Monday, February 28, 2011


In the morning, I'm driving an hour to test drive a mini-van. Yes, a mini-van. It's a used Honda Odyssey that is just barely within our cash budget for a bigger vehicle.

I adore my 1999 VW Passat wagon. I truly do. That dinosaur has served us well! It still only has 93k miles on it. BUT I am due in September and can't fit 3 carseats safely and comfortably in my vehicle without serious issues.

We don't feel like we need an upgrade or a nicer car. The one I'm test driving is a 2000. Just one year newer than my vehicle. But honestly, we could use the space. I love to be able to function comfortably in my car- taking the dogs places, borrowing my niece for the day. I would lose the ability to do many things if I kept the VW, so she is getting sold. Someone is getting a wonderful deal on that car. We've upkept it well and the little green car will run forever!

Off of my tangent... Hopefully this van will work out, I can buy it tomorrow, and we can get my car up for sale by the weekend. That would be delightful. I never envisioned myself as a mini-van mom, but if I can get one that is functional and will last me until the kids are much older, then that would be ideal.

Goals: not green or beige, no dark cloth seats, something we can pay cash for and hopefully get back at least 50% of the cost by selling my car

In other news, the person that was so rude and disrespectful to me as to inspire the "Negativity" post I made was at it again tonight. I believe in giving forgiveness freely and filtering out the negativity to see the good in people, but there comes a time when you have to protect yourself from people who have lost their humanity and attack without provocation. I did not deserve the hatefulness spewed at me tonight, but I believe that for the most part, I responded well and maintained my dignity. I then blocked this person from future contact with me and my family. No more of that.

I will say this, though. You will never be old enough to be entitled to more respect than you give. Age does not grant you special permission to mistreat those younger than you. There is NO ONE on this planet that is more deserving of respect and consideration than another. If I ever turn into an angry, bitter old lady, I sincerely hope that someone puts me out of my misery. But you know, I don't see that being a problem for some reason...

"Samson" by Regina Spektor

I've been singing this song on and off all day. It's positively heartbreaking, but lovely.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

"Beebee Kickins"

That is what Jackson (2) calls our chicks! We picked up a few on Saturday.
We got 8 Black Australorps and 2 Silver-laced Wyandottes. Very cute.

A group shot of our bitties :)

One of our 2 Silver-Laced Wyandotte babies. They won't be very big when they're full grown, but we hear that they make great pets and are very tolerant of children. And they're beautiful as adults!

One of our 8 Black Australorp babies. They're known for being friendly, hardy in the NC climate, good foragers, and good mamas!

We're hoping to up-cycle one of the buildings in our backyard into a nice coop. That may or may not happen this weekend. We shall see! For now, they're happy in the brooder we set up in our sunroom.

I almost forgot to mention that my brother set up my clothes line! I've had it since September. Only took til February to get it in the ground! ;) I've hung two loads of cloth diapers on the line and overall, I've been very impressed! Why did we not do this sooner?!

We've been talking about buying ourselves out of our Verizon contract for some time now. I bought a no contract phone tonight and I think we're going to take me off of our plan this week. We'll save quite a bit of money every month by switching to a monthly deal with no data plan (i.e. no internet) and best of all, we'll be out of our Verizon contract. I don't like the dependency that I've developed on my Android smart phone. I spend way too much time on it and it's all a waste of time, money, care. So in our quest to simplify our lives and become less dependant, we're saying goodbye to Verizon.

The songs in my heart today have been "The Cave," by Mumford and Sons and "I've Got This Friend," by The Civil Wars.

"Oh, I've got this friend holding onto her heart. Like it's a little secret. Like it's all she's got to give. Oh, if the right one came, if the right one came along..." -"I've Got This Friend" by The Civil Wars

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Dusti, Dusti quite contrary, how does your garden grow?

Keelin with our peat pots!

with 3 dozen types of organic seeds and 216 peat pots all in a row! :)

My brother came over yesterday to till a garden for in our backyard and we estimate that once we're completely finished, it will be about a quarter of an acre and hold enough organic veggies to eat fresh and can to my heart's content!
My brother tilling

I want to make jellies, pickles, and just overall become more self-sustaining. Since I am pregnant and due at the end of the summer, I'm definitely going to need some help from Keelin (almost 5), our designated garden gnome!

Some of our lettuces (planted on Wednesday) started to sprout on Friday morning! Goodness!

I can honestly say that I'm most excited about the cucumbers and tomatoes. I can't wait to jar pasta sauce that I started from tomato seeds and herb seeds! I can't wait to make homemade pickles with one of my late grandmother's 15 pickle recipes and pickling peppers in vinegar so that hubby can eat them and I can use the spicy vinegar to cook with! I'm so looking forward to creating a space for my family filled with food that we grew ourselves, evidence of our commitment to sustainability and self-reliance.

The basil, chives, sunflowers, and tomato seeds I started a week ago are already looking like beautiful sprouts, too. The sunflowers are getting huge! Our chickens are going to love them!
Jackson being a critter

Yes, I said chickens! :) We're getting some of those, too. My brother, Daniel, and husband, Tim, are going to be building a chicken coop in the next few weeks and we'll be incubating our own eggs. More on that in another post!

I'm off to play with my family on this beautiful Saturday. I think we're going to go try our luck at a roadside farmer's market.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


Well, we can expect some changes! Tim and I started trying for our third child in November. Clearly, that isn't something you really advertise. It's a little TMI for most people.

I got preggers the second week of December and we found out 13 days after I ovulated, which is super early! After dealing with some agonizing and terrifying ruptured ovarian cysts last year, I am SO thankful that my fertility was spared.

Today, I'm 12 weeks and 2 days pregnant. Some would still say that's a little early to be telling people, but my midwife thinks that I, and this baby, are in pretty good shape. We're going to visit an Ob-Gyn a couple of times (today was my first appointment) just to do a few tests that my midwife doesn't do and have an anatomy scan and level 2 ultrasound in about 8 weeks. Our insurance covers it 100%, so why not?

I do feel a bit hypocritical and uncomfortable seeing an Ob-Gyn, especially since I generally don't think that they mesh well with my ideals about women's health and natural living. I detest the medicalized approach to pregnancy and childbirth, finding comfort and the feeling of "YES! I knew there was something out there for me!" with the Midwifery Model of Care. My dream is to be a homebirth midwife myself, so I do tend to feel a little uncomfortable in the office I'm visiting.

For those that are curious, yes, we are having a homebirth if all goes as planned. My midwife is qualified, educated, and experienced. I trust her with my life and the life of my child. If something were to not go as hoped, my attending ladies would recognize it and handle it in the best way possible for me and the baby, up to and including a hospital transfer.

I've had two hospital births, one medicalized and the other hands-off. My only regret about my natural hospital birth was going to the hospital. :)

I am not going to change my mind. I've done the research and feel such a peace about my decision to birth at home. The plan is to have a photographer present to capture the experience for us. Some of those pictures will be shared. I just want people to understand that labor isn't dangerous, pregnancy isn't a terminal illness, and my body was MADE to do this! Your body is, too. Our bodies WORK! Amazing, isn't it?

Can't wait to meet this little one at the end of August

By the way, yesterday was our anniversary! Tim and I have been married for 3 years!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Making mistakes and being mindful of mercy

I make mistakes. I sincerely dislike being on the wrong end of wrong.

I occasionally let my mouth run away with me and say too much, say something out of line, hurtful, what have you... I will say, though, that I don't ever set out to intentionally hurt people. In my younger days, I was a spitfire, Baby. I let it fly, but these days I tend to keep a better hold of my tongue. I'm a work in progress.

Earlier this week, I made dinner plans with an old friend. I realized that I had a commitment for tonight (the night of our dinner) earlier today and my phone died, so I told myself that I'd charge my cell and call her before she got off of work to give her plenty of time to make other plans for dinner.

Call it mom brain, call it general forgetfulness, but I truly 100% blanked. I have never done anything like that in my life and I hope to never again. I should have met her for dinner at 6 and I realized that I'd totally forgotten at 6:30, with a dead cell phone and a room full of children that I'd committed to being responsible for tonight months earlier.

I called my dear friend and she was in the restaurant waiting for me. Can you imagine how low I felt? I've been sick with remorse all evening... which is coming up on about 5.5 hours now of just feeling positively ill over it.

I let myself forget someone as important to me as this friend. Who does that?!

Apparently, I did. I apologized profusely and told her that I was taking her out for a nice dinner to make it up to her, I even researched the cost of having flowers delivered to her at work, but alas- they are out of my budget. A delicious dinner next week and my heartfelt apologies will work or they won't.

Which brings me to something I've been marinating on tonight.

How quick are we to judge those around us who stick a foot in their mouth or make a simple mistake? Are we quick to accept the apology of a person who regularly takes care of business and has a momentary lapse in brain power or lapse of judgement?

I know that I hate being wronged, but being wronged gives me the opportunity to be upset, get over it, forgive, and move on. When you are the one who has wronged another person, you don't really deserve any sympathy, but you hope for understanding and forgiveness all the same.

Tonight, among many things, has taught me 1) to never ever make an appointment/date/plans without putting them in my date book AND phone, and 2) to make a conscious effort to show mercy, even when it is undeserved.

My friend could have bitten my head off tonight. She could have ripped me a new one. I absolutely deserved it. Do you think she did? Of course not, which only makes my sadness at hurting her unintentionally so much greater.

Isn't it stunning and humbling that we so often get what we don't deserve? We are blessed beyond measure and act entitled. We have a bad day and act like we deserved better, when we truly deserve and are owed nothing.

Humility. It's what's for dinner, at least for me.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Sweet Saturday

Saturday morning cartoons with the kids, reading Hubby's resume, a little crafting <3

In a few, we're heading to a friend's little boy's 3rd birthday party. Present: check. Card: check. Which leads me to a question...

Why are eco-conscious toys always the ones so strangely shaped? I should take a picture of this terribly strange looking wrap job. I appreciate the toy maker's commitment to using less materials for packaging, hence the lack of easy to wrap corners, but man!

Alrighty, I'm off to dry my hair and try to locate my shoes. I believe I saw two year old Jackson stomping around in them earlier, so who knows where they ended up! :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

We won!!!

One of my favorite bloggers
did a giveaway on her blog!
The winner could choose one of 3 Barefoot Books!

Well, I (who have never won anything in my life) won!
We chose "Skip through the Seasons" and are so excited!
I showed the kids the picture of the book and told them
what it was about, so they're looking forward to it arriving.

Thank you, Samantha!

You guys go check out her blog!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Happy Monday!

Sunday night, Jackson (our newly 2 year old boy) decided to wake me up multiple times. Doesn't make for a restful sleep

I woke up this morning feeling a bit like I'd been hit by a truck, but I took Keelin to preschool (she goes Mon,Wed,Fri from 9-1), then the little guy and I ran to the store for popsicles.

I thought for sure that since Jackson slept almost as terribly as I did last night that surely he would take a great nap late this morning. Nope!!!! The little dude sat in his room yelling for me the whole time he was in there in a sing-song voice-- "Mom-eeeeee! Mommy?! Mom-eeeeee!"

I trudged through the day a bit like a zombie, got Keelin from school, came home, and we all crashed around 3pm.

Jackson fell asleep in his bed, Keelin fell asleep on the couch, and I fell asleep in my bed. I slept so hard I hurt when I woke up... after 5pm. *sigh* My kids normally go to bed at 7:30, so that wasn't great. I jumped up, prepped dinner, woke the kids up, and we ate, played, watched a short kids movie, took a bath, read a Junie B. Jones book (Keelin's new favorite), and both of the kids happily went to sleep just before 9.

I am SO glad that Keelin doesn't have school tomorrow. I desperately need to put laundry away and work on some cloth diapering accessories for a friend due next month.

BUT overall, it was a happy Monday <3

Friday, February 4, 2011

Root Beer Floats and other awesomeness

I have been craving a root beer float (more like root beer awesome), so I bought a 6 pack of Blue Sky certified organic root beer at Earth Fare yesterday and a pint of my favorite organic, fair trade vanilla ice cream.

See? Even your junk food can be kinder to the planet!

I cannot tell you how delicious these things are! I have 3 cans of root beer left and half a pint of ice cream. Running out of ice cream before I run out of root beer would be like running out of carrots when you still have ranch dip in your cup. Just a sad state of affairs.

We ran out to grab dinner (thanks to my Dad for staying home with a sleeping Keelin) since the chicken I had been thawing/marinating all day in the fridge was still half frozen (epic fail) and nothing else sounded good (thanks to my sweet Keelin throwing up all day, I think... poor, sweet girl). We went to Bonnie Kay's and had some salt and pepper shrimp (hit the spot!), then went to check out the yard sale they had going on to benefit a child in our community who needs to travel for medical treatment. I won't rub in ALL of the amazing deals I came across, but I will tell you that my son now has an awesome pair of black Chucks, I found the coolest costume bling, got a $5 Kozy Carrier (Yes, you read that right!!! and in perfect condition), a bazillion hardback kids books, and a huge box full of other goodies. My grand total was $14, but we donated some cash on top of that... Altogether, killer deals for a good cause. Blessings to that family. I cannot imagine having a child with health issues- parents that care for children with special medical needs are my heroes.

On another note, I went onto Amazon to order Jackson a few more prefold diapers, since I have credits on Amazon and a few of his prefolds are getting a little sad looking. NONE of the good brands had Prime shipping. That did not excite me. I decided then to forego the prefolds and buy them elsewhere and started looking for Econobum covers, since we could use a couple more One Size diaper covers around here that aren't bulky and can fit in my purse easily. There were NO Econobum or Flip covers in stock. I take that back, there was 1 Econobum and it was $9 + $7 shipping. How about no?! Nothing economical about that!

So, the story of my night... I had a delicious float, I went to a great indoor yard sale, and I was disappointed in Amazon. I hope our girl feels better tomorrow, but I fear we'll be missing our friend's little boy's pirate birthday party. Can't risk bringing the Outbreak monkey to the party, though.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Here is a little photo love.
I wouldn't mind waking up here!

Or relaxing here!

Or serving a meal here!

Or living here.
As long as someone else did the dusting!

Discovering absolutely made my evening yesterday. I was really offended last night by someone that should not have gotten under my skin and as much as I hate to say it, I let someone's negativity and unkindness affect how I felt.
As someone that has battled depression for most of her life, some days are harder than others. Winters are usually pretty tough on me, quite so now that we have children. Why? Because even when the sun is shining and I might be happy to go outside or run errands all day, those kiddos will be chilled to the bone regardless of bundling them, and nap times are necessary. This mama is really looking forward to spring temperatures, I tell you what
- but back to business!
If you need a dose of happy, definitely check out that amazing website!
You will find something that brightens the moment and makes you smile- I promise.

To the tune of "O Christmas Tree"

O, W-2's
O, W-2's
Could you possibly be lost en route?

O, W-2's
O, W-2's
My old boss can kiss my pa-toot.

Just because I resigned and moved away-
Doesn't mean I don't deserve to see my pay.

O, W-2's
O, W-2's
Maybe tomorrow's the day!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Negativity (edit number 6)

Today, I let someone's bitterness and negativity affect me. I normally can vent, get it out, and move on, but what this person said to me actually made me angry.

That being said, I'm a very emotional person. I vent to my close friends and my husband, then I feel better. I process out loud. I'm not big on crying, because it usually never gets to that point. I very nearly went off on someone for being disrespectful and hateful regarding something I am very passionate about. But I didn't. I shut my mouth, turned off my computer, and went to bed.

I learned something tonight.

I am the only one who has a hand on my happiness. I choose to be happy. People don't make me happy, my circumstances don't make me happy. I am happy because I choose to be.

Some days, it is hard to remember that I am happy. I let the noise, the pollution, the funk into my head and it's hard to drive it out. That's what happened today. I let someone else's ageism and ignorance get past my filter. I let it in. That was my mistake.

BUT I am a wise 23, almost 24 year old. I know that what this person said had NOTHING to do with me. This person projected their issues onto me, disregarding my education on the subject, ignoring the wisdom of a younger person, refusing to recognize an educated opinion supported by science because it did not mesh with what the media has taught said person.

I did some yoga, controlled my breathing, and recentered myself- sans the funk.

Update: I've since seen this person and didn't even feel uncomfortable around them. People only influence you if you let them, so I encourage you to be firm in what you believe, filter out the noise, and don't ever let anyone undermine your passions and convictions.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Second Day in a row?

Could it be? Am I actually posting more than once in 6 months? ;)

I woke up this morning feeling rested for the first time in weeks, which is a bit strange considering Jackson had a nightmare last night and was up screaming his head off at 3am and it took me until 5am to get him back to sleep in my bed. Good thing Tim was in Fayettenam or someone would have been a super-crank this morning.

Got woken up at 8 by my best friend of 20 years, which I didn't mind <3 had some yogurt, paid all of February's bills, did two loads of laundry (including diaper laundry that has been calling my name for a couple of days), did a load of dishes, and made a game plan of things I'd like to accomplish this month.

Here's my list:
1. finally hang the curtains in Keelin's room
2. paint the living room
3. figure out where we'll go for our 3 year anniversary on the 23rd
4. purge the kidlet's closets of outgrown clothes, pass on to friends
5. get the dogs micro-chipped
6. do our taxes

Not a terrible lot, but our living room is significantly larger than any other room in our house, so painting it will be beyond obnoxious.

In other news, Max will be 1 this month and Jessie will be two! I may have to learn how to make doggy birthday cakes for our furry family members!