In the Garden

It’s planting time!  I have been looking forward to this for such a long time.  Every time I worked in my old tiny raised gardens.  Every time I went to the grocery store to buy expensive, organic produce.  Every time I drove 40 minutes to pick up produce from the coop…I thought about it.  And dreamed about it.  I can’t wait to have my garden abundantly producing what my family eats.  Last week we began our planting.  Our garden is about 15 feet x 100 feet.  It took a while to get it ready to plant (and it would’ve been longer if not for the help of a friend with a tiller!).

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Willow’s Baptism

What a special day it has been for our family!  Today Willow was baptized.  We were honored to be surrounded by our church family.  A few of our family members were able to make it, but for the many that live so far away, here is a piece of this special day for Willow.  Thank you to all who played a part in making this day so special for her.  It is so moving to see my girl take a stand for Jesus in this way!  I’m a proud mama. :)

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Goats!

Well, it’s true.  I’m a goat person.  I thought I was.  I even wanted to move to a farm just to become a goat person.  And as it turns out, I’m a goat person!  It’s been five weeks since the kids came to our farm. We were able to get twin nubians – a boy and a girl (Kevin Mike (named after my brother, which was very important to Chloe) and Hazel).  They came to live with us when they were three days old…precious!  And if you haven’t tried it yet, I’ll just tell you that bottle feeding baby goats is super adorable.

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A Rabbit Habitat….A Rabbitat

There isn’t much cuter than a little bunny.  Their sweet little ears, twitchy noses, and that soft, soft fur.  So precious.  We are all suckers for rabbits over here.  Each of the girls has her own, the latest addition occurring very recently after a trip to the feed store where 5 precious little bunnies awaited us in a hutch.  Laelia was the only one who did not have a rabbit and who was ready and willing to hand over some of her Christmas money to bring home her own little fuzzy.

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Pond Life

We may have lost a pool in the move, but we’ve gained a pond.  I was quite sad at the thought of not having a pool in Florida, but we haven’t missed it in the least.  (Check back with me in July though, just to be sure.  I may have a different response for you.)  Pond life has added a new adventure for us.  On occasion the girls will put on their swim suits and go for a swim.  We’ve gone fishing a couple times.  Reed enjoys throwing things into it.  Anything really, but we try to keep him occupied with the hundreds of pinecones and sticks available for chucking in the water.  Sometimes we even get visitors.  No alligators yet, but we’ve had some egrets, cranes, storks, and even otters.DSC_8702 Continue reading

Homesteading and Chickens

A few months ago we moved.  This move gave us the opportunity to take a big step we’ve been hoping for–the chance to be true homesteaders and develop methods of self sustainment for our family.  Now, instead of a partial acre, we are sitting on several acres that give us the freedom to do for ourselves a lot more.  Of course we had a few chickens before, but in the city where we previously lived only 2 chickens were allowed per quarter acre.  Now that’s just crazy pants.  We had just under that amount of land, meaning that we probably should’ve only been allowed one chicken (instead of 3.  shhh!).  But going by that reasoning, here we should be allowed to have 40 chickens!  That’s a lot of eggs!

We added to our flock a few months ago when they were just a couple weeks old.  They were so teeny tiny! (Side note: I would have more pictures of the chicks as babies, but Reed poured a glass of water on my computer.  I had no idea until I picked it up and water poured out of it.  He’s cute, but he’s a busy mister.)chicks Continue reading

Merry Christmas!

Every year this day gets more magical as the kids understand more about Christmas.  This year, we spent Christmas in our new house.  It was fun to figure out where the tree would go.  It was fun to decide how to do the lights outside.  But what was super amazing was the comprehension these kids have about just how special Christmas is.  They have it down.  They’re not all about the presents.  They really get it.  They understand that the gifts are just a fun part, but that the real reason we celebrate Christmas is because of Jesus being born.  And it’s so precious to see and hear them talk about it….that is, until it came time to fall asleep on Christmas Eve.  Then all bets are off.  Santa is coming.  Nothing else exists and sleep becomes impossible.  DSC_7918 Continue reading

Christmas Jitters

It’s only 2 days until Christmas and you can feel the excitement in our house.  I mean, if you’re super sleepy Scott and me anyway because we were up late wrapping gifts and these kids got up at 5:00 this morning.  They are so excited about all the wonderful little parts of Christmas that are coming so soon.  DSC_7843 Continue reading

O Christmas Tree

When I was a kid, ours was the family who, on the first weekend in December, loaded up in the family car and headed out to the tree farm to find our Christmas tree.  We drove for almost an hour and when we got to the farm we trekked hill and down dale until, sometimes in the bitter cold and whirling snow to find the perfect tree…and one that we all agreed on.  Not always easy.  And once we did my dad would get down on the ground with his saw and cut down our tree.  We all pitched it to haul it back to the car.  After securing it to the top of our car, we headed to the barn for hot cocoa.

We’ve been in Florida for over 4 years now and tree farms are something I miss about living in the North.  I have been thinking that maybe we can plant some on our property for our annual Christmas tree, but I haven’t looked into whether or not they do well here.  Meanwhile, I still wanted the experience of chopping down our tree.  DSC_6604 Continue reading

{Recipe} Vanilla Steamer

These past few days have been chilly here in Florida and we are loving it!  We’ve put on our warm clothes and snuggled up close.  It’s been a great change from the usual 75 degree weather at this time of year, especially with Christmas coming!  Now, I usually do not enjoy warm beverages, with two exceptions:  the occasional hot cocoa (yum!) and vanilla steamers.  Ahh…vanilla steamers!  This yummy treat was first introduced to me by a friend who worked at Starbucks.  And until two days ago, I didn’t have the recipe.  But as I was making some hot cocoa on the stove, I figured out, and completely by accident I might add, the recipe for the oh-so-delicious vanilla steamer.  DSC_6756 Continue reading