Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What's Going on Around Here

Life has been full lately.  Some of the things we have been doing....

Bob has completed our third chicken coop.  We call it the Dawdi Haus because it is attached to Coop 2.  The oldest group of hens has moved in and seems to have settled in nicely.

It has 3 nest boxes and a nifty lid so that you can reach inside and get the eggs without going into the coop!
(He's so smart!)

He also has replaced our upstairs toilet, it broke!  So glad he is a handy fix-it man!!  I'll spare you the picture.....

Today he stained the back of the carport of our log home.  It was one of those jobs way down on the list.  But now it is done and looks great! 

Of course, he is puttering in what is left of the garden, considering the heat and excessive drought conditions. 

And, most importantly, Bob has had precious time to read the Bible.  God is teaching him more and more and he is soaking it up like a sponge! 

While reviewing some history books for the boys' schoolwork, he realized that his ancestors on his mother's side come down from the Pilgrims of 1620 and the Puritans that came over on the Winthrop Fleet in 1630! 
And that they wanted a godly life and religious freedom and were willing to put their lives on the line to get it!

The kids have all gotten new computers.  They were able to buy them with the money they earned from their businesses.  So far, Julia has gotten back into blogging, taught herself how to use Gimp and started a new site for free blog backgrounds.  (My new background is one of her free backgrounds!)  She is also my "right hand man-er-woman"!  She helps me so much around the house.

Mark has ramped up his schooling and is planning a new Lego movie with Steven. 

Steven has made a stop-motion animation movie about David and Goliath.  He is in the finishing stages and we are hoping for the premiere soon!  Then Mark and Steven plan to do a movie together. 

We are excited about some new places for the kids to sell their ebooks.  They are now "live" on The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Ebook Store!  Yay!  Click on the link and then search in "companies" for Warfare by Duct Tape and Jewels by Julia.  We have a couple other places in the works, more info on that later. 

They are also kept busy caring for our 26 new little chicks that I posted about last time.

Me, well, I have learned to continental knit.  I am basically a crocheter that dabbles in knitting.  But I find knitting to be very slow for me.  I watched this knitting video after someone suggested the continental style and I really like it!  It will take some practice to get really fast but I have it down now.  I love learning new skills even at my age! 

It has been a whole month that I have been trying a new way of eating.  A friend of mine has Fibromyalgia and she was greatly helped by eating this way.  I don't have Fibro, but I deal with Rheumatoid Arthritis.  Basically it is no sugar, no high fructose corn syrup and no hydrogenated oils or lard.  Do you know how many foods this cuts out?  The kind in a can or already processed?  Quite a bit.  So I have learned how to make my own refried beans, my own tortilla shells with whole wheat and ones from corn.  I have made muffins with honey instead of sugar.  I dragged out my old Sue Gregg cookbooks and voila!  it was all in there!  She has some great recipes if you want to keep it simple, from scratch and whole wheat, etc. 

I have been working hard to promote the kids's ebooks, fixing up websites and finding another convention for next year.  As well as plan and begin another school year with the boys. 

Dealing with our garden produce has been a learning curve for me this year!

It has been a great problem to have, pumpkins and squash, tomatoes and peppers.  Bob planted cayennes this year as well as jalapenos and green peppers and they have been prolific!!  So I will learn how to dry the cayennes and make a powder out of them.  They are too hot to eat fresh!  But I use the powder all the time to make our hotsie-totsie sauce (like Taco Bell sauce).  We've made lots of fresh salsa, too!

Today I washed about 5 dozen jars that were given to me.  I plan to can chicken soup when we butcher 3 old hens whose time has come. 

It is also time to buy groceries this week.  I plan menus for a month and grocery shop once a month.  I inventory all that I have in the pantry and freezer and then make out the grocery list.   Tomorrow is the big day to hit the stores.  I absolutely love doing it this way.  I save about 9 hours of my time every month by only shopping once in the month.  Occasionally, I'll stop in the store if there is a great BOGO sale or we need more produce. 

This has been an incredible time of learning to walk by faith.  In all areas of my life, I have to live by faith.  My health, my children, our finances, our businesses, everything is out of my control and firmly in God's hands.  I can't do anything to change these things except believe that God will make a way, show us the way to go and provide everything we need in the right time and the right way.  We are not just sitting on our hands, as they say, but doing all we can do.  But in reality, we can only trust.  God is faithful and true.  He will never leave us nor forsake us. 

So this is what has been going on in our lives.  What's new with you?
Leave a comment and tell me what new in your life.  I'd love to hear from you. 

Gotta run, Bob is patiently waiting for me to cut his hair! 

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