we told daddy to pick one out to put up in his cubby at work. So he picked my favorite and I told him not to mess it up, because once we're tired of looking at it, it's going to the grandparents in AZ. Gotta spread the joy!

I've developed an interest in Japanese. I went online and am currently learning the katakana script. Don't know how far I'll go on my own, but I needed another hobby! LOL Okay, nuff for now.

Monday, February 26, 2007

McKenna said "outside" clearly today! Might have been a fluke, but it was a nice one!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Today was 'water the plants' day. My 75 gallon terrarium has several plants in it, some of which are pothos, wandering jew, an orchid, primroses, zebra prayer plant, some carnivorous nepenthes and sundews, and my newest nepenthes miranda. It's a larger plant than the others with one beautiful full-grown pitcher on it.

McKenna and I watered everything at the kitchen sink and she stood on her stool to help me. I showed her how to use the sprayer and we took turns watering and bathing the plants. She got quite a kick out of watching me filter my rainwater. The neps and sundew don't tolerate tap so I collect rainwater or use distilled when it's really dry out.

I used a new filter for a fish tank and ran all my rainwater through it, mainly to get out any dust or herbicide residue that may have accumulated on our roof. I wait about 15 minutes AFTER it starts raining before collecting so that really ensures that I collect the cleanest stuff. Hey, it's free, too! McKenna thought that was really cool - me using the filter and funnel and gallon jug. I'm going to have a blast teaching her about horticulture (as much as I know, anyway) and about keeping fish tanks.

Now I've just got to figure out how to get blogger to accept a picture of McKenna I want to put on up this site. It'll take photos from the laptop, but won't take the shared files from Noel's computers... guess I'll have to ask him!

Noel got back from a LAN (computer gaming) party in Portland and brought some 'prizes' home with him, one of which is a computer gaming tower that he's selling to a friend of his for a bargain price of $110.00 Nice case, too - not tricked out like some of the pics I saw, but pretty nice. These gamers evidently compete to see who can have the wildest computer pc set up. One picture Noel brought home was of a case with an axe sticking out of the top. It was pretty wild. I can only imagine all the work and time that goes into it. One guy has his computer inside a glass rectangular cube with the computer at one end and the monitor is being projected onto the far end of the cube. It looked pretty heavy! Well, enough on that. Time for a chocolate fix!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Wow, just went through a confusing tussle with McKenna. I was bringing her downstairs and she started crying. Got to the bottom and put her down - she turned right around and hustled back up. (She can walk up the stairs now with her hand on the wall) Then proceeded to start crying again! So I went up, picked her up again, asked her what was wrong, and she started patting my back. Took me a minute, but I finally realized she wanted a piggyback ride down the stairs! Noel's always doing this with her. Yay, we figured it out! :)

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Well, I just updated my blog. I like it - was getting a bit tired of pink. Don't forget to scroll to the very bottom and check out the pic there, too.
Okay, to answer everyones question... nope, not preggo - but still working on it! LOL

I updated my webshots page... so take a look all of you that haven't checked it out. As you can see, I've developed an interest in carniverous plants. Mainly Asian pitcher plants and Sundews. McKenna really likes my terrarium... she'll go up to it and point a lot. I think she really likes the wandering jew plant. And my zebra prayer plant. Gotta go, someone's screaming at me! LOL

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Jeez, I can't believe no one's harangued me about posting! It's been forever... let's see. McKenna is almost weaned. I've got her down to once a day, so maybe I can get pregnant again! I'm actually wondering if I am right at this moment, but that damn pregnancy test is EXPENSIVE and all I need to do is wait 4 or 5 more days to know for sure. Ugh, anyway.

New news... I received my Master Gardener certificate and as soon as a frame opens up, I'll get it up on the wall. They took a picture of our group and it's supposed to appear in the Idaho Press Tribune, and they'll let us know when, evidently.

We all had a wonderful Christmas. We had enough snow to sled on, although it actually consisted of Noel or I pulling McKenna along the driveway or street. She really liked it, and we're going to attempt to find a nice hill somewhere that doesn't charge or have age restricitions!

I've been up to wild experiments in the kitchen with a sourdough starter. I created an active healthy starter using no commercial yeast - just the stuff found in the air or already in the flour. Pretty cool if you ask me. I'm making pancakes a lot more with the extra stuff that I have to do something with. It already has a nice tangy, somewhat mild sour flavor. The REAL sour will come with time.

Umm, lets see - McKenna's talking a bit more. She has signs for lots of things, including napkin, strawberry, light and some others. Actually tons of others, but I think I've shared a few already. She can say poopoo and point to her bottom to let me know whats in there. We've pretty much won the battle of 'throw this food on the floor if I don't like it' and have converted to 'push this bowl back away from me if I'm done eating and ask to get down'... a few time outs made that happen! We're much happier. McKenna didn't like mommy's face when she saw her cleaning oatmeal off the china cabinet!

She's developing an attachment to Babar, her elephant, and asks for him frequently, although she'll sometimes go to bed without him, if she doesn't think of asking for him. I'm okay with where she is now... it certainly doesn't seem to be an obsession or anything yet.

I've found an interest in Sudoku, a number game. The neighbors gave it to us for Christmas, and I found some online versions that I like. Definitely gets the brains synapses firing! Allright, nuff for now. The kiddo's down, and I deserve some ME time!! LOL