Monday, April 30, 2012

some lemon repotting redone...

i was able to repot one lemon tree sprout this morning...it was at about 6-8 inches by now...so, by all accounts, it was time to move it from its styro cup home into a real container. this little sprout was one of the original lemons i germinated back in november. my mother brought this gumongous lemon back from jax to me that my step-sister-in-law had cut from her tree in their back yard. needless to say, this lemon was the size of a grapefruit and put store lemons to shame. i tried to germinate about 10 seeds. about 7 took. and now, over the last several months...only three of the sprouts have survived...i repotted one of these this morning.





so, isn't it just the cutest little lemon sprout ever??

these are the others waiting to be repotted/transplanted...

this actually has two different sprouts in it...i am going to try and separate them between two pots...

i think the orange sprouts need another month or so in these containers...

they need more growth on the sapling trunk before i feel safe to transplant them.

accomplished??? maybe....

being more relaxed and 5 days off per doctor excuse/order...

I have lain on this couch/bed/in this house for two days...vertigo is better today...though not so much on the boat. We went out on the water for a bit today after the baby returned home from camping for the weekend with scouts. My vestibular nerve is the one being affected right now by the viral shingles....not fun, not fun, not fun...


I did manage to get a pint of mayonnaise finally made tonight...just in time to use the rest of the cabbage left from making the cabbage rolls (this past week to freeze for future dinners) to make some coleslaw to go with dinner and the rest of the raw veggies and meat...and it was able to lactoferment this afternoon and evening...shelf life extension is always a pro...but it will be gone in less than a month.

There is just a bit of leftover whey in the freezer...so it was used....still need to make more cheese, so we have more whey to put back....

I got all papers graded for one university and am minimally caught up with the other two. I will finish updates tomorrow for the others after dental visits and allergist visits...of course, no shots for me...which I will dread...I can breath so much better with my shots...

My husband was able to go to the post office to mail off necessary papers needed to be mailed related to LDA.

So all in all, I feel like a few accomplishments might have been made from my couch abode??  Perhaps?!?!  Yep, I think so...

Other things...my parents arrived back in the country safe and sound from their recent trip and are home safe. I need to talk to my older child desperately...it has been like 4 days...is that long?  It feels like so long...I miss my child.

Today we saw a house on the lake - one I would refer to as a megamansion...My current house would have fit into this megamansion's garage alone...I wonder why people need so much house??... We laughingly discussed that house would be enough house to move my older child, my DiL, any future kids they have, and my younger child's someday family...How awesome would that be?  All my children and grandchildren in the same house...AwEsOmE!!  And, I am so megasure the DiLs would love to live in such an arrangement. I could be with my babies all the time....It makes perfect sense to me.  The doggies and kitties could live in an ensuite near the children's quarters!!  Yep, I have this figured out...Now, just need the money to build it!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

yuckiness, need to do, and reflection...

yuckiness: 
I have viral shingles and viral shingles vertigo...Can you imagine constantly feeling drunk without having had alcohol??  And of course, this means another lovely round of steroids...which also means I will not be able to get my allergy shots this week...so, by the end of the week...I will feel like allergic crap perhaps...     
 
need to do:
Have you ever just had one of those weeks where you feel like you have so much to do?  I am not just talking about the regular work piles:
1.  I need to finish writing those IEPs for my every other day secondary special education teaching job.
2.  I need to grade papers for one university whose term ends today.
3.  I need to post the next week's instructional guidance for another university.
4.  I need to grade papers and discussions for the third online university I work for.
5.  I need to work on a newsletter for the nonprofit I work with downtown and finish a curriculum spreadsheet.
6.  I need to schedule a conference call for the board of the other nonprofit I run out of my home.
7.  I need to get the paperwork together to renew my teaching certificate that expires soon.
8. I need to email all the students and set up the courses for the 4 classes that start in a week or so...
9. I need to update my vitae and webpage again.
I also need to do stuff for homeschooling and home in general:
1.  We are out of mayonnaise. I need to make some more....
2.  To make mayonnaise, I realize we are almost out of whey....which means I need to make more cheese.
3.  We will be out of butter within the week...which means I need to make more butter.
4.  I need to water the cabbage, lettuce, tomatoes, potatoes, beans, strawberries, cucumbers, lilies, mint, flowers, lemon tree sprouts, orange tree sprouts, pineapple plants, and other plants indoors.
5.  I need to transplant the lemon tree sprouts to a bigger container. The same needs to be done for the 4 pineapple plants and the two aloe vera plants. The spider plants needs to be repotted.
6.  The potato plants need to be remounded.
7.  I need to check and water the blueberry plants, the raspberry plants, the concords, and the blackberries.
8. We need to can many things.
9. I need to prepare the pole beans for canning.
10. I need to put the mother culture within some red wine to start the culture growth...I need to get some crocks for this, too.
11. I need to grade the half of the Australia unit my child has completed for Geography.



reflection:
1. I love when at the end of a day I know was a great homeschooling day, my child looks at me and says it was a great day and he is glad he did not have to learn anything that day or do any school. We had one of these days last week...We studied the fall line of the tectonic plates at the river, and raced leaf boats. We viewed and photographed egrets, herons, turtles, geese, and cardinals. We sucked honeysuckle for a snack. We hiked three miles. We studies eddies and water current. We looked at igneous rock erosion. We viewed the train trestles from beneath and looked at the structures. We went below the interstate and viewed the reinforcements on the cracks and the structure itself. We visited an old canal waterway and viewed a dam spillway. We went through the old water plant in the city and studied how the river was rerouted. We discussed barge pulls up riverways and older town settlements. We looked at canal water pipelines and went to the first free black public school in the state after the Civil War. We looked at clay brick erosion from original Civil War brick walls in the city. And as we leave all of this to go home, the child states he had a fun day and is glad he did no school that day!  How little does he know!!
2. I love to remember why we made the choices for our family we made a year ago and seeing these decisions confirmed through outcomes now.
3.  I love seeing the fruit of God's labor blooming.


Sunday, April 22, 2012

Steps to nowhere!!


Walking in our footprints...or theirs?

The younger child and I recently went for a short trip to the beach. The water was too cold to swim in for the most part (unless you are from the polar regions).


We were walking and as we are moving along...I realize how HUGE my child's feet are...


I measured my own against his...I stood for a moment in his footprint and realized how his foot has long outgrown mine.


My toes are where the ball of his foot is. I should not be surprised...his older brother wears a size 12 as well... The size 12s he has are growing smaller and in a few months, we are lready in search of some size 13 shoes.

I often think of a small child who plays in the parent's shoes. I never had this luxury. I have one fleeting moment of my childhood when my biological sperm donor person was sober/sane enough to place me on his feet to dance...it was a few seconds only. I think it is perhaps the only good memory of the man I have.
 
In those moments when our children are small and they emulate our presence, we are honored and realize how much of their lives lies before them. As I stood in my child's footprint...I wondered, if one day I will walk in the footprints of my children, honored by the lives they have led. I pray this will be true.

Challah for dinner = Yummy!


This bread took up the entire platter!!  It tasted better this time than the first time I made it. This time I did not measure. I never measure when I cook. If it looks like the correct amount...then it is...if it is a really tasty ingredient, then there is usually extra of it in any given dish. So this was made tonight with the that looks like the right amount measurement method! :)  I used a four braid this time on th bread, rather than the three braid of last time. This was not all we had for dinner....it complimented the breaded and baked tilapia, baked russet slices with onion and feta and EVOO, salad from our veggies, and a fruit salad of oranges, kiwi, and strawberries. I am stuffed.

Summer Vaca??? Options? Opinions?

Trying to decide where to go on vacation this summer or if we can even afford to take one...often we do a lot of what we call minivacations. These often involve one nighters to the beach or so...or just a weekend here or yonder.

So, to the beach? Pawley's Island is not an option any longer this summer, as our friend and her family have rented their condo out for the year...mmhhmmm! The mountains always remains an option. I am really thinking about heading back down coast and camping...that was awesome at Thanksgiving.

So, what are you doing for vacation this summer?  Any options or opinions to share?

I have linked up with the mommy blogger program to try and earn the $50 Target gift card to offset summer vacation expenses...details are here: http://cruiseweb.com.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

YaYa Capades....

We have been trying to take an inventory of what our foster puppy has been into in the past two weeks...


Please be mindful that when I say been into, what I really mean is eaten or chewed to shreds...
1.  one of my cute strappy sandals.
2.  foiled wrapping paper.
3.  loaf of bread.
4.  all of the doggy treats - leaving my other puppy none.
5.  ziploc baggies.
6.  part of my son's flip flop.
7.  cat food.
8.  a dishrag.
9.  2 trashcans.
10. an entire box of plastic dining ware.
11. entire bag of paper plates.
12. the recycling - more than once.
13. two Lickity Sticks.
14. a throw pillow.
15. floor rugs.
16. box of instant grits.
17. mail.
18. one laundry basket.
19.  a tomato.

Her tail/butt/back-end bumped into the guitar in my son's room a day ago or so and broke the handle in two - leaving it only connected by the strings.

This is only a partial list, but it is all I can remember at this moment.

Updates to the YaYa list of destuction tonight...
20. A bag of Splenda.
21. bag of hamburger buns.
22. junk mail.

Friday, April 20, 2012

LERNT LIVING IN THE SOUTH


A possum is a flat animal that sleeps in the middle of the road.

There are 5,000 types of snakes and 4,998 of them live in the South.

There are 10,000 types of spiders. All 10,000 of them live in the South, plus a couple no one's seen before.

If it grows, it'll stick ya. If it crawls, it'll bite cha.

Onced and Twiced are words.

It is not a shopping cart, it is a buggy!
Jawl-P? Means, Did you go to the bathroom?
People actually grow, eat and like okra.
Fixinto is one word. It means I'm going to do that.
There is no such thing as lunch. There is only dinner and then there's supper.
Iced tea is appropriate for all meals and you start drinking it when you're two. We do like a little tea with our sugar. It is referred to as the Wine of the South.
Backwards and forwards means I know everything about you.
The word jeet is actually a question meaning, 'Did you eat?'
You don't have to wear a watch, because it doesn't matter what time it is, you work until you're done or it's too dark to see.
You don't PUSH buttons, you MASH em.
Y'all is singular. All y'all is plural.
All the festivals across the state are named after a fruit, vegetable, grain, insect, or animal.
You carry jumper cables in your car - for your OWN car.
You only own five spices: salt, pepper, mustard, Tabasco and ketchup.
The local papers cover national and international news on one page, but require 6 pages for local high school sports, the motor sports and gossip.
Everyone you meet is a Honey, Sugar, Miss(first name) or Mr.(first name)
You think that the first day of deer season is a national holiday.
You know what a hissy fit is.

You don?t switch the light off, you cut it off.

Fried catfish is the other white meat.
We don't need no dang Driver's Ed. If our mama says we can drive, we can drive!!!
I understand these jokes, do you?

Saturday, April 14, 2012

I'll eat a leaf, but not that one....

Really?? 

Tonight we had a sirloin lamb calf that had slow cooked for most of the day...it had been rubbed down with various seasonings and the like. My younger child had shucked several ears of silver queen. We used left over buttermilk from making butter about a week ago for homemade buttermilk biscuits. We had also gathered some of the mixed lettuce assortment from the containers outside and washed it for a simple salad. Dinner was very good! 


 
One type of leaf in the rub for the lamb sirloin was bay leaves. Dinner is on the table and it is noted that my husband is pushing the leaves carefully off the meat cuts. He is fishing around them in the dish and simply will not eat them... Yes, I know they can be quite woody and chewy. But, what I find so amusing is that he has had these before - ground or pureed in other food items and not known the difference.

The younger child commented he had just eaten leaves in the salad. My husband states he will eat leaves, he just does "not want that leaf." There is more queries on the subject. We laugh. My husband makes a joke about we "won't leave [him] alone." Hahaha!  He once again tells us, "I'll eat a leaf, but not that one...." My child offers him a different bay leaf out of the meat dish...he declines.

I do tell him how he has eaten in the past year or so: from the container garden plants and garden - cowpea leaves, lettuce, cabbage, spinach, broccoli leaves, parsley, basil, lemon, and sweet potato leaves. And from the outdoors - wild garlic, wild onion, and dandelion. He looks at me strangely and states, "I'll eat a leaf, but I don't want that one...."


He does comment that if we can eat them, then I should do so...so, I do!  He still refused to eat one. The child had eaten some earlier in the day!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Life Realizations of Blessings

Last two weeks in review...
1. We are fostering a rescue puppy. We are going to adopt her. Her name is YaYa. She is a brown labby lady. 
2.  My other doggy, my younger child's therapy dog, is still adjusting to the idea of sharing her people with another dog...and, not too happily if I might say so.
3.  YaYa ate one of my good sandals (the strappy cute ones) the other day...it did not make me happy.
4.  I think I am going to have to take my youngest child back to the allergist soon.
5.  Cassie has kennel cough. We had to get her some meds.
 
6.  The neighbor's dog has kennel cough as well.


7.  We had a blessed Seder at my house.

8.  We spent Easter dinner with my older son and future DiL. The  meal was great.
9. I have turned in my verbal notice at the school I teach at that I will not be returning there to teach next year. I will homeschool my younger child full time and focus on his disability and helping him to improve his academic and community function and ability. I still have to write my formal notice for the school and submit it to the administration.
10. I found out that the curriculum I received from my aunt has some many hidden treasures in it the more I dig in the box. So very blessed by that gift.
11. We have moved forward in opening up our homeschool co-op in the community.
12. I received my younger son's latest MRI results. He is healed. If my Lord can do this...I need to open my mind to His full authority. So awesome.
13. At the public school I work at it is the time of year when we have to write those lovely special education plans for all the children I teach....those Individualized Educational Pains. Oops....I meant to say plans.

Blessings Overflow...Look all around you...
1. We are doing our taxes. Fun! Fun! Fun! NOT! Our combined salaries were $8000/yr more the year we lived in FL when I worked less than I do now. We ran two households (barely) and never wanted for anything. The Lord provided for us. We made less money last year combined than we did before. Our combined salaries have dropped by about $4K/year for 2+ years. I have not felt this occurring and would not have believed it to be true without reviewing all tax years side to side. This proves we can survive on less and lends to making more cutbacks overall. 
2. If the Lord can heal my child, the Lord can take care of this too...and that...and that. I worry less and appreciate more. Thank you, YHWH, for revelation.
3. Yah sustains my family in time of need and in time of prosper. We are never alone.
4. The container crops are doing well. The potato plants are growing...we are mounding the stalks about twice a week. The cabbage I thought I had killed is making a brilliant comeback. The various sorts of lettuces are growing well. Tomatoe plants are not producing yet, but are growing well...My concord grape vine is thriving. The strawberry plants seem to be doing well thus far. The cannas are starting to bloom. The mint is growing larger. 2 lemon trees are growing well. 2 orange trees sprouts are growing. We rooted another pineapple plant. I need to repot the 4 pineapple plants from last year into bigger pots. The carrots and peas are growing well. We have many bean plants sprouting and the broccoli is breaking ground. My cabbage plants are so pretty. ((I think the cucumber plants died. I know the pepper plant died.))
5.  Chickens are doing well. Egg production is up.
6.  Homeschooling is going well. I love being with my child.
7.  Nothing is more important than the Lord, faith, family, and friends.
8.  I am realizing more and more that church is not the building, but the Living Word and Testimony I take within me. I am the church. I am my church. My Lord is within me.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Homeschooling through history hands-on...

These were historic markers at a historical society maintained cemetary. We came upon these and stopped to look and examine. Learning on the go!








Later, while just riding through a neighboring town, we found a Confederate cemetary (well, mostly Confederate)...and, we stopped to look and read markers and statues.

         





This was a tree stump grave marker. It was a more recent one...within the last century, anyway. The tree stump was because the person was a member of Woodmen of the World.

The second picture was the stump grave up closer. It was kind of wierd, but kind of unique. :)



This was of a small building down the hill, but in another section of the cemetary. Upon closer inspection, I think it may have been a crematorium of some sort, but I am not sure. Anyone know what this is?


I did try and peek in the hole, but I had no light source. It was a crack in the door of the curved building of the previous picture.

This was a natural effects shot. I did nothing to enhance this. I love how the light rainbows a glow around this. The entire cemetary had a peacefulness about it. But, seriously...I love this shot.

In the middle of the cemetary, near the front, was a statue. We found it to be neat, because the statue was made of strong metal and it seemed as though a huge force wind had caused it to be pushed forward on the weight of itself. The statue itself was quite neat, but it was educating in itself to show my son the effects of where the statue had pushed forward on itself and it still was able to compensate somewhat, by bending and yielding to some of the weight and carrying the burden of the weight in other ways.
This is the entire statue.


If you look at the bottom of the statue in the picture below, you will be able to see some of the buckling on the top sub-base that has the names of the militia on it. You can tell how the sides are higher than the middle. The sides are kind of bubbled up a bit.

The following photographs show how the statue base buckled and bulged in some places to offset the weight of the figure on the statue top shifting forward at some point in time. The last photos show where repairs have been done to the cement base where it has cracked with the damage or over time.






Of course, this last photograph shows the beauty of a true Carolinian (and, a true Christian)...in the middle of death, is honor, in the form of one of the images of Confederacy Salvation...the Palmetto Tree...bent, but still alive and reaching Heavenward...showing that no matter what, we may bend, but we will not be broken.



1Co10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.