Monday, February 28, 2011

Our Super Fun-Filled Weekend

I don't know about your weekend, but ours was really nice. Friday night we had movie night for the kids. They packed their pillows and blankets into the living room and sprawled out on the floor with popcorn and sippy cups to watch "Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian". The boys really enjoyed it and had planned on camping out in the living room after the movie, but I said I was going to sleep in my bed and they decided their beds were more comfortable than the floor too.
Saturday rolled around and T took the boys to the city with his dad. You see, T is a groomsman in his friends wedding this summer and he had to get fitted for his suit. He was so excited. That it's over. Actually, it's not over, it really hasn't even started. (Little Rose is eating a graham cracker right now and I think she is possibly falling asleep at the same time. Yeah, she's being a total goofball too.) I got to hang out with my little girl all morning and then hitched a ride with my sister to town where we bought all kinds of exciting things. Oh, I can tell you are dying to know what we found! Our first real treasure we picked up was.....chicken feed! No, not what you expected? That chicken feed really helps me get a dozen eggs a day so... treasure for me. Then we went on over to the Wal-Mart. I know. On Saturday. In Small Town. What were we thinking?! It wasn't too bad; I have definitely seen it worse. I didn't buy anything super exciting there. Just the usual mambo jumbo of items you can buy in a "super store"; hair care products, high mileage vehicle oil, bananas, cheese and bacon. That bacon was really good, too. Later on, T went the other Small Town near us and rented a movie from RedBox for a whopping $1.08. We really lived it up!
Sunday we hung around the house doing some "fixing up". Our back deck now has railing so no one will fall off of it and I made another (empty) flower bed. I made BLTs for lunch (you wanted to know), then all my children took a nap, I took a shower and watched some PBS TV. Then we all went into Small Town to return the RedBox movie and picked up some yummy Blue Bell ice cream and cream soda to make floats back at home. They were so delicious and went really well with sitting out on our now safe deck. I finally dragged my butt back inside and made pizza (home made) and we watched Nature, not the Oscars.
I hope I didn't bore you too much with my very detailed weekend post. It was actually relaxing and we really enjoyed it so I know you enjoyed reading about it. I am hoping to get some half price plants at Lowes this week...if I can convince someone to go with me.
Stuck with an empty flower bed,

Friday, February 25, 2011

Headline: Baby Banana for Bananas

I have a little girl
With cute little curls
When she is hungry
She is very, very hungry
No, goldfish won't do
No, she doesn't want juice
Just a banana
Or make that two

My little girl really likes bananas. I mean she likes them so much she fought me for the banana peel yesterday! I had given her a banana and put the peel in a bowl that was still on the table from lunch. When she finished her banana (in about 12 seconds) I got her down from her chair and told her to go play.  I started washing some dishes and she walks over to me with a big grin on her chubby little face. "I wonder what's making her so happy? I hope she doesn't lay on my feet and cry when she sees I'm washing dishes again." She didn't cry. She was way to pleased with herself. I watched her and then noticed what she was carrying. The banana peel. She saw that pretty yellow peel on the table and thought, "More banana!" I tried to take it away from her and she suddenly had some sort of super power strength, I mean I really couldn't get her baby hand to open. Then, when I did managed to get her tiny fist open, she grabbed the peel with the other hand! Not to mention that my hands were all soapy so that didn't exactly help me out. So this goes on for a few more times, all the while Little Rose is making growling noises at me and then starts in with the screaming. I finally wrangled the peel away from her and threw it over in the compost bucket. I turn around to an outraged one year old who thinks I just threw a perfectly good piece of banana away. The screaming, crying and flailing of limbs really threw me for a loop. She is serious about her bananas. I knew she really liked bananas...just not this much. I can't take her to the store and just casually walk by the bananas and toss some in the basket. She sees. She wants. She cries. I actually have to somehow distract my precious daughter while I grab bananas and then HIDE them in the basket. It's a daunting task, believe me.

I now realize this post was about nothing but bananas and a baby. Forgive me, it's all I have right now. Unless you'd like to hear about which commercials annoy me most. I didn't think you did.
Enjoy some bananas your weekend!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Beef Stir Fry

It is yummy. I decided a few weeks ago to forgo the frozen bagged Chinese food and make it myself. It only feeds 2 people (or one really hungry person) and they can be expensive. So instead of a pre-made frozen meal I grabbed a jar of stir fry sauce and some frozen stir fry veggies. I had sirloin at home already so that was all I needed. Here's what I did: Since the sirloin was frozen I thawed it until I could slice it thinly, then added 2 tablespoons of soy sauce and corn starch and let it marinate until it was fully thawed. To cook it: Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a wok or large non stick skillet on medium-high heat. Add the meat and allow it to brown and cook almost through. Once the meat is browned remove it from skillet and throw in whatever vegetables you have (I had broccoli, carrots and water chestnuts). Cover skillet and let the veggies soften to your liking. When the veggies are ready add in the meat and sauce, cover for 5 minutes. I know it's not totally "home-made", but until I find a good recipe for stir fry sauce this is how it's done in my kitchen. T and I usually devour one of those frozen meals and are still starving and my version fed us well and I even had leftovers. Leftovers in this house are VERY rare. Then we had a piece of cake I made this afternoon because all my lovely children took naps at the same time. I had a brief moment of me time...I ate some Chocolate Covered Strawberries ice cream that T brought home last night. It was Blue Bell and amazing.
The kids are in bed and I am in need of a shower so I can watch Parenthood and eat some more ice cream. Hope I inspired someone to try something new today!
Liking Me Some Ice Cream,

Monday, February 21, 2011

Changes to the Farm

This February has been crazy, as far as weather, anyway. Freezing temperatures, snow, ice, and now, 70 degree days and 58 degree nights. I have the huge urge to plant things... I know I should wait and I will. Actually, I did plant spring onions and cilantro... because this is the right time to plant them (I read the seed packet). I just came in from moving a bunch of very heavy rocks to border my flower beds. I am now sporting a smashed finger.
Over the weekend we moved our sheep to a new location. I guess we are "part owners" of them or something like that. They were really getting a bad habit of crossing fences and strolling down our road eating our neighbor's gardens and hay. My sister and brother-in-law, who are the other half of the ownership, found them a place with sheep proof fencing and plenty of grazing space. I hope they remain happy and I'm sure I will still be seeing them from time to time. We acquired three more guineas and lost our rooster. I was not sorry to see our rooster go.
Some really exciting news! Remember how I posted that we were looking for another dog? (looks up post...yes, of course I remember!) Well, we found him! Actually T found him and Brenner (of new pup's name) is T's dog. Lori (the blue heeler) is mine. So he has repeatedly said since she claimed me. Anyhow, Brenner is a German Shorthaired Pointer and a very handsome dog. He started tracking some hogs on his walk yesterday and this morning he "pointed". So, I think T made an excellent decision when he chose this dog. Again, Brenner is T's dog. I will do very little with his care and nurturing, although I do have a few responsibilities with him while T is at work.
I have clothes to put away, things to bake and thaw, dishes to wash, and kids to feed. A busy Monday again.
Washing Dishes with One Hand and Feeding Kids with the Other,

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Oh, Hi Again

Yay, I got the Internet back!
We made it through the ice, snow and freezing weather without incident. We did such a great job bearing the teens and 20 degree weather for those weeks (yes, two weeks in a row) that we are rewarded with 70 degree weather all this week! I'm really enjoying going outside with the kids and dreaming about my garden.
Over the weekend we did some much needed work on the house and it is looking pretty good. I am planning out some flower beds for along the front of the house and praying I will pick the flowers that will not totally give out on me right away. I have been researching "Earth Kind" plants for my region. So far the flowers I had in mind are on the list and are very hard to kill once they are established. I am hoping the rose that T has tried to kill unsuccessfully for many years survives the slaughter it went through this weekend. It was planted too close to the house and when T was fixing the side of the house where it was he cut it down to about an inch in height. I then decided I would take care of this rose and T was happy. He said he felt sorry for it, because surely if I tried to care for it it would die. I told him that at least he would be happy.
I hope we can beautify the yard before the end of April. I'd like to have Ry-Guy's birthday party at home. I have 2 months. His party needs to be awesome this year because last years kept getting put off (surgery dates did too) and he never had a party. We feel pretty bad about that. We did go out to eat with our very close friends for our birthdays (mine and his are a day apart), but that doesn't make up for it.
I've got party planning to do,

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Day it Froze

(February 3)
It is still freezing here. Literally. I know it’s a lot worse in other parts of the country though, so I’m not going to complain about our weather too much. T and I have had the discussion about if we had to choose to be hot or cold what would we choose. I think I would choose heat. And I’m not saying that just because it’s so cold out right now. I’ve thought about this quite a bit throughout my life. I’m much more accustomed to heat than cold and bear it pretty well. When I was growing up my house didn’t have any central air conditioning so on those hot days in the summer I was outside running through the sprinklers and laying in the tiny blow up pool we had. My siblings and I had access to the freezer that was stocked with ice pops and treated ourselves to at least 2 or 3 a day. That doesn’t sound like a whole lot now, but when you’re a kid it’s like having an unlimited supply of sugar. And you don’t have to wear many clothes, especially if you happen to be of the male gender. Girls are expected to wear a tad bit more clothing. A swim suit all day is ok if you’re at home, but please, when in public cover up a little. And wear shoes. I used to be so shocked to see kids walking around on the pavement and in stores without shoes on. It’s not that hard to throw some sandals on…come on parents. It bothered me as a kid and bothers me even more now, as a parent myself, that people clothe themselves but not their children. That is a post for another time.
Those are nice warm memories, but back to reality now. We are staying warm and our animals are faring alright. I went out this morning and checked the chickens and let the sheep out since their water was frozen solid and they needed to run around a little. I decided to go find the cow and calf to see if they were doing ok. The cow is a little wild so I didn’t get close enough to see the calf, but I saw where they were. They were laying behind a round bale of hay my brother brought over keeping out of the wind. I walked up on the bank of the stock tank and when I did about a hundred blue birds and cardinals flew out of the brush; just about scared me silly. I recovered quickly when I realized it wasn’t a mountain lion coming to kill me and counted 17 ducks on the tank. They flew away too, along with a crane. It was a beautiful sight and made braving the cold totally worth it. I’m so happy I get to see that on my morning “commute” instead of angry people honking their horns in backed up traffic.
I have to go break up a fight and put Little Rose’s socks back on her. She has started taking them off every chance she gets.
Happily braving the cold,

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I May Be Frozen

This cold weather is something else. It blew in (literally) at 4am. I wakened to howling wind and shingles being ripped off the roof. I grabbed T and turned into a 3 year old because I didn’t like how the wind sounded at my window. So, we got up and checked the weather on TV and this Internet thing. So much for the front coming in around 11am. Come on meteorologists!
 It’s a good thing T got the horses penned last night or they would have been hiding in the woods somewhere. Speaking of the woods, T went on a little walk and called me to tell me we have a newborn calf! My brother had some cows over here this summer and this one jumped out of the pen when he came to load them up and move them back to his place. This lonely cow has just been hanging here with the sheep and horses. T hadn’t seen her the previous day so he suspected she had calved. I, of course, had no suspicions of any kind. I think I was busy trying to wrangle my kids and make sure we had clean clothes to wear.
My Internet is out right now, but I thought I should write anyhow and post it later when I get it working again. I do not know when that will be. In other happenings today, I am making chili tonight and then I will snuggle up with a blanket and some hot cocoa and watch the return of Parenthood. Then I will go snuggle up under my huge down comforter and hibernate until this cold weather goes away. Oh who am I kidding? I will get up at 7 tomorrow and make the best of things. Who has a down comforter in Texas anyhow? Me. I don’t regret it one bit either. Apparently big fluffy comforters are not in style anymore. The bedroom stylist people (puh-lease) have decided that blankets are sleeker looking and more modern. Um, ok, sure if you have central heat or live somewhere like Brazil. I, on the other hand, think that is total baloney. I currently have no central heat or air conditioning and think my down comforter has saved my life. It’s seasonal bedding, anyhow. The summer calls for light covers that can be thrown off easily  when it starts burning up. Ok, now that my opinion is out…let’s move on.
I am thinking I need some techie gloves. You know, the kind that are fingerless, so I can type or text without my hands freezing. Just the tips of my fingers would be frozen, even better. The kids are fairing quite well with this weather. D-man, my 4 year old, keeps asking to go outside. I keep telling him no. The wind chill is between 10 and 20 out there. We don’t have a snowsuit for him. Or anyone else, because that is what it would take for me to let him out there. Ry-Guy doesn’t really care. He probably would like to take his socks off but I won’t let him. Little Rose doesn’t care either. As long as they are happy  I am happy too.  I am going to go find a blanket now.
Not completely frozen (yet),