Monday, June 30, 2008

Time, wasted.

Hulu. Yeah. I'm a little addicted.

Between Kitchen Confidential and Firefly, who needs cable? (Not me.)

But I have so stinking much work to do. I'm still painting cabinets, been doing a lot of massage/crainosacral therapy lately, I have a 4th of July party to plan, and I'm up to my armpits in designing a website for my neighbor's machining business (and I haven't even started to write the markup yet...).

Even without Hulu, I spend way too much time at the computer. All day I've been e-mailing samples and design ideas back and forth. (And I'm still using Nathan's computer while my TWO dead laptops are still out for the count.)

So I limit myself. But last night I was up until midnight working, so tonight, I'm outta gas and can afford a little Hulu fix with a chewy chocolate ginger cookie before I hit the hay...

See ya...

Do you think I'm Craaaayyyzeeeee?



Some days are like this.

(Trying to open a bag of chips) "Pretend this is miiiine..."

(In the fridge) "Hmmm... I need a snack... No! I neeeed to! Just a minute! I wanna get some fooood!!!!!"

(At the TV with a DVD in hand) "I'm gonna watch 'Blumpy' 'til supper, okay? But I waaannnnaaaa!!!!!"

(On a chair at the sink) "I gonna do some dishes!" *CRASH* "But I waaaannnnaaaaa do aaa diiisheeeees!"

"It's MY computer!"

"It's MY hammer!"

"It's MY wallet!"


"It's MY camera!"

"Pretend this is my coffee. Cold coffee!"

"Look! I found a game!"

"I'm gonna do it mySELF!"

(In the bathroom) "I gonna wipe you when you done, Mommy..."

"I'm takin' a BATH!"

"But I need a marker!"

"No! Not yet!"

"Can I help?"

"Let me do it!"

"Mommy? Can you get me a special treat?"

"I'm eating like a doggy!"

"Can I make supper?"

(With a rake in the garden) "I wanna do a ex-a-vator!"

"I'm gonna make a phone call! But I need to call someone!"

"No, I not have quiet time today."

"Look! I let the chickens out!"

"No! I neeeed the hose! I watering the gaaaarden!!!"


"Mommy, are you frusserated?"

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Flows like water

There comes a time in a house remodel, that you realize that you've totally blown the budget, again, and it's sickening, and you can't even care any more. Dad says that "It always costs more and it always takes longer." Amen and then some.

So we've made two trips to the city (50 minute's drive) this week to get the rest of the supplies for the kitchen. And a few other projects, too, but mostly the kitchen. Thursday, we left Jonah with some friends and went to track down two more lazy susans for the corners and a sink base. One we found at the Habitat for Humanity Restore, sans inards and door, for 15 bucks. The other was a show-room clearance at Menards for $75. Scrounges, we are. We also got a new, unfinished sink base for $90, but returned it when we couldn't fit it in the van with the others. (I told him they wouldn't all fit...).

(Aside- after we picked up the sink base today, I totalled up what we had spent all together on all the cabinets --about $400-- and congratulated Nathan that we staying in our budget on ONE part of this project. To God be the glory, of course, but when Nathan had named that as our budget, I thought he was nuts. This many cabinets new would have cost at least $2,ooo. Yeah, scrounging.)

We went to get tile for the countertop at Lowes, since we knew they had some on clearance. And low and behold, we found some that we both loved, and it was on sale. I basked in that glory for oh, thirteen seconds or so. Eh-hem. Well, that was a nice experience, anway, becuase just before we loaded up the cart, we noticed that it was 13.4"x13.4" instead of 12"x12". Who does that? That's insane! And irritating. We tried to figure out how to make it work, but it would have meant a lot of messy cutty and waste. ARG! Our options in 12x12 were limited to beige, beige, and um, beige. What is wrong with people? The world is full of colors and everyone wants beige. Ugh.

Finding tile at Menards today was a frustrating experience. I did get some-- I don't love it, but at least it's not beige. Maybe it'll grow on me. Sigh.

Today we had Jonah with us and he was remarkably good as we proceeded to spend 3 hours trying to find everything that we needed for the counters, a sink base cabinet, and miscelaneous lumber. Swiping my card for that bill was downright painful.

Also, this morning we bought some cedar boards (from a disasembled outhouse! Ah-HAHAHA! Insert your own joke.) from someone north of the city. It was a really good deal and just enough to do outside window and door trim. (I was thankful there wasn't more of it because Nathan was having wild ideas of siding the house with it. Nuff said.) My Dad once told Nathan to "use the stuff that no one else wants" as a means for saving money on projects. Boy, did he take that to heart.

While loading this stuff up, Nathan was talking to the people there. All he did was mention that he doesn't gamble because he would rather give his money to someone who needs it (and he totally would, too) and he knows that God will provide for us. That sparked a discussion in which he did some hardcore witnessing to these people and I was in AWE. No kidding. It never ceases to amaze me how he gets into these talks with people and says all the right things. Praise be to God for the gifts He gives. When we left, the woman was saying how she was glad that God sent him there this morning.

So, even though our budget hurts, God is faithful to provide. And we're gonna finish this kitchen, baby.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


(Ya gotta give me creds for my dedication as a blogger in posting questionable photos of myself.)

What follows is the result of a little camera fun this afternoon:

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Double the Daily Dose

...of cuteness that is:

Jonah found an especially fun puddle after the rain storm the other day.

He's also been enjoying a little baby doll (hey, boys can play with babies, too). Sometimes he holds it ever so gently, and sometimes, well... he makes it ride in the back of dump trucks.

Pretty Poppy

I found this when I stepped out on my porch this morning:

These poppies always make me think of saloon girls in old westerns...

Saturday, June 21, 2008


Okay, so not only did I break my promise of a fascinating garden post "tomorrow", but I also failed to post at all for two days. The garden post will wait. Right now it is raining and hailing so the garden is resting and so am I.

Meanwhile, I'll tell you why I've been absent.

We were invited to a bonfire with our friends J. and S. and their kids on Thursday. They just signed papers on a new/old house in the country (as they've been wanting to get away from their house in town for years). So we were celebrating their acquisition of a money-hole/pile-of-never-ending-work not at all unlike what we have (but unique in it's own way as it's a trailer house with additions!). It'll be great though, as it's on 6 lovely wooded acres and they're eventually gonna build a new house anyway.

Ostensibly, the reason for the gathering was that they were burning the nasty old carpeting from the house in a deep pit (and they needed to cut some dead branches and trees, but Nathan had J.'s chainsaw, so we "had" to go). Also as a reason for this visit, there was the complicated matter of Nathan and J. having traded vehicles so that they could use the truck and trailer for hauling a load, then they needed to trade back so that Nathan could return the trailer to it's owner, and then they would need to trade back again the next day as J. still needed the truck.

We did not cook our food over the burning carpet pit. But we had a small fire for roasting hot dogs. The kids all had lots of fun with this, and we all ate hot dogs with a healthy helping of wood ash.

This was followed by the grand tour of the house and property. The property has nice walking trail and a nice wading spot in the river that runs nearby (not near enough to be a danger to kids). It also has lots of healthy poison ivy and poison oak. I had a slight panic attach about this, remembering a very bad reaction Nathan and I had a few years ago. There really was no avoiding it as we were walking around. But there is so much of that awful stuff around here that I've learned how to deal with it and mostly prevent breaking out. I have a whole arsenal. And I think we've been okay this time. So far, I have a small patch on my face and Jonah has some spots on his arm, but if that's all we get, I'll be very thankful. A little itchy rash I can deal with. Oozing-weeping-tear-your-flesh-off rashes over the entire body is a little harder to manage.

And on to the carpet-pit-burning: (Don't worry, nobody's dead or maimed.) We waited until almost dark to start this as we knew there would be black smoke. S. and I were going about our business cleaning up supper remnants. Suddenly-- BOOOOOOM... a huge explosion! It seriously sounded like a bomb and shook houses for a mile around. We were quite a distance from the pit, but we saw huge flames and realized what had happened. We panicked because we didn't know who was down there. At first, I thought Nathan was down there (he wasn't) and maybe kids as well. Nathan, S. and I ran down yelling for J. and soon he came running out and said he was fine, and there were no kids. He was a little stunned. We all had to try to recover from our near heart failure.

Apparently, he had poured some gasoline (I can feel my Dad wincing as he reads this) into the pit. Thankfully, he moved the gas can far away before he lit it. (But even so, I do remember Dad saying never evereverevereverever use gas to start a fire.) He went back and put a match to the gas trail and stood back. It took longer than he expected, but apparently the fumes had built up under the carpeting and such and... well, they exploded. Loudly. Amazingly, J. is completely unhurt and even still possesses eyebrows.

Angels, I'm tellin' ya.

I began to feel like the whole pit-burning thing was a seriously bad idea. S. and I pretty much kept the kids up by the smaller fire while the guys tended the big one, which went on until around midnight. We also reassured the neighbors who came to make sure the new owners had not blown up their house with in 24 hours of sale.

At some point after dark, a child stepped on and broke S.'s glasses. The presented a problem when it was time to go as she couldn't see to drive home. She wanted J. to take the kids in the van and she would follow closely and carefully in the car. Nathan and I thought this a bad idea. At first Nathan suggested that he would driver her home and I could follow in the truck
with the trailer. I thought not, so we eventually came up with a complicated plan that I would drive her home and Jonah and I would stay the night so that Nathan wouldn't have to waste gas driving an extra 10 or so miles with the truck and trailer.

So we did. I got all of two hours of sleep due to the moon shining in my face all night, a newly-hatched chick in the incubator that peeped unceasingly all night, as well as half-sleep induced worry about poison ivy (which made me get up and wash with dishsoap at 3:30 in the morning).

In the morning, I went shopping with S. and her sister M. in a city about an hour away. It turned out that I had to drive then, too, as 1), S.'s glasses were still broken and 2), M. couldn't drive a stick well enough to drive in city traffic. But we had lots of fun in spite of my sleep deprivation, and when we got back, Jonah was having so much fun playing with the kids that he never even missed me.

So J. took me and Jonah home when he and Nathan traded vehicles again. Then, this morning, Nathan woke me up at 6:30 and asked me to drive out to their house and retrieve his wallet that he had left in the truck, and get back in time for him to leave. So, I got to drive J's zippy little Honda
back to their house again. However, my plans to grab the wallet and go without waking anyone were dashed when the truck was not there. So, I had to wake S. up, and I felt terrible about it. She was quite surprised to see me (and I sure hope I didn't ruin her day by waking up all the kids when the dog barked at me) and told me that J. had gone to Bible study at their church. So I had to drive another 10 or so miles north. Good thing that car is very fuel-efficient, because I ended up driving 50 miles this morning for Nathan's wallet.

And, well, that is the end of my rambling saga of the last two days. Now we're to the rain-and-hail part, and I still have not caught up on my sleep. Sigh.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Nothing of Import

I know it's been a few days... I tried to post the other day, but Blogger was giving me fits. But anyway, all I have today is drivel.

Here is my day's work: strawberry jam. 27 jars. Maybe it'll get us through the year, but Jonah sure eats a lot of jam these days.

He wanted to eat the foam that I skimmed from the jam. In a bowl. With a spoon. Don't know how healthy that is, but I remember doing it when I was a kid and Mom made jam, so I let him.

He also requested that I take a picture of his elbow.

So there it is: Jonah's elbow. And that's not blood soaking his sweatshirt, by the way. It's strawberry juice, of course. Which is also what's on his face, fingers, and the rest of his shirt. He might have had a few strawberries.

And just when I got done with jam-making (jamming?) and finally sat down, I realized I had no ideas for supper, including no meat thawed. But I had some bacon in the fridge, (to make up for the lack of (and thus rationing of) eggs for breakfast, which is due to a funeral at the house of the Amish neighbors from whom I buy my eggs. Uh, did that make any sense?) and I had two eggs (despite the egg-famine) and some delicious Parmesan cheese (in an actual wedge) so I made Spaghetti Carbonara. Yum! That name always makes me laugh. Carbonara? Burnt Spaghetti? Bubbly Spaghetti? What kind of spahetti now?

Oh, and Jonah has an imaginary friend. (Waaah! My baby's growing up!) His name is Charlie. He's 8 and he goes to school and church. This was completely out of the blue, and I don't even know where he came up with the name. To use psychology, I would guess it's his way of creating his own reality in order to deal with his perceived deprivations as a three-year old... Or, maybe it's just because he's an only child and has no one to play with.

Aaaand... umm... (searching for content here) Oh, we started watching a movie on Hulu, The Barbarian and the Geisha. John Wayne goes to Japan. Hmmm. But Nathan needed to go to bed so he could actually get up for work, and I needed to pack him a lunch and write this exceptionally boring blog post and take a shower and go to bed. And I'm noticing that a couple of those items are still unaccomplished, so I will get moving to finish the list. G'night.

***Bonus: I know you'll be refreshing my site multiple times tomorrow as you wait for a riveting post touring my garden! Action! Adventure! Swashbuckling! ...Okay, so none of those. But you'll just have to take what you can get around here.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Progess So Far

So, time for another kitchen-update, no?

After the floor was installed, Nathan rented a big sander and set to work.

This step was longer than it was supposed to be since the sander left some "swirly-marks" (yes, that is a technical term. Really.) that we spend, oh, a couple weeks trying to work out. I maintained that they wouldn't be noticeable unless you crawled around on you hands and knees, and besides, the add character. But we had to try while we had the chance. So we worked and worked and sanded and sanded. Then gave up and stained. The extra sanding was for naught. They're still there, but turns out I was right. It's gonna be fine.

So I did two coats of stain.

Then, it got very humid, took four full days for the stain to dry, and we had to keep waiting for ideal conditions for polyurethane. Arg. Hurry up and wait. That's the story of my kitchen.

So Nathan has taken advantage of every small dip in the humidity to coat it with polyurethane.

But still, there always have to be problems, right? The first coat blistered quite a lot. So that took a lot of sanding. Second coat only blistered slightly, but upon examination, it proved to be covered in well-preserved dead bugs. Nathan did that coat at night and the bugs came in, but were apparently overcome with the fumes. So were we, but at least we didn't have to worry about slowly sinking through the air to a plastic grave.

As I type this, Nathan is picking dead bugs and sanding. Again.

And Jonah's helping. Or he was until he decided to come sit on my lap while I type.

So... Third time's the charm, right? Let's cross our fingers for a smooth final coat! (And a swift installation of cabinets and countertop...)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Woe is me

Feet don't like heavy objects:

(Disclaimer: the owner of this blog is not responsible for any gross-out factor from either nasty bruise or dirty toenails. The said owner goes barefoot in a large garden, and has not had time to dress up the grime with a mani-pedi.)

I have been painting the cabinets for the kitchen. About an hour ago I was putting the drawers back in the first three that I finished with the second coat yesterday. I've been such a klutz lately so of course I dropped the the corner of the heaviest drawer on my foot. I've never seen anything swell (can't tell from the pic, but it was nearing on golf-ball before extensive ice) so fast.

And now I'm supposed to be picking strawberries and making shortcake to take to a friend's house tonight where we're going for supper. Nathan said, "oh, we'll just pick up a coffee cake on our way there." WAAAAHHHH!!!

If you'll excuse me, I'll get back to howling in pain and indignation.


Thursday, June 12, 2008

Random 3YO, part II

"I'm a binger-binger! Look at me! I'm a binger-binger! I'm a binger-binger! I'm a binger-binger! I'm a..."


To Dandelion, the goat: "You can't always get what you want, Goat! It's my tractor and you may not touch it! I'm very upset with you!"


The subject of not always getting what you want is pretty hot these days. With the constant demand, "I WANT it!" comes the constant refrain from The Stones' "You can't always get what you wah-uh-ant!"

So the other day, I heard him singing his rendition: "You always get what you want..."

He doesn't seem to be getting the concept.

And this morning when I sang it to him, he sang back with a nice tune, "But I waaaaant iiiiiit" So I sang it again and he sang, "Sometimes I wanna get what I waaaant..."


"Will you help us, Mommy?"

"Uh... who?"

"Look at us, Mommy! We're cleaning up!"

Okay, so is this the "Royal We"?? You're creeping me out, kid.


"Mom, chickens poop, too"


He grabs my belt-loop from behind me: "Ah! There's something stuck to you! Hahaha! It's a big fly! AAAAHHHH"


"I'm the Mommy, now. You're Jonah."

"Okay. I want waaaaater!"

"Okay, here's some..."

"No, I want milk!"



"Wait I'll get you some..."

"Milk! I want milk!"

"Here's some water! Now you be Mommy."


"I'm a binger-binger! I'm a binger-binger!"


An Amish neighbor passed this on to me this morning (I broke the ad up into four images in hopes that you'll actually be able to read it):

While I'm not in the habit of propagating crude (and punny) humor, that just really made me laugh.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Bath Time (sort of)

This is pretty much a regular thing before bed, these days. I don't know how a kid can get SO dirty in one day. But it's summer, now.

This didn't used to be a regular routine. I've never been much good at making sure he gets regular baths. It's not really something I enjoy (nor do I think it's necessarily healthy what with soaps and the chemicals they contain...). What's wrong with dirt, anyway? Kids are washable. If you actually wash them. Okay, so I might be a little neglectful. Or a lot. Whatever.

I know the common advice is to bathe the baby each night before bed. My baby was doin' really good if he got a bath every week...

After he started crawling, he followed me into the shower one evening and loved it. So from then on, he pretty much just took showers with us. Er, well, until he got his little thumb stuck in the drain cover. Then it swelled up. Nathan was about to use a hack-saw. On my baby's thumb. [ETA: WHOA! I just realized that that is NOT what I intended to say there... My husband is NOT, repeat, NOT a baby-digit-slicer! REALLY! He was thinking of the hacksaw for the drain-cover not the thumb. He was gonna be really careful. But I still wouldn't have it. He's a fantastic Daddy! I'm sorry for making us sound like particularly negligent parents.] No way in heck. I was envisioning a trip to the emergency room with a seven-month-old with a drain cover stuck on his thumb. But then Nathan got it off. The drain-cover, I mean. So, "no more showers" declared Daddy, but that didn't last long. I couldn't take having to actually bathe him, so I would just make sure to have my foot on the drain. (Oh, boy, does that make me look rotten.)

And last summer, he could get pretty darned dirty, but I rarely filled the tub. If we didn't have opportunity for a shower, I'd usually stand him in the tub and wash him up quickly in running water.

Poor kid. He really lost the mother-lottery.

But now! Now, he's hit the bath jackpot. Now, he's very dirty every day and there's really no getting around the bath-before-bed thing. Okay, I guess the main reason is that he's getting old enough to wash himself. Kind of. More self-sufficient, anyway.

So he gets a bath (not always with soap, I'm afraid) every day.

And how do you like my tub? It has jets! Which I've never been brave enough to actually use. Also, it take two hours to get enough water into for a decent bath, and by that time, I may as well have filled it with the hose if you consider the temperature. And then there's an Rust Factor. Suffice it to say that I don't actually take baths very often, myself (okay, but I do shower regularly).

But, I'm proud to report, Jonah does.

Monday, June 9, 2008

I'm sure this is what Heaven will smell like


Yeah, just like that.

And I wish you could see a full-sized, high resolution view of that photo, cuz I'm really liking it...

I love when my peonies bloom. These three big peony plants are one of the very few wonderful gems that came with this dump that we live in (and I say that in the fondest way possible-- about the dump, I mean). They're planted in a very strange spot, but whatever. I'm afraid to move them. So they just started blooming and I've been fawning over them all day. They're loaded with blooms and more buds.

And this evening we had another nasty storm move through. It was downright scary for a few minutes there. We've been getting these... one after another, almost every day.

I'm sure you know where I'm going with this.

Cuz those lovely peonies? Are laying on the ground.


Berry Haul

I went out to my very own little strawberry patch this morning and got this:

Okay, so it's not much, but they're beauties! They're just getting going, so I should get a few every day or so. Not enough for jam, but we'll have some shortcake and a few for the freezer. I usually pick 20-30 quarts at a berry farm each summer, so I'll still have to get some for jam, but it looks like my patch will supplement our berry harvest. Next year, perhaps I'll have enough of my own!

Here's my patch:

It's thin because when I was given the plants last year, I didn't have anywhere to plant them. So they had to wait to be planted, and by the time Nathan got a spot prepared, many of the plants were toast. But the few that survived multiplied nicely. Then I got a few more plants from an Amish neighbor, but it was in the fall, so some of them didn't make it through the winter. But when they're done producing this summer, I'll renovate the patch and move the plants into better rows. Then they can spread some more and I'll have lots next year!


Sunday, June 8, 2008


I just checked by blog stats when I noticed that I was one hit away from 2000. While there, I noticed that I got one hit from the Google keyword "spray paint sucks". Uh... Woo-hoo! I'm on the map!

Aiee. The things people search for...

Free Fishing Day

Today, across the whole state, people were out fishing without licenses. It's free-fishing weekend, and we decided to take advantage of it. Jonah has been begging to go fishing. "I wanna catch a fish! Can we catch a fish today?" is what we hear daily.

We quickly figured out that casting for him and then handing him the pole was not very much fun for him. So Nathan put some inedible plastic bait on a hook and just let him dip it in the water right off the shore where he could see all the little fish nibble at it.

And oddly enough, within five minutes of our arrival at the rearing-ponds he actually did catch a fish! All by himself, when we weren't even looking. He was ecstatic! It was a small bass, so we had to release it as you can only keep them over a certain size. But it was sure fun while it lasted!

The novelty soon wore off as we proceeded to catch nothing for the rest of the day. Isn't that funny? Jonah caught one by himself without even trying, but then Nathan and I could catch absolutely nothing no matter how hard we tried.

And it's really pathetic. We would not make good survivalists. We never catch anything. Morrell hunting? Nothing. Wild leek looking? Nothing. Deer hunting? Always nothing. Perhaps I am definitely my Grandfather's grand-daughter (he was notorious for loving the hunt but never getting a darned thing).

Foraging: ur doin it rong.

Anyway, back to my story.

After ten minutes, a major thunderstorm blew in. We got into the truck and decided to go someplace for ice cream to wait out the storm. We drove to Arby's to split a Jamoca shake (classy, I know. It was fun, though). It was a nasty storm, but blew through quickly and when it started to lighten we headed to the dump to load some firewood. Jonah helped, of course. He referred to himself in the third person by the name of Front Loader.

The storm passed and left gorgeous evening sun. We went back to the rearing ponds for more fishing (and the whole not-catching-anything part). This beautiful family swam by to say "hi".

Eventually we tired of not catching anything (it wasn't just us, we talked to others with the same problem. That made me feel better, even though I was bummed about not bringing home supper.) so we loaded up to go to a nearby lake with the intent of fishing more, but ended up swimming instead.

And this is the part where Jonah went out too far and lost his footing and tried to be a fish. But Daddy was fast and quickly put a stop to that before he actually inhaled water. And Daddy's boots got soaked.

And when we got home, Jonah sweetly thanked Daddy for taking him fishing.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Fill-in-the-blank Interview

Me: Jonah, do you want to do an interview?


M: And "interview" is where I ask you all kinds of questions and you answer them for the benefit of other people.


M: Please disregard the pathetic excuse for a flower bed in the background. Now, let's begin. First of all, what kind of tractors are you very favorite?

18 minutes later--

M: Whew! That's a lot of tractors. Um... Don't you think they're kind of big and dangerous for such a little boy?


M: Well, how old are you?


M: I think you're having some co-ordination issues.


M: Uh, I think you still need one more finger there...

J: -no answer-

M: So, are you a boy, or a monkey?


M: What are you going to be when you grow up?


M: Well, how about you just don't worry about that and stay little for a while yet. Ya wanna live with me forever?


M: Okay, well, thanks for the interview. It was fun. I'm so glad you took time out of your busy schedule to talk to me.


Friday, June 6, 2008


Sometimes I notice Jonah picking up on my bad habits...

And now I think he's also picking up on my computer addiction. His own version, of course. He loves to watch youtube videos. Now we've already moved on to games. Here's one I found that he's now addicted to: keyboard-o-rama. It's my own fault of course... I showed it to him... I should know better. (Elmo is SO obnoxious...)


Yesterday, Jonah was sitting in a little cardboard box (playing Diesel Engine, I presume) a few feet away from me while I was using the computer. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him tip over, then start crying. I didn't jump up because, well, he cries about everything. But as I turned to look, he was trying to get up, and I saw that there was blood. Everywhere. All over the floor and on his hands and feet as he was trying to stand up.

I panicked and immediately thought he had knocked out a tooth. But I hadn't heard a thunk or anything, and he was facing me and I saw nothing on his face. So as I got to him, I saw blood running down the back of his head. There is a very old (unused due to the fact that it's not safe) brick chimney in our living room. It's mostly surrounded with things, but there is a corner exposed, The edge is not sharp, but has a lot of little broken and chipped dull edges. Apparently that's what he hit when his box tipped.

So I grabbed a rag and had him lay down while I pressed it on his head. The cloth was soaking awfully fast, so I figured it was a big gash. My mind was running through the scenario-- "Okay, Nathan's not home... I need to take him to Urgent Care for stitches... I only have the truck to drive. I'll try to stop the bleeding, then I have to get the carseat in... bandage his head enough to make it to the hospital..." etc. So I called Nathan on his cell and told him. He said that head wounds usually bleed a lot and to just keep pressure on it. He asked if he should just come home, but I said wait and that I would call him when the bleeding stopped and I could look at it.

After a few minutes, the bleeding suddenly stopped. So I looked. His hair was all matted in the cut, so I had to try to move it carefully. I was expecting a big flap of skin or something. Instead, it was just a swollen bump with a little "T" shaped cut, each part being maybe 1/4 inch. Sheesh! That was a hurkin' lot of blood for such a tiny cut.

So I called Nathan back and Jonah insisted on telling Daddy that he bumped his head, and then he ran out to play (dried blood and all). "Yeah," Nathan said, "head wounds bleed a lot."

Kids are so accident prone. I guess I should just get used to it.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Garden Sprout

I don't exactly remember how old my siblings I and were when we first started to help plant the garden, but I believe we must have been about Jonah's age. It was a family tradition for us that every year on Memorial Day we would plant the garden together. Mom would buy the plants and dictate the quantities of thins to plant, but other than that, it was up to Dad and us to do the planting. She took care of all the canning and freezing later on. So Dad would oversee the whole project. We all helped and we all worked together. And it was actually fun, even though it was a lot of work. (It makes a difference to be working with Dad) As we got older, we were each given more difficult jobs respective to what we could handle and by the time we were teenagers, we knew the whole process. Dad had special techniques to allow the younger kids to help (without it having to be redone afterward).

So now I'm finding myself doing all the same things with Jonah that Dad did with me at that age, and later with each of my siblings. Last night when we were planting our sweet corn, of course Jonah wanted to help. So I found him a stick about 5 inches long and showed him how to put down a seed, then the stick, then a seed at the end of the stick. Move the stick and repeat. Stick, seed, stick, seed. This way all the seeds are evenly spaced. It took Jonah a few tries to get the concept and figure out which direction we were going, but soon he had it figured out. Sometimes he still needed a little coaching ("Put the seed at that end of the stick. Now move the stick... now another seed. No, move the stick first... only one seed... now move the stick. No, put it right here so it touches the other seed. Now a seed at this end... And move the stick.") but he made it to the end of the row!

This morning, I put in a second planting of potatoes. Nathan had dug up a new garden spot to supplement the other one, so we decided to fit in a few more potatoes. And Jonah got the same job every three-year-old in my family got-- run along and drop one seed potato in each hole. And he did well (the key seems to be the ability to understand the concept of one).

My Dad is a good teacher... Not only do I know how to plant my garden, but I also know how to train my helper.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


I stained my kitchen floor today. It was a hard job on my hands and knees, rubbing and wiping the stain and trying to make it all even... Sweating profusely in the humidity from the rain we finally got. I hate sweating. Ick. Anyway, I even did a second coat of stain a few hours later to deepen it and make sure it was all well saturated. It's lovely, and I'll post pictures soon.

Jonah was awfully good while I was working. He played happily with his cars and trucks and hardly bothered me at all. Later, he left with his Daddy to go do manly things.

So after I got done, I grabbed Nathan's laptop and headed out onto the porch to rest and get some fresh air. And as I set the laptop on the little table so I could sit in one of my new-old deck chairs, what did I see, but this:

And this:

I'm gonna go gnash my teeth for a while, thanks.


Sometimes, I think there's just something a little strange about my sister.

I just can't seem to put my finger on it...

We get along great. I've always thought it was so special to have an only sister. We share five brothers... maybe that's why sometimes she just seems a

Anyway, when Samuel was learning to talk, he called me DeeDee and her LaLa. Somehow, that morphed into our nicknames for each other and that's what we call each other pretty much all the time.

So she's really sweet, laughs a lot and we have fun together. But sometimes... I don't know.

I mean, at times, it just like she's from anther planet or something...

So imagine my surprise when Nathan picked up my last roll of film yesterday and I found this picture on it:

Yeah... see, I just knew something wasn't quite right.

Lala, I only tease you because I love you.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Love of a Laundry Line

My husband caught me taking a picture of the laundry after I had hung it out. If there was ever any doubt in his mind regarding my level of nuttiness, it's all gone now.

You have to understand that I hate laundry. I'd rather scrub a toilet. Well, I don't hate it as much as mowing the lawn, but it's not my favorite job, and I'm not very good at it. I guess the main reason I hate laundry right now is that my rusty well water turns everything dingy and orange. So the more I wash our clothes, the dirtier they get. How's that for morale-boosting?

But there's something about hanging my clothes out in the sunshine and wind that renews a little joy in those daily chores.

Isn't it funny that when the automatic clothes dryer was invented, it was this great labor-reducing appliance that people couldn't wait to own. It made women's lives so much easier. And yet now, there's this revival of the laundry line like it's this amazing new discovery and people love to use them and risk fines in their homeowner's associations by going against mandates about hanging out laundry. And for me, with propane and electricity costs, the savings is a bonus (forget "saving the planet", it's all about the money. In more ways than you realize...). But mainly, I do it because I enjoy it. It's just so peaceful and satisfying. (Don't get me wrong, I love my dryer, too. Ain't no way I'm hangin' my laundry out in February. I know people have done it for hundreds of years and the Amish still do, but I guess I'm a hypocrite in that respect. I have modern conveniences and it sure isn't convenient for me to freeze my tooshie off hanging out laundry in the winter.)

Oh, and here's where I give a plug for my latest laundry discovery-- soap nuts. I got a good deal on them through my co-op and they work great! And they're better for our skin than the chemical stuff. And my line-dried laundry is much softer!

Now, I want to find a way to salvage the water from my washing machine to water my garden (since I don't have chemical soaps that would pollute my garden). No, it has nothing to do with being "green" or "saving the planet". I'm not into that because I think it's based in lies. But that's another post for another time. No, I wouldn't be at all worried about saving water except that on top of being rusty, our well is wimpy. And we're in a drought. And my garden is struggling and it's hard to get enough water to it. If I had a good well, I'd have a sprinkler out there in a heartbeat! But I asked Nathan about collecting the laundry water and he said, "Um, I'd have to do a lot of plumbing." And right now, my kitchen is more important.

Did I just write all that? Wow, I am a nut.