Friday, February 26, 2010

Fever and Chills

 

Our Storyteller is an in-your-face, up-close and personal kind of guy - in a good way!  He touches my heart when he lays his hand gently on my arm when he talks to me!  The downside of  his tactile personality is that he touches everything and picks up germs - and gets lots of colds.  We have trained him in the fine art of hand washing - more than once!  We carry hand sanitizer and use it, but try not to overuse it. He still picks up germs - and shares them, usually with me. Part of this whole liver condition is a fragile immune system, and I often feel much worse than he does when we are suffering with the same germs.

This week started out pretty well, with Storyteller suffering from a light head cold and some achy-ness, but as usual, he was cheerful and active and able to do his work. Things got rough when he passed it on - our Historian has a sore throat but is able to work, and I've got the full blown nastiness, complete with fever and chills!  I am spending a lot of time sleeping. Today I am up and about, but barely.  I showered and stripped the beds, threw in a load of wash and decided a long nap was in order!  So, no tasty treat for our Company Girl Coffee or pictures of our week today, but we will soldier on!  Dreamer, who is gratefully well and holding down the fort here are home, has butter softening on the counter to make cookies and has kept us well supplied in 4 flavors of Jello, crushed ice, juice popsicles, and lots of water.  She is also keeping up with her schoolwork!  We might even be up to a quiet family night, but we'll see.  
I'm off to take another nap.

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Company Girl Coffee - Quiet joys

Welcome Company Girls and other friends!  I can hardly believe it is Friday again! It's been a pretty quiet week because of snow cancellations, but there have been some special blessings that I thought I'd share with you today!


We have been blessed with some terrific sunsets out the front window this week.  It is so pleasant to see the sun during the day and the sunset in the evening!  Have you noticed that the days are lengthening already? 

Our kitchen is a fragrant place these days!  Though I have not had the energy for much baking, we are enjoying the sweet fragrance of this lovely pink striped hyacinth - a gift from the Historian for Valentine's Day. It is like a sweet breath of springtime - especially welcome when we gaze at the foot of snow still on the ground.  I won't even talk about the snow white stuff in the forecast!

Another delight - bright cheery pink birthday flowers from a dear friend!  I love kalanchoes because they are prolific bloomers and have such wonderfully green almost succulent leaves.  They remind me of waxy begonias which I enjoy so very much in my summer garden!



Another delight for this week - something new to keep my hands busy while I listen to reading practice or while the kids work 'independently' but I need to stay available.  Mum brought another little bag of nice cotton yarn leftovers and I decided to try another teddy bear cardigan!  

I've been doing a lot of reading aloud to our Storyteller on the couch.  He has suffered with a mildly upset tummy and chills for three days this week.  Though he has remained his usual cheerful self, he hasn't been keen on doing much school work.  I push as far ahead as I dare and than dangle the 'reading carrot' to get through just one more subject!  Thankfully, he hasn't gotten too far behind and now we are way ahead on our reading schedule.  He is loving this book - and was very excited to learn that there are 5 in the series! Thank you Heather of Blackberry Rambles for the great reading suggestions!


Another fun part of the week was the long awaited arrival of our box of books.  The children have moved ahead pretty quickly with their school favorite subjects so it was time for another book order! It's almost like Christmas around here when new books come - because of course, there is always more than just 'school books' in the box!




I am so happy to say that Dreamer and I have walked every day this week - in home walking with Leslie Sansone  has been a blessing since getting out to walk with all the snow has been impossible.  Since our Storyteller was not up to walking with us, we've just been having fun walking the 2 mile each day together!  We tried the jogging mile on Wednesday, but though we both finished, we both felt it - in every muscle!  So, we'll try that again another time - maybe after we master the 3 mile! Spring training for Dreamer - softball is coming sooner than we think! For myself, I am walking for better fitness and the constant battle for weight loss. Thankfully, we both love walking!



This week I've been catching up on my mending - I even put in two new pants zippers, which I hate to do, but I was so pleased to get those garments off my sewing table!  We need to make a run to the quilting  fabric shop for a bit more fabric so that I can finish Dreamer's quilt top and I want my sewing table to be free and clear for when I am able to get that project completed!  She is anxious too!

I've been very tired after such a productive and fun time last week with Dad and Mum, but than I look at all of the things we've accomplished this week and I think we've done pretty well under the circumstances!  Today I was inspecting my lettuce and chive plants - they are so ready to go out into the garden  - the same garden that is under 12" of snow!!!  I was out with the shovel breaking up clumps of ice and throwing them into the path of sunlight - there is heat in those late winter rays and I have every hope that spring is just around the corner!

I do hope your weekend is a time of blessing for you and your family! Thanks so much for stopping by!


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Monday, February 15, 2010

The Simple Woman's Daybook

A big 'thank-you' to Peggy for hosting 'The Simple Woman's Daybook' each week! It's such a great way to start the week with a focus and reflect upon the goodness of God!
Be sure to click on the picture below to visit Peggy and see the other journal keepers!


FOR TODAY
Monday, February 15, 2010
Outside my window...
Snow on the ground, snow in the air!  We are expecting 4-7 inches of more whiteness today!  Many local schools are closed again, but not our home school!
I am hearing ...
Dreamer is getting at her schoolwork, but Storyteller is in bed with a rumbly tummy and a headache.  The snow is like a big silencing blanket - I can't even hear the cars on the road going by! 

I am thinking ... 
About my Mum and Dad - we had a good visit last week, but now I am missing them terribly.

I am thankful for...
Our home with it's well stocked pantry and freezer.  We are very amply provided for, and it is humbling.
I wish we had more milk and eggs on hand, but other than that we are well supplied.

I am praying for ...
Strength.  Last week was great, but we packed in as much as we could in just a short time with Dad and Mum, plus we had our AWANA Grand Prix on Saturday.  I stayed home and rested yesterday, but am still very tired today.

I am remembering ...
The fun of celebrating my birthday last week with Mum and Dad! 

I am wearing ...
My long denim skirt and warm thick tights, a deep sage green turtle neck and a waffle weave vest in sage.

I am going ...
Nowhere this morning, and if the snow is any indication, I'll be home for the day.  The roads are already snow covered and it is coming down fast. It's likely ballet will be canceled, and we will reschedule piano if necessary.
 
I am reading ... 
I just finished reviewing a couple of books for Dreamer to read for book reports.  I've been enjoying reading to Storyteller too, but I don't have anything new that I'm reading just for myself.
 
I am hoping ...
That we can get in and out of the driveway ... the drive is broken on our snow blower! Dad diagnosed the problem but wasn't able to get it repaired, so we need to get it to the shop and fixed ... if we can get out of the driveway!

On my mind ...
'He who hesitates is lost'
I'm very frustrated to find the 'perfect' set of bookcases we would like to organize our homeschooling supplies is no longer available. I am not usually a big IKEA fan, but this line is solid wood and a nice color and the dimensions were perfect for our small space!  I want two of  THESE and one of THESE !  We've been planning to buy  them since September and finally have the resources to go get them and now they are discontinued!
Plan A was built in - but the estimates were way more than budgeted for. Plan B was looking on Craig's List for something that would work - to no avail. Plan C was the three perfect IKEA pieces.  
Plan D ... yet to be formulated! Oh, for some basic woodworking skills and tools!

From the learning rooms ...
We are waiting for another box of curriculum from Rainbow Resource to get us up and going again.  For now, doing what we have and enjoying some relaxed days for Dreamer - Storyteller has no lack of things to do, but today he isn't feeling very well at all.

Noticing that...
Things are very quiet around here when our Storyteller is not feeling well!

Pondering these words...

1 John 4:10
Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

From the kitchen... 
I've got some chicken thawing for soup later, and we have leftovers in the fridge to use up.  I don't know when we'll get out for fresh veggies, milk and eggs, and I have not looked at the food fliers. We still have an abundance of pork in the freezer! 

I am creating ... 
We made the sweetest Valentines last week - Dreamer worked mostly on her own, and Storyteller needed help, but it was fun.  I have a long list of things to sew, but my mending pile is really out of hand, so I need to tackle that first and than get going on some other fun projects!

Around the house ...
We did a general clean after Mum and Dad left Saturday so things are well in hand.  I need to put away some things that Mum brought us and our bedroom is clean but I have a big pile of sorting and boxing up to do.  I need to get at that ASAP, but I've been waiting for the home school area bookcases because I plan to use the small bookcase that is currently our home school bookcase  in our bedroom to organize things there! Did you follow that rabbit trail? 
Mum was so wonderful to fearlessly tackle Mount Ironmore and she tamed that great pile!  I did some ironing Saturday an will try to be better at doing a 1/2 hour each day to keep up!  It is so nice to have everything clean, ironed and ready!

One of my favorite things ...
Having something new to wear, birthdays, family time and chocolate cake!  Thanks Mum!
 
A few plans for the rest of the week..... 
***All plans are 'Lord Willing' and 'Weather Permitting'*** 
Monday - Piano & Ballet
Tuesday - Art class for Dreamer
Wednesday - AWANA
Thursday - HomeSchool Co-op

From my picture journal ...

This little painting hangs above my kitchen sink during the winter months,
reminding me of growing up in Northern Ontario, Canada!

Have a great week!

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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Now, don't you worry about us!

I know that sometimes when I don't blog for a while some of my sweet friends get a bit worried about our little family, so I'm just dropping in to say we are just fine!  We have a lot of snow and more to come, accompanied by high winds and drifting, but all in all we are well provided for!  Our Historian works for the Wal*Mart of libraries so they rarely close - he's up to his usual routine!

Dad and Mum had a good trip with clear roads and arrived Sunday night.  Monday was busy with all of our usual stuff along with my annual physical and an orange and grapefruit run for the Historian.  Dad has been busy today resurrecting our old snowblower and running errands.  I've been doing school and making quick simple meals, and Mum has been tackling Mount Ironmore and trying to keep warm - bless her heart!

The kids are enjoying having Poppa and Grammy here, but were struggling with some bad attitude!  I guess they figured that'd be getting off school while Mum and Dad are here - and it doesn't help that the local schools have been closed for three days!  We've been staying up a bit later too and getting slow starts in the morning!  As you can see, when we do finally get through school - Storyteller is out loving the snow! Thankfully he is over his cold and can get out. We need to work on his snow fellow building skills - this was to be a Heron.  We are studying the rain forests and jungles of the world in social studies right now, so he's got birds on the brain! This snow is lighter than our last batch which is now frozen solid, so it is harder to mold into shapes!


I guess that is all for now!  Keep warm and well.

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Saturday, February 6, 2010

The difference of a few hours ...


and there is still more to come!


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Silence



We are enjoying the silence of our winter storm - the quieting blanket of snow muffles the sounds of everything, even the plow and sander.  The road is in decent shape, but everything has been canceled or postponed as we all dig out.  


The Historian is having a bit of trouble getting the snow blower going, but hopefully it will be running soon, since he has a request for a nice big fort building pile!  Both children are still sound asleep, but the Historian has been up and taking some pictures of our beautiful landscape!

I am enjoying my breakfast of chocolate brioche - inspired by Anna at Pleasant View Schoolhouse!  She made a rich bread dough and added chocolate last week - beautiful picture HERE. It looked good enough to eat!  Mine?  Not so photogenic, but yummy!


 Since I'm in the front room, this is my point of view!  Occasionally there are cars going by, but it is so quiet and peaceful - I can't even hear them!  With all the big windows in this room, it is a tad chilly, so I may have to take my tea and bread and go to the family room to enjoy the silent morning!  We are so blanketed, I may not even be able to hear the snow blower when it starts!


I hope you are keeping warm and well and that you enjoy the blessings of you weekend - 
whatever they may be!

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Friday, February 5, 2010

Company Girl Coffee & A Winter Storm!



Welcome!  I'm glad you could make it!  The roads are too not bad yet, but the sidewalks and parking lots are pretty slushy and slick!  I've got a pot of Creme de la Earl Grey on keeping hot but there are no fresh baked cookies to be had!  We're planning to bake a little later, but is seemed more prudent to get our errands taken care of this morning since we are anticipating 6-12 inches of the fluffy white stuff we love! We've been to the pharmacy, library and grocery for our fresh produce, and now we are home sweet home.  We thought to tie a rope from our house to the Historian's workplace this morning, but decided we'd just have to pray him home safe this evening!



This is the view from the furnace room window of our back patio - so pretty and inviting! I am afraid that this is going to be hard on our Storyteller, though, since he is just full of a cold and will not be able to spend long hours out of doors.  The snow is really quite pretty - but those big flakes hold lots of moisture and so it is sloppy and wet.  Great for snowman making, but almost a guaranteed soaking, even with great snow pants and  heavy coats!Short of wrapping him in plastic, I cannot contrive a way of keeping him completely dry, so he is in!  He hasn't even whined about it yet, so I think he is pretty under the weather.  He'll be more upset when he is better and it is gone without him having played in it!


If the weather doesn't delay our plans, tomorrow is our AWANA Grand Prix and the kids have been hard at work!  I found that using painter's tape on waxed paper makes for great peal and stick stencils for painting Storyteller's car - which is great because he is not good at the detail painting, but wanted a replica of Jeff Burton's 2010 racecar!  It's almost done now! Dreamer chose to copy Herbie the LoveBug, but the shape of her car is a little different. My car - dubbed the 'Funkmobile' - is pink 'tie dye', glittery, and a convertible, so that Flora (made from a wooden clothes peg) can enjoy the wind in her hair!  All we need now is wheels and that's a job for the Historian when he gets home!




As you can see, Dreamer lined them up by our verse of the week on the kitchen counter!  I smiled at your comments last week about our verse board!  It is just a dollar store chalk board that has been in our home forever!  It is hacked up (the snowflakes are a cover-up) and lacks a pretty frame!  Like many of you, I would like to walk into Goodwill and find the 'perfect' pretty frame to make into a kitchen chalk board, but in the meanwhile, my 'use what you have on hand' philosophy suits me just fine.  I used a 50% coupon at Hobby Lobby to purchase the chalk markers (they are pricey) and I just clean it off and put up a new verse every week or so, right in the kitchen where I can't help but ponder it while I work away making meals and tidying up!

Speaking of tidying up, that's what we need to be doing, along with some baking to fill that empty cookie jar!  Poppa has a flu bug, so things are up in the air as far as a visit from Poppa and Grammy, but we are going to be prepared in case Poppa has a fast recovery and is able to make their planned trip - even if it has to be postponed by a day! It is such a long trip, and with the variable winter weather, we have to hope for the best, but be flexible!

I hope your weekend is a blessing, whatever you find yourself doing!  Thanks for dropping by! Folks on our road are driving at a snail's pace, so do keep safe! It must be getting a bit slick out there!



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Monday, February 1, 2010

The Simple Woman's Daybook

A big 'thank-you' to Peggy for hosting 'The Simple Woman's Daybook' each week! It's such a great way to start the week with a focus and reflect upon the goodness of God!
Be sure to click on the picture below to visit Peggy and see the other journal keepers!


FOR TODAY
Monday, February 1, 2010
Outside my window...
sunshine!  Bare ground and a whole bunch of robins!!!!  My husband is sure that spring is on it's way!

I grabbed the camera for 'proof' since spotting the first robin is a fun game we play at our house!  The kids and I were the big winner this year since there were more than 15 on our lawn!
I am hearing ...
way too much about Batman and Robin!  The Historian let the Storyteller watch some really old episodes of Batman online and now he's enthralled!

I am thinking ...
superheroes are over-rated! Steadfast, caring husbands rate much higher in my book!

I am thankful for...
sleepy Sunday afternoons!

I am praying for ...
some fellow Company Girls who are struggling with various needs right now!  Rachel's chosen a wonderful 'Small Thing' to start off our month of challenges, and asked us to pray for one another!

I am remembering ...
that this is the first of the month and I have a whole long list of things we need to do! I did remember to give the septic tank it's treatment, but I have filters to change and other things to do! Better get to it!

I am wearing ...
a red turtle neck and blue hoodie with my comfy old jeans. Storyteller and I are going for a walk while sister has her lesson so I need to be extra warm.  I've been having trouble regulating my temperature and keeping warm as I struggle with fatigue.

I am going ...
to rush out the door for piano, ballet and errands later!
 
I am reading ... 
I just finished 'That Certain Spark' by Kathy Marie Hake and I am looking forward to her next book 'Serendipity' which is due out in August!  Wonderful 'brain candy' for when life gets too serious!
 
I am hoping ...
that this wonderful sunshine continues!  It energizes me even on days when my liver and I are not getting along well!

On my mind ...
I need to be working harder to take Deuteronomy 6:6ff more to heart and include more of the Lord in our everyday conversations with the children.

From the learning rooms ...
we are hard at work on a creative project! The AWANA Grand Prix is coming up quickly and we have cars to paint!  Other learning has taken a bit of a backseat, but as soon as the cars are done, we'll be back to work!  The Storyteller just began 'The Dark Ages' in history.

Noticing that...
the last wee bits of snow are no match for the sunshine!

Pondering these words...

Nanananana.... BATMAN! 

 Just being real here folks!

From the kitchen...  Are you ready for a laugh?  On our menu this month (and for the next 4 or 5 months) is pork, pork, pork and a side of ... pork!  Last weekend we picked up our freshly butchered and processed pork, and let me tell you - those hogs were FAT! 600 pounds of freshly frozen chops, bacon, sausage, hams, steaks, roasts, and hocks!  My oh my! You might say we are in antibiotic/hormone free 'hog heaven'.  Last time the hogs weighed in at 400 pounds so this was quite a shock!  Not surprisingly, the bacon is a bit more fatty this time ... we're going to have to talk to Farmer Nick and see what he's feeding his pigs! Can you see why I am praying for no power outages and considering how to squeeze a generator into the budget these days?
I did make yummy blueberry muffins for breakfast, but they are long gone! 

I am creating ... 
a plan for this week!  It seems like there is a lot of my plate and we are adding something new to the mix - Dreamer has longed for drawing classes for a long time and now has the opportunity to do just that!
 
Around the house ...
I need to clean the bathrooms and the floors need some care!

One of my favorite things ...
I always have trouble with this one, but I guess I would say having the right tool for the job is quite a blessing!  The kids are thrilled that I have the brushes and paints to make their cars for the Grand Prix. It's nice to be well supplied!
 
A few plans for the rest of the week..... a bit of cleaning for every room in prepartion for very special company Sunday, some catching up with Mount Ironmore, school, Art Class, AWANA, ballet, piano, Homeschool Co-op on Thursday and the AWANA Grand Prix on Saturday!  Next week we will be having a Valentine's Party too!

From my picture journal ...

I was a bit disappointed with my  Burpee Seed Starter trays at first- the pellets don't seem to fill the cells like I'd hoped at all - BUT when I transplanted the lettuce on Saturday, the roots were lovely and very hardy. Yeah Burpee!  My Poppa David loved getting seed from Burpee for his wonderful garden, so the gardener's tradition continues!

Have a great week!





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