Monday, December 29, 2008

Hi All! Haven't updated in awhile, have I?

Let's see... Madelaine is exercising her voice, and now that she is doing 2 naps a day she is sleeping through the night again. I realized that she wasn't getting enough sleep during the day. She's also starting to skooch backwards when she's on her tummy, so I expect getting to her hands and knees might happen in the next month or so. Not really sure.

McKenna is doing great but is starting to get mouthy and obstinate at times with me. I knew this day would come, now I just have to transition us through this phase. Oh, I know. It's not a phase, right? How about mutually respectful argumentation versus, 'me, me, me' and "I want" and "Stop" (this last accompanied by a hand out-thrust in a stop position) Sigh! Oh well, if we're planning to homeschool I'll need her attention, respect and motivation so I better start working on it. Guess a bar of soap in the mouth is out! LOL

We've had tons of snow up here lately. McKenna and Noel built a snowman and a snowfort that started out as an igloo, but only got about 3 levels up before Noel decided it would make a better fort. The neighbor kids used it for awhile before it melted. There's only a couple of hunks left out there. Noel will take McKenna sledding in the next couple of days without Maddy and I. Maybe next year we'll go along, but this year she's too young.

Noel's doing some extra computer jobs on the side to bring in a little money. So far, he hasn't made a ton mainly because people are unwilling to spend a lot of money right now on stuff. He's getting lots of calls due to his ad on craigslist and from people who heard of him word of mouth. He's handing out business cards, so hopefully this will take off for him. Well, enough for now. I've gotta get a little girl out of the tub!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Forgot to mention that we have an appointment set up with Parkview to determine McKenna's eligibility to attend. That's in a couple days and I'll try to remember to post about that. I have a feeling we'll be turned down, but I'm not to bothered by that anymore. There's been a marked improvement in her speech and I haven't seen any aggression in a long time with other kids or her sister. Love to all!
Madelaine rolled over from her tummy to her back for the first time yesterday. So excited! She's doing great now. Lots of talking, smiling, giggling. Loves lurching around in her exer-saucer. LOL McKenna has been wonderful with her and there's been no incidents of aggression in many weeks. She's been acting very concerned when her sister cries and comes and gets me if I'm not close by.

Winter is coming on. We made snowflakes out of construction paper and hung them on the cabinets and also picked up our Christmas tree and decorated it. Got lights up outside and our tree looks fabulous. Nothing much else for now. Gotta get my coffee!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

So, recently we've done the corn maze out at Linder Farms and McKenna had a blast with that. She really wanted to be in the bounce house most of the time and on the slide, but the slide was crazy. Absolutely no supervision, with kids getting trampled on their way up and McKenna got her leg stuck in one of the straps that are on the ladder part and had to be rescued. Finally, someone got over there and made the kids behave but it was short-lived. We did the corn maze, which McKenna really thought was a bore, but then we did the pony rides and she got in the saddle and was liking it until the pony started to move and then she wanted off. LOL

Anyway, there was lots there to do. We picked out a 40lb pumpkin and carved it up and got plenty of pictures, thank you very much! Nothing much else except that Madelaine is giggling a little now and gives us tons of smiles. McKenna is being a very good big sister and I'm not as paranoid now as I had to be earlier.

We went for a walk today and a stray cat followed us home. She's young, probably not a year old and is either pregnant or nursing - probably the latter. Skinny, but with some food I gave her hopefully she'll do okay. She may stick around for awhile, who knows? But with these cold nights, I fixed up a couple of boxes for her (one within the other) with some blankets so maybe she'll take advantage. Of course, if she likes it too much and is nursing, she might just bring her kittens here. Guess we'll find out. McKenna likes her because she's friendly and lets her pet her.

McKenna has gone through the first screening at Parkview Pre-School and has a 'social' group this friday, so we'll see what they think. It'll take awhile before we know if they'll take her. She's been behaving around other children much nicer lately and hopefully her main issue that they'll address will be speech. I'll keep everyone posted on how that goes.


Sunday, October 12, 2008

Whoops, forgot to add that that Noel's mom and I cleaned up the garden and got 85lbs of tomatoes out of the garden! We wrapped some of them up to ripen and left others out and around the kitchen. Maybe I'll can some tomatoes this year after all!
Hi all,

I haven't updated anyone in awhile except by email, but I need to update here. It's been a crazy summer. My dad crashed their RV and they had to get a new one, and while that happened they stayed with us for awhile. The new RV had multiple problems and would have to be taken in every day or so to fix or re-fix the heating and air conditioning.

The stock market has tumbled of course, so mom and dad have lost lots of money and dad has taken it particularly hard. We've been reducing spending like crazy and haven't peeked at our 401K's lately. I'm not sure I want to!

Noel got E. Coli around september 28th or so and was hospitalized on Friday the 3rd, McKenna's birthday. It wasn't much of a birthday for her! He was in the hospital with bloody diarrhea and vomiting from the 3rd until he was released on tuesday the 7th. It was a horrific experience and his main problem along with the horrible cramps he had to endure was the dehydration. That seemed to help a lot once he was on IV. If we wanted to visit him we had to but on gowns and gloves. It was quite the operation!

McKenna also has e.coli and it's the same strain Noel had but it's treating her very well. She only has had a couple days of diarrhea and vomiting and we did end up taking her to the ER when we saw blood in her stool. I wish I could take away the memories, because she had to have an IV and they tried to cath her and I finally said that I'm sure I could get the urine sample they needed. Turns out the SW health district of Idaho would have tested her stool for free since Noel had it and I wouldn't have had to put her through all of that. She'll be contagious for another day and then she'll be home free.

The latest development is that our TV burned out last night and I'm secretly pleased. I always disliked how Noel would watch a lot on weekends and this will free up more 'family' time. I also will have to re-direct some of McKenna's attention which will be good for both her and me. A repairman will probably charge too much to fix it and we have medical bills that need to be paid first.

So, in a very small nutshell, that is what is going on!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Madelaine laughed for the first time today!

We also are dealing with e.coli 157 H7 and I will
update you all when our saga is finished.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Wow, here's a great article on the failed government bailout!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Today we went to IHOP for breakfast and then to the World Center Birds of Prey south of Boise. They had several different types of falcons and eagles and lots of interesting displays. McKenna really liked the eggs (fake) that they had out on display to show the different sizes and colors of the various raptors. We watched a short video and looked into a tree burrow (again fake) that had eggs in it. Lots of historical stuff in the archives as well on the sport of falconry. But the point of the trip was to learn something and have fun and we acheived that, especially when one of the staff brought out a male peregrine falcon. McKenna kept wanting to hold it, and obviously that was out of the question. She really just wanted to go back to the eggs! LOL

So that was our Sunday out. This autumn I want to go to the Meridian corn maze because there will be lots of other fun activities for the kids there. We missed it last year and with the wrap that I've learned for carrying an infant against you, I think it will work out with taking Madelaine along.

In other news, Noel has gotten his green Geo running and it seems to be doing well. He'll drive it to work for a couple weeks to get the feel of it and make sure his motor is doing well before starting work on the red Geo. And now we'll have a functioning alternate vehicle for me to use if I want to make a short trip and want to save on gas. I never liked driving the red one as I couldn't shift down into 2nd gear. The green one is automatice so I don't really need to worry about that.

I've discovered freecycle and am giving stuff away as I declutter our home. I've also given away some produce from our garden as I'm now getting a bumper crop and am really burned out on blanching and freezing. I didn't do too much canning, but will try to get more of that done next year.

Monday, September 15, 2008

You all have to check out my 5-strand braided loaf that I did yesterday. It's the very bottom picture at the bottom of my blog. For a first try, I don't think it looks too terrible. Next, I'll try a 6 strand and we'll see how that one comes out. I'll keep you all posted. Next, it'll be on to sourdoughs! :)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

We went to the park today. Brought our blanket and sat under some massive trees... McKenna played on the playground, and we also went to check out the ducks, which had mostly left since last time we were here. We saw one, though. Also saw some fish jumping for some bread that some kids were throwing for them. Then we took off our shoes and dipped our toes in the water. McKenna wanted the minnows to come up and nibble her toes, but I think her red nail polish was scaring them off! :) Then we headed back to daddy and the blanket. Real nice day.

We got back and I managed to get the place picked up a little. McKenna's taking a nap and the little one is making noises so I guess this won't be as long as I thought! Mom and dad have headed up to Stanley and they swapped an RV chair out for one of the others that they had given us. It's nice, though and will be easy to keep cleaned.

I'm tempted to try to make some more diaper covers from the pattern that mom left, but I'm too intimidated. I seem to only have the courage to attempt sewing when she's around! LOL Okay, gotta go... Madelaine wants some mommy time.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Came across a cool site referenced here in my research on new urbanism. It scores the walkability of your neighborhood! My score was zero - what's yours? ;)

Monday, September 08, 2008

As you can see, new pics! Mom's here keeping an eye on things, so I thought I'd take some time to update. I love this baby stage... some of the things at the tops of my list are the way Madelaine bumps her nose against my shoulder when she wants to nurse. She reminds me of a hen pecking for food. It's really cute. I love gently picking off the skin flakes from her scalp when she's nursing. (I know, only a thing a mother could love!) I love seeing her get nice and plump and know that it's all my doing! :) I love the way she nestles into my shoulder and neck when she's tired and falls asleep that way. I love the sounds she makes - interesting little high pitched hoots... but don't like the way she cries MUCH more than McKenna ever did. I think she slept 6 hours last night, too.. which is great because she tends to not sleep as well as McKenna did, either!

It's harder to get things done, but I think I'll be doing a lot of stuff after Noel gets home. Computer time is much less these days, as well. I'm trying to get in quality time with McKenna because I can see in her eyes sometimes that she's sad she's not in my arms as much as she used to be. But for the most part, she's still good with her sister, especially in the mornings. Can't leave them alone during the day though, unless Madelaines sleeping in her play pen and then that's all right. Okay, enough for now. I'm expecting a herdshare lady and a freecycle lady to come soon. Also need to write to my bro!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Just wanted to do a quick post while I actually have some down time. McKenna has been doing wonderfully with her new sister. No more hitting incidents, just the occasional roughness when 'giving' her to us, but most of the time she asks us to take her out of her lap and we just pick her up. I still can't leave them alone together. I can't wait until I can trust McKenna enough to do that. Soon she'll be the big sister that mommy can depend upon to keep and eye on her sister and keep her safe. She still wants to pick her up and yesterday was sitting cross-legged on the ground next to Madelaine and picked her up in her arms, and when I saw her she was holding her but then let her thud back to the ground on her back. Needless to say we had a tough talk about how we have to be gentle and how that hurt her sister. I've been trying to show her how to hold her when we're in bed together so that if there's a fall it's a soft one, but she knows she's supposed to ask permission before picking her sister up.

We got haircuts yesterday. McKenna's is nice and short and mine is short all over. I have bangs, and that's the longest length on my head. I can kind of spike up the back a little... it's pretty cool. Literally as well as figuratively!

In other news, I'm being swamped by beans, cherry tomatoes, and yellow squash. Zucchini has dwindled, thank God! I'm at the point where I'm sending squash to work for Noel to get rid of and offering it to friends. I've already blanched a ton of stuff already and the large outdoor freezer is getting REALLY full! I'm happy though... it feels good to grow your own stuff and not have to worry about getting it somewhere else. Kiddo's awake, gotta go!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

We're doing well here... Madelaine is getting to be a little chunk. She has a voracious appetite and I don't think I'll have a problem with lack of milk like I had with McKenna. She's a pretty agreeable kiddo and McKenna has been behaving herself and acting very loving towards her sister. We haven't had a hitting incident since I last posted.

I'm recovering pretty well from my delivery. Have to go back to see my doc in 4 weeks so he can make sure I'm healing up well, I guess. I'm able to do a lot more around the house now, so am relying on mom a lot less.

Mom has been helping me blanch vegetables from my garden. Mostly bush/pole beans and zucchini/yellow squash. We're not getting as many tomatoes as I had hoped, as they are gradually coming on. That may be because they are indeterminate, but I haven't been keeping up with the suckers either, so they could be overwhelming the plants. We're getting lots of cherry tomatoes, but I had to cut out some of those vines to give one of my other tomato plants some breathing space. Peppers are doing well... I have bell, anaheim, hot chili, jalapeno, and serranos. We have more peppers than tomatoes, so Noel is hoping we get more tomatoes so he can make salsa. He already made a small batch that I canned, which was my first canning effort. All of the jars sealed, so Yay for me!! :) I'd love to get more tomatoes, so I can try canning them as diced or as tomato sauce. We go through a lot of canned tomatoes in the winter. I may have to start chopping off blossoms on my squash plants or pull them off because they are producing like gang-busters and I can't seem to get ahead of them. Patty pan squash is doing pretty well, but my scarlet runner bean plant hasn't done anything except put out some pretty red flowers. I want to plant garlic this fall and try potatoes and onions next year.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Well, I am back home from the hospital and thought I would start on my birth story. Madelaine Sydney Noel weighing 6 lbs 3 oz at birth was born on July 25th at 1:48pm. My labor started probably around 6pm in the evening of the 24th. I first felt that I might be going into labor when we were eating at the Golden Corral. I had cramping, a low back ache and braxton hicks contractions that were coming every 10 to 15 minutes apart consistently. We went home, played some cards, sent McKenna to bed and I kept track of my contractions up until bedtime (11pm), which were coming every 10 minutes apart consistently at that point. Once in bed, they went to 4 minutes apart and all of the sudden I felt a kind of 'thump' sensation by my cervix and then had leaking, and once I stood up a gush so my water had broken and I knew we'd have a baby that day. Since I couldn't sleep through the contractions, I went downstairs to get through the initial labor. I also wanted to labor at home as long as possible and let mom and Noel get some sleep. I figured I could hold out until 7am or so, but by 4:30am they were intense enough and coming about 3 minutes apart, so I went up and woke Noel. I got to say, "It's time to go to the hospital, honey!"

We woke mom up to let her know we were leaving and then headed to Mercy Hospital where we planned to have the baby. We got in and they strapped me up to the monitor and we could see the contractions. I also had to pee in a cup and they checked the fluid that was on my pad to make sure it was amniotic and it was. So they got us into one of the nice birthing rooms with a jacuzzi tub and an extra 'bed' for the dad for spending the night. Once I got settled in that room, one of the nurses came in after calling my doc and told us that we actually needed to go to St. Lukes Meridian hospital to have the baby if we wanted to do a VBAC (vaginal birth after c-section) since that is where my doc works on friday... or else, if we wanted to stay at Mercy we'd have to do a c-section. So, after Noel convinced me that I did indeed want to do a natural birth (during contractions I was saying I wanted a c-section LOL) we headed back to the car, me being in much more pain by this time. I was blowing and panting like a dog through those contractions with a fair bit of moaning going on as well. By the time we got to St. Lukes and got checked into triage I was begging for an epidural.

They say that because my water broke fully this time around, my contractions were more intense. I don't remember them being so intense with McKenna. They finally put me into a labor and delivery room and I asked how long for the epidural and they said half an hour. I watched that skewed clock on the wall like a hawk, calculating how many contractions I'd have to get through before the anesthesiologist arrived. I was 6 centimeters dilated by this time. When we left Mercy I was only 2 centimeters, so my progress was going fast. My visualizations of waves were not working at all. All I could do was grab Noel's hand and do a bit of yelling and deep breathing. So the anesthesiologist arrived and got me prepped and I had to say that getting the epidural was not that painful. It was harder holding still during the contractions, actually. Once it was in, I needed to lay on my side for awhile and was told it would take about 20 minutes to take effect. And once it did, it was heaven! No pain, just some pressure that was very doable!

So I was able to relax and enjoy the last part of my labor. I went to 7 and then 8 centimeters and then back to 7. I knew that getting the epidural had the possible chance of slowing down my labor, so they gave me some pitocin which I really wanted to avoid, but they gave me the lowest possible dose and it was enough to get me back to 8 and then 9 centimeters dilated. Then Dr. Kaiser showed up and examined me and said he was able to actually push the cervix and get me to 10... so they waited a bit more and he said he would do a quick surgery and to wait to push until he got back. The surgery took 45 minutes (it was a tubal ligation) and by the time he was back, the nurse could only get her finger in me up until the first knuckle before bumping into Madelaines head. I had to lay like that for about 10 minutes waiting for the doctor and then he was there and telling me to push. I pushed through two contractions and we were able to see the head crowning, then it would slip back. He had me push through one more contraction and said if I wasn't able to get her out he'd help with the vacuum, which is what ended up happening. He tried once and it slipped off, but with the next push, he got it seated properly, snipped me a little (episiotomy) and then helped pull her out as I pushed and out she came. I can only say it was an overwhelming feeling knowing that I went through labor the 'natural' way, despite all of the interventions I had. It was awesome when they put her up on my belly right away. It's what I wanted with McKenna and couldn't have due to the c-section. After we looked at each other for awhile they took her and did their stuff minus the eye drops, which I wanted to delay so that we could see each other, and then I nursed her successfully right away. I hardly had to do anything at all, she just latched right on. Unlike McKenna, whom needed a great deal of assistance. After that, not much to say except our nurses were great, and we were able to leave after 48 hours. We would've been able to leave earlier except that I had a slight fever, so she did too, and they kept her to make sure she was okay. The last couple nights have been tough, but she's been staying awake better during the day so I can only expect that she'll sleep better during the day now. I'll post more later!

Friday, July 25, 2008

So I'm writing this now before my contractions get any closer and I can't write at all! I believe we're having a baby today. It's 12:50am in the morning and my water broke at midnight. Felt like this weird 'thump' inside me, kind of like something all of the sudden fitting where it's supposed to be. Thought it was the babies head engaging for a minute. But then I felt the water trickle out and when I stood, there was more. Put a pad on and laid back down and more gushed out. Used the litmus (ph) paper the doc gave me and the yellow paper turned purpley-blue. Definitely amniotic! Earlier today (yesterday, I guess) I had also tested in the morning and then the afternoon and had gotten faint positives on the paper, so I might have had a little leak, but this was a definite.

I first started wondering if I was going into labor at The Golden Corral for dinner because I had a low back ache, cramping, plus braxton hicks contractions seemed to be getting closer... like 10 minutes apart. In fact, they continued that way up until my water broke, getting as close as 4 minutes apart for about 45 minutes or so. After my water broke, they went to 10 minutes and now an hour later they are about 6 minutes apart. I hope I can let mom and Noel sleep for a few hours before waking them up. In fact, if my contractions start getting REALLY close and it's still early in the morning, I'll probably just go in with Noel and have mom come in later in the morning with McKenna. I'll have to let Patty know what's going on, because she may end up watching McKenna while mom and Noel support me. So, I'll labor down here in the living room for awhile and see how things go. The contractions are stronger than my braxton hicks were, but manageable. Don't know when I'll post next, but probably after the baby is born!

Madelaine Grace Noel (pretty sure about the middle name, but not 100%)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Well, mom has been here since the 15th and we've been making cloth diapers. We had several prefolds, a couple fitted ones, and a couple of covers by now. Noel got lots of baby clothes and accessories down from the attic, including the baby swing and bath tub. He was up there getting boxes because he was leaving for Lewiston, Idaho...

Dad was in an accident with the RV up in that city and evidently he hit a nail, had a blow-out, and the RV popped off the truck and slammed into a bank alongside the road. He was banged up, but is basically okay and the dog was fine as well. Noel took a U-Haul up to help dad go through the RV and get everything they can out of it. Evidently it's not so banged up they can't get in but they'll probably have to force the doors. Dad told mom that it will be totaled. She's against another trailer, but would consider a motorhome. She and dad haven't discussed anything yet. Dad and Noel will be coming back on Tuesday and dad will be staying with us until after the baby is born. They'll probably head back to AZ earlier than they anticipated, unless they get another RV, I suppose.

Nothing else much going on. Stabbing pain around my bellybutton today, but I think it's my abdominal muscles separating a little. I'm going to start doing some exercises... I have a bit of a diastasis there. That's it for now!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Noel brought home a long folding table yesterday and it's now in the living room. I set up my sewing machine and managed to make a pre-fold diaper out of some t-shirts. Nothing fancy or even good, really. Just practice, although it will make a servicable diaper. What I really need is some good soft absorbent material that's not as bulky as cotton. Some of the new bamboo fabrics out there seem like they'd be a good deal. Anyway, I've got a pattern for an all-in-one diaper on the way and some fleece from a nice online dealer to make into some diaper covers. This is the diaper the pattern will make - scroll to the bottom to see the finished product:

She also makes fleece covers, which I want to do also... those are at this link - scroll down as before:

Anyway, if I get good at making them, who know? Maybe I'll make and sell some as extra income - they are incredibly expensive just to buy outright!

Don't know if I mentioned that I took McKenna to the local rec center pool and she had a great time swimming. We mostly hung out in the kiddy pool, but she keeps talking about the blue water slide that was in the larger kids pool. It wasn't open while we were there, so I'll be taking her back sometime after 4pm for her to try using it. Somehow I see her getting halfway up the ladder and balking, or getting to the top and changing her mind! It's a pretty good-sized slide, but looks fun. We'll give it another try. For now, we're getting in fairly cheaply as I still have medical passes from my hip/back problem I had while pregnant with McKenna. So I'm only paying $2. and that's just for her. It might be worth it to get a pass in later years after the baby gets older. I'll have to remember too, that they have bleachers there so that parents can sit and watch and not necessarily get wet! :)

Well, enough for now... we're having a chicken/barbeque pizza for dinner tonight that needs to be assembled.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

So, I cleaned all three bathrooms today and nearly killed myself. My back is really complaining, so enough is enough! I'll stick to flylady's routine, at least when it comes to the bathrooms, and just do bits and pieces instead of wholes from now on! But we did get the litterboxes moved back downstairs, at least the ones in the upstairs tub. So we have 3 downstairs instead of 2 up and 2 down.

Afterwards, when I was laying on the couch, McKenna joined me and we watched the baby move inside of me. You should have seen the peaks and valleys! McKenna had her hand on my tummy a lot and kept saying 'move, baby!' It was pretty cool to see how 'wowed' she was by the whole thing. I'm pretty sure she'll be a really good big sister.

Other than that, not much going on. I'm big and slow and feel like a whale, but in another 3 weeks or so I should have a new baby to hold! :)

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Well, our stray is headed home. While Noel was getting him vaccinated, they used the wand on him and came up with a microchip #. His name is Charlie Tuna and he lives at the far south end of Nampa. He traveled quite a ways to get to us. Anyway, Noel is taking him back to his home to be turned over to the roommate. The owner is backpacking in the Sawtooth mountains right now. I think Noel is pretty bummed. I have to admit he would have been a nice cat to have around, but sounds like he was an indoor cat and might not have adjusted well to winters outside, even with shelter. Ah well, maybe another one will come along! Should have taken his picture...
Well, we seem to have adopted another cat. This one will never be inside our house, however. 2 cats inside and the poop they produce is quite enough, thank you! He (or she) showed up about 3 nights ago and you could tell he was starving. Ribs protruding, hip bones prominent, etc... I gave him a little wet cat food, but not too much. I didn't want to give him more problems. He gobbled it down pretty quickly. Came back two nights later and we fed him again. He showed up this morning finally in the daytime and is quite the lover. He won't jump up on your lap, but he'll rub against you and lay under your feet if you're sitting down. Noel and I discussed the fact that if we're feeding him, we'd better be responsible and get him shots and neutered and all that jazz. So Noel just now found a low cost shot clinic at the local pet store and just took him there. We'll check into the local animal shelter as I think they do low cost or free spays/neuters for stray and feral cats. I was thinking of names and I like the name "Moscow" but I think I'll let Noel name him. He's the one really enamored of our new visitor and McKenna seems to really like him too. He let her pick him up and carry him around, so we know he's pretty cool with kids.
He's a gray and white striped short-hair cat. Very nice.

In other news, we had our refresher birthing class, which turns out was not the refresher class but one of the all day ones... the woman who gave me the info on the phone evidently needed 'a talking to' according to the class instructor. So we missed an hour and a half in the beginning, which covered breathing, and we had to miss the last hour and a half which covered pushing because we only had babysitter coverage up until 1:30... and both of those issues were ones that I wanted to review. I didn't feel I needed more info on comfort measures, medications and breast-feeding, which I feel well-versed in already. Anyway! It was discouraging, but I guess we'll manage! ;)

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Happy Anniversary to us! Our 8th year married. I got Noel an ice vest to wear in the car since he has no AC and he got me a digital picture frame so that I can get all of those pics off of our computer and onto the pic frame! So today we hit the doc's office and he checked me out, did a Strep B test and we discussed labor and delivery. He wants to induce me only two days after my due date! That sounds a little quick. He said there's no reason to let me go longer (no benefit to the baby) and that if I want to attempt a VBAC we'll need to do it before the 14th because he goes on vacation and if I go into labor after that, the other doc won't allow me a trial of labor because he doesn't 'know' me. So I would automatically have to have a C-Section. Dr. Kaiser said he'll try stripping my membranes first, which isn't the same as breaking the bag of waters... and see if that gets me going. Personally, I'm going to try every known at-home method I can to get myself going into labor naturally. Sex is #1 on the list since it seems to be most effective.

Today was also just an emotional day for me. Last month hormones raging and this stupid Micron change of health plan and all that entails is just making me stressed more than I should be. Noel and I got home and I took a nap, then because I had absolutely no energy to think about making dinner he took me out to Outback Steakhouse (hey it IS our anniversary!) and we ate the cheapest meal ever there. A burger for Noel and a pasta dish for me. He really wanted to go there because he was craving their blue cheese dressing. LOL

So we got home and worked in the garden... which was relaxing. I showed Noel the squash bugs that I've been finding on the squash plants and we got two that were mating. I also showed him the eggs that they lay on the underside of the leaves, so he went through and looked for eggs and scraped them off. We didn't find anymore bugs. McKenna and I had found 3 the day before, so maybe we got a head start on them. I did some weeding and also tied up my tomato plants again. They're growing really fast and every 10 inches of growth I tie at the top of my florida weave system. Most are setting fruit and I have one ready to pick tomorrow that I'll let McKenna pick. The brandywine plants, however, aren't setting fruit. Maybe too much nitrogen in their little patch? If it was temps, I would think the other plants would be having the same problems. Hmmm... My beans are all flowering, so soon I should have beans, and I've already picked a couple of zucchini... I'll have to let some of them get bigger so that I can save seeds.

So, I was definitely feeling more relaxed after working in the garden. Took a shower and sat in front of the swamp cooler that Noel put in a couple days ago. It's coming in through a window, so it's a temporary set-up... ideally it will set on the south side and vent into the air ducts. But I kind of like it the way we have it. You can really feel the breeze of it in the stairwell as we have windows open up there to pull the cool upstairs. The trick is finding that perfect amount to have them open so that you're not allowing warm air to come back into the house. Okay, enough for now. Almost bedtime!

Friday, July 04, 2008

New pic of my garden is up! I'm also adding some photos of McKenna with her Grandma and Grandpa Hynick on my webshots page. The link to that is:

Hopefully the pics will load for me this time! Yesterday we delivered milk and our backyard neighbor saw us loading the SUV to get ready to go and she invited McKenna and I over to play with her grandkids on Tuesdays, which is really cool. She watches an infant, a 2-year-old girl, and an 8 and 11 year-old. I also met Melissa's friend Shalimar and she has a 2 year old boy and I think her oldest is 4. Melissa has a little boy who's just a few months younger than McKenna. They played on the trampoline together in her backyard for awhile before I went home and put my milk away. McKenna had a blast although she scratched the littlest boy when they were tussling over a ball. She got a time out and behaved after that. Maybe I need to inspect nails, too, before we go to peoples houses. Jeepers!

Baby is doing fine. Noel likes the name "Evolet" from that movie "10,000 B.C." I'm not too sure about it. I still like Madelaine, personally. Today Noel's trying to install our swamp cooler into our living room window as a temporary measure until he can bust into the side of our house later on. I hope it won't be too cold or wet and ruin our furniture. We will probably have to move the one couch.

Tonight we plan to go to Caldwell for the fireworks show. I haven't seen a big production in awhile. We're going prepared with foam ear plugs and also ear protectors that you wear on shooting ranges for McKenna. I hope she'll accept them and relax enough to watch the show. It's only a buck a piece, so if we have to leave it's no biggie. We can always watch from outside of the stadium too, I suppose.

Had a couple weird dreams last night. A guy was trying to shoot me and I made him shoot into my knee so he wouldn't hit my belly. Another was me and my neighbor Carolyn being all chummy and the best of friends even though we hardly see each other anymore. At least the truly wacked dreams have gone away!

Well, enough for now I suppose. At some point I need to get this house in order and back on a routine so I'm not completely overwhelmed when our next daughter comes.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

So we've been having problems with McKenna pushing and hitting. Went to the doctor today and he asked us a bunch of questions off a form and we only had to answer negatively to one question and that was about her hearing, which I also had a question about. She seems extra concerned about 'loud' noises, even when they are not very loud. We're going to set up a hearing screen for her and then if he thinks it's necessary he'll have us go to Parkview Developmental School for some speech therapy. I'm hoping it's just a delay in communication that is causing her frustration and that that is maybe why she's doing all of this pushing/biting/hitting (other kids, not adults). Anyway, I'll keep you posted on everything.

I'll have to get a pic up of my garden. It's gotten quite bushy lately.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Whew, well the b-day party went well... McKenna had a blast and except for some scratches on her feet from the grass, was a VERY happy camper. The next day she complained of a stomachache, which I figure is just from all the cake and candy. I gave her Peptobismol, and today she also complained of a stomachache. Hmm... maybe she just likes the flavor of the medicine? She has no other symptoms, isn't walking hunched over, and is running and playing like normal, so she may think she's found the latest and greatest thing, this being sick! lol I'll keep an eye on it, anyway.

So, nothing much else going on. Garden is looking good, I'm making some money on swatcash... and if you want to try too, go to It's my referral link, so you'll help me out by joining under it. Anyway, money aside, we're doing good. I've got a little over a month left until the kiddo is born... we like Madelaine so far as a name, but we need to keep looking. I feel like Noel hasn't put ANY effort into the baby naming! Anyway, nuff for now........... later!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Well, the wind came up and started doing some serious pushing on our newly erected awning. We don't have a couple support posts near the sliding glass door and down a little farther, so it really affected the stability. Noel ended up taking the awning off the frame and we just erected it again today. I'll take a picture and get it posted. I think it's pretty nice. 98% UV resistant and gives a decent amount of shade. Not as much as I'd like, but it will work AND I can probably still grow some plants underneath it in beds or hanging planters.

Later today we'll be going over to Patty's for Christi's b-day. It's a My Little Pony Pool Party. Should be fun! I'm going to dress McKenna in her new dress that my mom made. It's so pretty... I'll have to get a pic of that, too!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Wow, just found this great site on how to save gas by different driving techniques... I'm already trying the method of accelerating slowly and then coasting to a stop. So far, it hasn't affected anyone behind me. I'll keep it up and see if I can't increase my fuel economy on the SUV.
It's been a little bit since I've posted. I was in Cascade last weekend until Wednesday visiting mom and dad at Arrowhead RV park. McKenna got to play on the playground and dip a toe in the river and she had lots of fun. Only downside was the mosquitoes! McKenna got bit (well, all of us did!) and then was really upset whenever she saw one. I used the tennis racquet-type electric zapper and we got tons of them in the RV. Mom and I went into McCall for some groceries and fabric and then went back to Cascade. I took the SUV but they helped me out with gas, so it wasn't too bad. If I can drive the SUV less than 600 miles in the next 3 months, I can also get a break on our insurance since it would be considered an 'occasional use' vehicle.

Noel is putting up the awning today that came from his dad. We've got the supports up and just need a few other things which he just went out to get. McKenna's in the pool having fun and my garden survived quite well under Noel's care while I was gone, so I'm happy about that. Can't remember if I mentioned that the robins eggs and robins are gone from our tree. We found a broken egg shell on the ground under the tree the day of our yard sale. That was two weeks ago and it doesn't appear that they are coming back. I'll have to look and see whether I should knock the nest out in the fall... I'm not sure if robins re-build a nest every time. I they don't, I'll just leave it alone.

I'm now 32 weeks 6 days along, so well into my eighth month... August 9th is my due date and mom doesn't think I'll go that long, but I guess we will see! There's lots of uncomfortable kicking and shoving going on in there, but nothing I can't handle. Although those punches to my cervix tend to make me yell out involuntarily at times. lol Ah well, we had another follow-up on the spina bifida and everything looks good. The tech noticed something weird where the umbilical cord attaches to the placenta. It looked like a couple of filaments waving around. She had a doc come in and look and he said it was probably where a tear occurred early on and then healed up. He also commented on my 'lakes' and told me there would be quite a few interested medical personnel wanting to see my placenta after the baby was born. I guess that's quite an unusual thing to come up on an ultrasound. Anyway, she's healthy and growing (about 4 lbs now) and I can't wait until she's here and we're able to hold her. Noel and I discussed names again and he finally agreed that one of the names I came up with 'wasn't bad'. Madelaine.


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

So I am 31 weeks along as of yesterday at my appointment. My uterus is also measuring 31 inches, which is right on. I've gained 13 pounds which is the total amount I gained in my pregnancy with McKenna. I'm happy though, as I feel that I should have more weight on for a healthy sized baby. McKenna was only a couple of ounces away from being considered 'low birth weight'. Anyway, all is well in that area.

My garden is going well except that I have what I think is iron chlorosis in my bean plants and one of my squash plants. I have ammonium sulphate, but I'm not sure that's the best stuff to apply. Probably iron sulphate would be best. But I did get my soaker hoses down in the garden with the help of my mother and some improvised stakes, so now I won't have to water by hand, except for some pattypan squash I planted not long ago.

McKenna appears to be well on her way to being completely potty trained. She did have an 'accident' yesterday, where for some reason she decided not to use the potty, but other than that no poop accidents in the last week or so. She even went while we were at the RV, so I feel comfortable now about taking her to Cascase to visit mom and dad for a weekend here this month without worrying that she'll regress. She's very proud of herself and constantly talks about having 'potty power', which is SO cute.

Well, that's it for now. More later!

Monday, June 02, 2008

So I had come across this info on the internet on running your car on water:

and after reading so many controversial things about it, namely it being a scam, I mentioned it to Noel who said there's no way it would work. He's been cleaning up an old Geo motor and went to this guys place who is going to regrind some parts on it and clean it up some. So this guy had a Dodge pick-up truck there that he was 'running on water', which is a bit misleading because what he's really doing is extracting the hydrogen from the water and adding it to his fuel in order to boost performance by about 50%. His truck went from 12 miles per gallon to about 19 miles per gallon. Noel came home all excited about it and I said, "that's what I was telling you about!" He said I didn't explain it fully to him. Anyway, you can buy the kits for cheap on the internet, but he says he can build his own and it'll be safe because it will be an enclosed system. So, we'll keep you posted on that development. First he needs to get his rebuilt engine back into the Geo. He's driving his other Geo to work right now, which is getting about 45 miles to the gallon. If he does this water conversion thing and we can get a 50% gain on mpg, that would put us at about 75 miles per gallon! Evidently, you CAN convert a vehicle to run solely on water instead of gas, but it's a LOT more complicated.

So enough on vehicles. The garden in coming along. There's some small tomatoes on my early girl and the rest have blooms. It's going to be chilly in the evenings (high 40's) and I don't have row covers, so I'm crossing my fingers that all will be well. Mom and dad are stuck in Willamucca due to truck issues. They're hoping to be here by Wednesday. They were supposed to be here today, but that's out. I'll have to work on Noel to let me take McKenna up to Cascade to visit them since they're due at Cascade RV park by this friday. He's worried she'll revert and won't poop in the potty anymore after she gets back, but she hasn't had an accident in 4 or 5 days, plus she went at Patty's house, so I think she'll be okay. Anyway, we'll see how that pans out. Nuff for now, I'm craving an egg sandwich! :)

Friday, May 30, 2008

I had my first scare today at the park with McKenna. She was playing with an older child, maybe 5 years old or so and I noticed that the girl took her hand and started leading her towards the parking lot. In fact, by the time I jogged myself over there, they were between a couple vehicles and I heard the lady behind the wheel say, "Jenn, her mommy is coming to get her" Well the lady said 'sorry', and I grabbed McKenna and told her she needed to stay on the playground. They were all gathered around the back of the vehicle where there was this wheelchair, and I think that was what this girl was trying to show McKenna because as we marched back to the playground McKenna was bawling her eyes out about it. I think she thought I was mad at her as well and I kept telling her I wasn't mad, just scared that the little girl took her away. So I realized today that we need to discuss stranger danger. Just never thought the first lesson would be about a child! Ugh, my heart was beating so hard! Anyway, that was the highlight of my day. That and having to yell at McKenna about deliberately pushing a younger child down.
She had been trying to give this kid a hug as the kid reached the bottom of a slide and the little girl kind of just shrugged her off, so McKenna followed her a few steps and pushed her down! I admit I ran over there and swatted her butt in front of whoever cared to look our way. I made her apologize and told her we don't push kids and if it happened again we were leaving the park. She seemed to understand me and behaved after that. It just makes me want to pull my hair out in frustration when I see behavior like that because I wonder where it comes from! We don't hit or push or shove at home so I wonder if it's some kind of impulse control thing and a phase she's going through.

Who knows? Potty training is continuing to go well though, so I'm grateful about that.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Just got back from delivering milk and McKenna got to check out the two pigs that Laura now has and her daughter Catherine showed McKenna the tadpoles in their pond. Much to my daughters delight, she was able to hug the baby and give him a kiss! Looks like she also was checking out all of the chickens, too. We spent some time there looking at the animals and I chatted with Laura for a bit. It was fun stuff.
Okay, so I need to get an updated pic of my garden up! There's green stuff in it now, not just bare dirt! LOL

I'm starting to feel really stretched and can't imagine (yes, I can!) going on another 2 months like this... and the dreams are starting to get disturbing. I always had weird dreams when I was pregnant with McKenna... stuff ranging from the abusive to the erotic to breastfeeding dreams, to dreams of me having 3 kittens instead of a baby (last night). I can't help but wonder where all this weirdness comes from!

Anyway, I had some cramping sensations in my lower uterus last night when I went to bed. It actually resolved once I stuck a pillow under my belly. Guess I thought I wouldn't need one with our bed.

I've got to pick up milk today from Lauras farm, so McKenna will get to see the baby chickens and the cows and the baby goats and lambs... should be fun. Laura got some Cornish X hens that are the kinds that are meant to be slaughtered at a certain age. Let them go too long and they get breast-heavy and start falling over and getting respiratory problems, as well as leg problems. They were never created to breed naturally. How disturbing is that? But it's a lot of meat for the money, so who knows?

Other news... Noel is sending his cam-shaft from the Geo to some people in Washington who are going to do something to it to give him an extra 5 to 10 mph on his Geo. He already gets about 43 to 45 depending on driving, so this will be really exciting! He says he can do the same this with the other Geo, as well.

McKenna seems to be coming along with potty training. She did a #2 at Patty and Joes house yesterday evening when we were there for dinner, and that makes 4 poops in about a weeks time. I know you all are as excited as I am! LOL Seriously though, if she keeps on track it'll mean I'll get about 2 months of no poopy pull-ups before this next kid is born. Then I just have to cross my fingers that she doesn't regress afterwards!

Okay, time to wrap this up. I need to get the coolers ready and the empty milk jugs loaded into the car.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Didn't feel so hot today. Sharp intermittent pain going vertically through my belly button. It might be the abdominal muscles separating. But no other symptoms except a little nausea, and that was only briefly. The baby has been quite active today, so I wasn't worried enough to call anyone. I've had a little diarrhea, but I took some Mylanta and am actually feeling a lot better. I did take a long nap today while Noel took McKenna out to Home Depot and Wal-mart. They hit a fruit stand, as well. By the way, I'm 29 weeks along, so just entering my 8th month.

Nothing much else to report except lots of rain and thunder today. Garden is doing well. Beans are coming up nicely, squash is putting up their first set of true leaves. My scarlet runner bean has sprouted and that should be quite a sight when it's fully mature! I meant to plant my sprouted pole bean plants today, but didn't get to it. I have an extra tomato plant (heirloom brandywine) that I might have to give away. I already have two in the ground doing well. Strawberries have little berries on them already and I saw a little tomato starting on the one brandywine. Very exciting!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Well, yesterday we decided to eat out and then do a movie, since we haven't been to the theater in a long time. We took McKenna, and got into the theater and it was so loud that after about 45 minutes, she'd had enough and wanted out. So we sat out near the restrooms until Noel came out of the movie. I thought about taking her into one of the other shows, but she didn't want to go into any theater, period. Ah well, we'll have to try out some other movie theaters and see if they are quieter. Other than that, not much going on. I've been getting my garden back into shape after those high winds came through. I've finally got some pole beans coming up that I started inside and I'll plant them in a couple of days. Can't wait to see them scrambling up the poles! I bought three more bell pepper plants to replace some that the winds ruined. The others seem to have come through unscathed.

We were out a couple of days ago and McKenna started pointing out all the letters that she knew, which are quite a lot now that she's been watching the Letter Factory. I was very impressed. She's also pointing out numbers that she recognizes!

Well, time to get out in the garden............ nice day today.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I was sitting here thinking about how we learn things and start forming opinions about these same things.

If someone told me that I'd be a housewife in my later years, I would've said 'okay, yeah I probably will', but if that same person told me that I'd also be homeschooling I would have said, 'no way'. My early opinions of homeschooling were much the same as lots of other peoples. Steriotypical ideas that homeschooled kids were weird, non-socialized, geeky, and came from radical families were set firm in my mind. How did I make this total 180 degree turn in my life?

I've realized that we tend not to question what information we're given at a young age, or what info we're given from supposed 'experts' even as adults. When a gifted scientist comes up to you and tells you that all of his research has led him to conclude with 100% certainty that our world will change drastically in the next 5 years if we don't do something about greenhouse emissions, most people might say 'okay, he must be right, he's a much respected scientist' and if we don't question what he says, his opinions stick with us and color our own thinking as our own opinions form on the subject. I find that many of us don't tend to go through the process of doubting everything that anyone in a position of authority says. Of course, that would be very tiring! But what about doing it only 5% of the time?

Until I talked with a homeschooling mom, my opinions on homeschooling were set. Noel and I were looking at public school and that was that. But her experience with teaching at home (actually, she doesn't do true homeschooling - it's public school at home) were very positive for her children and I could see that they were bright, happy and social. From that one encounter, my journey towards homeschooling and everything else I've gotten interested in has come. Now, I will be homeschooling in a drastically different way than this person, but nevertheless I embraced learning and researching this type of education wholeheartedly.

Ever since deciding to homeschool, I have learned so much more about what is really important. Homeschoolers tend to be rebels of a sort. They're going against the main after all, so from it stemmed my interest in raw milk, homesteading, environmental issues, fossil fuels and the peak oil theory and much more. I find myself so fulfilled even though I am at home away from the work force. I have so much more time to learn about what interests me and that will only make me a better 'teacher' for my children. Dialectics, the ability to doubt what is said and then turn around and assume the opposite, for learning or arguments sake, can be a great tool to developing our persuasiveness and awareness.

When teaching my children I need to remember that when they develop an interest in one subject, they will learn and expand so much more than if they were forced to keep to a single point of interest. The love of learning is the springboard to higher knowledge, and eventually to the search for truth.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

**UPDATE!** The same day (Sunday) that we had the poopfest all over the floor, McKenna later went to the bathroom (for pee) but I heard 3 wet farts, so when I went in I saw some little brown flecks floating in the toilet. I knew she hadn't really been making an effort to poop, but I praised her like she had and told her how proud I was that she did a poo in the potty and she was SO happy with herself. So yesterday, Tuesday, she does 2 deliberate poops in the potty!! I am so proud of her and I hope that this is the beginning of the end of potty training. We shall have to wait and see!

In other news, my green beans and squash are FINALLY coming up, so I am thrilled that these seeds weren't a total bust. I need to get our and water the garden this morning and then we'll be going to the docs for my glucose test to see if I have gestational diabetes. It should be quick. Last time, they had me drink down a glass of sweet stuff and took my blood some time later. I'll bring some stuff along with me to keep the kiddo occupied.

I made a sourdough loaf lastnight, which came out beautifully! I think I'm getting the hang of this baking of bread without yeast!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Oh my God, we had a poop explosion today! McKenna is still not doing #2 in the potty and she came to the back door while I was outside doing garden stuff and yelled, 'poopoo', and I said 'go tell daddy' and so the next thing I know Noel says, 'hon, you better come inside'... well, she'd had on panties and shorts and had done it in her pants and it was pancake batter consistency and was in a large puddle by the back door. Since I had told her to get her dad she had tracked back to the computer room, dribbling little spatters along the kitchen floor and carpet. I'm sure she had already done it in her pants by the time to she told me about it, but I can't help wondering. Maybe she had been holding it and wanting a pull-up? But she didn't say so, SO... she helped me clean up the mess after I stuck her backside under the bathtub faucet. She got some nice cold water, which she didn't appreciate but maybe that will encourage her to use the toilet next time? I stressed that it was an accident and that next time she should use the potty, but she won't even listen. It's very frustrating. I'd love to have her potty trained by August, but honestly I can't see it happening. If I push, she'll just revert and start having #1 accidents, which I don't want. So, guess I'll have double diaper duty for awhile!

After she helped me clean up her mess, I had Noel take her upstairs and bathe her since I had to tackle the carpet and use the mop on the kitchen floor. She had wiped the spots for me with paper towels and then took the poopy towels to her arms trying to get off the other streaks of poo still on her. I don't know how I ended up cleaning up the whole mess since Noel is the one that found it, but technically I did know she had a poo in her pants when I was in the backyard, so I'm partly responsible. Anyway, she's now clean and the carpet is as clean as it's going to get with the carpet shampoo stuff I used. We're going to need a new carpet eventually anyway. Something darker than what we have now!

Other than that, we went shoe shopping today and both Noel and I got a pair of shoes. We also picked up one maternity top at Ross for me, since I'm low on acceptable public wear in the late stages of pregnancy, and we ate out at Primo's Pizza. Now that I'm thinking of it, we're incredibly lucky that the poop bomb didn't happen while we were out!

I think Noel's cooking dinner tonight. I'm beat!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Well, I was posting in my blog earlier today when I had a bit of a mishap with some coffee. So there's a possibility that the laptop might be doomed, but Noel is going to look at it.

Hot days here! Nothing else coming up in my garden yet, but I need to be patient. I keep expecting things to pop up overnight! We had Christi and Joey over today and they played in a kiddie pool that we picked up last night. It has a built in slide so the three kids just went round and round. Near made me dizzy just watching them! Later, after we all ate we took them out front and they rode on the tricycles that we have with Joey taking turns with McKenna. I think they had a really good time. I know that three kids wore me out, but it was just as much the heat I'm sure. It got up to 86 today, but felt hotter. I got our party canopy partway up but not fully up, but I was at least able to sit in a chair under the shade.

Nothing else going on... baked another batch of cookies. I now have chocolate chip and peanut butter to devour. McKenna's loving it, but it's too much so I might have Noel take some to work Monday!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Had a great day yesterday... picked up some more compost and when Noel got home he rototilled that area along the fence and I got my raspberries in today. Hopefully they won't go into shock. They were already putting out some nice leaves. We had Patty and Joe and kids over for dinner last night. We did grilled chicken with vegetables on skewers and some rice. I found moths in my biggest bag of rice and had to dump the whole thing. I'm so mad at myself because evidently I didn't put a clip on the bag. Luckily, I had some backup stuff that was just fine.

The kids played in the backyard for awhile and then munched on watermelon afterwards. All in all, a good day. Today I don't have much planned. I'm just happy to have gotten down the raspberries... I guess I'll have to lay down a good weed barrier. Maybe some extra thick layers of newspaper! I'm pleased with progress... just wish my pole beans would come up. And the tomato I planted has brownish discoloration on it's leaves. I'm not sure what that's all about. I'm going to dig in and make sure it's getting water down at its roots.

Baby #2 is kicking up a storm today. Lots of visible movement and some uncomfortable moments, but nothing I can't handle. Speaking of handles, I wouldn't mind getting a name here soon for her. I'd like to be able to stop calling her 'the baby'. Oh well, gotta get Noel's creative juices flowing, cause he's sure no help! ;)

Catch ya later!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day to all of you mom's out there! We had a fantastic day. I received a "Your the best mommy ever" card from McKenna... and a garden spade from Noel, which was also fantastic because I've been wanting one! McKenna helped me water my garden and then we went to Greenhurst Nursery and picked up some more tomato plants. I had enough room for more pepper plants, so Noel grabbed some of the hot and spicy variety. We hit Mr. V's in Caldwell for lunch and then Carrabaras (Italian) for dinner. Noel didn't get the fence line rototilled, but he said maybe tomorrow if he gets home early enough. I suppose my raspberries will just have to suffer! LOL He did pound in the wooden stakes for my florida weave that I needed, but one busted in half, so tomorrow while I'm out getting compost and sulfur and stuff I'll pick another one up.

Tired, so off to bed. More tomorrow!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Today was pretty busy. Noel took off early to get his snow tires changed to regular ones, and I started some garden stuff. Planted my first row of beans and will plant the 2nd row in another 2 weeks. I also planted some crookneck squash with nasturtiums to repel squash bugs and also planted my tomato. (Finally!)

McKenna played with the hose and sprayer today for the longest time. I just let her since it was irrigation and not house water and thus we weren't paying for it. She mainly watered all of the weeds along our fence instead of our crunchy grass. We took a short walk and came upon a yard sale with lots of baby stuff. I picked up a baby thingy for $8.00 - basically it's kind of like a car seat of sorts that's more open and it has a shady part with a screen over it so that I can be gardening and have the baby in it and not have to worry about bringing out a blanket or worry about lack of shade. McKenna crawled into it and I took a picture. It's pretty cute. LOL

Noel came home much later (around 7pm) and told me how he spent an hour or more at the Les Schwab in Nampa only to be told they couldn't put tires on his rims because they were too small. Guess most small cars now coming out have 14 to 16 inch rims and his are 12. He had to go into Boise to find the tires he needed. Spent several hours there, then did some grocery shopping before coming home.

After a complicated meal of hot dogs, I went out and mowed the lawn after he started it for me, and then he did the side yard and front strip. Went for a walk after that, then sat in the back yard and ate some watermelon, which McKenna loved. We talked and watched her play on the swing set and then I took her up for a bath. All in all, a pretty nice day! I'm hoping to get to the nursery tomorrow to pick up some other tomatoes and once they're in and Noel has my stakes in, I'll put down the soaker hoses. If Noel gets that strip in front of the fence rototilled, I'll put in my raspberry plants. Otherwise, I'll just dig a hole and mulch around it.

Monday we have Patty and Joe over for dinner, so I'll probably do some pick up tomorrow as well. I really need to mop my floors, but we'll see if I get to it. Garden stuff is higher up on my list of priorities right now! ;P

Friday, May 09, 2008

McKenna officially loves her Letter Factory DVD. After about 5 times of watching it, she is now making the letter sounds after most of the letters. I'm really impressed with the DVD so far. It's very engaging, and except for the letter "L", the sounds are spot on.

I tried to start the mower today and it wouldn't start. My mother told me she forbids me to start it after hearing about my tries, so I'll let Noel know it's up to him to get it started. The lawn would go un-mowed for about 2 weeks or so if I didn't do it, and I hate having it look shaggy, so maybe I'll guilt him into helping me more!

I'll get my tomatoes planted tomorrow and I THINK I see my beans coming up. But they're a lot smaller than my regular bush beans, so I'm not sure. But I'm hopeful. McKenna and I tried to fly her kite again today, but there really wasn't enough wind. So no go there. Not much else going on. Feeling a bit dis-jointed in thought today.......... more to come later!

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Well, we had our milk and eggs delivered today. I have a love affair going with these eggs! They are so yummy and have the brightest orange yolks. We hit the library after breakfast and picked up some books I had on hold, and then went down to the lap-sit storytime. McKenna behaved very well during the program and sat and listened. She's really old enough for the pre-school story time, so we'll go to that one next time. I think she pushed a little girl just before we were leaving. She was over near the stairs and so was a little girl who looked like she hadn't been walking long. I heard some wailing and looked over and the toddler was on the ground, feet in the air. McKenna might have hugged her and then pushed her away, but later (after I made her apologize) she started going on about pushing the kid. So we discussed how that isn't nice and it can hurt people. Sigh. Guess she'll learn with a new sister on the way. We came home and put on the Letter Factory by Leapfrog that I picked up at the library. She seemed to like it, but was tired and fell asleep after watching it. The day has just zoomed by! No wonder it seems like my pregnancy is going by so fast!

Noel brought home a cherry picker, which looks like a mini-crane. He's borrowing it from some guy so that he can yank the engine out of his new Geo. We got the "stimulus package" check from the government, so he's going to see about getting the vehicle running. I did take $200. of it and put it into McKennas savings since some of the money from that check was due to us having a child. The other Geo is still doing okay for him, and I'm trying not to drive the Chevy as much. In two days the price of gas went from 3.49 to 3.59 and that's at our cheapest gas station, Maverick. Chevron is at 3.64! Anyway, I'm looking forward to reading a book I have on hold at the library called "The Self-Sufficient Life and How to Live it". The info it contains may just come in REALLY handy one of these days! Especially with the price of everything!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

So, I'm officially falling apart.

List of problems:

Shoulder (getting slightly better with PT)

Wrist - still aches a little when I use it but getting better

Right back of hip - return of the Sacro-iliac joint pain I had with McKenna, I'm pretty sure.
I limped along all day yesterday. Today is better, but as I recall the pain would come and go.
I might have to have PT for that, as well.

Allergies are coming on full force. I really want a cortisone shot to wipe out my symptoms for
3 months, like I've done the last two years, but have to talk to my OB doc about that. For now, I'm limping along on Sudafed and eye drops.

Cramp in the arch of my left foot has been bothering me today. I'm taking in calcium, but nothing much going on there.

And what's really crazy is that the pregnancy itself is going very well. The only problem I'm having thats associated with pregnancy would be my SI joint pain. All this other stuff is just bad timing! Other than that, I'm feeling good, baby-wise! According to the latest ultrasound, the baby weighs 2 pounds now. We still haven't made any headway on names... Noel doesn't come up with any and my suggestions all get shot down. I told him if he doesn't contribute to the name pool, I'm going to name the baby whatever I want! lol

The garden is going well. My lettuce is still growing, and I'm waiting for my beans to come up, which should be in the next couple-three days. I also planted some carrots under the bean teepees, and those should be up in the next week if they decide they like my soil, which they may not. I amended it with some chopped fall leaves and sand, but it still may be too lumpy for them to take off. Gotta get that pic up of my garden with teepees and everything. Maybe today!

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Well, it was a beautiful day today! We got up, ate at Elmers... treating ourselves to part of our $50/month allowance for eating out. We then hit Home Depot and Lowes and picked up some stuff for the Geo as well as the stakes I need to do my 'florida weave' for my tomatoes. We also hit a great deal on bamboo poles for making teepees for veggies like pole beans. So I put up two teepees, each with 4 legs, and will plant my beans as soon as the ground warms up just a titch more. My mesculen is coming up now, I'm very happy to see. I was afraid that it wouldn't due to all the nearly-fresh horse manure we tilled in, but I see the leaves emerging. So far for my garden I have lettuce planned as well as beans, broccoli, peppers, squash, tomatoes, strawberries (already going) onions, and maybe potatoes if any ground frees up that's in the sunshine. Oh, also have the peas popping up in the front yard. Some of my onions are popping up as well, but will have to figure out where I'll put them. I might just have to thin them and put them in containers.

McKenna was very good for me today, as was my husband! We hit the farmers market after the home improvement stores and found just onions and asparagus. I would have purchased asparagus, but he was out. And didn't want to write a check for a buck for the onions. I'll go next week and see if anything else shows up. I'm determined to try to eat what's in season this year and try to avoid out of season things, unless I really have some cravings for strawberries in November! I'm also planning to ask our herdshare lady Laura if she'll (not this year) let me help her process her meat chickens when the time comes. I think it would be good to know the whole process from start to finish, especially if I plan on ever having chickens for eggs and meat. Of course, that would only happen if we move out of this subdivision, which I'd like to think would happen eventually. I think it would be good for McKenna to really know the hows and whys of how meat gets on your plate. Educational and all that jazz! That's it for now... I'll have to take pictures of the teepees I put together in the garden, and then when I have pole beans growing on them! Yay, I'm so excited!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

I had my physical therapy appointment yesterday. Patty watched McKenna for me, which was nice. I went in and saw a nice woman named Jamie. She stays at home with her kids except for wednesdays and only works from 8am to 1pm... How nice is that? Anyway, after having me move my arm this way and that and manipulating it she declared I have a weak rotator cuff with a bit of tendonitis. She said when it's painful, you tend to use it less, which actually worsens it over time. So she gave me exercises to do twice a day by pulling on a length of stretchy surgical tubing in different ways and I'll report back to let her know how I'm doing in a week or so. I think it's a good idea especially for if my shoulder decides to act up again down the road. I certainly don't want to get to the point I did where I had my arm in a sling! So, that was that and McKenna and I went home.
Noel and I discussed our garden a little bit in bed and I brought up a nice staking system I read about for tomatoes called the florida weave. It's easy to install, cheap, and tear down in the fall is a breeze... according to the article! Just need some stakes and twine and that's it. Here's a link for those interested:

I want to get my brandywine tomato into the ground asap since it's showing signs of leaf curl on the ends which indicate inconsistent watering. It's in a pot and I keep it evenly moist, so I'm hoping I don't lose it. It's a little early for it to go outside, but I think I'd better get it out there by this weekend. I'll have Noel put in the staking system this weekend and I have two more brandywine tomatoes starting from seed, so I'm hopeful for a good harvest. I'm going to put in some romas as well, so I can can up some sauce this year. We go through an awful lot of diced and stewed tomatoes, as well as sauce... so here goes! My peppers are coming along nicely, too. They will be nice and sturdy as I've had them right up under lights since they've emerged.

I did the milk run again this week, but thankfully won't have to go again for 5 more weeks. I picked up for an extra person, which will become a regular thing. She won't be participating in the drives out to get milk as she lives in Meridian. We're just dropping her share off at Melissas and then she'll just drive to Melissas to pick it up. Poor Laura and family are still living out of a motel since their commode isn't fixed yet! It took me a good while to get all the milk loaded. It's heavy stuff and I think I now know where I may have strained my shoulder! lol Also picked up eggs, and found some cracked, so I swapped them out for good ones in the other cartons. I felt a little bad about that, but I don't want to pay 1.50 for less than 12 eggs! But a buck 50 is a good price as the cheapest eggs I can get in the supermarket right now are about $2/dozen. And those are from the unhealthiest hens kept in battery cages. My eggs from Laura are from her free range hens and they have great diets... access to greens and bugs and good food and her eggs have the brightest orange yolks I've ever seen. And they're tasty, to boot. I also picked up a dozen for Patty as she wanted to give them a try. Laura had been charging a dollar 25 but I noticed that she raised her price up to 1.50, maybe for the higher price of feed? Not sure, but I'll let Patty know before I get anymore for her. They're still a great deal, in my opinion.

Last night I was cruising the internet and came across this puppy:

It's slated to be available in the US for under $30,000 and the electric version will be coming out first, followed by the hybrid/plug-in model. Can't wait! As it is, Noel's getting a bonus check for the first time in a couple of years and he'll be able to fix up the Geo's engine, and maybe get the second Geo running. Then I wouldn't have to drive the SUV so often. :)

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Interesting article on the Foreign Affairs website. Gave me a lot of insight on how oil-rich countries are plagued by a whole host of problems.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Have I mentioned recently how I have the loveliest, most helpful, charming, well-behaved child in the neighborhood? :) These last two days would have tried most kids patience, but she did really well for me. Yesterday, I had to have my arm looked at and we were at the doctors for almost 2 hours. I came early because they said they needed insurance information from me, but upon arrival told me they had everything they needed. So I was 20 minutes early and McKenna jumped around and spun around (very discreetly of course!) and talked with two couples that were nearby and was just a chatty Kathy with them. They didn't understand half of what she said, but were charmed. She held up 3 fingers when the nurse asked her how old she was and I was amazed she remembered, as I'd only showed her how to do that once. We must have waited for the doctor for at least half and hour and she was up and down on the examination table, keeping herself occupied and then I gave her a dry erase tracing book that I think my mother got for her, but can't remember. She sat and played with that for a long time. Doc finally came, told me I might have a bit of tendonitis in my right shoulder and I have a weakness of my rotater cuff so he sent me for x-rays.... so we went down the hall and I had to check-in with this lady, whom I told "by the way, I'm pregnant" and she was like - 'does the doctor know?' and I said ' I thought he did' Turns out I assumed that the nurse told the doc I was pregnant because she spotted it right away and asked me about the baby, etc... then I assumed that they would just put extra protective aprons on me. Oops, guess not. I went back to sit in another waiting room for the doc to come talk to me, which took another 20 minutes at least and he came in and said, 'we'll just do therapy and save the x-ray for after you give birth if you're still having pain.'

So then I was over to make an appointment at another desk for tomorrow where they will show me some exercises to do at home to help strengthen my shoulder. But the point is, McKenna was a darling for me the whole time! I was more impatient that she was! And today, she had to come with me for my dentist appointment, because I totally spaced getting someone to watch her and she sat and played with this pillow the technician gave her and then put on the headphones and laid on the floor to watch the tv in the ceiling. She did so well they gave her a choice of toy that's usually reserved for kids that had cleanings done. She picked something out that she already has at home, a little squishy softball... and she got a lollipop from the nurse from the day before, so she was pretty proud of herself! I have high hopes for her as a big sister. I'm hoping jealously will be at a minimum, since I plan to make sure she doesn't feel left out and I think she'll be a great helper. She loves holding babies whenever she gets a chance.

Other than that, not much going on. My shoulder actually feels much better, but I wanted to keep the above appointment just because it tends to be a recurring thing and I think having some exercises to do will help in the future, when it comes back, as it no doubt will! That's it for now, other than doing laundry and dreaming about putting up my own tomatoes this year. Aren't I just SO domestic? ;)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

McKenna and I were alone today as Noel is at a LAN party. We stayed home and watered our garden and irrigated our lawn and kept my mesculen seedlings moist. I really want some salad greens this year! Noel picked up a soaker hose for me that I'll use on my garden once I get most of the plants in. For now, I've got an oscillating sprinkler to use on the seeds and young plants until they become more established. I have my beds all made and am just hoping it doesn't get too hot too soon and bake the earth before I get my mulch down. Ideally I want to wait to do mulch when I have my plants up and showing a couple sets of leaves. Noel also picked up some twine for me to use with my peas... and I may even be able to use it for the teepees I want to do. Don't know yet. I'm just itching to get stuff into the ground, but it's really too early for most things except my lettuce and peas, which I have in the front. Ah well, it'll be worth it. And the garden should look a lot nicer this year without all of the grass and ragweed around and in it and with some mulch down to keep soil moisture more even. I'm also determined to stay on top of my compost. I've been putting down a thin layer of straw over the kitchen scraps and then sprinkling in some water to keep things moist. I hope that will help stuff break down better. The composter is also in the full sun now so that should make a difference.

I've been researching alternative fuels and vehicles lately. A conversion kit for a car to go to electric is anywhere from $6K to $28K - plus the batteries, which are $1 to 3 thousand have to be replaced every 3 to 4 years... but no having to fill up on gas! No regular maintenance that you'd need to do with a regular engine! I was on Craigslist and couldn't believe all of the SUV's and trucks that were for sale! Even if we wanted to sell our Chevy Trailblazer, we'd never get a good deal for it. I was looking at pedicabs
and some have electric assists, but they are expensive too! And I'm not sure how safe I'd feel having McKenna in it with me on my way to Walmart... besides, where the heck would I park the thing? I really think we should look into getting this countries passenger trains running again. I mean, what happens if oil gets too expensive or runs out and we haven't come up with an alternative fuel source? Those of us in the suburbs away from urban centers will be up a creek! Makes me want to homestead and be self-sufficient even more. Well, enough rant time - it's getting close to McKennas bedtime. She's having a tougher time of it now that it's staying lighter out and she can still hear the kids outside playing!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Forgot to mention I'm 24 weeks 6 days along today. Had an appointment yesterday and I've gained 9 pounds so far, and they measured me too, but can't remember the measurements except the nurse said it's normal. Heartbeat was normal, too. So I'm almost into my 7th month! I think I've gained more weight with this pregnancy, too. I only gained 13 lbs with McKenna.
Today was a give and take of stuff... I hurt my wrist while edging around our tree out front and tearing out the grass from its base. Didn't actually start hurting until an hour later and then it was a sudden sharp pain when I moved my hand a certain way. That was yesterday and today it's been stiff and feeling cooler than my other hand. I'm not seeing any swelling or anything so I'll tough it out until monday when I go in to see an orthopedic doctor about my shoulder.

I did manage to put together a kite for McKenna today that Noel picked up at Harbor Freight for $5.00... it flew okay, but we really needed more string to let it out. McKenna thought it was the coolest thing, but then she was torn between flying the kite and wanting to watch the Clines rip out their tree from their front yard. LOL

Noel's coming home soon and we'll be having hot dogs and chips and he'll be turning on our irrigation since our grass is starting to dry already!

Monday, April 21, 2008

So unfortunately I have to go see yet another doctor about my shoulder and upper arm. I've been having progressively worse pain in my right arm and it's getting to the point where it hurts to drag it with me when I roll from my right to left side in bed. I had it in a sling today and finally popped some tylenol and decided I should have someone look at it. I've had this same thing happen before, it just usually goes away on its own. Problem is, right now is a time in my pregnancy when I'm not getting up twice or three times a night to pee. I usually get up around 5 or 6am to go and then sleep till 8am. Last night my arm kept me awake and it pissed me off! So off I go to an orthopedic doctor next monday. I'm hoping it's nothing serious. My father suggested early arthritis, but I swear I'm not that old yet, AM I??? *Sigh*

Nothing else going on today. McKenna and I took a walk and she played on the swing set out back. It was about 55 degrees. The manure is as ripe as ever, but is ok if I sit just outside the back door. Noel came home early and then disappeared to hit the eye doctor. And I've got beef stew going for dinner made out of our leftover sirloin steak from our grass fed cow. Yum!

Oops, and forgot to mention he purchased a newer Geo since his current one has been stalling a lot on him lately. The transmission is crap and the suspension is also crap. So we have a new Geo (1994) that currently isn't being driven because it lost power on the highway on his way home from purchasing it from the guy. The guy refused to give him his money back. Thing is, Noel test drove it twice, both on and off the freeway and took a mechanically inclined friend with him the second time. They both thought it was a great deal and ran beautifully. So, evidently there was oil leaking around the spark plugs and that is what the problem was. They got it started and drove it back home and Noel is hoping to learn enough about auto mechanics that he can pull apart one car to get the other one running well again. Who knows where that will lead?

Stay tuned for more....

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Noel went out and got some manure from a nearby farm today. Enlisted Joes help to spread it out over the garden. It stinks out there now, so he'll have to rototill it in soon before the neighbors complain! I could smell it when I was in the front yard and the wind was blowing. It was sunny most of the day with the cherry trees blooming profusely. I snapped some pics of our tree. It was also snowing today. Kind of a strange day. I realized it was snowing right after I finished watering some peas I sowed yesterday. LOL Nothing else much going on. Everyone's healthy and happy!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Today was milk delivery day! It took 3 hours, but McKenna enjoys going to the farm to see all of the animals. Laura has about 50 or so cornish rex chicks under lights that will be for meat and has more on order for egg production. McKenna petted the baby goats and the baby calf that is Faiths baby. Faith is a jersey cross who is Lauras biggest producer right now. There was also a big fuzzy sheep there that got a nice scratch. I went to pet one of the chickens that was in with the chicks and got a bunch of feathers in my face. They obviously don't like to be petted! Poor Laura's bathroom broke, so they are staying in a motel about 12 miles from their place. They have to come back home twice a day for the animals.

Our first drop was at Christina's and there were a bunch of kids McKennas age out playing, so she ran around with them while I handed off the milk and used the restroom. If I wasn't pregnant, I'd be able to make the entire round without a pit stop!

Anyway, all went well and when I got back home I potted up a raspberry sucker that a co-worker of Noel's gave us. It'll be a bit before we get it in the ground, probably. I also transplanted my strawberry plants into my lasagna garden. Noel still needs to put the drip irrigation in, but there's only 4 plants in that bed and he'll be able to work around them. Another beautiful day out today at 64 degrees, so we'll be outside for the rest of it, I think!

Monday, April 14, 2008

I looked at McKenna today and saw a little girl instead of a toddler! She is growing up so fast I can't believe it. She's speaking better all of the time and is such a big help to me. We did my lasagna garden in the back corner of the yard and I must say it was a LOT of work. I had to wet the newspaper and lay it down first, then the half-finished compost, then the manure, then the peat moss and last the straw. It was a lot of bending up and down and my back is feeling it! But all the work hopefully will be worth it in the end. After I transplant my strawberry plants there, all I'll have to do to keep on top of it is to keep mulching. I'm hoping the newspaper I laid down was thick enough. Anywhere from 4 to 8 layers of it got put down. A co-worker of Noel's is giving us a raspberry sucker that I believe is still dormant so I don't have to plant it right away. I'll stick it in a container until I get my back back and then put in another lasagna garden along the fence between garden #1 and #2. Whee! I'm re-thinking doing newspaper on the large garden though since it was so much work. Maybe cardboard instead, but I'm going to need plenty of greens and browns for my layers. I might end up just having Noel till in manure and leaves, then plant and put a LOT of straw on top to try to keep down weeds. I do want to make beds though and have paths, which Noel thinks is a waste of space, but it will be so much easier to access plants without walking on them, plus I'm the one that does most of the weeding, planting, picking, etc... so I think my way of thinking will prevail! lol

Braxton Hicks contractions have been kicking in a lot lately. I've had them going on for about the last month and a half and didn't realize what they were until about a week ago. I just thought it was the baby moving. Guess I didn't have them this early with McKenna. But now that I know, they do feel like very mild contractions although as time goes by they get stronger. This baby is sneaking up on me. I don't even have her room painted yet! I'm excited though. McKenna will sit with me and snuggle up to my belly and pat it. She's really cute about it. Asked tonight if she could hold the baby. I told her yes after it was born. She definitely is realizing we're going to have a sister for her.

Enough for now...

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Well, today was another fantastic one temp wise. Got up to 76 degrees... a little warm for manual labor, but that was okay. I didn't get my small garden done because I was waiting on Noel to get the right sprinkler head attachment. He got the wrong one when he went out just before dinner so has to go back for the right one. He says I can start creating the garden tomorrow as long as I leave that sprinkler available to him to access, which should be no problem. I think I'll go out tomorrow with McKenna and pick up a bag of manure, compost, and maybe some more peat, but only if they are really cheap. We found a source of free landscaping rocks in Caldwell that we'll use to line the garden with and probably also the main garden as well, since our other option was brick and trench edging is out of the question because even Noel can't get the spade deeper in than about an inch down into our clay soil. He did admit how it could look good if it was properly done (at the right depth) so I might try softening the ground up with water and see if that works any better. I sat outside with McKenna for most of the day in the backyard in the shade and she swung on her swing and pulled out her pool inner tube and wore that around and rolled on the ground with it. She's got streaks of dirt on her face and arms! But she was a happy camper today. In fact, it's nice enough out now that that's where she is. I don't know what I'll tell her on tuesday... it's supposed to be a high of 56 degrees! I can't wait for May!

I checked and noticed that the pepper seeds I planted under my fluorescents are starting to emerge and my brandywine tomato plant is telling me it's time to put it in the ground. I hope it can survive another couple weeks! We'll see how it goes. Other than that, beans and squash can go directly into the ground and I might give potatoes a try this year. Can't wait!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

I'll have to get some photos up of our progress in the backyard! I didn't get to my smaller garden today because Noel needs to put on a different sprinkler head so he can hook up some drip irrigation for me. I'm willing to wait for drip irrigation! So we concentrated on the main garden. He rototilled around the whole thing and we dragged out the clumps of grass to make it more even then laid down the black plastic. Working on top of that stuff really heats you up! After that, he pushed the utility trailer full of wood chips across the yard (that's using his muscles!) and lined it up with the edge of the garden and we used rakes to drag it all out of the trailer and then the wheelbarrow. So now, we have wood chips around our garden and once I borrow a spade from one of our neighbors I'll do some trench edging along the front of the garden since that's the only area that will need it. I may end up deciding I need to line it with bricks, but the important part is being able to mow over the edge without having to worry about wood chips flying everywhere! I'll have to look at some options. Noel may want to use the plastic liner stuff that he bought a while back, too. If that's the case, he may have to do some of the work! That stuff is tough getting into the ground! You have to dig pretty deep, especially if you want the top flush with the ground. The main thing is keeping the grass from encroaching into the wood chips.

McKenna had a blast outside with us today. She got lathered up in sunblock and 'helped' us unload some of the wood chips from the trailer with a stick she picked out of them. Then found a much larger stick (the woodchips were a little 'rough' around the edges!) and played sword. It got up to 69 today but felt much warmer in the sun, especially as the day wound down. It was a great day for doing all of this work! And don't worry, I took plenty of breaks! I mainly helped straighten out the plastic while Noel tacked it down and then I raked the chips evenly after he wheeled more over to the area I was working on. So it was fun and we were all in a good mood. Maybe tomorrow I'll get the photos up on our blog or webshots.
So I've got an itch for another phalaenopsis orchid, and there's a show coming up in May so I'm excited. Now I've just got to save some money. They're only going to be $15. to $20. dollars but we're a little tight on spending cash at the moment, doctors bills and all!

So I'm redirecting my attention back to my gardening. Today we will put in the wood chips around the garden area. Noel's planning to rototill to make the area more even, since it's still pretty uneven from when he dug up the irrigation a couple years back. He just came in and told me he surprised a black cat sleeping under the tarp and on top of our wood chips in our little utility trailer. He thought that was pretty humorous. It leapt over our fence and was gone.

Right now I'm waiting for Noel to dig up a sprinkler head in the back right corner of our property so that I can put in a lasagna garden. He even suggested it so that I could transplant the strawberries that are still in our main garden. He wants to rototill that whole main garden, so the strawberries have to go somewhere. I've got the outline done for my smaller garden and have the peat moss, newspaper, and leaves/straw ready to go... just have to wait for him now.

It's a beautiful day and is supposed to get to 69 degrees today, which will be nice and warm in the sun. McKenna will be outside with us most of the day, I imagine except for when I come in to make lunch and dinner! More later!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Good day! Except for McKennas melt-down right before her quiet time... but that was all because she wanted candy and I said 'no'. Such a mean mommy aren't I? lol

We went out and delivered empty milk jars to Christina who is next to pick up milk so that she would have some empties to give back to Laura. Laura had a shortage last round and it resulted in less milk that we would have normally gotten. After that we headed to the mall. Guess I haven't been there in awhile because I could have sworn there was a Payless shoe store. Guess not! But there was a Foot Locker. Didn't do me any good though... they didn't have the type of shoe I wanted. Then we headed to Lowes and I picked up some Long fibered sphagnum moss so I could re-pot my orchid, which I did when I got home. There were plenty of dead roots as it didn't like my semi-hydro mix I had it in. After I pruned the roots, it ended up going into a much smaller clay pot and I layered in the moss and some orchid back and called it good. It's been growing roots and leaves for me, but I was really worred about the dead roots I knew were in the medium. Didn't want any problems down the road. So I had fun doing that and Mckenna helped me out. She's been a good little helper lately!

Oh, our dinner last night went well. The kids didn't seem to go for the raviolis, but the adults liked it. We had just enough with only a little left over. It was nice enough outside that the kids played outside for awhile, too. They swarmed Noel after dinner. Shoulda got a pic of that since at one point he was literally covered with child. lol Lots of tickling going on, basically. That's it for now!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Oh my God my back hurts! I've been doing raviolis for the last 1-1/2 hours plus fettucine when I ran out of filling. I ended up not having enough yesterday because of my mistakes. McKenna helped me crank out the pasta into sheets which actually was a BIG help, especially when I had to go really thin for the fettucine. Since I had to make another batch of ravioli today I decided to go green! So we'll have a mix of regular tannish colored raviolis mixed with green. I feel so Italian! lol

I also got the floor swept and mopped and just have to vacuum... I'm thinking of leaving the pick up stuff for Noel when he gets home. He can do that and put the leaf in the table and then all I'll have to worry about is is making the sauce and cooking the raviolis since everything else is done, except bread. I usually like to have garlic bread or something with this kind of meal, but honestly I don't think I'm up to making any! I'll call Noel and see if he wants to pick any up on his way home.

Now it's time to see if I can't get McKenna to take a quiet time. She says she just peed, and when I looked in the bowl the toilet tissue in there obscured my view of any yellow. She lied a minute ago and said she went when she obviously didn't. Ergh! We're getting to a difficult stage. I need some sort of dealio I can throw in the bowl so that when she goes I can definitely tell that she went. Anyway, I gave her her sticker and all that goes along with a successful pee, so we'll see if she has any accidents in the next hour or so. She's had a LOT to drink this morning. Kiddo #2 has been quiet while I've been working, but now that I'm sitting down is acting up. Must be the snack of red pepper, strawberries and green apples!