Proverbs 31:27

2014 UPDATE - Baby Girl born January 26, 2014 Unassisted homebirth Our 10th Sweetie Pie!

Lilypie Breastfeeding tickers

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!


Hello from all of us here! I know, don't yell at me, it's been 6 months since I've written, but believe me-I write to you everyday...you just can't read my thoughts, yet!


We had a beautiful baby boy on the 26th of August weighing 8 lbs and only 4 hours of labor with a full hour of sleep/rest the middle!!


We started school with 5 in attendance in September and we're off for the holidays. The older two are in 3rd grade, the next two in 1st and the last in Kindergarten, with a daycare for the two babies. Still just me...I don't have any lavish au pairs!! But one can daydream! :)


We are going to watch Polar Express tonight. It's all about kid's being kidnapped for Christmas, but I'm sure it's safe for children!! LOL

Hubby and I (with the help of the children) have been working to finish the house. I am taking pictures when the batteries work. I think the camera eats the battery 'juice' while it's off and then laughs at me after I take one picture and get the "low battery" sign and it auto shuts off!


I've been painting doors and patching missed holes and other miscellany jobs. Hubby has been finishing framing windows and doors and the baseboard (which I'll need to paint) and then we'll lay the padding and carpet, finish the electrical for the stove downstairs and do cleanup. We're very close to being done. We'll have the odd jobs of putting in the doorknobs and packing tools and look for other things like polishing hindges that might have drywall mud, etc. You're really gonna love the pics. Ok...you've convinced me. I'll include this pic of the door before I painted it. It still needs another coat and the trim. This is how close we are to finishing!! I'll be so glad to post the finish pictures-maybe even figure out how to post a video!! Here are a couple of things we saw in the drywall mudding. I just added the pencil lines to define it.








So, that's what's been going on here. Very, very busy!! Hope to make this more regular again! I'd love to hear from all of you-even a simple hello so I know that you are all there!

Have a wonderful Holiday Season and a Blessed New Year!!


Hugs to all you alls!!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Laugh with Me!

Ok, After seeing several ads for the Acai Berry diet(where they all lose about 20 lbs the first month and another 20 in the second month), I decided to look up natural-quick-weight-loss sites. I came across one called FormerFatGuy and looked a second, saw he had a blog and read a couple of posts. You'll haveta scroll down to June 9. The title is MacDonald's hits Africa. Updated: I couldn't get the link to work and finally found and saved the picture. So if the link doesn't work, here's the funny pic:




In other news, here are some pictures of our cherry tree, we pick about 8-10 per day.





Hubby also discovered, while he was mowing back along the fence line, 3 mulberry trees WITH FRUIT!! We have another one without fruit which is likely the male tree. It's enjoyable to watch the children run the length of the yard to disappear in the bushes and eat all the ripe berries they can find!!



Hubby had cut down the trees after we moved in, about 4 years ago. They grew again and we left them. This is the first year there has been any fruit. I love it when God plants the tree (volunteer) and it bears fruit!! Whole-lotta scripture comes to mind! :)

What else? Things are not always as they seem!


The baby's been kicking tons and tons especially when hubby speaks or sings! Yup. Baby #7 will be coming along by the first half of September! I'm doing just fine. I was swelling a bit in the legs and ankles (having nothing to do with temperatures or activity levels), then my mom in law suggested more Potassium & that worked!! Hubby bought a bunch of bananas, nectarines and canned-in its own juice-pineapple. It's wonderful to eat fruit til I'm full!! (that would be about 2 nectarines, 1 banana and 1/2 can of pineapple slices) I have skinny legs and feet again!! :)

So, I'm not super woman thin/fit right now. But if weight gain continues as it has been, I will only put on as much as I did with my firstborn, which was the best I did and well within normal range! We have been walking almost every day.




I've been working alongside hubby mudding and drywalling and sanding and patching and all of that 3-5 times per wall/ceiling! Things are getting closer to being done. Just alot of basic things: window jambs, painting, stretching/laying carpets, trim, a bit more electrical (I worked on my first box almost all by myself!), a little more tiling and a bit more that's not coming to mind. Getting down to the last bit!

I am constantly amazed how God has given me strength to do my regular duties and help hubby. I need to take a few pictures of the downstairs and show off our work! I think I will have mega shoulder muscles from sanding the ceiling in particular! Ohhhhh!! It's gonna be beautiful, it's so close and I can see how lovely it will look!
Yes, we like the house, just not the location. We will miss it, but we know that God has provided the way to move where(ever) we desire and have what we need!

You are always welcome to email or comment! I will be posting regular stuff here but not often, not because of the pregnancy but because of the house construction!! I will get pictures soon and you'll be able to see how much work renovating a house is! It's not difficult at all, just time consuming, but it will be worth everything!!!!!!!!

Don't forget to check over at my sewing blog for more info, especially if you haven't read my story yet! Bella's Sewing.

Right then. I'm done here. Hope you are enjoying the warmer weather (or cooler for those south of the equator) and keeping God first in all that you do!!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Potatoe Soup, Fresh Bread and a New Blog

Morning started cool and raining. I decided to make bread again & I'm glad I did. Hubby got more potatoes and I needed to make something...cool weather equals yummy meals with fresh bread!

Welcome back.
I've opened a new blog. Fresh new start. Come if you like.

Snowbird's Escape is not quite in use yet, since I made it for after we move.

Bella's Sewing I've already posted a few times and plan on continuing.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sunshine On My Shoulder Makes Me Happy!

This is of the rain falling over the ridge. Taken before we cleared the blueberry patch, the lot just south of the shed (or to the right in this pic).

We have just been enjoying the outdoors!! Though it's rained off and on, the weather is almost warm-at least the children are in shorts. No garden this year and so one day we cleared out the blueberry patch. It was overgrown with just grass which might have saved several bushes. We put the plants in pots and set them against the shed and hubby mowed the patch. He and the children worked at filling in the holes in the garden-formerly "Jumpy Squirrel's HideAway" and general digging area. After mowing the yard a couple of times, it also looks better. Made more room for the dandelions to grow, go to seed, then leave stems of brown sticking up all over. #6 likes to go and pick these stems and all the other children pick the long flowers and make bouquets or just tear apart the flowers to put the petals in their "pizza" as cheese<--that would be #4!


Hubby and I also cleaned up the back room the other day. I was picking up and sweeping and so I almost cleared the whole downstairs! I organized everything that needed it and threw out the rest...it really made it look better and we could easily see how little we have left to do! Since hubby had to tear out lathe and plaster, old ceilings and such, it was a big mess. Now there won't be anymore tearing out & the new construction can resume!


Before the clean up, hubby and I laid tile in the laundry room. It extends from the kitchen & it looks so nice now! After working out so much, I had the wherewithal to help put in the flooring. This is my work here in the picture and the towel was for my knees until hubby got the knee pads for me. We needed to make the floor level with the rest and so we laid down plywood and screwed it in and then mud, then the tile board and screwed it down (appropriate screws for each thing), then the mud and the tiles. Hubby put the tiles and I helped with the spacers, then after a couple days of drying, moved the machines back in to do laundry, then back out to finish grouting. We did the tiling while the children were awake and quickly found how much more efficient we are when they are asleep!


In the space of time I've not blogged, the fruit trees have leafed, flowered & fruited!

This is a Santa Rosa Plum

This is one of the apple trees

This is the pear treeI skipped putting the picture of the cherry tree & will try to get pictures of when its fruit is red!


Wanted to show you my counter space. This is when I made Veggies, White Sauce, Marinara, with noodles after finishing the dishes. The dishwasher has been downstairs since January and I do the dishes by hand. I am the more efficient, water saving, better quality dishwasher! This model also cooks :) I enjoy washing by hand, this is the reason I told hubby he could leave the dishwasher downstairs after he offered to bring it up.


To the left


and to the right
That's all I can remember right now. Need to go share the fresh bread and then head outside again! Ciao for now.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

"Andre, You've Sunk ANOTHER Submarine?!"

Yet another update.

Exercise:

I have yet to reach failure on most of these. TOO EASY DRILL SERGEANT!!
These are the exercises we do. Of coarse, hubby is much, much stronger than me, but my goal is to come close!

*Bicep curls: 15lbs, 12x's (these are to failure)-these are each arm, so if I had a bar it would be 30lbs.
*Shoulder press: 40lbs, 12x's (to failure)
*Tricep/Overhead extentions: 30lbs, 12x's (I could probably do 15-not to failure yet)
*Bench press: 55lbs, 12x's (to failure)
*Leg extentions: 70lbs, 12x's (TOO EASY STILL)
*Leg curls: 35lbs, 15x's (to failure)
*Squats: 95lbs, 12x's (TOO EASY!)
*Dumbbell rows: 40lbs, 12x's (to failure)

That's it. We are also walking, or trying to, everyday. I've lost 4 lbs in the last 2 weeks and have gained noticeable muscles! The numbers are what I did last workout. I started with much less weight and worked up. For the things that are too easy still we will add 10, 15 or 20 lbs at a time to see where my limit is. If I cannot do at least 8 reps, then it is way too heavy. That's all here.



Housing/Packing:

I've listed my very first-all by myself-ebay items for sale! (just books) I am very pleased, for hubby has wanted me to put things for sale and I just hadn't learned the format yet! I kept counting the pennies and what they might turn into...yarn, knitting books, fabric! Just dreaming! Being the practical family, it would be more likely groceries, bills, gas money!

Hubby is still working hard on the house. He called me one time (you know that call where you drop everything and run!) he was standing in the back room and I know now what "Atlas" looks like. He was putting up drywall for the ceiling and, well, let's say, I'm his right hand man!! So very glad we're done with all that. The people who owned the house before did some renovating and for being in the construction business made HORRIBLE errors in things like the wiring. In layman's terms, they put the wrong "thickness" of wire so that if there were a fire, the breaker would NOT trip and the house would burn with no alarms going off!! Hubby's been redoing so much of this: can't leave such dangers!!
Meal Planning/Cooking:

Meal planning has been great! I have a meal for everyday and everyone is loving it. Umm, except for yesterday. Everyone loves the food so much that there aren't the leftovers anymore! I usually make 1/2 of my 12qt pan and have enough for at least two meals! Do I need to make more? I have that pan and also a 16qt pan (where I make yogurt). Oh, and I also forgot to figure in when hubby goes shopping. It is mostly when he needs something from the hardware store, so that could be 2 times in a week or not for 2 weeks! I try to keep stocked everything, but everyone keeps eating it!!!

Schooling:

Ok, I was wrong. I apoligize. My children will not be skipping a grade or workbook. They will be finishing High School by the time they are 12. I was also mistaken in how long it took for them to complete this grade. Under 3 months: the are just about finished with the 2nd book, which took them a month and the only reason they took longer for the first book was because we took off for visiting family and we were only doing one lesson per day! (though we tried at the time to have school 6 days per week) As we continue through the summer, the older two will work through Math 3 and be ready for Math 5/4 by the time school starts this fall! That's my 2nd grader and my 1st grader will be doing 4th/5th grade math! As far as History and Science, they are doing well learning about trees, flowers, seeds, seasons and geography. I'm thinking of getting some older grades in this area since it is just 'random' facts and not at all like math with concepts that are built onto each other. I am excited to see what's out there and find the perfect curriculum for our children! Yesterday during naptime, #3 had found a kindergarten/1st grade workbook we had bought for the older children a couple of years ago. He was doing the pages (with some of the instructions being read to him by an older sibling) with ease!! I'm going to separate the pages that he can do and keep them for records. I'm sure I have a thin binder, probably packed away already, well, the folders are still out, that'll work. He now reads books to the little girls!

I think that's all the news here. Slowly selling things and it clears out space for hubby to work. Getting phone calls of interest on the house. Spending all my time with the children to keep up on training so that there isn't a lull into poor attitudes and bad behaviour. Refiguring lessons, incorporating Biblical principles, keeping the Word ready in our hearts. Ah, and we finished reading The Man in Bearskin!! The children loved it and asked what the next book will be. Right, I already had them sent to storage. I guess hubby will go get the well marked box. Not knitting-REALLY wanting to sew or even make dishcloths, but I can wait and continue designing in the meantime! I came across this quilt...looks like it would be fun to make & I love the colors! Caution to all who quilt: you might be inspired by all the quilts this mama makes!! Much like this site, not simple one patch quilts but very beautiful!! And visit this site with so many tutorials...I think I'll be finishing quilts before I get around to actually sewing clothes once we settle in AZ!

Just finished making bread and spent a bit of time outside. It was not too cold, but the wind made us shiver. It was nice to come inside and eat the bread with butter and honey or honey and crunchy peanut butter!! Now, we are just chillin' and enjoying the warm house.
I've been thinking of taking out my sewing machine, but then I've been talking with hubby about helping him more on the house. I knitted 2 rows last night and it didn't have the same wonderfulness as before. I am so very ready to quilt and sew. If I help hubby, he said we would really be done in a week. On one hand: sewing, on the other: helping hubby with house which equals moving sooner. I guess we'll be doing some tiling tonight! I need to finish the laundry so we can take that out of the room. Later all ya alls!!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Occupy

Here's just another update on what we've been doing.

I'll start with the boring stuff

Workouts and Exercise:

Well, hubby asked if I wanted to work out with him lifting weights...what can I say, "YES!". It's a completely different mentality than working out to lose weight. In fact, I'll be gaining weight , but I will definitely be leaning!! Hubby's done this workout before and had amazing results! We work out twice per week-yes, only twice-all the major muscle groups. You workout to "failure", this in turn makes your body produce the growth hormone hGH, which makes it easier to put on muscle. I've already improved in lifting 50-100% more! We are not changing what we eat (nothing to change there!!) and I'm already seeing benefits in lifting everyday things as well as more energy! I'll let you know how it goes!!
House/Packing:

Yesterday I packed ALL of our storage items, having switched seasonal clothes & put away all non-essential items. (I have one closet I couldn't reach to do and I actually packed up almost all of my knitting things-gasp!) Hubby is taking them to a storage unit (we don't have a garage) until we move to make more room for a better house showing. Our house is now on the market to generate interest as hubby finishes the last of the work. We will have private showings. If we apply ourselves, we should have everything done and ready in as little as two weeks with the max. of 4 weeks. Hubby has been working on the back room, put in a closet last night and finished reinforcing the floors under the tiled upstairs kitchen. He has the ceilings and walls to dry wall, then mud. He likes to have several running projects, while he waits on things like the mudding to dry he is able to work on one or two more.

I am so very excited as this ball rolling downhill is increasing in speed!

It was fun to consolidate all the boxes and I had 3 more buckets (rubbermaid type containers) and 6 boxes that were suddenly empty!



I've been called "The Queen of Organizing and Alphabetizing", so naturally, as I excel in one area, my mind is quick to plan the next step in another area (but all comes from God as He gives wisdom and out of His mouth comes understanding!). I've possibly figured out a weekly menu for our family:

Sunday: Meatloaf & Mshd Spuds
(beef meal-since we are finishing the last of our cow)

Monday: Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Meatloaf and Salad
(leftover day)

Tuesday: Veggies & Noodles with White Sauce &/or Marinara
~BREAD~

Wednesday: Lentils and Rice
(this will be once per week)

Thursday:B'fast-Oat Cereal
Lunch-Leftovers
Dinner-Eggs & Toast (b'fast everyday)

Friday:Creamy Chicken Noodle Veggie Soup
(soup or stew day)
~BREAD~

Saturday:Leftovers (also made pumpkin bread)

This has already eased my cooking schedule-though I spent yesterday going full steam for 17 hrs. I got up at 6 this morning (after only 4 hrs of sleep) and finished putting away the bread and straightening the kitchen AND I was able to read the Word-very refreshing-while I watched the pinks and reds in the sky. Yup, it's cloudy & it's supposed to be raining right now, but the high is supposed to be 73 degrees!! A wonderful day, now, if only we could dodge the raindrops and go outside!! I was getting a bit upset because it was raining/going to rain, but then the Lord showed me that He was cleaning the air for us! Yesterday, the neighbors decided to burn (at least this time it wasn't trash) and the wind blew most of the smoke right into our house. So, today, the Lord blesses us with rain to clean the air & we are able to open our windows again...umm, right after I find the screens.

Schooling:

#1 & #2 will be finishing the Math 2 by the end of the 'school year'. (It only took them 3 months to finish the second book) I need to get Math 3 (or maybe reassess to see if they could skip a grade with a bit of added effort on my part). I need to think of what Math to do for #3. I'll look into the Math 1 and see how it is. I need to get a workbook for writing for him & start that as well. I'll probably couple #3 & #4 in a grade, since she is right there with him. Then #5 always does everything with #4 and will want to join her....hmmmm, incorporating 3 beginning students is a new challenge for me. That would increase my classroom size-I'd have 5 children at the table. I had the younger ones for less time and different types of lessons-more verbal-than the older two. By the way...we year-round school. Learning doesn't stop, neither have we.

Knitting: (more boring stuff)

I finished my vest 2 weeks ago. I really like it...just the right warm without getting in the way while I work! I finished almost one sock, but I won't be wearing wool socks until next January-ish. My shawl I also packed, it will be quick to finish-when I have the umption! I am already thinking of things to sew. I would love to make the girls matching sundresses for Sundays and 1 or 2 matching dresses for everyday. We'll see, the little girls already have a number of summer dresses, so maybe I'll just be sewing for #1-unless G'ma T is willing to get out a few of the "heirloom" dresses. I remember a sleeveless lavendar dress and maybe one or two more. I haveta remember when we stop by on our WAY TO ARIZONA!!!!!!!!!!!
Ok, I'm calm. I'll go, since this is getting a bit lengthy.

"And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them,

Occupy till I come."

Luke 19:13

Friday, April 10, 2009

Menu Plans


I haven't listed my menu in a long time. Though I keep it from having certain days posted, I have the flexibility to change the meal depending what's in the cupboard. So far for this week I have these meals, not counting leftovers. I am also waiting to see what dh brings home from the store. He does an awesome j0b & it's always exciting to see if he brings home "extra" ingredients! He goes to the grocery store (saves time with just him-he makes the decision & there is never an ill spent cent) about every week and a half to two weeks. This makes it possible to save money on gas, since the store is far, and he's able to go to the hardware store all in one trip.


~Chili

~Noodle soup (watching Kung Fu Panda will make you need noodles!)

~Lentils & Wild Rice

~Grilled Cheese & Tuna

~Broccoli Soup


Meals always are for 2 times if not more except for things like grilled cheese, that usually accompanies leftovers or is a semi-snack.


I must say that Lentils & Rice is something that the Lord showed me to make. I use the Lundberg rice which is a mix of brown/wild rices. I throw the rice, lentils, water, salt and butter in the pan, bring to boil, cook at simmer for 50 mins & let it rest for about 10. I just revisited this site and found out that lentils and rice is a depression era food, as in this recipe. I am amazed that God gives wisdom to anyone at anytime - makes cookbooks pretty useless here!! Speaking of The Best Chef giving me His recipes, I also made a delicious Creamy Broccoli Soup today. Once again, 3 1lb bags of frozen broccoli, cover with water & bring to boil and cook til soft. Blend with a stick blender (don't splash it into your face-it kinda hurts) add one stick of butter, 1 TBSP of salt, a dash of pepper, at least 1 cup of milk and then the super secret sauce...oh, yeah, here you go: 1.5 cups of white sauce, or alfredo, or secret sauce:


1 stick butter melted into pan, add 1/4 cup of whole wheat flour and 1 tsp of salt with a dash of white pepper. Cook til bubbly then add 3 cups of milk. Bring to a boil, without burning the bottom of the pan. In another pan (or the same pan before you start the sauce) saute 6 cloves (1/3 to 1/2 head) of garlic, 1/4 cup diced onions, salt and pepper in butter. Cook until clear to golden. Blend with stick blender add to white sauce.


This is not for this meal, but you can pour it over veggies/noodles with this wonderful sauce:


1 can tomato sauce (I use the walmart brand-least amount of ookies)

6 garlic cloves

1/4 cup diced onions

1/4 tsp dried basil

1 tsp salt

pepper to taste (or just a dash)

1/2 can (small) refried beans ~* surprise! (or 1 part beans to 3 parts sauce)


This is great as a dip as well & it gives you added protein.


I just finished a pumpkin pie bread muffin cake thing. It is already 2/3rds gone. Having these yummy, nutritious and warm meals when it's still very chilly out is a wonderful way to get pleasant smiles and mmmmmmmms all around!


What else. Since I've lost another 1-2 inches this week (log is put away right now), but weight is not quite falling off, I've been restructuring my workout. Also, it's been so chilly or rainy or just pbbblt outside, walking has become almost non-existant (except for 3 days ago when it was so pleasant & sunny & I was able to take my 30 laps!!) I need to find my weights - I have 5 & 10 lbs free weights, hubby has a bench but it is down in the construction zone. I found youtube instructional videos (the pictures are inappropriate & I don't want to send people there) that explain how to workout more efficiently. A incredibly qualified (schools et al) trainer that explains things a bit like Teresa Tapp, but shows the benefits of using weights-or strength training. You know, the whole principle of gaining muscle which will in turn burn fat or use more energy therefore you lose weight. Another don't-need-to-look-at-the-scale-to-be-in-shape people!!

Psst...I can do 10 regular push-ups now followed by 10 more "girlie" push-ups!! Wooohooo!!

Anyway, what I've gathered is that I need to use my weights, workout only one of the Push/Pull/Legs workouts rather than something like: arms/chest one day then back the next...if you are paying attention to what you workout, then it is unnecessary to overwork the same muscles. Also that I need to raise my metabolism by doing small sets throughout the day, for when your body is at rest it is burning fat. While you sit, eat, sleep, and all, you are losing weight-not when you are working out-most of the time!


So, I'm gonna be improving my weight training and warm up to stretch and I will finally drop this extra flabbie! I've had a hard time getting my workout in this past week. Babies up late, overworking during the day so that I crash at night-basically never taking a rest time. All these things as well as the cold and cloudy weather took its toll on me. Since I don't have my regular trainer (dh) I have to be my own. I quit (in process) the "Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans". I never needed a crutch before, and have been sorely disappointed in this group. Maybe it should better be named the "Sisterhood of the Shrinking"; a complete thought (gerund modifying/describing subject) that doesn't suggest the opposite of what I think their purpose is . Oh well, not everyone will live up to my high expectations! Speaking of high expectations: I found these old links to Teresa Tapp describing her workouts.

Part 1 & Part 2. It's nice to review & remember why I did these workouts in the first place. Here's the Hoedown. (This does not nullify the fact that I will use weights/strength train)


Okie dokie, having a lighter school schedule. Only one lesson per day rather than two. Spending a little more time with setting up a tiny bit of chores, but really it should be called responsibilities.

#1 is putting away dishes (she's started washing bowls/plates when they are needed), switching the laundry.

#2 is making beds (mainly the little girls & mine-since everyone likes to sit on it)

#3 is cleaning the playroom

#4 gets the laundry out of the dryer with

#5 helping #4


They all help with picking up in general and the boys (#2 & #3) are pleased to trade off setting the table for meals. I am continually amazed at how they teach each other and care for each other. #3 has proven he can read...same as big brother, at the age of 4. Taking out the computer has also been a huge sucess! They are better behaved, kinder to each other (dearly so), quick to come when called, willing to acheive whatever task is set before them! Well worth all the effort-though I coulda saved myself alot of my own trouble by being consistent a long time ago! It's not the scheduling, routine or specific curriculum or ways, but doing the same thing with the same set of rules-always. It's really something you learn on your own, for you are your own family.

Alright. That's the news from Lake Woebegone...ummm, I mean here, where the woman is strong, the man is good looking and all the children are above average!! Goodnight folks.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Yummy Taco Pizza

Here's another great meal...plenty of protein and tasty as well.

I was rummaging for a yummy meal. Let's see, lettuce, moz. cheese, milk, refried beans, eggs, ummm....I'm not getting much: ok, here we go.

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup corn flour
1 tsp salt
1/3 stick of soft butter
Water enough to make a dough

Roll onto large cookie sheet & bake for 7 mins at 400 degrees
then add:
Refried Beans mixed 1/2 and 1/2 with tomato sauce
Mozerrella Cheese & a tad of Colby Jack
Black Olives

Finish in the oven for 3-5 mins or until the cheese looks how you like.

Viola. Isn't it beautiful? I think I'll finish the last piece after workout tonight




Now, what am I going to make for tomorrow? I've got b'fast down (need to get a loaf of bread out of the freezer), lunch...umm...and dinner....oh, yeah. THINK! Guess I just haveta throw something else together!

Probably need to make tomorrow my laundry folding day and finish planning meals for the week. I helped hubby mud the dry wall we put up, the children were all wanting to help & did a little. We have a few more coats, but the partition to the stairs is looking top-notch!

Well, I'm off to workout. All 6 children are in bed (not necessarily asleep) and it's much quieter. I had #2 (6yrs) & #3 (4yrs) both helping with setting the table and getting the food out when it was time to eat. Pretty soon here, I won't have to lift a finger, except to care for myself! I love being a manager! The older ones are constantly using whatever they have, whether books or toys, to teach the younger children. It is amazing to hear them teach concepts and explain things and then encourage the child(ren) listening! K, gotta workout for real now, ciao!

Wednesday Weigh-In


Ok, still weigh the same as last week: 140 (which I am very thankful for-it had fluctuated up 4 lbs during the week!) but my measurements went down overall 2.75" the biggest loss of 2.5" in my abs! I didn't work out on Saturday or Sunday, so I have a 5 day work week. (Somebody needs to make the meals and do the laundry and change the diapers, ect. ad nausea)

I had the hardest time working out-it hurt and I really wanted to quit! With the constant posts at the "sisterhood" site and knowing ALL the "sisters" out there working hard, encourages me everyday to keep going!! (I really couldn't let them all lose their weight while I just give myself too many free days!) My jeans fit better in the waist, but are a bit snug in the thighs and calf-these jeans had already gone into the "too big" pile 4 months ago!! I'm going to keep it up and lose big in this challenge!! Next month will come too soon and I'll look back and know it was worth it!!

"No Pain, No Gain!"

I always feel like I could workout more, even after I'm done! I feel GREAT!! It's worth it so far!!

I've added the "Hoedown" and "Awesome Legs" to the 2-3 approx. 10 min workouts with Gilad. (This link has the same videos, but I can't find the site I have bookmarked on my comp.) Still walking when it's nice enough out-which is once or twice per week. I need to go get dinner started and then head outside-it's finally super sunny and warm 53 degrees (though the cold country wind makes me need to wear a coat-it's perfect on the deck where the wind is blocked by the house) *mental note: need to open the windows and air the house!
See ya next week, more inch loss and more likely some weight loss (unless I decide to start lifting weights!)

ETA: I have the #20 lb button on my sidebar because I've lost 20 lbs since I started really working out last August. (I'm not counting from when I had baby the end of last March-cause that woulda been 50lbs total!!) #5 lbs of it in September, #5 lbs in October and the last #10 lbs the first two weeks of November! Yeah, I was down to 128 all the way until we got back from the wedding. I had to start working out again while we seriously started working on the house & moving from room to room to renovate!! Now things have settled and I know when to help my hubby and can plan around it, so, I can now workout. I gained 14 lbs in the last 2 months of not working out (and weaning the baby). So, that's why I have 20 lbs to lose-having lost 4 last week. So there. pbbbbbbbt.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Happy Birthday Blog!


This is the second year I've blogged! I can't say that time flew in this instance!

Today was really windy, but much warmer (around 50 degrees). We went outside for 40 mins. I was able to walk around the yard 12 times & I paid attention to keep a fast pace & even ran a bit-that was a great feeling, sorta like coasting downhill on a bike!! I have a workout tonight also to do & look forward to a really great week!

It was wonderful to be out in the sun-my whole attitude is more of a calm, collected mama after the exercise in the sunshine! I just wonder how fulfilling it will be to have so much more sun & so many more months to be outside in Arizona!!

Today we also got up earlier & I feel so wonderful for all that I accomplished today before the children went to bed!! I straightened some books & then the children "found" them again--I thanked God we don't have television; they were reading to each other, and not only that-they were TEACHING each other how to read!! (#1 with #3) It's so cute when the baby girls (3 & 2) play with each other, the elder teaching the younger with much praise, "You did it! YEAH!!"

Just finished helping hubby hang more dry wall. He's working on the stairwell with its partition wall. He's prepping it now to mud-which I may be able to help on this side of the stairs! :)

That's all for now. Ciao.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Mmmmm....Delicious


Today I made a mouth-watering Roast with Mashed Spuds!! Crockpot meals are so easy and yummy. Thaw roast, put olive oil, salt, pepper and fresh garlic cloves (sliced in half if big), and then the roast on top, dash a bit more salt and pepper on the roast. Add some water depending how much broth you want to be left over after you've served the gravy with the meal. Cook on high for about 4 hrs & enjoy the aromas that waft through your house! How easy!! Boil 5 lbs potatoes for 20 mins with salted water, drain (& keep for another stew, potatoe bread, ect.) and put in a mixer (Bosch is THE best!) add 1 stick of butter, salt, white pepper and 1 cup of milk and mix til the right consistency. Serve before everyone comes, or it will be gone and they'll be asking for seconds before you're done serving!! :) Don't forget to make a volcano with the gravy in the potatoes-that's what we called it when my mommy did this for us!

To answer this question: For your cinnamon rolls, do you just use honey instead of white sugar? Would brown sugar be OK?

We don't use brown sugar, but we do eat lots of molasses! (full of b vitamins, calcium, potassium, magnesium!!) Brown sugar (I'm sure you know) is only sugar that a small amount of the molasses has been added back to it. I only put a minimum of honey in the dough so it slightly sweetens it, but won't burn. I add a mix of butter, honey and vanilla (maybe cream -whipped or not if we have it on hand) and pour or brush it on after the rolls are out of the oven.

Oh, I forgot...I put a teaspoon each of ground cinnamon and ground ginger in 2 cups of honey and use part of this for the icing.

And I've had to figure how much bread we eat each week and which were the best days to bake it. For me it's Tuesdays and Fridays, then there is no bread making on the weekend and I still have the day after if I get behind on things! This was the only way I could keep up!


Nothing else here. Amazingly enough, the snow has melted and it was such a bright sun shiny day!! :)

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Feeding Your Brain

Amidst the hype of low and non-fat diets, I have not fallen for it. It never made sense to me! Why separate an egg to miss out on the lecithin that naturally dissolves fat? Why eat low fat dressings to miss out on the good cholesterol to nourish your brain? Why drink skim or low fat milk and miss out on the vitamins and minerals? (Besides the fact that farmers feed their pigs skim milk to fatten them!!) Why get sucked into the trends that end up making it more difficult to lose weight, more difficult to stay in shape and be healthy?

SO, I decided I wouldn't do that. I also cannot eat only protein. Natural whole grains are great for the body, extending an even blood sugar level as well as soluble and insoluble fibers. Why suffer through diets where you CANNOT eat, and just get rid of the junk that you SHOULD NOT eat? Sugar and white flour (whether enriched or not) is not food. They are leftover processes that defeat the purpose of nourishing your body. Processed foods have added chemicals to keep products longer and enhance the flavor for the sole benefit of having the consumer buy more. Otherwise known as neurotoxins. They work on the brain to stimulate a sense of well-being just like drugs.

Ok, anyways, we finally finished the last of the white rice we had and I think I'm going to throw away the noodles. It's not worth it for my body or my family's to suffer and try to eat healthy and lose weight at the same time. It's not worth going out to eat-NOBODY cooks like I do. I actually ate 1 whole peanut M&M today and within seconds of putting it in my mouth I felt bad. It doesn't taste good anymore! (not a bad peanut) Maybe it was the Blue Lake, maybe it was the sugar coating, maybe it was the artificial flavor of the chocolate? Maybe it was just a bad idea!

Just one M&M caused me to determine to forget about all those foods I associate with good times and happy memories. It's detrimental to my body to have to deal with those toxins and suffer the emotional as well as the physical reactions.


Back to the basics. Today I made Whole Wheat Bread...I added a little more honey, it had been tasting a bit yeasty. Also put on a pot of Potatoe Soup with lots of celery and carrots and leftover Roast juice that had garlic. Just finished 4 eggs with 2 slices of my bread with butter. I don't starve my body-or eat meals only 3 times per day, but I feed my body so it recognizes that I will feed it next time and therefore will get rid of the reserves of unnecessary fat. If I eat only 3 times per day, I gain weight, even if I'm working out! I eat more protein than carbs, but I eat plenty along with lots of fats. Olive oil, butter, Cod Liver Oil are what we have now, but I can't wait til we can get Coconut Oil again...that's when I had better weight loss and just felt much better overall!!

So, if you have problems losing weight, keeping it off or have any health problems or issues-consider what you put in your mouth and if you really want to work that much harder to get it out of your system! "A minute on the lips-a lifetime on the hips" really comes into play here when you don't eat The Extreme Healthy Foods.

Whatcha gonna do? When are you gonna get up from the computer and work off that last ________ you had? When are you gonna stop planning meals based on junk or not planning and going out to eat junk? I can hear you say, "But I don't like it, my family won't eat it" then figure out a way...and stop making 3 year old's excuses, you are an adult!

Ok, gotta run.

Here's some food for thought:

"He should have fed them also with the finest of the wheat: and with honey out of the rock should I have satisfied thee. " Psalm 81:16 "And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man's heart." Psalm 104:15

"And hast given them this land, which thou didst swear to their fathers to give them, a land
flowing with milk and
honey;" Jeremiah 32:22




This is an older pic, homemade cinnamon roll with whole wheat flour and honey and butter.

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Working Mama

Ah- HAH!! I got your attention!! hehe, I'm just talking about all the work I've done!!

Today was a busy day, finished up school with Math drills (flashcards with Daddy) and the Math Lessons which took a while to do-TGIF! I was in a brain-fog and am drinking my water right now!! As I am getting sick of being online (but love to get email and comments) I'm working on limiting my time. That is usually best done if I just leave the computer off!! I made a batch of bread and actually had a wonderful Potatoe Soup ready at the same time!! Amazingly, we didn't get the snow, but it's still COLD-hence the cooking! :)




So, finished the dishes (while cooking) and was working on the laundry since this morning. Feeling a bit discouraged about the laundry (which is unlike me-I really enjoy it, nothing to think about and it gets done!), and happened on A Wise Woman Builds Her House in an older post where she talks about doing laundry. I was encouraged and thrilled that she does her laundry almost exactly how I've always wanted to do mine!! You'll haveta go see.

Anyway, gotta go. I need to switch the laundry and do a quick pickup and ready for bed. Ciao.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Shrink into Summer Weight Loss Challenge

Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans



As per The Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans, I will be posting something about my weight loss. They're a bit hung up on the weight loss in association with caloric intake rather than inch loss and caloric output with extreme healthy eating (so caloric intake is a moot point). They should seriously look into it!! I have lost tons of inches and weighed the same-I was always more pleased that I could actually fit into my jeans better than the fact that my weight didn't change. I guess that's what you call building muscle!

My goal weight is 120 (I was way too skinny at 112!) I now weigh 140 (according to my fickle, old, beat up scale) and 152.0 (according to my digital scale that weighs my weights 8lbs more for every hundred-yeah right digital is accurate!-it's even a Weight Watchers-not adjustable in any way) So, I'm looking to lose 20 lbs.**

I was walking and starting to do sprint intervals, but it's been raining and I must take into account having children outside playing--so, once again, I haveta change my workout. Whatever I do will be for approx. 1 hr, because that is the time I've found that I actually start to lose weight-anything else is just stretching! (i.e. pilates, yoga, etc.)

My goal is muscle building (I guess I'll be getting out my weights) as well as weight loss, but more importantly inch loss. I can go to FitTV online and workout with Gilad's workouts for the National Body Challenge. He uses weights and does plenty of cardio. The workout sessions are in approx. 10 min segments. There are several, so I can pick and choose how intense and how long I workout. I will probably be working out at night (11p.m. or so) since I'm not an early riser that much earlier than the children!! I'll set that goal another time! As the weather improves, I will be going outside to walk/sprint and maybe incorporate the 5K Run method at the same time!! (that would be just tooooooo coooooool!)

**I took the inches off the site, but I'll be keeping track, maybe with a total of inches lost to post here.

From last week (3/18), I actually lost 4 lbs!

With motivation I look forward to losing a minimum 5-10 lbs per month, and since this is an 8 week challenge, I think it is very possible!!

I will try to take my measurements and weights in the morning before any food intake.

It's tough being this honest (some may think I'm being a freak 'cause I'm not that fat, but I'm not in as good of shape as I desire and I just had a baby a year ago and would like to shed the extra flabs!)

Ok, that's all I can think of. Come back next week to see my progress!

Happy Birthday!!


Today is Baby Boy's 1st Birthday!!


He is running everywhere, comes when he's called, gives us the "yuckies" instead of trying to eat them, he's getting his 5th tooth (the top 2 came in the same day he was weaned-about 2 weeks ago), he's talking-saying so much & we are learning exactly what it is & how I LOVE it when we get it right, his smiles and hugs are just perfect! He is learning to like bananas, but it just depends what he wants. He likes his salty and savory foods before his sweet foods! The children love him much and are always playing with him: getting down on all fours and chasing him til he gets down and chases them back! They all are wonderful!

Happy Birthday, Sweetie!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Another Great GiveAway!

Anne over at Jensen Family Blog is having a giveaway that will close Wednesday the 25th at 7p.m. (she's in Colorado, so whatever time zone)

Go visit, leave a comment & welcome her into the blogging world!!

I may be adding other giveaways-if I have make time!



Win a free Bumgenius 3.0 Diaper! This is a valuable All-In-One cloth diaper that you can use for yourself or give as a gift to someone expecting a baby! Go check out Hot Belly Mama's Blog for details on how to win this wonderful All In One Cloth Diaper. Hot Belly Mama will announce the winner on March 30th, after her 30th birthday!

Here is the direct link to her blog:
http://hotbellymama.blogspot.com/

go to her March 8th entry!


You can go here (Two Under Two) for yet another giveaway (guess where I've been all day!!)

This is what she's giving away! Adorable!!

Ultimate Blog Party '09

Ok, once again, another Blog Party, but this one is HUGE!! I hope I have time to search through at least a few blogs & find like-minded peoples!!

Ok, this is me, BellaMama, married to the Best Husband in the World for the past 8.5 years, and we have 6 blessings that are 7 and under. I homeschool all of them (but actually keep records for 5), I'm a stay-at-home mom--I actually stay at home, We eat no processed foods and I bake our own whole wheat bread from freshly ground flour and make plenty home-cooked meals, We don't watch T.V., We cloth Diaper and Baby Carry and Co-Sleep, We love to research information and try to better our lives. Currently we are renovating our house to sell and move soon! What else? I love what I do, where I am and how God works in our lives each and every moment!!

Ok, off to find others or maybe I should be knitting--hmmm, tough toss-up!

Ultimate Blog Party 2009


These are my top ten prizes I'd be glad to receive:

1.USC 1: Spanish for Children DVD series.

2.USC 14: Glass and stone earring and necklace set

3. USC 66: $50.00 Gift Certificate to the online maternity and baby boutique, Madre Gear.

4. USC 7: Organic Nest Egg take-a-long pillow

5.USC 17 :$50 Sterling Silver Earrings from Ice.com

6. 20: 5 bars of handmade goat milk soap

7.USC 73: Go baby OutMat

8.USC 26: 10 $50.00 Gift Vouchers to Hatley

9. USC 45: Pair of shoes from Eleven Collection Spring/Summer 09′

10. USC 58: Handmade Retro Apron of your choice!

11.USC 9: $50 gift certificate to Salon Hive

These are all from the US/Can list and #6 is the only one from the regular list.


I also have a blog where I write about my pregnancies, my babies and my health during these times. (Written for wives and moms though not inappropriate)

One more blog where I write up free patterns for knitting. I hope to one day include my crochet patterns, but a girl's only got so many hours in the day! :)

Ok, I think that's all! Talk to you'alls later!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Knitting Kit GiveAway


Go leave a comment at FUZZY THOUGHTS by Friday for a chance to win a Scrap Chaps Knitting Kit! Quite adorable, just like the other knitting patterns at her Etsy shop!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

What Not To Make


I started surfing Allrecipes . com yesterday, looking for something different to make. I got my recipe I was looking for and then continued to look for other ideas. Big mistake. Ok, I have the ingredients, sounds good and easy, I'll try it.

Kugel (Never forget the name!)
2 lbs noodles
10-12 eggs
1 cup butter
someone commented about their modifications so I tried my own
1/2 lb broccoli chopped
1 cup of spinach chopped
1/4 onion sauteed
salt and pepper

make noodles, mix with everything and put in a pan for 1 hr at 350 degrees.

See, really easy, sounds good (except for those who don't like specific veggies)

My hubby nicknamed it "The Embalmed Cassarole" The children had such pitiful faces and asked, "Do I have to finish this?" in the sweetest way. Baby #6 ate it just fine, but stopped after a while and just spit it out with a face that said "yucky". #5 lovingly gave me all of her portion and said it was for me.

This is not what I expected at all, but was pleased that hubby said it was ok to ditch it. I offered my "fix" of cutting it into pieces to put into a soup, hubby said, "Yeah, cut it into pieces to put into the trash." Guess I shoulda made a quiche!


House news: Hubby has all but one window in downstairs. He's also been finishing up the mudding of the downstairs room's drywall and cleaning up and getting rid of stuff. It's so nice to hear him say he's getting rid of things!! No pictures....cause we didn't take anymore. He's also scraping ceilings to get rid of all the "popcorn" texture.

As always, knitting in the evenings and weekends. I just found this beautiful, free shawl. I don't know if I'll make it or make a vest. I'm working on a vest right now. I dunno if I'm gonna write the pattern to sell or not, we'll see.

Other than that, all's quiet here. It's starting to warm nicely and I've been walking around the yard for exercise. It's difficult to workout at night (11p.m.-1a.m.) and be wide awake, so I'm opting for outside time with the children playing. Now, I can knit at night! :)

Ok, that pretty much all the update here. Have a blessingfull week!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Caution: Construction Zone

Here is my husband's latest work zone. He is framing the windows, adding insulation, wrapping the house, then putting in the windows and putting up siding. The first picture is of the North side of the house, the second is the South side. He's working on the front also, but didn't take a picture.


While we're working, our neighbors (actually where we used to rent before we got this house 2 houses down) took down about 1/2 of a dilapidated garage. Though I don't have before pics, this is quite an improvement!!That's all for now, going to go outside to get some sunlight before it's gone!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Modesty

Another group to enter to win prizes and talk about Modesty!


modest fashion week


Enjoy the fellowship!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Induction Cookers & Yogurt Making


Thought I'd show you'alls my induction cookers. They are wonderful, especially when your stove goes out and you still have electricity! They are also great in summer when you don't want added heat in your house! This is the white one, it has a lip at the edge of the plate, the black one doesn't. They're very easy to use, the children are starting to learn. Since our stove is fixed, but so old and inefficient, that I am using the induction cookers for everything that would be stove top. I still make bread in the oven and things like meatloaf, but that's all.



The principle is on magnetism therefore, if a magnet doesn't stick to your pan, you won't be able to use it, the cooker will automatically shut off. Also, if you take your pan off the plate, the connection is broken and it will beep a few times and then shut off. I love this for teaching the children to cook, the plate does not get hot except for the retained heat from the pan. The concept is brilliant!!

Right now I'm making yogurt-thought I'd take pictures to show you!

This is the black one, I must use for this huge pan (no lip on the plate). So, by tonight sometime, we will have 2 gallons of yogurt! (and meatloaf I made last night.)

That's all that's going on here besides the children have moved to doing 2 Math lessons per day-they are absolutely excelling!! :) We will finish the first work book in no time and move to the second. We need to start Multiplication and Division now that they are good at Addition and Subtraction. Then Algebra is next, Geometry will be interspersed so that Trigonometry will flow easily as well!! I will be checking their placement and skip a few books, since in elementary the main processes are learned and then repeated until the upper grades. Their reading is doing quite well and I hope to get out these books I got from Rod & Staff:

Thrilling Escapes by Night
The Man in Bearskin
Evangelist in Chains

I have more, and I think these are great true stories and truly real life based. I think I'll be selling my Laura Ingalls books...I'd not read them before now and found that I don't want to know the inner thoughts of Laura or the disobedient things that Almonzo did. Don't children have enough bad examples that we would have to introduce more?! We want them to emmulate Christ-like characters and will be looking for more whether taken from scripture or biographies.

Well, that's all for now. Need to go get another meal/snack out! Have a blessings of a day!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Titus 2 Blog Party

Sure, I'll join to get more people to visit me. So, do sit and have a cup of tea and enjoy!

This blog was started to mainly stay in touch with far away family and has turned into an outlet for me to see what I've been doing! I've realized that I can accomplish more when I want to blog than I did before I started a blog! I hope to encourage other moms of many small children that they are capable of getting all they are required to do and much more done since we are all allotted the same amount of time in each day!! I don't apologize for what I believe or how we rear our children. There are many books and teachings and the few I've read and heard I like only a few sentences from each and therefore don't support the rest. I've learned not to look to others for help as God is my helper and I am learning to make Him my All in All! We are a cloth diapering, co-sleeping, baby carrying, not cry-it-out family. We look for opportunities to show our children that treasure in heaven is our ultimate goal and that living perfectly in Christ by walking in love.

You're always welcome and please comment!

Here's the link to get back to the Titus 2 Blog Party go see others!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Do I Look OLD?


For years I've read and heard the verse about the older women teaching the younger women. I just reread it and the Lord showed me something:

"The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; "That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, "To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." Titus 2:3-5

Did you see that also? Do I look aged to you? I think I still fall in the catagory of a young woman, I'm still learning the things that are listed!

So, I will refrain myself from trying to teach you. I've not come that far in life that I can consider myself aged!! I will abide by this verse:

"Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
"And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church."
I Corinthians 14:34-35