Lunch - Eggs & Oranges

Lunch - Eggs & Oranges

 

Eating Lunch

Eating Lunch

Air Freshener - Cloves, Cinnamon Sticks, Leftover Orange Peels

Air Freshener - Cloves, Cinnamon Sticks, Leftover Orange Peels

 During lunch time is crunch time.  It’s the small period of time right before naptime.  It’s really important that I use this time to get as much lined up as possible so that I can cram as much into naptime as possible, because all the little ones are asleep.   Mixing up the bread for naptime baking…

Making bread

Making bread

Mixing up tea for packaging and for me!

Mixing up tea for packaging and for me!

Naughty Little Brother gets to sit by my feet.

Naughty Little Brother gets to sit by my feet.

 Sweetest Pea had been helping me.  See the stool?  I turned around and she was gone.  Yet, her clothes remained?  Was she zapped?

What happened to Sweetest Pea?

What happened to Sweetest Pea?

 Nope a potty break.  Apparently it required the removal of all clothing?

Time to read before naptime.  They're ready!

Time to read before naptime. They're ready!

One's Out!

One's Out!

Two Down!

Two Down!

Mission Accomplished.  Three all asleep.

Mission Accomplished. Three all asleep.

Little Girls and I finish up the bread.

Little Girls and I finish up the bread.

Oldest two read history for today.

Oldest two read history for today.

Then it’s time for Mama and oldest two to feed the baby goats lunch.  They get fed three times per day.  One more month ’til weaning.  I’ll be glad.  It’s fun, but a lot of work.  The little girls are listening to Mary Poppins on CD.  We have a very strict family rule for naptime.  You read or you sleep.  If you choose not to read, you choose to sleep.  Period.  There are no other choices.  Often, the older kids and I will do science or history in this time frame.  Today I’ve got work to do.  But for the benefit of the “school room” discussion, let me show you our science room! 

Designated science area

Designated science area

Not only are we blessed with a designated science area, but we also have our very own Home Ec room! 

Home Ec Room

Home Ec Room

Tongue in cheek, sure, but also goes to prove that ANY size home is suitable for schooling.  You do not need to feel like you can’t suitably school your children without a designated area.  Oh hogwash!  Can it be nice?  Sure it can.  If it fits your family’s lifestyle.  I can say that I like our situation right now better than I have at any place we’ve lived (military CA, two houses, moved back, then to town, and now) since we began homeschooling eight years ago and this is the smallest home we’ve been in in the last eight years.  Or possibly the last 13 years.  And it’s perfect for us, for our lifestyle. 

Off the soapbox, back to the day…..

Gotta get a little work done.

True Vine Stuff

True Vine Stuff

Sold a lot of lip balms and Drench bars last week and need to restock.  Must be chapped skin and lips… That time of the year I suppose.

Mixing up Drench

Mixing up Drench

Decided to try something a little new for someone’s little boy and ease of application instead of a tube…

Drench Drops... Hmmm....

Drench Drops... Hmmm....

Cutting Labels

Cutting Labels

Stamping Soap

Stamping Soap

shot47bigkidsA little snack while journaling.  The little ones will be up shortly.  Time for clean-up.  Packaged up a few orders and ran to the Post Office.  Called Daddy on the phone and he’ll be home after a bit.

Back home in time to do some clean-up before Daddy comes home. 🙂  Um, like fold some laundry?

Blech.

Blech.

Girly Girl helped me make supper (baked salmon, fried potatoes, green beans) and we picked up the kitchen.  Princess and Pumpkin Head cleaned the living room.  Big Brother vacuumed and corralled Shortie Pie. 

Daddy came home, mama milked, and Little Brother helped me feed the babies.  Girly girl finished up supper and it was almost ready when I came in from milking. 

Would have LOVED to put these up last night, put DH tells me they can wait for the weekend.

My new laying boxes!!!!

My new laying boxes!!!!

He’s right of course.  The chickens could care less.  I think they’re lovely and he did such a nice job on them.   I’d lay twice as many eggs if I were a chicken!

We watched American Idol and tucked the kids in bed with all their blessings.  I admit I sat up and watched the Duggars last night.  They never fail to fascinate and inspire me.  Can you even imagine 18 children?? 

Have a great day!!

Wow, what’s going on?  36 hits before 6:30 this morning?  You all must be dreadfully bored!  Well, it’s Friday for me.  (For ya’all too I suppose.)  I need the day to prep for a sweet and peaceful weekend of staying home and ENJOYING each other with no where to go!   May you all have a very blessed weekend with those you love and those that love you.

 

This is a reprint from my old blog and was almost exactly one year ago. 

Date: March 2, 2007

Our little business has really begun to take off.  We have shipped out approximately sixty orders since the last week of January.  That is impressive to us… It pretty much tops the amount of things we shipping in 2007, not counting wholesale orders.

This was a bit of a shock to me.

Also, we had the flu two weeks ago.  It is not a generic “we” that people use when talking about themselves.  It was a collective we.  I had the flu.  Ana had the flu.  Timothy and Christian had the flu.  Rebecca, Elizabeth, and Abigail had the flu.  And it was not pleasant.  I’m pretty certain the last time a bug knocked me down like that was 1999.  Only one child threw up and I consider that a rejoiceable success.

And I’m thrilled to report we were able to completely treat all symptoms with herbs.  No Robitussen, no achy, so you can sleep medicine!   We didn’t need Tylenol to combat the fevers.  It was a major success in our home and I’m very grateful we had everything on hand.  Except lemons and fresh ginger and that was quickly remedied by a very good and doting Daddy. 

Which brings me to the title of this entry.

I Can Do All Things.

I have heard of those mothers.  I think I once thought I was that mother.  I’m no longer under such delusions, lol.  I will freely admit that my younger children watched more television in the last three weeks than most likely the rest of their short lives combined.  I only wish I was kidding.  We did accomplish homeschooling… some.  I did keep up with the business though it meant long hours and little sleep and I wonder if that is why I was sick three full days whereas the children bounced back in under two?

And I discovered something about myself.  I *can* do almost anything…. I just can’t do them all at once.

I can be quite a decent wife.  I can be a sweet and rather discerning mama.  I can be a rather dutiful homeschooler.  I can run a moderately successful home business.  I can sew, and cook, and make everything from scratch.  I can work with a designer on new labels, talk with a printer about the new labels, plan my new wholesale accounts, plan our test prep., teach one small child her letters, teach another to read, another to count, another her body parts, another pre-algebra, and another multiplication.  I can wake up at 5AM with dh and I can stay up working on work ’til 1 AM. 

BUT

You can’t do it indefinitely and you can’t do it without a cost.  And you can’t do it all at once… or at least not longterm.

I was the “can do” mama.  For many, many years, I had a can-do philosophy.  If I heard of it, I was convinced I could do it.  I wanted to learn to sew.  And I did.  I wanted to grind my flour, make my bread, and spend hours upon hours in meal prep.  I wanted to run my own business, homeschool my children, use cloth diapers, and do everything I read about in Mother Earth News, all the while being a successful soccer mom, and coaching softball.

I’m exhausted.

And I quit.

LOL, I have come to accept that there are things for this family that are a priority.  And, now we are expecting our eighth child in twelve years.  I have one sixth grader, one third grader, one K/1, one preschooler, one 3 year old, a toddler, and I am oh so very pregnant.  It is time to delegate.

I have been reading how to make yogurt in my oven.  Today I quit.  I am buying a yogurt maker!  Don’t comment on how easy it is, I don’t care.  This is my line.  I can’t plan properly so that my oven is free.  I can’t keep up with our yogurt consumption.  I am buying a yogurt maker. 

My daughter is going to learn to make the bread.
My son is going to learn to grind all the flour.
My dh bought me huge tea jars so that I don’t have to pre-mix my pregnancy and childrens’ teas every morning.
I hired someone to turn my prefolds into prefitteds.
I am switching to all natural covers for the babies.  And I am NOT (absolutely refusing) to potty train Abigail before the baby comes in May.  (I can’t decide if that’s smart or stubborn.)
Someone else is making the wool covers. 
Someone else is designing the website and the labels.
We are having a printer print the labels.
I cut out all the soaps I don’t enjoy making.
I am simplifying.

Can I do it all?  Perhaps.

And finally, the admission.

I can do many things well.  But I can’t do it all well.  And that is a fact.  And a useful fact.  It is time I admit my limitations. 

In life,  we must all prioritize.  Where did True Vine Soap originally start anyway?  The goal was to give the business a name that would remind me to stay where I needed to be.  To keep me mindful of my priorities.  I am extremely grateful that I gave it such a name, and truly believe it to be God inspired.  Thanks to that, I think I am getting back to the right track.  We are so easily misled on rabbit trails. 

God
Family

Everything Else

Lord keep me mindful that I cannot do all things.  You have given me twenty four hours each day of which I am to be a good steward.  I pray that I would be mindful to take good care of those things which You have given me.  Keep me mindful Lord, keep me mindful.

A lot of our conversations in this house revolve around poop.  Yup, not kidding… Poop.

We have one baby, one toddler, and two preschoolers, so poop is a neverending source of conversation.  Some old-time favorites are always size, color, smell, body parts, and the list goes on.  Mom’s least favorite poop topic is location.  Mostly because the conversation always begins with, “Me poo…. or I pooped…”  And ends with me screeching, “You pooped WHERE?!”  It’s not pretty, but I’m convinced it’s normal. 

My oldest daughter, on the other hand, is positive it is NOT normal and we should all pretend as though no one ever poops.  It should not be mentioned.  Ever… That function which shall not be named.   Following one of these conversations you’ll hear her take a deep sigh and mutter, “It’s not okay.  It’s just not okay.  I can’t believe we’re talking about this again.”   And she’ll quietly slink away, pretending not to be listening to the conversation.

Well, I just want to say, “Thank you Tim Hawkins!  I now have the reassurance  I needed to know YES, we’re normal!” 

We got to see Tim perform last weekend in Galena, Illinois.   I’ll admit to being a little giddy at being alone with my husband overnight for the first time in approximately 13 years, but I thought he was fantastic!

His skit on his three year old ds and poop was priceless and I was laughing way louder than I ought according to my husband.  But, gosh, it’s so nice to relate to someone! 

It was with GREAT relief that I came home the next day and reassured our almost 13yo dd, “We’re totally normal!”

She broke my heart. 😦

“No mom, we’re NOT normal.  It’s just that he’s as twisted as we are.”

Sigh.

Whateva’.

The weather has gone from a high of sixty, to today…  Expected high of 32 degrees.  Oh, yes, and 2-4 inches of snow.  Sigh.  This wouldn’t be so incredibly disappointing except Mark and I were going away!  We were leaving the children with my folks and going to see Tim Hawkins!  Do you know him?  We find him wildly hilarious, but you have to be able to laugh at yourself.   Homeschoolers, beware.  If you can’t laugh at yourself, do not watch his Adams Family parody!  And, yes, he’s  a homeschooler.   Funnier than that is Cletus Take the Reel.  Unfortunately, we’ve found the hard way that unless your family is “redneck” and you know country songs, you won’t find it very funny.  HOWEVER, considering that we meet both of the former criteria, we were laughing so hard we had tears rolling down our cheeks. 

I’ll admit that I absolutely CAN’T wait to see him.  Although, the concept of just getting to spend 15 hours alone with my husband is thrilling!  What will we do?  We’re coming home that night so that we can milk Cinderella in the morning.  A bit of a bummer.  Cinderella however, has amazed us with her drive to be near people.  As a matter of fact, she cleared a 4.5 foot fence yesterday.  How does a goat do that?   It’s amazing.  So, we’re working on a new fence for her this weekend.  She gave a whopping full gallon on Wednesday!  I was so impressed.  It made her prison break a little more bearable. 

Half of our new homeschooling books came yesterday!  WooHoo!  Nothing like opening a huge box of shiny, new books!  What a thrill!

Legend is doing beautifully.  He has had zero accidents so far and Karen tells me that he was not potty trained.  She did tell me to get a large crate, but with a divider to make it smaller. I’m sure that made all the difference.  She sent him home with all sorts of goodies, but his absolute favorite is a little blue fleece blanket, covered in brown puppies, that smells like home.  What a thoughtful gift to give a pup!  He goes to the veterinarian this morning for his physical and to meet her.  We told her we were homeschoolers and that we’re using it as a field trip, so she’s preparing a little package for the kids!  How thoughtful is that? 

So, Ana is absolutely in love.  She is convinced that Legend is the smartest, sweetest, most beautiful puppy in the world.  I’m not sure she’s wrong.  He can sit like a good boy.  He isn’t fearful, jumpy, timid, or hyper.  I think he’s the perfect fit for us.  He just seems to be energetic, friendly, and the perfect velcro pup.

Ana, Dog Whisperer

Ana, Dog Whisperer

Legend loves being near us.  Everywhere we go, he goes.  He especially seems to love Mark.  But Tim loves him best I’m pretty sure.  Legend has not quite figured out steps yet.  And he thinks he’s a big dog.  He tried to convince me yesterday that he doesn’t need to use steps.  He thinks he can just hop on the porch like a big dog.   Maybe someday Legend!  Right now his front half can get up there, but that back half is just weighing him down!

I Think I Can

I Think I Can

And, of course, one step behind,  is Tim.  “Need help Boy?”

Legend will meet Bear this weekend.  Bear is my parents’ dog.  She is an Akita mix and really should have been a lap dog.  She’s getting old, but she’s the sweetest, quietest dog.  And she likes other dogs.  Well, maybe.  Actually we’re not sure Bear likes or dislikes anything.  She’s just okay with everything.  With the exception of her lawn chair, which she loves.  It is really odd to be sitting out at Mom and Dad’s, everyone in a lawn chair around the fire or whatnot, and Bear in her lawn chair. 

I was thinking the other day about how all three of us kids have dogs.  My brother and his wife have two, Baby and Precious.  One is a German Shorthair, the other a Lab.  My sister and her husband have Jeep.  All are spoiled dogs, though well behaved.  Jeep is exceptionally talented.  I, no kidding, watched the dog open his own Christmas presents this year!  I wish I had had it on camera, I would put it on YouTube for all of you.  It was amazing!  Sean (my brother-in-law)  has spent a huge amount of time with Jeep.  Dalmatians aren’t well known for their trainability to say the least.   Sean has apparently deeply influenced Tim.  I found this out yesterday as Tim tried to explain to Legend how to “High Five.”  Hmmmm…  I think “Down” might be easier.

Have a wonderful day!