Monday, September 12, 2011

Solitude, Puttering & a few of my favorite things

Monday, the children back to school and momma's tired.  I've hardly spoken any words today and it's so nice.  Calm and quiet and good for my soul.  I've been spending these moments of solitude doing my favorite thing ~ puttering and enjoying the house in it's hushed state. 

I feel like it's really mine for a few worthwhile hours and then happily welcome THEM in once again.  It doesn't really feel like a home without THEM anyway. 
Puttering is fun isn't it?  Handling your favorite things and taking a good look at them!  Realizing a few things that aren't a favorite anymore and setting them aside to find a new home.  The pile of donations is growing and needs to be taken out. 
I love the process of editing.  Thoreau said "simplify, simplify, simplify."  This speaks to my soul!  Have a blessed Monday.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Soccer Jamboree

It's about time for a post about the boys!  Soccer season has officially begun and these two energetic boys are keeping us busy with soccer 4 days a week!  We started out with a bang, at the fields by 8:30am to notarize medical release forms and up for the 9am game.
Casey, who was on fire, scored 5 goals!  When I yell "Nice Casey!" & give him a thumbs up he gives me a little grin.  It's sweet with a little bit of "cool guy" mixed in.
Aiden was goalie for the first 2 halves of the 2 games he played.  He did awesome & even got an assist from the goalie position!  He kept both teams at bay so they couldn't score against us! 
Aiden is less aggressive than Casey when he plays but he is pretty accurate and he's also quick. 
Can you tell I'm a bit proud of my guys! 
It was fun to watch but quite exhausting and hot in the 85 degree weather.  Whew!  I'm glad we're back at home again!  I guess it could have been cold and rainy though and I personally will take the heat any day!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Memories with my girls

There's a funny thing about having two precious girls who bookend rambuctious boys in one family.  Time spent with each one is amazingly fulfilling and beautiful but in completely different ways.  This momma is feeling pretty blessed right now to say the least. 
Last night Anna & I had the most memorable evening together at a Taylor Swift concert.  Out on the town enjoying the lights, glitter and glamour of it all with my eleven year old girl.  (Well, first we stopped off for a burger ~ you know, kid food)
The show was impressive from the elaborate sets and special effects to the dancing and instrumental aspects.  It almost had a broadway theme.  Taylor made a point to come out into the middle and perform up close and personal to the crowd!  Anna was able to shake her hand as she came by in front of us! 
We both dressed up in our country best with cowgirl boots and such!  (She is even wearing a Taylor Swift dress!)
And then there is another kind of sweet, a kind of memory made of pure goodness and joy with all the simplicities of home.  A quiet morning after a dazzling night.   A gentle breeze and pretty light shimmering through falling leaves.  AND... a lovely angel adorned with curls and a pretty smile softly swaying on a swing, to and fro.
Goodness in the evening and goodness in the morn.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

An unusual 1st Day of School

This is a very normal photo of Casey eating a classic afterschool snack - it even says so on the bag.  Not exactly classic for our house (we rarely have chips here) but you know, classic for the rest of America! 
The day wasn't what I thought it would be though, isn't that the way it goes!
For starters it was super warm like in the 80's and it's only supposed to get hotter (very unlike the PNW). 
Second, I thought it was going to be quiet around here.... except Aiden was home sick (had a fever and sore throat last night).  Seriously missing the very first day?

Third, my husband came back and keeps giving me more work to do on top of working on taxes (extension), getting the kids set for school, payroll, a mountain of paperwork to deal with.... (what does he think I am a secretary or something? he he)  I thought I was just the caterer's wife. 
Hmm... instead I'm working my tail off!

Finally, seeing the stress written all over my disapointed face (because I thought I was going to enjoy his company and rest a bit) he took the two kids out of the house for a little while so I could work in peace.  Once I was able to get something done I ran errands by myself (which hasn't happened in a long time since he has worked practicly every day since the beginning of July.)  Whew!

Then the children came home with 85 papers for me to complete and sign (this part I knew to dread expect) and both boys had homework (they managed to get Aiden's to me thru Anna, Yay!) 

Is the universe upside down for anyone else besides me?  Or maybe I just thought school starting up would be less work somehow?
Any compassion would be appreciated!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Caterers Wife

In preparing for the in~house caterer to arrive home from a rather large event with tons of produce to overflow the fridge ~ the caterers wife (you can guess who that is) got to work in the kitchen today to make room.  This is a fabulous recipe I found when my older kiddos were tiny like below miss mouse!
I have made it enough times that I use whatever ingredients I like together and only follow basic proportions these days. 
Here it is:
Blueberry Gingered Granola Bars

1 1/4 c. toasted walnut halves
1 1/2 c. puffed rice cereal
1 1/4 c. oats
1 c. dried fruit
1/2 c. oat bran or wheat germ
3 T. crystalized ginger, fine
1/4 c. (or desired amount) semi sweet chocolate chips
1 c. brown rice syrup
1/4 c. natural cane sugar
1/2 t. salt
1 t. vanilla extract

Oil a glass baking dish and set aside.

In a large bowl:  Combine first 6 ingrediants & toss well.

In a small saucepan combine the next 3 ingrediants & boil for 4 minutes gently stirring until thickened.  Remove from heat & stir in the vanilla.  Pour the sauce into the dry mixture and toss.  Pour into the prepared dish and let set up for 45 minutes before cutting into bars.  

Delicious & nutritious, right in time for the first day of school!

Whilst playing in the kitchen (I mean working very hard) I also got to changing around the countertops a bit and added in this little shelf to display some of my favorite little kitcheny things. 

If you know me very well at all you would know that the only way I really get inspired to do a clean is by moving things!  My friends always tease that they have to look around every time their here to see what has changed! 
Anyway, that is much of how I spent this Sunday afternoon!  How did you spend yours?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Farmers Market

We spent the morning at a local Farmers Market, just the four kiddos and I.  Before you go thinking "Oh how lovely for a Saturday morning..." let me just say it didn't last long.  I think I forgot to give the "if you aren't listening and having good attitudes we wont stay" chat!  Anyway before we made it out of there I managed to grab a delicious farm fresh breakfast burrito, a lovely bouqet of dahlias and a handmade soap to try.  And the best part of course ~ the inspiration!
I came back wanting to get to work making over the front porch ~ the window boxes and general arrangement of everything!  Here is the finished look until the pumpkins start coming out and then those will have to be worked in also!
Chrysanthemum's and Kale, Chickens and Pumpkins and little violets!  Delight!

Welcome friends, welcome fall!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Garden Pests & other notables

These two flew the coop and proceeded to bed down in my newly planted lettuce patch.  Alas, the entire fall planting of lettuce seeds is no more.  We came home from a lovely time at the beach to a sad state of affairs in this garden bed.
On another note, the artichokes are coming along nicely! 

And my herb garden was happily put to bed just before we left for our little trip.  I added in some treatments from around the farm!  Some ashes from the barbeque, some coffee grounds from the kitchen, some old chicken bedding & manure from the coops (at least they are good for that!) and finally some leaves from the leaf pile my children already started!
To answer a few questions from the last garden post:
~ Biennial means carrots have a two year growing cycle.  The first year you can eat them!  Then if some are left in the ground for a second year they are not for eating they produce seeds and you can collect the seeds!
~  Yes, I do can & freeze and this year I'm also dehydrating.  We have a catering business and many times we have so much produce left we can't possibly eat, can, or freeze it all in time.  We have one of our biggest events ever this weekend so I bought a deydrator in time to make sure nothing goes to waste!
~ I didn't grow sweet potatoes this year but we grilled some from our local farmers market and I found out how delicious and also nutritious they are.  Sweet Potatoes are a must for my 2012 garden plans!  I am also going to add in garlic, shallots & green beans! 
Please do comment about your gardens!  I love to hear tips and ideas and successes!

About Me

My photo
wife & mother of 4 beautiful children, 2 girls & 2 boys. small business co-owner; catering and a restaurant/alehouse, writer, gardener, lover of freedom and humility found in christ, small town enthusiast, book reader, admirer of noble truths, beauty and love