Tuesday, April 20, 2010

When our children are babies, it seems like we have to capture each moment on camera. As our children get older, there are some moments that are just as precious to us. For me, seeing my children reading and studying the Bible fills my heart with such joy.

I enjoy watching each child with their different special times. Lizzie always disappears in the late afternoons, and I know she's up in her bedroom reading her Bible. Allen is a night owl and reads before bedtime. Sometimes he reads very late...well after midnight. Last week he came tip toeing into my bedroom around 1 am and was all excited because he had just finished the book of Revelations. Anna reads first thing in the morning before getting out of bed. Ruthie looks forward to reading well enough to have quiet time on her own.

Today Maggie had two appts, one at noon and one at 2 pm. So I took my four youngest children along for a day at the library and driving around. I see the Navy base is warning us about preparing for hurricane season.
We had fun driving around the base and even stopped in to surprised Mike at the school.
The waterfront is just beautiful.
Ruthie and Lizzie walked down to the beach while Maggie, Allen and I watched from the bridge. The tide was out and the water was crystal clear. This was the first time we didn't see anything spectacular in the way of wildlife. For dinner, Maggie, Lizzie and Anna made these delicious shrimp wraps. We had eaten these at the local grocery store but couldn't find a recipe for them.
When I asked the chinese sushi man how he made them, he pointed me to the above rice wraps...but he couldn't speak enough English to explain anything. So today in the library I found the directions in a Vietnamese cookbook.
You place the crunchy rice papers in very hot water until they become pliable. Then you take them out of the water and dab with paper towels to dry them. Fill and eat. We filled ours with shrimp, avocado, cucumber and romaine lettuce. The only thing missing was the delicious sweet and sour sauce that I need to look for next time.
Sorry for the blurry picture but I wanted to show you the custard buns Maggie made for dessert. Yummy! Maggie has eaten these at Tearrific Cafe, a local restaurant. Definitely a keeper recipe!
I wanted you to see the custard on the inside. This is the recipe Maggie used except she omitted the egg and used regular flours and sugars. She also substituted a small box of vanilla pudding mix for the custard powder. (Anyone know where to find custard powder?) These buns are steamed.

Maggie didn't realize the ingredient amounts were in metric. She had to get my electronic scale out! She was exhausted when they were all finished. Next time she makes them she will translate the amounts and write them down.

Tonight we are all weary...and tomorrow is another big day. We will be going to help Grandaddy cook dinner for his church. My brother is ill, so he won't be going. None of the shopping has been done yet, so we will be very tired tomorrow night!

Lam 3:25 The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh Him.

Many blessings ~ Kathie

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Next month will be 5 years ago that Maggie started living in chronic pain. But praise God, she is well on her way to being healed. Each day she can do a little bit more with her hands, each day a little less pain. PTL! Maggie is enjoying doing a few craft things like she used to. She designed this bookmark, then had Anna do the actual sewing. I love it!
But Maggie sewed this luggage tag herself using an empty juice bag. It's so cute! This is the other side of the tag. Maggie did all the cutting and sewing herself.
Today our family watched the half of the first dvd in this 2-disc series. What a wonderful family video! We were all inspired. It's called How to Teach Responsibililty by Michael and Debi Pearl at http://www.nogreaterjoy.org/. If you have children, or hope to have children in the future, you need to watch this dvd.

Five of my children and I are allergic to casein which is a dairy protein. It is in all mammals' milk...including humans. Yes, some babies are allergic to their momma's milk. Anyhow, everything I read said that all caseins are the same. If you are allergic to cow's milk, then stay away from all milk.

Then I read a website of a woman who says all milks are not the same. She says the DNA of cow's milk is very different from goat's and sheep's milk. So when we found this goat's milk at Walmart, we decided to try it. Well, we all drank a good bit (half a glass or more) and no one is suffering!! Maggie can hardly wait to go shopping for goat's cheese. I am still very cautious about it. I have felt so healthy taking dairy and eggs out of my diet...but I sure do miss my lasagna and cheesecake. So we'll see. Moderation is the key word...I think.

It's been a wonderful weekend. Ready to face another week, even with our unseasonably cool weather. Many blessings ~ Kathie

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Anyone interested in buying a piano? This looks like a good sale!
Speaking of pianos...it is so nice to have Maggie playing the piano again.
This morning I took my five youngest children and headed to the farmer's market in Charlotte Hall. We enjoyed the few remaining animals. Most had been sold already.
Just a few bunnies left.
And a few chickens. I was fascinated by a mother hen and her 6 chicks. She would peck their heads when they were naughty!
I talked to an amish woman at her store. She gave me the news that one of my mennonite neighbors' young daughters had been badly burned. She didn't know the name, so on Monday I will go find out.
On the way home we stopped at this wonderful antique store named Keeper's. This building has housed many quick-fail stores over the past decade, so it is nice to see a successful business here...although we did have the whole store to ourselves on a Saturday morning.
I'm not sure if you can tell what this is, but I would love to sandblast this plant cart and repaint it white. The price is $15...seemed steep to me. Am I realistic? I'd really like to know...would you pay $15 for this plant stand? This is not tall...maybe 30 inches.
How about $600 for this charming airplane with push pedals? (I'd rather spend it at the piano sale!)
I enjoyed the cast iron stoves and kitchenware.
I was fascinated by this popsicle mold!!
This is the inside of the mold. See where the sticks would slide in and be held until the juice freezes? I loved this...and it's in pristine condition! Only $95! *tongue in cheek*Someday I hope to cook on a wood cookstove such as this...just to try it.
It was hard to get a picture of this cast iron plant stand for $895. Very heavy!
This is the other stove. I'd rather have a black cookstove.
The quilts were beautiful. I took pictures of my two favorites.
I don't like the blue edging on this quilt, but I love the blocks!
Early this spring I planted basil and asparagus beans in this fish tank that I got from freecycle. I had the planting bug in a big way, so this met the need. I got laughed at by my children, but now that my plants are doing well and smell nice, everyone wants to stick their own seeds in with mine. Next time I will put twice as much soil in the tank...the bottom of the tank shows much overcrowding of roots. But not bad for a first time!

Grandad and his friend Harry came by today. We sat on the porch and drank smoothies (orange, strawberries, banana, and ginger ale spritzer). Then we went over to his house to go fishing but it was much too windy. So we cooked kielbasa on the grill and caught up on family news. Soon to be three new babies in our extended family! Get quilting, Anna!

So as I end this Saturday, it is with a thankful heart. Thankful for my salvation, my family, my home, and my life. I live everyday with the awareness that I live a better life than 99 percent of the world.

Many blessings ~ Kathie

Friday, April 16, 2010

Another week gone by quickly! Where does the time go? Anna pieced together another baby quilt. The picture doesn't do it justice...the stripes look so nice in real life. Once a week, Sarah does an in-depth science experiment with my children. This week's experiment was about density.
They used water, wine, syrup (molasses), oil, and vinegar. Then they had a bowlful of different doodads to see at what point they sunk. Good work! Sarah said the twins (14 next month) are spelling on an eleventh grade level. Excellent!
Abigail is already trained in the ways of homeschooling...she plays so nicely in the same room. She loves to play tea!
On Wednesday after our weekly Burger King date with Grandad and Meemaw, we stopped by Apple Basket to see the spring inventory.
I always enjoy browsing through this store.
This store has many rooms, each with its own theme. This is more of the kitchen room...my favorite.
Lizzie and Ruthie were inspired by the aprons. There were many antique quilts as well.
The good thing is that the prices are always reasonable. When was the last time you heard that?!

Mike and Sarah will be leaving in the morning to drive a few hours away to MACHE (Maryland Assoc. Christian Home Educators) for their annual curriculum fair. Sarah wants to look at many different curriculums in a few hours. She will have a great time.

So this is another weekend that the tilling won't get done, but slowly we are planting flowers and herbs. I'm glad that my strawberry bed is planted. Today Maggie only had an x-ray taken, so I was able to spend a lot of time at home cleaning...so tomorrow I can sew all day.

You may notice that Maggie's Test Kitchen no longer exists. Maggie decided she will start her own blog when her hands are healed. So I have turned that blog into a sourdough blog (see side column on the left). I know there are many such blogs already, but this is my own version for my friends. I am slow in getting it started, so please bear with me.

Enjoy your Saturday. Many blessings ~ Kathie

Saturday, April 10, 2010

I finally finished sewing my dress today! I will try to remember to have one of my daughters take a picture of me wearing it tomorrow. This fabric was regularly $8.99 a yard but we got it on sale for $2.50. The difference in quality was substantial.
Our friend Chris and his wife Tina came over today to help us check on the honeybee hives.
Everything looked good.
The bees are ready for the honey flow in a month. I don't know...I just know that's a good thing!
This week I bought this coffeepot and pitcher at the thrift shop. I don't know how much I paid...I had an armful of stuff and the lady said $7, so I was very pleased! I planted Maggie's orange and chocolate mint plants in them. I got the idea from my friend Deb who puts her plants in water pitchers on her porch stairs. (Hers look so much better than my attempt!)

Our hearts are tender to the things of the Lord as we prepare for tomorrow's sermon.

Many blessings ~ Kathie

Friday, April 9, 2010

Walmart is selling many dvds for $3 this week, so I bought this one called Follow the River. The rating is PG for frontier violence and mild thematic material. You can read more about the movie here on http://www.imdb.com/. You can buy the dvd here on http://www.amazon.com/ for as low as 88 cents! I heard no foul language or saw anything immodest on this film. Hurray!

I don't want to spend the time writing a book report here, but the story involves a woman who is taken captive by Shawnee indians back in 1855. Of course, there are many things that you see in the movie that are unrealistic, but for family viewing, I think this movie is wonderful. I highly recommend it.

I was excited to watch this movie because my great-(7x)-grandmother was also taken captive back in 1756 by the Shawnee indians. Her name was Rebecca Regina Walker (1746-1826), and when she was 10 years old, she was scalped (not fatally) and forced to walk 200 miles to Ohio. At first she had to carry a young sibling, but when he became a burden, the indians killed him. Six years later she was reunited with her parents.

To read the whole fascinating story, go to http://www.grahamreunion.org/. Click on Genealogical information. Then click on A Compiled History....

Maggie made a delicious snack today from dandelion leaves and chickweed. She sauteed the weeds in Kikkoman's dipping sauce with a few drops of sesame oil. Yummy! It was hard to share this plate with seven other people. Shouldn't be a problem next time...we have a field full of weeds!
This morning I made a large bowl of veggie salad. We ate it for breakfast and lunch...and again for dinner! I didn't have a recipe, so I mixed kidney beans, black beans, celery, cilantro, red and green peppers, red onion, white and yellow corn, and 1/4 cup of Wishbone Italian dressing. If I'd had cucumbers and grape tomatoes, I would've added them.
The leftovers should be even better tomorrow after blending all night.

Mike, Allen, and Anna spent most of the day working on our hot water heater. Every few years the heater gets clogged from calcium deposits. It's a tiresome job to empty it and vacuum all the junk out. But now it's done for a while.

Tomorrow we hope to work in the garden and transplant some bushes. The weather is perfect...if not a bit cool...for which we are thankful.

I still haven't made it to the sewing room, but now that my home is clean (well...cleaner than this morning!) and the laundry pegged, it should be easier to manage. Enjoy your Saturday.

Many blessings ~ Kathie