Monday, March 31, 2014

Girl's Day Out!

Devon took Morgan and Brenna on a day out last weekend. They went to the small local touch tank, although they didn't actually get to play in the touch portion because it was being cleaned. Then they ran around the pier for a while, went to Dairy Queen , and finally the park. Brenna was pretty worn out by the time they got home and went right to sleep without her dinner.
Now, check out how they looked on the way home. I don't think they wanted to come back.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Sweetheart Vest

I made my goal! I planned to have this little vest finished by the end of the month and I made it with a couple of days to spare. My Son in Law's Sister loved the little vest I made for my future Grandson and wanted one like it for her baby. I promised My Stepdaughter that I would try to finish it before their visit.

I bought this yarn intending to make a vest like this for Brenna, but I never got around to it. We decided that it would look adorable on Baby Brenda instead.
 I've made several of these little vests. It's one of my favorite patterns. This is the first time I've made the heart cables though. I think they turned out great, but I wasn't able to get good pictures of them, so you'll just have to trust me!
Now, I just need to finish Carlitos' baby quilt before the shower on the 12th. Can I make it?

Helped Again!

I went in the sewing room yesterday to get a pair of scissors and look what I found. Oh yeah, someone (no one, Mr. Nobody) decided I needed help threading my serger.
Luckily it wasn't too messed up this time! Whoever it was, just spun the the thread guide around until it wouldn't turn anymore. I didn't even have to re-thread the whole thing, I just had to spin it back the other way.
I just don't understand why they need to do stuff like this. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Sowing Seeds

  Yes, we are in the garden, but those aren't the seeds I'm talking about. We've all heard the phrase "You reap what you sow". Well, this week I've been sowing seeds in my children.
Gardening isn't really easier with small children "helping". Duncan is actually able to help a little with some projects like planting seeds and transplants and hauling shovels and rakes around. The three younger kids really aren't any help at all. It actually takes much longer to work with them and I often have to re do things on the sly when they aren't looking.
Why do I let them help then? Why not send them off to play? Because, you reap what you sow and I want to reap capable adults who have important skills and know that their work is valued. That means that I have to let them work now. Yes, it takes more time, but that is sort of what parenting is all about.
I realized that I didn't get pictures of Morgan, but you can just barely see her digging a hole in the background of this picture.
When I let my kids help now, even though it isn't really much of a help, they are learning skills that will be useful in the future. They are also are understanding more about why I do what I do.  Seriously, it is easier to just buy produce from the store, but I feel that growing as much of our own food as possible is important. When the kids work with me, they get a chance to learn why I feel that way.
When I let the kids work with me, they feel like they are making a contribution to our family and home. They become producers, not just consumers. They get to take ownership of the results. If you've ever had a hard time getting your kids to eat vegetables, just let them grow some of their own. They might surprise you with how many of "their" vegetables they are willing to eat. Especially if you let them help cook them too!
I admit, I have to remind myself of all these things while they are busy digging out the soil I just put in place, or someone accidentally steps on a new transplant, or when I'm trying to lift a full shovel with a small hand on the handle "helping" me. It really would be so much easier to just send them in the house to watch a movie. But, I have goals as a parent. I want things for my children and welcoming their help gets me closer to those goals.
Besides, don't they just look adorable?

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Carlitos Needs a Blankie

And Grammie Kara is more than happy to make one for him. I've still got a ways to go. Do you think I can finish before the shower April 12th?

Monday, March 24, 2014

A Dream Come True

All pictures in this post were taken by Duncan!
I have been in love with alpacas since the first time I ever saw one. I knew right then and there that I wanted to have some one day. Almost five years ago, we moved out here in the country on acreage and planned to have more animals. Sheep, goats, alpacas, or maybe all three. We did have 2 little Nigerian Dwarf goats when we moved and added two more goats over the next year. But, then Owen was born and a lot of our time and money have been taken up with his medical needs. Last year one of my little goats escaped and ate a rhododendron and died and my older sickly goat didn't make it through this past winter. With our goat herd down to two, Rod and I decided that this year we would make time for some more animals if I could find some for the right price.
Enter alpacas. This little herd was rescued last year from a very neglectful situation. The family who rescued them is going to be moving to the other side of the country to care for an ill family member and didn't think that they could manage to take the alpacas with them. So, they have come to live with us. I have alpacas now!
We have three adult females, black Sonata, white Pixie, and brown and white Glory B. We also have a female cria, Surprise. Surprise was hard to get pictures of because the adults keep protecting her, but you can see her little face over top of her mama's back in the above picture.
Then there is Mr. Roscoe, the adult male and father of little Surprise. They are settling in well and getting used to the kids and dogs and goats and geese. They are still a little unsure of us, but I think we'll win them over soon. They are very curious animals and love to know what is going on. They make the cutest little noises too.
I got to carry little Surprise from the van to the field when I brought them home and I can't wait to work with her fiber! She is so incredibly soft and plush. Brenna wants to sleep with her. I'm so excited to have them!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Ratio Change and Other Updates!

One of our big changes after this week's EEG is to switch Owen from a 3:1 ratio to a 3.5:1 ratio. I explained HERE what ratios mean in relation to the Ketogenic Diet, but in simple terms it means that Owen will be eating three and a half grams of fat for every one gram of protein and carbohydrate combined. What that means for us is that I have to REWORK all of Owen's recipes. Our super nice dietician told me to take a couple of days to re do the recipes and then make up some of the food ahead before starting him on the new ratio instead of trying to switch him right away. That gives us a chance to use up the rest of the 3:1 food we have in the freezer too.
Today, I switched around 16 of Owen's favorite recipes. I started with his yogurt since we use that as a vehicle to get his medication and vitamins into him, then I moved on to his current favorites. I still have a bunch of recipes I want to switch, but this gives me enough to start cooking this weekend. All in all, it took about 4 hours to make the changes with a bit of distraction. I probably could have shaved that down by almost an hour if I didn't get interrupted so many times, but that's how things go around here. Never a dull moment! Especially when we've just gotten back from the hospital.
Our washing machine looked at the back log of laundry from our trip and decided to go on strike. It figured that the dishwasher gave up a few months ago, so it might as well stop working too. Hopefully we can get it fixed quickly! Doing dishes for 9 by hand is one thing, doing laundry by hand for 9 isn't going to work for long.
I did get my raised bed garden weeded and ready to plant as soon as it dries out just a bit more. I also got an entire bookcase gone through in the play room in my current attempt to find the playroom again. Unfortunately fixing the book case doesn't make a huge visible change, but I should be able to actually fit all the books on the shelves now. The next step will be to teach the kids to put the books back on the shelves when they are done with them, which won't be nearly as easy, I'm afraid.