Friday, January 16, 2015

Lambs!

This week. My goodness. I am pretty sure that last Friday was an eternity ago.

What a contradiction, I was just saying that December flew by, and now... well, welcome to the slowest week. ever.

And this cute little thing is going to take some of the blame.


Well him, Curly is what he's been named, along with his twin sister, Mo, on the right.


And their half-brothers, twins also, Larry on the left and White Tipped Tail on the right.


Also, we can't forget about their other half-sisters, another set of twins, Two-Dot on the left and Softie 2 on the right.


These six were all born within 24 hours of each other. Needless to say, it's lambing season around here.

And while having six lambs born was a bit of a to do around here, these guys all made it as easy as possible on us. Yes, there has still been a little work and doting involved, but mostly they've done everything they're supposed to do on their own.

But there was actually another lamb, Softie, born a couple of days before this bunch, that was a different story.

To make a long story short, Softie's mom's milk never came it. Softie got hungry, which led to getting really cold and despite all of our best efforts, which included bottle feeding, several warm baths and an evening inside by the fire, she just didn't make it. I'm going to be honest, I was never that attached to Softie, but there were two little kids around here whose hearts had been stolen. Having to tell Audrey and Owen that the little lamb that was laying in our living room that they had said goodnight to didn't make it through the night was definitely a new parenthood low. Just thinking about having to tell them what happened was enough to bring me to tears.

Luckily though we've bounced back. Watching those cuties up there bounce around the pasture has been a lot of fun and taken sad little minds off of Softie.

We aren't quite done yet though, we still have one more mom waiting to have babies. I feel for her. At this point she looks ready to be done. I know I would be. So who knows by the end of the weekend we may just have a couple more little lambs around here.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Why, Hello January

Is it really already January? 

Wasn't it just Thanksgiving? Weren't we just Christmas tree hunting? I'm pretty sure we just pulled all the Christmas decorations out and started listening to Christmas music.

Owen found his favorite place behind the Christmas tree.
Needless to say, December seems like a whirlwind. There wasn't any one big thing that made it go so quickly, I mean other than the whole celebrating Jesus' birth thing, which is pretty huge, but other than that it was a lot of little things, school shows, a few parties, lots of visits with family. 

Audrey was sure she wanted to make a cranberry and popcorn chain for her Christmas tree. I don't think it ever got longer than about 6 inches, but somehow that whole bowl of popcorn still disappeared. 
Now Audrey is back to school and we are starting to get back to a bit of a routine. I didn't make any big New Year's resolutions this year. I usually don't. But there are definitely a few things on my to-do list for the year that I would really like to get done.

Swinging with Grandpa in his new moose hat.
At the top of my list is getting caught up with all my pictures. My mom is the best at keeping photo albums, she started around the time my sister was born and still has them caught up to within a month. The albums are all numbered, I think she is somewhere around 30 right now. It is impressive. And as much as I would love to emulate her and her photo album abilities I have fallen short, I'm nearly three years behind on pictures. This is the year that changes, I am catching up. Also on the list are a few landscaping projects and a little sprucing up of some rooms inside. 

I'm excited for everything 2015 has to offer and am looking forward to another year of fun and laughs with this great family of mine. 


Friday, December 5, 2014

Christmas Tree Hunt

It's been a little quiet around here. I have to guess that that is how it will be for the next month or so. Our calendar is full of Christmas parties, a birthday party, school shows, church activities and visits with family; all of which put this little blog on the back burner. Hopefully I'll have a minute to pop in here or there. 

My brother, sister and both of their families were able to come our way for Thanksgiving this year. We spent most of the week at my parents house watching the cousins play. It is so fun to see them all together. 

The Friday after Thanksgiving we headed up to the mountains to find Christmas trees. 

"Eye black" courtesy of her uncle. 
Last year we started a new tradition that Audrey could pick a tree to have in her room. The "rules" are that you have to be two years old and the tree has to be shorter than you. She definitely is over two, but her and her dad decided to ignore that whole part about the height. Oh well. 


Unfortunately for Owen they also miscalculated where the tree was going to fall after they cut it. Poor guy was right in its path. He wasn't amused, but everyone else thought it was pretty funny. 



We've been decorating all around the house this week. Nothing too fancy, but a little splash of Christmas here and there. Audrey's tree is up in her room strung with multi-colored lights. She thinks it makes the perfect night light. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Last of the Garden

It is time to close up the garden for the year around these parts. I haven't mastered any sort of winter gardening yet, so this is the end of my season.


Our temperatures dipped pretty low at the beginning of the week, mid 20s overnight, and that really did it for all of the summer vegetables that had been trying to hang on. It was time to say goodbye to the peppers and all of the marigolds, which add so much color throughout the summer, had to go too.


I had pulled a lot of the other plants weeks ago. Either they had stopped producing or it was just not warm enough for anything to ripen.


These are the last of our carrots for the year. Our harvest was pretty small, but they are so sweet and delicious. We have a few beets and some kale that still look good so I will limp those along as long as I can.


It's a little sad to look out and see the mostly empty boxes (and the work the still needs to be done to clean everything up!) But it is also exciting to start thinking about next years garden. We hope to put in permanent drip lines to all the beds and some sort of "pretty" ground cover between them in the spring.

This is the first year we have had a garden big enough to really produce a lot, I rarely had to buy any produce at the store throughout the summer. I loved that. I still have a lot to learn and there are plenty of changes I'll make next year, but overall I'm calling this a great year of gardening.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

One Pretty Flower Girl

We had a wonderful weekend away this last weekend. We headed a few hours south to my in-laws house. Although everyone was excited for a little getaway, Audrey's enthusiasm had us all beat by a mile. You see, not only were we spending the weekend with her grandparents, but she was also the flower girl in the wedding of one of Bryce's closest friends growing up. Before this I don't think she had a concept of what a flower girl was, but as soon as we explained it, it was like a dream come true to her. 

When it came time to decide what to wear we consulted the bride and groom and their only request was something white, otherwise Audrey could choose. When I relayed that message to Audrey her reply was, "Great, I want a really, really long, and really, really, really poofy dress with a bow on the back and flowers." 


So twelve yards of tulle, one yard of satin, and six inches of chiffon later that is what she got. This was one of those trial by fire kinds of sewing projects. Much to my mother's chagrin, I didn't have any sort of pattern and just kind of winged it as I went. There are definitely a few imperfections, but luckily they weren't easily noticeable.


As soon as she put it on she said, "Mom, don't I look like a princess?" Success!

She was absolutely beautiful walking down the aisle and throwing the flower petals. It definitely brought a tear to my eye. And then she danced her little heart out at the reception. She stayed until the final songs were playing and went back to the house just beaming. She also came back with holes in her dress and tights from a fall and holes in her new shoes from running and dancing so much. All in all I think she had the perfect day. 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Hold Still and Smile

A couple of days ago I decided to attempt a very mini "photoshoot", using that term extremely loosely, with the kids. They are growing so quickly I didn't want this stage to go by without at least one good photo of them together. Ha! I should have just asked them to solve world peace, it might have been just as easy. No wonder photographers set the prices they do, I would say they earn every single penny of it.

Luckily enough, I think we might have gotten that one decent picture I was after, but we also got a whole bunch of "outtakes" too.

Things started well enough. Both of them at least attempted cooperation and a smile. Unfortunately, Owen also felt he NEEDED to have his hand on his face.

We decided to move things outside which Audrey translated as time for me to take pictures of her doing "cartwheels". As evidenced by this picture she is still trying to figure out just how to do a cartwheel.

Back inside Audrey started doing "princess poses", something she picked up after going to Disneyland and Owen refused to look at me.

But I saved the best for last. I LOVE this picture. While it isn't the beautiful, happy, smiley picture I was after, it sums up our life so perfectly right now... unpredictable, silly, and a whole lot of crazy. Just looking at it makes me smile.

Happy Monday!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Homemade Dusting Spray

A couple of years ago, after a bit of a healthy-living-free-range-chemical-free-back-to-nature-documentary binge, I decided that I wanted to give making my own cleaning products a try. I was pregnant with Owen and thought that we didn't need all those chemicals floating around the house. Plus, the idea of little hands getting hold of a strong cleanser and getting sick from it was also a big catalyst. 

It didn't take much googling to find a million and one different homemade cleaning "recipes". I gave a few a try and altered them to my liking and now I have a few that I've been using for the last year and a half. A couple of people have asked me for the recipes so I figured here was as good of place to share them as any. 

First up today is dusting spray. I've used this on both painted furniture and natural wood and it works great. And I LOVE that the recipe is so simple and ridiculously inexpensive. These are things I always have on hand so I don't have to worry about keeping something special around. 


I keep all my cleaners is spray bottles with the recipes right on the front. That way when I run out I don't have to try to remember the recipe, which, let's be honest is not going to happen, or have to go look it up somewhere each time I need it.

Doesn't it bother you that I capitalized the "t" in "tsp"? Yeah, me too! To bad I'm too lazy to change it. 

Here is the recipe, as it is a little hard to read in the photo:

Dusting Spray
(Shake well throughout use)

1 3/4  cup water
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 tsp olive oil

A couple of notes... I always use distilled water in the cleaners as we have hard water. Also, because oil and water don't mix you have to shake throughout using it to make sure you are getting a little of everything.

Let me know if you decide to go the homemade route, I'd love to hear what you think. Happy dusting!