Wednesday, July 30, 2014

A week in snippets

Tuesday-spent the entire day with a girlfriend sans my wee ones. Ummmmmm yeah, hello adult conversation. Only took me a couple hours to get the hang of it again, but no worries, I found my stride soon enough. Oh, and the best part, WHIPPETS! Is anyone else obsessed with these dark chocolate covered, fruit filled, marshmallow clouds of deliciousness?

Wednesday- Yes, Kaleb did have to drive the kids around in a rain deluge while I got my hair redone for the second time in two days. I told you, I am not good with hair change, but have no fear its back to looking the same as it did before, minus half an inch. Oh yeah, and the electricity went out midway. So there I am,  foil all over my head and a crowd of beauticians holding their cell phone flashlights over me saying things like, "do you think it's finished?" "Does it look too yellow?" good times, good times.

Thursday- We are officially out of groceries, and I wonder can we survive off of meat and whippets. Watch out people, this is not good for my hanger.

Friday- Went out on a swanky date night with friends. When, oh when, will I stop dressing like a teenage wannabe hippie. I think it's time, but I'm just not ready.

Saturday- Another date night. Had the opportunity to go to a local coffee shop and hear my amazing brother do a gig. Was totally looking the part, feeling uber cool and young, out late listening to music. That is, until he played a song he wrote about my grandparents and I fell to pieces. Here, take my cool card back please, I don't deserve it.

Sunday- Wanted to stay in bed all day, in my pajamas, laying next to my lovey, and watch an entire season of something funny from beginning to end. Possibly eat just a few more whippets. That is  NOT what happened.

Monday- It's Monday, enough said!

Tuesday- Everybody took a nap. Really, does it get any better? Followed by a swim and we finally have the beach set up so it's much more fun. Topped it off with a bonfire where we roasted hot dogs and made s'mores. I love my little family. Forever and Ever.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Love you song

Do you ever get asked so many questions by your wild ones in one day, over and over and over, until you just start singing all of your replys to try and throw them off? Hoping maybe they will laugh or at least pause and give you just a moment of peace? I do this a lot. It's actually a trick I learned from my brother. He used to do it when we were growing up. Probably for the same reasons:)

Anyway, I was using this tactic on my crazies the other day, and somehow a little love song was born out of it. Funny how that happened, as I don't think thats the feeling I had at the time. Positve projecting maybe? Oh well, the song has endured. The kids love it and beg me to sing it all the time and it's even turned into our goodnight ritual that I must sing and dance to before bed. Yes, I said dance. They like an event, an entire performance with opera voices and classical ballroom. It's really something to see. The words go like this…

I'll love you in the mornings and in the afternoons.
I'll love you in the evenings,
and all throughout the moons.
I'll love you to the heavens, to the bottom
of the sea
and I will keep on loving you 
for all eternity.

Sweet right? Anyone want to help come up with some new verses? They are really wanting a longer show:)

Monday, July 28, 2014

date night and a peach

Thanks to some wonderful family members, Kaleb and I have gone on more dates this past week than we have in the past two years. It has been so totally dreamy. Any uninterrupted time spent with my man is going to be great!

Last Friday we were offered a night out. Excitedly, we made reservations at a fancy restaurant and planned to treat ourselves right nice. It happened to be the greatest day of the summer, weather wise. Clear, crisp, unseasonably cool, it beckoned us to come out and play. So we scrapped the fancy date altogether, ran back in the house to put on some comfy shoes and headed out to enjoy the afternoon. First stop, the gym. I know what your thinking, lame right? Nay, it was awesome! It's in a big warehouse so all the doors were thrown open and the breeze was filtering in. We always have all four wild ones with us at the gym, and they just toodle about and play beside us, but to go just us. Well, it was fine! Next, we went and grabbed a quick bite. The restaurant we chose has a super quaint atmosphere, the kind of place that inspires wanderlust, and travel plans. We played darts while we waited and spoke of secrets and dreams. After dinner we borrowed some rackets and hit up a nearby court. The last time we had played tennis we were in that romantic phase of being wildly in love, yet refusing to admit it to ourselves or anyone else. "We're just friends" we'd claim over and over! Don't you just love situations like that? When your face to face with a memory, and you can see yourself then as just a kid, and now, here you are- years later, happily married with four kids, and see where life has brought you.

After a hilarious joke of a tennis match, we went on a walk and found ourselves at a little coffee shop where we shared delicious treats of the chocolatey nature before wandering hand in hand back out in the fading glow of evening.

It was hands down, the best date I can recall in so long. Our only goal had been to not end up at the grocery store or running some sort of errand, which somehow seems to be how it always ends up for us. So being outside and doing something active together was perfect. I love this man of mine, he is so good!

As for the peach, well, I got a couple hours alone with my baby bug on Saturday and it was divine. We took a little nap together and then sat outside, soaking up the sunshine as we shared a giant peach. I took a bite, then she got a bite. We chattered away in between like the kindred spirits we are, at least until she decided she needed to hold it by herself. Ain't life sweet!

Thursday, July 24, 2014


We suffered another loss here on the farm this week, and it left us with our two week old bull calf motherless and our heads spinning. I don't know though, maybe Kaleb and I have finally settled in. We've stopped questioning whether this is some kind of sign or asking all the why's. I think we've come to a place of acceptance, that this is simply life. You will have setbacks and complications, things will not always go as hoped or planned. That's ok though, it's all part of the adventure. We can both say that this time we had fun learning how to cope.

Neither of us knew the first thing about what to do with this calf. In our minds all we saw was a long stretch of bottle-feeding this calf, and it honestly didn't look like the best option for the calf or us. So, with a little advice from a great mentor, we stepped waaaaayyyy outside the box and tried something a little bit different.

First thing we needed to do, was find one of our mamas that had a calf around the same age. Next we narrowed it down to the cow with the best milk supply and overall mothering capabilities. Once our selection had been made, Kaleb used some new found rodeo skills and was able to place large dog collars around both of the calves necks. From there, he hooked a foot of chain between them, so where one went the other had to follow.

I could have watched all day, it was ridiculously entertaining. They would glare at each other, run and pull in opposite directions, be in a total standoff one minute, then buddy up to pester another calf the next. That poor mama was so confused and not one bit pleased, but it didn't take her long to realize that if she was going to nurse her calf, well then, she was going to have to nurse both.

From what we had heard and researched, cows and calfs run mainly off scent, as far as knowing who belongs with who. So, after that new calf got a little of the new mammas milk running thru him, he started smelling more like her own, and gradually she began to accept him. After a few days we let them free, and now that sweet calf has a new mamma, and a brother. It's getting to stay with the herd and grow strong with fresh milk.

It felt great! Learning something new, not accepting the norm but pushing for something better. To not let it bring us down but use it as a positive learning experience, and to have just one minute of success.

It was udderly amazing! sorry just had to:)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

fearlessly four

Having a four year old is my fave, especially this one. It's just a great age. They are out of the terrible twos, which most mothers will tell you is really the terrible threes, and they seem just on the cusp of being a big kid. To me, it's an age to hold onto, to soak up every stinkin moment, because in a blink their little  toddler type phase is over. Here are just a few things about my "Ice Man" that I hope to remember.

1. He says, "I love you like a love song." A lot. I'm quite sure he's heard this ole Selena Gomez hit one time, but this line stuck. Hilarious! He will yell this out at you from across a pond, a top the diving board at swim lessons, from his chair in time out. All throughout the day, and it is fantastic!

2. He still loves to be held, and cuddled, and smooched. He walks in every morning, arms held out and says, "I just need you to hold me." No matter how busy I am, I must stop and hold him, for I fear this won't last much longer.

3. He is funny. Legitimately funny. He says the best things. Example- I'm telling them to listen to their swim coach and be sweet and he says, "and not put our fingers in his belly button." What? yes of course, please do not put your fingers in his belly button- I thought that was a given. It's comments like this all day. He's horrible to discipline, because he always manages to make us laugh, and lets face facts, he is ridiculously beautiful.

4. He is not too cool for anything, everything you do is awesome, and he's vocal about telling you so. Could be how well you cooked, or how pretty he thinks you look. It should also be noted that this kid cannot whisper or talk quietly, his normal inside voice is a full on yell. It's all very fun!

5. We sometimes call him "Frumpers". I don't think it's a real word and I'm not sure how this term came about, but it's definition seems to be a mix between grumpy and pouty. He is frumpy often. Every movement becomes exaggerated, shoulders slumped, bottom lip  fully out, whiny voice. It can be frustrating, but it's also kinda great. 

6. But, my very favorite thing, is he still wears pajama sets. There is just something so deliciously yummy about a little one in matching pjs. It screams wrap me up and hold me tight, and I am. Holding on to every moment, enjoying it whole heartedly, but also knowing that five is amazing too, and that's comforting.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A beauty to behold...

We have been making small steps into homesteading. Although, I'm not really sure what all that word encompasses, or when you know you've finally achieved it, but still, check this out…

Two freezers filled to the brim with meat we raised and processed ourselves! I think that's a pretty big deal, and isn't it lovely!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Miracles and Traditions…

As legend has it, my Dad brought a silver bracelet home with him from a stint in Africa with the peacecorp. Years later when I was born, he carefully placed that bracelet on my wee baby wrist and there it has resided all these years. The only exception being the two times it has fallen off. 

The first time it simply got caught, opened up and fell off in a pool while I was swimming. I was eight years old at the time and it was not too traumatic, but the second time, well that is quite a story…

On a family trip to the lake a few years ago, Kaleb and I and my mom and dad rented a boat for a day of water skiing, swimming and tubing. The weather was perfect, the sunshine strong and overhead, warming our bodies to the core. Without a care in the world, Kaleb and I hopped on an inner tube for a little joyride. We started gaining speed, wind whipping us in the face, when it flipped and we tumbled into the deep. My bracelet somehow got caught and down it went, covered up by the dark murky water, sinking to the bottom of the lake. No sooner had the reality of this loss set in, than the sky went from bright to ominous.  It seemed as soon as that bracelet touched down, everything broke loose. Dark clouds came over head, rain started pounding down, thunder boomed and lightning struck all around us. 

Now I have never and hope to never act this way again, but I was beyond crushed, completely heartbroken. I was screaming, wailing. Kaleb had to grab my still crying self and swim me to the boat, push me in and get us to land, quickly.

In a strange sort of way I felt my identity had been lost. I had envisioned myself a wise, wrinkled old woman still wearing my beautiful silver treasure, the bracelet remaining a part of me and my story. My parents, obviously sad too, as it had been a part of all of us, decided to hire a diver. Dick the Diver to be exact. For $50.00 he and his 10 year old nephew set out in search, with their only source for direction being, "somewhere on this 1/2 of the lake!" 

Now, I am absolutely an optimistic, glass half full kind of gal, but this did not seem like a very realistic find.  Dick the Diver told us that he had found plenty of fishing rods, various boating accessories, and even a set of car keys but all of those had been close to shore. Not to mention, the owners of those items had a pretty good idea where they had dropped. Even with all this, I waited hopefully in the boat as Dick and his nephew disappeared below the surface. About 20 min in, up pops the nephew, and he's holding my bracelet! 

On the ride back to shore Dick's nephew tell's us how poor the visibility was down there. He could only see about a foot in front of his face. A ray of light from the surface caught his attention and when he followed it down it was shining on the bracelet which was resting gracefully atop a rock. Miracle? Yes, for me, I believe so.

I have carried on the tradition with both my girls. I debated whether it was a good idea, after all, mine has caused me quite a bit of trouble not being willing to take it off. But in the end, I knew I had to. It's a story, something unique to pass on, a beautiful moment. Thus far, theirs have stayed on too. Aussie is just beginning to notice that it's special and I can see her becoming attached also. I love to think how long it could last, how many generations this tradition could pass through. It's all so romantic, and lets face facts, we could all use some more of that.

Friday, July 18, 2014

the winner is...

Congratulations to Morgan Smith!! 

To claim your freshly picked moccasins email me at with your color/size selection, and shipping info.

Big thanks to everyone who stopped by, for all the kind comments and sweet encouragement. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

It's Complicated...

The farm and I are fickle friends. I sway, back and forth. Thinking it's the loveliest place around one moment, to really not liking it so much the next. Let me be clear, I completely and totally realize what a blessing this place is and I am humbly grateful, but like everything in life, my feelings for it are ever changing, cyclical, and always evolving. As of late, I've not been such a big fan.

Let me explain, farm life can be kinda hard. For one, it can be a little lonely out here. You're far away from everybody and I can go days with out seeing anyone. If Kaleb weren't out here with me, well, I just couldn't do it. Also, if you have a penchant for being easily overwhelmed, which I do, then it is doubly difficult. Not only are you cleaning, care taking and up keeping your house and yard, but you've got acres of land that is all too quickly becoming overgrown and gradually going back to its natural wild state. There is a lot that is demanding of your attention, time and pocketbook. It can be a heck of a lot of pressure trying to keep it all together and hopefully improving it, knowing someday this will belong to your children. Also, and here's the kicker, we're relying on animals, grass and good weather. Pretty much everything is out of our control.

These are the times, when I want to pack up, move to a one bedroom apartment in a huge city for a few months. Have nothing to clean or take care of but a few square hundred feet, be wholly surrounded by people and crowds and gain some serious perspective.

But then, you have a week like this one. One filled with promises of summer fun on the banks of a pond fishing, or running thru tall fields wild and free playing hide and go seek. Moments of watching my wilds adventure and explore and knowing deep down that this is where it's at. Life is happening here on the farm. We top it off with a drive thru the fields, windows down, music blaring and joy and freedom wash over me and I happily allow it.

and the piece de resistance- a newly contrived swimming hole.

Alright fine, you win, I do love you!

p.s. Don't forget the giveaway closes tonight, so leave a comment on mondays post for a chance to win a pair of seriously cute moccasins from freshly picked. Winner will be announced tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014


It's happening…

She is so very close and I cannot stop it.

My baby is almost, just ever so close to walking. It's ridiculously cute and she is oh so amazing, but please time- won't you stand still, just for a little bit.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

How does your garden grow...

Gardening has been a fairly new venture for our family. We did our first one about three years ago. It went so well and we had the best time working in it. Unfortunately, it seems it was a bit of beginners luck. So, this spring I set out strong. It was going to be the year of the garden, I just knew it! I decided we needed to go a little bit bigger since there wasn't mushroom in our previous garden (see what I did there, its good right?)
Kaleb dug me up a nice big plot, right smack dab in the middle of the field. My heart was soaring, I had visions of me out working that beautiful soil in a long flowing eyelet dress and a big floppy hat. Sounds realistic, huh? 

I digress. As it turns out a garden cut out in the middle of the field, is really just good for growing more grass and maybe a few snakes. It has not been romantic at all. I do not carrot all for weeding, and this year has been more then I can handle. It has totally and completely squashed my gardening spirit.

It has however bean an ok year for kale, and I yam loving having a few fresh veggies (I could go all day here people, settle in.) Good, home grown goodness, fresh from your garden, cannot be beet.
With a little sass from my hubby the other night, he tried to make me admit that I don't like gardening. I stand by the fact, that indeed I do enjoy it. Just in a nice clean area, that's beautifully manicured and looks like it should belong on the cover of a magazine- whats wrong with that, am I asking too much? 
Obviously, I still have lots to learn and lucky for Kaleb, I have drawn up a whole new layout for next years garden. I'm thinking raised beds.

Peas, lettuce pray it goes better! 

Monday, July 14, 2014

thank you, hello, and a giveaway...

This thing called a blog is kind of surreal. It's a strange, but oddly beautiful space to create and collect. I have been at it quietly, for a measly four weeks now, and have sort of loved it. When I began last month I only told my husband, my mom, and my in-laws. It was my little secret. A chance to see if I would even enjoy it, and to slowly adjust to being out in the great big blogosphere. Now I realize, lots of people have blogs, but for me it's a really big deal. I am extremely private, and putting myself, our family, and my heart out there, is truly terrifying. 

Honestly though, I have thoroughly enjoyed the last month. I love sorting through our days, and weeks. Picking through all the little moments and coming upon a treasure. Taking something ordinary, and turning it into something beautiful. I love that it makes me take more pictures of my wild ones and gives me a place to document their childhoods. I like being able to create, to write, to make my mind work a little bit harder. It's been an invaluable lesson in bravery for me.

Even more odd is that through some kind words, I actually have a few readers, and to them I want to say a big Thank You. Your sincerity and support have meant the world to me and have given me the courage to keep sharing.

So as a thank you and a welcome to any new readers, how about a giveaway!! Who doesn't love a good giveaway? 

I'll be giving away one pair of freshly picked moccasins to a lucky reader. They are my absolute favorite! Aussie's first pair of shoes nearly 8 years ago were moccasins and she has worn a pair every year since. So in keeping with this tradition, Eleanor's first shoes have also been moccasins. Only this year, I was lucky enough to stumble upon freshly picked. They are awesome! So crazy cute, I would happily have a pair in every color. To enter simply leave a comment in the section below. The winner will be announced on Friday, July 18. Be sure to tell your friends and happy picking!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

This old house…

I love this old house with all of its charm
plonked right down in the middle of a farm.

With it's sloping floors and cracks in the walls
its high vaulted ceilings leaking rain like a waterfall.

The air conditioner has broken, leaving us dripping in sweat.
Still manageable though, the fans haven't quit working yet.

The paint is chipping and the to do list is long
it's near a hundred years old and still standing strong.

There's been rain, sleet, snow even hail
but this old home has always prevailed.

It's not fancy or posh or level or square
but for me there's no rival, none even compare.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

It's Kaleb…

I realized the other day, that I talk a lot about Kaleb, but he hasn't been formerly introduced. So let me tell you a little bit about this man I adore so much.

First off he is an amazing father. He is actively involved in everything with the kids, but it's not just that, he is excited about it. He is patient and so kind to our buggies. He treats the littles with respect and truly listens to all of their sweet chatter. He takes time to teach them trades he learned as a kid, but also loves taking up new hobbies right along with them. Watching him with our babies is beautiful!

Kaleb makes sweeping, drastic changes, both spiritually and emotionally. As his spouse, this can take some adjusting, but once you get acclimated- it's amazing! I do feel like I've been married to a few different Kalebs, and I have loved them all completely, but he just keeps getting better. He constantly surprises me. Along these same lines, he makes strong, sometimes seemingly strange decisions. He always has my support, but regardless of approval or acceptance from others he stands by  his choices unwavering, moving forward unfazed. Looking back these bold decisions have been some of the best for our family.

Over the years I have come to fully trust Kaleb. He is wise. He understands the message of the gospel fully, and can explain it so simply. In a way that sits so lovely with your stomach, that you know, deep down, it's truth. He has brought me so much peace.

Kaleb makes you feel like the funniest person in the room. He laughs with ease. He looks like he belongs on the cover of a romance novel and has locks that would give any girl hair envy. I never go anywhere with him, when someone doesn't stop us to say a celebrity they "swear he looks just like." We've never heard the same name twice. He likes his coffee black. He wears carhartt overalls everyday and I joke with him about getting into costume to do his chores. He cannot cook anything but eggs, which he eats ten of a day. He rarely gets overwhelmed and loves to feel needed.

He is a good man, my Kaleb. We are lucky to have him and I love him so, I hope he knows he is my world.