Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Craftiness

I finally posted something on the crafty blog: James' backpack. It came out nice, even if it did kill my sewing machine.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

First Day!



I am SO HAPPY that James did AWESOME in school today! I was afraid he was going to be a big, crying mess when I dropped him off, but he wasn't. We have talked about school so much that he can recite the routine in his sleep. I think that helped. I have been praying for weeks that it wouldn't be as bad as VBS. James had quite a few people praying for him and school, and we talked about that on the way home and decided that God had helped James to be brave. Yay! I kept waiting to the breakdown and it never came. Not last night, not this morning. Instead it was a very excited boy packing and repacking his backpack, and reminding me to hurry up because we had to get to school!! When we got there, he gave me a hug and kiss, and walked right to his table and sat down. I left quickly so he wouldn't have a chance to panic, and he did great. He told me he cried a little bit when I left, but then he was fine. I thought I would cry, and I did get a little teary eyed walking out thinking about how my baby is in school. But I was also happy for him. He is so excited to learn; he wants so badly to read. We have been working on sounds and letters at home and I know he is ready to take off! As we were walking away from the school, Katie said she was sad for James. I told her that it wasn't sad, that James was going to get to learn a lot of new things. After thinking about that, she said 'I'm not sad for James. I am weaaally, weally pwoud of him.' (Katie translation: really, really proud!) Me too!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Back In Business

Despite the weather people forecasting the apocalypse, we are still here. The end of the world did not come, although I heard from my neighbor that there was a very long line of cars waiting to get their morning coffee at Dunkin Donuts this morning. We lost power overnight and up until about 1:30. Hopefully it stays on! We had tornado warnings, hurricane warnings, tropical storm warnings, areal flood warnings, flood warnings, and a state of emergency. We didn't get the winds as bad as they predicted, but there are a lot of fallen trees and the creek is REALLY high. We had already had an excessive amount of rain in August, and now they hit the record in Philly with 19.1 inches of rain so far this month. Crazy! It takes two years or more to get that much rain in Grand Junction!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

It's True

The end of the world must really be here. They are closing Wawa's* for the hurricane. What'll we ever do???

**Wawa is a very popular covenience store/gas station that sells hoagies and coffee and stuff. There is basically a Wawa on every corner.

Friday, August 26, 2011

There's A Storm A Brewin'

Apparently there's a wee bit of a hurricane coming our way. There is mass panic in the streets (sort of) and plans to evacuate, shut down, re-route, etc.. I had to run out to get a few things we were out of, and Jeff informed me that I needed to go NOW. I mean, I know we are getting a big storm, but NOW? Right now? He told me that he couldn't even get gas on the way home because there was a line out the gas station and down the highway. Someone from his work had gone to the store and couldn't find batteries and other emergency supplies. When I went to BJ's, nearly everyone was buying bottled water and batteries. It'll be interesting to see what happens. Hopefully its not too bad. I think we'll just hunker down and watch from the window.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Pictures of Israel





A few months ago my parents went to Israel. I have been working on organizing their pictures into a photo book and thought it would be fun to post some pictures here. These are just a few of the 900+ pictures they took on their trip! It is pretty cool to be able to visualize these places now when am I reading my Bible. The two things that stood out to me the most were how green things were, and how the houses were all made of stone. Stone walls, floors, and sometimes even ceilings. The rooms were made narrow enough that slabs of stone could be laid across the top for a roof.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

This Is Totally Random But....

I was looking over at my sidebar and noticed that y'all have gotten quite the smorgasbord of blog topics lately, there's been produce and poultry, a Communist professor, and a scuffle with a possum. With some cute kids thrown in for good measure! Its a wonder you all keep reading! :)

Garden


The garden is doing well this year, with the exception of my squash. I am kind of stumped on that one, because squash is generally easy to grow. I couldn't resist digging up a few of my purple potatoes, just for kicks. This is the first year I've done potatoes. Guess what? I boiled those suckers up and ate them all by myself. I didn't even share. ;) We've also got a surplus of peppers and tomatoes around here, which is quite nice. I had a tomato sandwich for breakfast this morning. Mmmm! Now I've got to fire up ye old canner and get cracking! For the record I am at about 175 jars o' fruit-and-veggie goodness so far. (pickles, jam, fruit syrups, BBQ sauce, tomatoes, jam, pickled peppers, more jam...) This winter is looking tasty!



Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Farm



We joined our CSA again this year. We go every Tuesday morning to pick up our share, and do the U Pick crops. It is always so much fun, even though the kids have taken to complaining that it's farm day again!!! Then they go and roll in the dirt and all is well in their worlds. Oh, and they pick ground cherries...lots of them. I don't really care for ground cherries but they love them and will sit there and pick them up, unwrap and eat them.


Tyler grazes indiscriminately, sampling green tomatoes, unripe berries, and the semi-rotten tomatoes that fall from the vines along with everything else. I try to keep an eye on my basket because once he finds it, he will plop down and help himself to whatever looks good to him. He won't really eat cherry tomatoes at home, but he will eat them at the farm. Go figure!


Eureka! I've hit the jackpot!!


Beautiful little helper, isn't she?


Sungold Tomatoes: deeeeelicious!

Between the farm and my garden, I feel like eating in the summer is such an extravagance. I can eat as many fresh tomatoes as I want, for breakfast, lunch and dinner if I want. Even though we are rolling in tomatoes right now, I will miss them when they are gone. For now, I will enjoy my produce drawers full to the top with lots of yummy produce and try to fill up my freezer and pantry before summer runs its course.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Some Days.... (**Warning*** Whiny Post Ahead)


Some days I wonder why I bother to try and accomplish anything. This is one such day. Since we got back from camping, James and Katie have been on nap strike. Hello! Don't they know that this is necessary for my sanity?? Now James, he is getting old enough that he might not need one anymore. I am OK with that, if he takes a quiet time instead. His idea of quiet time is not exactly quiet sometimes. Due to camping and no naps, the last few days he has been very whiny and tired. Katie too. We had to run a few errands this morning, which was met with much wailing and gnashing of teeth by James. He wanted to go out to the store that he wanted to go to, but not to go to the place I needed to go. I told him we were going both places, which led to more wailing. We hit Walmart, which was tolerable. Then, we went to the mall (which I try to avoid). Tyler refused to ride in the stroller. OK. He can walk. And, he can run. Until he trips, falls and chips his two front teeth. Yes, both of them. Although not as big a chip as Katie's, but still!!! What's up with my kids and their teeth?! So, I pick him up, carry him, then he wants down again. He decided to live up to his nickname, the Terrorist, and that ended up with us leaving the store promptly and the kids crying because they wanted to look around. I herded my whining, crying children through the mall and into the car, took them home where we've been ever since. Here's to a better day tomorrow!

When Your Teacher Is A Communist

Jeff has been taking a summer class from a professor that is a complete nut job. During the first class, he talked at length about his political views and criticized Obama for being too conservative. By the second or third class, it became clear that he is, according to his own description, a Communist/Socialist in his views. He spent a good length of time bashing America, and white people, and how they repress everyone else, mainly black people and women. He used derogatory terms and profanity to describe Americans who fought to establish this nation. He also talked about how children should not look up to their own fathers, rather to sports figures and super heroes. Guess what?! This isn't even a class about politics. He just uses the class as a platform to rant, rave and show bizarre and inappropriate movies so he doesn't have to teach. One student actually suggested that they watch a certain (very strange) movie and offered up his Netflix account. The teacher agreed, and they then spent the rest of the class watching some twisted and pointless movie. Originally, he had said that their grade would be based on two papers. A student suggested that they only have to write one paper, and he immediately agreed. So, their whole semester's grade is based on one paper. The kicker? As long as everyone puts in some sort of effort, no matter how meager, they are all getting A's, even the kid who was busted for plagiarism!!!! The moral of the story? When your teacher is a communist/socialist, you will get an A whether you deserve it or not.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Camping: The Final Installment (Phew!!!)


At the boulder field

At this point, I think only the adoring grandparents are interested in more camping photos, but here goes, and I promise this is it! :)


Katie jumped from rock to rock, and given her reputation for less than stellar coordination, it was a cringe a minute for us.

James showcasing the sign, all while dutifully keeping his leg straight!


Spotted on the way to camp, the rare species 'Towerus Cell Phonia,' indigenous to the PA highway corridor. Seriously! Did they really think that it was going to blend in with anything? Gotta wonder what people are thinking sometimes.


Tyler the Mud Magnet



Trying to catch minnows and tadpoles; I caught one tadpole for them to see


Tyler inspecting Jeff's work

Bright eyed and bushy tailed


The boulder field is about 1400 feet long in the middle of the woods. Amazingly, it is about 10 feet deep and there is a stream that runs underneath it. If you walk out toward the middle you can hear it. We didn't go because of James' leg.


Scary!!!


Staying up late


Marshmallows!


Marshmallows are very messy. The stickyness, combined with dirt and soot made for some filthy kids!


The second day of our trip, James was running and tripped and fell and split open his knee really bad. Like probably would've gotten stitches bad. I was on the fence about whether to try and find a place to take him, and Jeff wanted to bandage it up and see what happened. I am happy to say it is healing up nicely. We've had him keep his knee as straight as possible since then so as not to put pressure on the wound.

Dr. Jeff busts out a makeshift splint. It didn't go over well. It stayed on for about 3 seconds. Fortunately, James has been a trouper through the whole thing. I'm glad we had the stuff needed to clean him up and bandage it. Otherwise we would have taken him for sure.


Katie and Tyler playing in the dishwater. Tyler kept stirring it up and saying 'Making' very proudly. I am not sure what he was making, but it kept him entertained!


There was a sand beach there and Tyler spent his time literally wallowing in the sand, sticking his head in it, and floundering about.


Warm sand






James once yelled 'Hey, Mom, look at those boobies!!' and I had to correct him. Buoys, not boobies. True story. Fortunately he has since worked on his pronunciation.



Wondering how far out he can go without a) scaring Mom to death and b) scaring the jeebers out of himself






We should do this everyday, Ma!


On our way home

Monday, August 15, 2011

Camping, Continued


Katie playing with a worm she and Tyler found...


I am not sure if the worm survived all the love


I bet that worm didn't know what hit him! I'm pretty sure it was the first and last time it'd ever encountered a creature in a pink tutu!


Tyler was even more fascinated by the 'nakes' and would sit and dig them up with his grubby little hands. We told him they were worms, not snakes, but nevertheless, he insisted excitedly that they were 'nakes!'
Hey, look! The Beverly Hillbillies have moved in!


This was the view from our campsite

This picture cracks me up! James and his little caterpillar friend. The angle makes James' nostrils look downright cavernous.


More 'nakes!' I love this picture. Tyler and his inquisitive old man expression.


One of the gazillion caterpillars we encountered


The plight of Katie: her pants just won't stay up.


Here, Mom! A picture of me. I hope this qualifies :)


Enjoying the scenery near our camp


Checking out the caterpillar (Have you noticed I have a thing about photographing hands yet?)


Going through a 'secret passageway' in the rhododendrons


Sunlight through the branches


Katie apparently shares Jeff's fearlessness about heights, which in fact, adds to my fearFULLness. I would be happy if my children kept a conservative 10 feet away from any drop-off, thankyouverymuch!!!

We found a large rock field, thanks to satellite pictures on Jeff's Blackberry. Technology these days, it can be very useful. The rock fields came about by lots of freezing and thawing.


The intrepid explorers and their trusty guide


Wild low-bush blueberries everywhere. No wonder the bears like living there!


My Tevas. A certain someone likes to bust on me for these, saying things like 'Uh, 1990 called and it wants its shoes back.' But alas, I don't care!!! They are comfy and sturdy and good for what ails ya.

A boulder pile in the middle of the woods


Look! We climbed the mountain! We did it!


We decided that we should have set our tent up in this clearing we found. The moss was softer than most carpet!

And tomorrow, the last installment of camping pictures, also known as the "Megan can't narrow it down so she's posting a zillion pictures" post.